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Russia: Revolution and Civil War 1917-1921

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Between 1917 and 1921 a devastating struggle took place in Russia following the collapse of the Tsarist empire. Many regard this savage civil war as the most influential event of the modern era. An incompatible White alliance of moderate socialists and reactionary monarchists stood little chance against Trotsky's Red Army and Lenin's single-minded Communist dictatorship. T Between 1917 and 1921 a devastating struggle took place in Russia following the collapse of the Tsarist empire. Many regard this savage civil war as the most influential event of the modern era. An incompatible White alliance of moderate socialists and reactionary monarchists stood little chance against Trotsky's Red Army and Lenin's single-minded Communist dictatorship. Terror begat terror, which in turn led to even greater cruelty with man's inhumanity to man, woman and child. The struggle became a world war by proxy as Churchill deployed weaponry and troops from the British empire, while armed forces from the United States, France, Italy, Japan, Poland and Czechoslovakia played rival parts. Using the most up to date scholarship and archival research, Antony Beevor, author of the acclaimed international bestseller Stalingrad, assembles the complete picture in a gripping narrative that conveys the conflict through the eyes of everyone from the worker on the streets of Petrograd to the cavalry officer on the battlefield and the woman doctor in an improvised hospital.


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Between 1917 and 1921 a devastating struggle took place in Russia following the collapse of the Tsarist empire. Many regard this savage civil war as the most influential event of the modern era. An incompatible White alliance of moderate socialists and reactionary monarchists stood little chance against Trotsky's Red Army and Lenin's single-minded Communist dictatorship. T Between 1917 and 1921 a devastating struggle took place in Russia following the collapse of the Tsarist empire. Many regard this savage civil war as the most influential event of the modern era. An incompatible White alliance of moderate socialists and reactionary monarchists stood little chance against Trotsky's Red Army and Lenin's single-minded Communist dictatorship. Terror begat terror, which in turn led to even greater cruelty with man's inhumanity to man, woman and child. The struggle became a world war by proxy as Churchill deployed weaponry and troops from the British empire, while armed forces from the United States, France, Italy, Japan, Poland and Czechoslovakia played rival parts. Using the most up to date scholarship and archival research, Antony Beevor, author of the acclaimed international bestseller Stalingrad, assembles the complete picture in a gripping narrative that conveys the conflict through the eyes of everyone from the worker on the streets of Petrograd to the cavalry officer on the battlefield and the woman doctor in an improvised hospital.

30 review for Russia: Revolution and Civil War 1917-1921

  1. 4 out of 5

    Henri

    When I've heard the there's a Beevor coming about Russia I guessed it would be a general effort to describe the overall Russian campaign in the Second or First World Wars. I even thought it could be on their WW1 campaign - or maybe a general overview of all their military campaigns over the 20th century. What I did not expect was our foremost military historian tackling the issues of insurrection, revolution and early communist state building. When I picked this up I was interested to see whethe When I've heard the there's a Beevor coming about Russia I guessed it would be a general effort to describe the overall Russian campaign in the Second or First World Wars. I even thought it could be on their WW1 campaign - or maybe a general overview of all their military campaigns over the 20th century. What I did not expect was our foremost military historian tackling the issues of insurrection, revolution and early communist state building. When I picked this up I was interested to see whether this would really turn out to be a history of revolution and civil war and I guess the answer is yes - it is, but not at all similar to the fare we usually get about the birth of Soviet Union. Understandably with his background and incredible backlist the author focuses less on the political and economic machinations behind the scenes (whatever there is on this though is spot on) and instead shines his military expertise on every important issue and event. For example whilst many other political leaning historians would focus on the Bolshevik cliques or political infighting during the rebellious months in late 1917 Petrograd, Beevor takes us to command posts, garrison headquarters and trenches of the Eastern Front - all of it with fascinating detail deriving from detailed research. This is a fantastic and crucial new way of looking at the identity forming years of the Soviet Union and I am totally here for it and would recommend it to everyone.

  2. 4 out of 5

    bernardhughes

    Puts current issues in perspective I had almost zero knowledge of the scale of Western intervention to stop the Boloshvik revolution and it gave me a perspective on the roots of Stalin distrust for Allies in 1939. Read The Glossary at the end first. Horrendous brutality on all sides made me think a 'plague on all your houses' . Puts current issues in perspective I had almost zero knowledge of the scale of Western intervention to stop the Boloshvik revolution and it gave me a perspective on the roots of Stalin distrust for Allies in 1939. Read The Glossary at the end first. Horrendous brutality on all sides made me think a 'plague on all your houses' .

  3. 4 out of 5

    Nick Harriss

    Having read “Red Famine” and “The Empire Must Die” recently, this book focuses on the time period between the two, so seemed a perfect next read. This achieved that task very well. While it’s coverage of the Revolution itself was not as good as “The Empire Must Die”, that of the Civil War was first class, and enlightening in many ways.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Thomas Robb

  5. 4 out of 5

    Goran Remborg

  6. 4 out of 5

    John

  7. 5 out of 5

    Joseph Petyanszki

  8. 5 out of 5

    Anthony Killeen

  9. 4 out of 5

    Wendy Wilkinson

  10. 5 out of 5

    George Saville

  11. 5 out of 5

    Mauricio Santoro

  12. 5 out of 5

    Billy Heron

  13. 4 out of 5

    Mark Dickinson

  14. 5 out of 5

    John Coughlan

  15. 4 out of 5

    Darren Gore

  16. 5 out of 5

    YiYang

  17. 5 out of 5

    Christian Jakobsson

  18. 4 out of 5

    Samson Vowles

  19. 4 out of 5

    Andrew Herbert

  20. 4 out of 5

    Tim Cahalan

  21. 4 out of 5

    Todd Robinson

  22. 4 out of 5

    BrianC75

  23. 4 out of 5

    Alan S Jones

  24. 5 out of 5

    Alexander Slocombe

  25. 5 out of 5

    James S Lawson

  26. 4 out of 5

    Daniel

  27. 4 out of 5

    Eric

  28. 4 out of 5

    Will Goring

  29. 4 out of 5

    Simon Wingfield

  30. 4 out of 5

    Rosemary Bailey

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