Week 11- The War in 1917
Week 11- The War in 1917 HIST 388
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This 2 page Class Notes was uploaded by Austin McManus on Tuesday November 10, 2015. The Class Notes belongs to HIST 388 at George Mason University taught by Harry Butowsky in Summer 2015. Since its upload, it has received 44 views. For similar materials see World War I in History at George Mason University.
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Date Created: 11/10/15
HIST 388 Notes Week 11 War in 1917 Mutiny of the French Army amp Russian Revolution A Perpetual War The State of Europe in 1917 1916 saw a severe final blow to the idea in the minds of European heads of state amp the general population of fighting a splendid little war by way of three significant battles Verdun Jutland amp the Somme These and other factors caused all sides to experience this blow in a number of ways 0 Germany by the end of 1916 had lost over one million troops at Verdun and the Somme without gaining any territory in either engagements Additionally Britain s illegal naval blockade of Germany had resulted in gradual starving of the population and subsequent loss of much of the citizenry s morale Having practically lost their allies in the East both AustriaHungary and the Ottoman Empire were barely holding off the pursuing Russians British and Italians Germany quickly realized that it was alone by the onset of 1917 o On the Allied side both the British and French armies having lost millions of men by the end of 1916 were quite tired and fed up with continuously fighting and gaining very little ground on the battlefield increasingly soldiers particularly in the French ranks began questioning the reasons for their being at war and protesting their governments when they were not given sufficient replies 0 In the east tensions in Russia between the Provisional Government under Tsar Nicholas II and the public were rising as multiple revolutionary factions notably the Bolsheviks began rising to power and in uence both within the government and amongst the Russian people the Revolution that followed brought significant change both in the shortterm regarding the course of war and in the longterm as the implications of the role of new Soviet government in geopolitics for the remainder of the 20th century B Mutiny of the French Army 1917 By the spring of 1917 the French military strategy had failed time and time again to bring any significant and decisive advantage to the French Army The men serving were well aware of this as their casualties had exceeded 15 million by this time and they were basically fed up with fighting with insufficient rations and other in uential factors With Joseph J offre being fired General Robert Nivelle had taken his place and proposed a weeklong artillery barrage of the German lines succeeded by an all out frontal assault of the enemy by the entire French Army Nivelle assured the soldiers and officers that the offensive would last 48 hours and put a swift end to the war on the Western Front The resulting failure of the Second Battle of the Aisne the premiere engagement of Nivelle s offensive stripped much of the French Army of its morale and convinced a significant portion of the enlisted that the war needed to come to an end before more Frenchmen were killed The subsequent mutinies throughout nearly half of the French ranks were halted only by the disappearance of Nivelle and his replacement General Phillipe P tain easing the soldiers discrepancies by promising significant reform including an end to offensives deemed suicidal as well as further provision of rest from the front and home furloughs In addition to the surge of optimism prior to the Nivelle Offensive and the subsequent frustration following it the mutinies of 1917 were caused by an increasing sentiment of pacifism and disappointment at the failure of American troops to arrive and relieve the French C Russian Revolution 1917 Eloquently detailed in John Reed s Ten Days that Shook the World the October Revolution was the second of two revolutionary movements that occurred in Russia in 1917 The first known as the February Revolution brought the end of Tsar Nicholas s autocratic regime due to the mutiny of formerly loyalist Red Army troops and replaced it with a dual power government which involved two major factions o The Provisional Government was a coalition of liberals and socialists seeking political and social reform in Russia through democracy and was headed by Georgy Lvov the first postimperial Prime Minister of Russia 0 The Petrograd Soviet was a city council in Petrograd presentday St Petersburg consisting of socialists who challenged the more moderate Provision Government for power a struggle that would be a leading cause of the revolution in October Leon Trotsky one of the seven leaders of the Bolsheviks headed the council during the revolution later in the year By the fall of 1917 the two political entities came to a head and the Bolsheviks led by Vladimir Lenin used its increasing in uence in the Petrograd Soviet to organize the mutinous factions of the Red Army and citizen revolutionaries that they used in order to effectively overthrow the Provisional Government in Petrograd on October 25 the Gregorian calendar s November 7 The Provisional Government was replaced by the Bolshevik majority Congress of Soviets which declared Russia as the first socialist state known as the Russian Socialist Federative Soviet Republic which lasted until 1922 when the outcome of the Russian Civil War established the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics USSR colloquially known as the Soviet Union
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