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Why the 1905 Revolution Failed

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Why the 1905 revolution failed

The 1905 revolution failed due to many factors, all of which helped the Tsar government overcome the revolutionaries. The aim of the revolutionaries was to gain governmental reform, however the Tsar’s aim was not to lose power.

One of the reasons that the 1905 revolution failed was due to the loyalty that Nicholas II had from his armed forces. With these armed forces the Tsar was able to crush the disturbances that were part of the revolution meaning that he could arrest the revolutionaries and either execute them or exile them to Siberia. This in effect reduced the amount of revolutionaries making it easier for the Tsar to stay in power throughout the revolution. Having the loyalty of the armed forces was a very significant reason for the failure of the revolution because if the army had have turned against the Tsar he would not have been able to overpower the revolution.

Nicholas II also had support from a group known as the Black Hundreds. This was a counter revolutionary group formed of mainly richer citizens such as landowners who supported the principles of autocracy and Russian nationalism. The Black Hundreds helped the government regain control as even though they did not have governmental approval they hunted down and executed thousands of know reformers meaning that it would be again be easier for the government to survive during the revolution.

Another reason for the failure of the 1905 revolution was disunity among the revolutionaries. This meant that there was no co-ordination with the outbreaks resulting in them being very spread out. This made it easier for the armed forces and Black Hundreds to suppress them because at no time was there one big outbreak which would have made it hard for the government to deal with. This was a significant factor for the failure of the 1905 revolution because if this had have been the case the government may have found it difficult to deal with the outbreaks as they would have been largely populated due to the 80% peasant population in Russia at that time.

As well as the revolutionaries not co coordinating very well they also had very different aims depending on what political group they might have been in. Some groups of revolutionaries wanted to share power with the Tsar whereas some wanted to completely change society and remove the Tsar. Due to their differences in aims this caused the different types of groups to fight amongst themselves as well as fighting against the Tsar which would have made it impossible for the 1905 revolution to be a success as everybody was fighting against each other.

The final reason for the failure of the 1905 revolution was the introduction of the October Manifesto which was a document that granted rights to the Russian people and it gave citizens a voice in the government through the election of the Duma. Tsar Nicholas II believed that this manifesto would help to end the revolution as it met some of the needs of the revolutionaries. This was correct in some cases as the manifesto split the opposition forces as some liberals continued to make small outbreaks against the Tsar whereas other liberals immediately accepted the terms of the October Manifesto and ended their revolution.

In conclusion the Tsar survived the revolution for a number of reasons however I believe the most important was the Loyalty of the armed forces and the support of the Black Hundreds. I believe that this is the main reason for the failure of the revolution as even though there was no co ordination between the revolutionaries they still provided outbreaks and attacks against the government which couldn’t have been dealt with without the support of the armed forces. The armed forces gave Nicholas II a lot of power as due to the strength and size of his forces it made it easy for the Tsar to crush outbreaks giving him no real threats that he had to deal with. If the armed forces had not have been loyal to the Tsar and went against him I believe the 1905 revolution would have been a success.

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