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Сведения об образовательной организации Во исполнение постановления Правительства РФ № 582 от 10 июля 2013 года, Приказа Федеральной службы по надзору в сфере образования и науки от 29 мая 2014 г. № 785

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Oleg Airapetov: The Russian Army during the War and Revolution

On December 1, 2017, as a part of the lecture series at Saint Tikhon’s Orthodox University of the Humanities on the 1917 Russian Revolution, Dr. Oleg Airapetov gave a lecture on “The Russian Army During the War and the Revolution”. Dr. Airapetov, a well-known historian, discussed how the Imperial Government discredited itself by losing the confidence of the officers. This led to a loss of control over the army and, in the end, to the triumph of the February Revolution of 1917 and the overthrow of the monarchy.

In his lecture, Oleg Airapetov touched upon the question of the role of the Army in the events of 1917. In the historian’s view, the course of events leading to the Revolution can be traced back to the 19th century, when serfdom was still widespread in the country.

The reason why the Government lost control over the Army when the country was at war in 1917, according to the lecturer, was that it was unable to recruit and train enough officers and corporals to keep pace with rapid growth in the number of recruits. A particular feature of the Russian state at the time was the relatively small size of the country’s police force. The Army was partially responsible for policing and was not able to suppress any substantial amount of civil unrest.

Taking into account the conditions of the First World War, the Government was unable to suppress the 1917 Revolution as it had done in 1905, when the country had a professional army that was loyal to the Emperor. During the protracted First World War, morale began to fall among soldiers, and the extent of control over the army over the country also began to decrease. The authorities began to forfeit the trust of the army, and this led to the soldiers joining the rebels during the revolt in Petrograd in February 1917, rather than siding with the government. This ensured the success of the February Revolution.

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