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Word Count: 1101Before the war.

Before the war, there were lots of problems
which led up to the revolution and we call them
the long term causes. The peasants working and
living conditions were very bad but the
government made it even worse by its own
policies. Russia needed to develop its industries,
so that it was a modern agricultural country
instead of a backward one and also to remain in
an important military power. To aid this dilemma
the government invested in enormous amounts of
money in improving Russias industries. Where
did most of this money come from? From the
pockets of the people in Russia!
To do this, the peasants had to pay huge taxes
not only on grain but on nearly all everyday items
such as alcohol and salt! Nevertheless, the
workers wages still stayed very low and did not
increase much at all as the government wanted
to squeeze the people for every penny they could
get to put into industrial development. Soon later,
all seemed well, iron and steel industries grew
rapidly but then thousands of workers lost their
jobs. This was a cause for strikes and rebellions
against managers and the government. Also,
things were not going very well in the country
side. As if being taxed for all you were worth
wasnt enough, there were very bad harvests for
a couple of years so now they were starving as
well! To return the favour, the peasants became
violent and started to burn landlords houses.

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Then the Tzar went to war with Japan which he
thought would make the public believe in the
government again. However, it backfired on him
and caused all the same problems again but by a
greater degree. That really infuriated the people!
Leading up to the war the peasants and workers
still had:
*Inadequate clothing
*Insufficient and unhealthy food
*Long, hard hours at work
*Inadequate housing/shelter
*Self-made entertainment
*Impoverished standard of life
*Very low quality of life
*Age of death-early 20’s-30’s.

These were the huge differences in the quality of
life between the rich and the poor as the rich
*More than adequate clothing
*More than adequate food
*Lived on rising and unearned income
*Entertainment was provided for them
*Excellent standard of life
*More than excellent quality of life
*Age of death-late 50’s, 60’s and above
In these years leading up to the war, as you can
see, the living standard of the peasants and
workers did not improve as so they were forced
to rise up against these massive inadequacies!!
Politically, Russia was very unstable as the
people had lost a lot of respect for the
government and the Tzar. When the Tzar started
to use the Dumas people began to wonder
whether they would have any real power. By the
Dumas first meeting it was clear. They could not
pass laws, they could not appoint ministers and
they could not control finance in such important
areas as defence. Was there much point in them
if the Tzar did not like what they were doing or
proposing to do, he could dissolve them?? So, no.

In my opinion the peoples views were not being
heard through the Dumas. There are lots of
opinions as whether the Tzar was fit to rule
Russia. In my opinion, the Tzar was not fit to rule
Russia but this was by no means his own fault.

He was taught as a soldier and he was not taught
to act and behave like a king so it was his
statesmanship that was at fault, not him himself!!
The War.
The war did not only effect the army but the
people at home. Food was getting short, all the
male peasants had to be taken off to the army so
only women and invalids were left to tend the
farms, shops .etc. All the working trains were
being put to use for the war effort so food was
not getting through from other places. Nearly all
unnecessary factories in the cities were closed
so that furthed in another massive
unemployment. People were not getting coal and
wood to burn because the coal industries were
shut down so the people were freezing as well.

Not only that but the prices were rising as well
because of the shortages! Wages were not going
up, workers had to work longer hours, and
Vodka had stopped being made during the war
so the people now had nothing to drown their
sorrows in!! There was a greater poverty all
round, a loss in confidence in the government
and there was no end to the awful news about
the terrible deaths and casualties from far at the
front lines!
Nicholas II made two very large and obvious
mistakes. The first was that he made himself
head of the armed forces


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