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Disintegrating Forces In The End of the Russian Empire Michael T Florinsky explores one of the most significant events in the 20th century In just over ten years Russia suffered vast changes in its government military and social standards Throughout this time war remained an overwhelming factor in the condition of the Russian Empire and in the attitude of the disgruntled masses Something had to give The Russo-Japanese War defeat sparked the undeniable need for change and WWI simply drove the nail in the coffin The people wanted change and Florinsky explains that the Revolution was the outcome of the disintegrating forces set in motion by the War p224 To accept that WWI caused the fall of the Russian Empire these disintegrating forces must be discussed First of all there is mobilization In order to fight the War the Russian government needed soldiers However Russia also needed workers to supply war goods to the soldiers while also supplying a tax base to fund the War This created a conflict between the bureaucracy and the military The war effort shifted millions of people from their normal jobs to the army or into the cities As the urban populations grew alongside heightening public discontent the poverty and ignorance of the masses proved a most favorable ground for the spreading of revolutionary ideas and spelled the doom of the monarchy p46 Therefore if there had been no war and no mobilization of the masses then there might not have been a revolution Another disintegrating force brought on by war was isolation With only two ports left open during the war Russia was forced to supply goods using mainly the railroad system However the entire system was incompetent and showed internal backwardness which caused further mistrust and questioning of the powers of the mighty Empire In addition to mobilization and isolation WWI caused the weakening of industry and agriculture in Russia The war effort demanded more productivity in
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