Operation Faustschlag

During Operation Faustschlag, most people in the leadership of the Bolshevik government opposed many peace with the Central Powers, like Leon Trotsky. However, in the end Lenin, who supported making peace prevailed and the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk was signed.

But let’s say, Bolsheviks decided to continue the war, which was a very possible scenario. How do you think this scenario could have turned out. Would have the Central Powers been able to continue their drive and capture Petrograd and Moscow? as they faced no serious resistance in those 11 days of the operation.

First of all, the reason why a lot of soldiers supported revolution is that they said they will pull out of the war when Kerensky did not do that many soldiers when to bolsheviks. A top priority of bolsheviks was to end the war.

2nd soviets had no capacity to fight Germany and since soldiers did not really want to fight they had no one to fight them with. Germans were very close to Petrograd and marched into Kyiv. bolsheviks had simply no capacity to defeat a standing army that was ready to fight them. Another reason that many people would choose germans with relative calm and order over bloody bolsheviks. an example is when Germany entered the Taganrog, they were actually welcomed.

So no there would not be any serious resistance, only the allies who had armies in important places could fight germans but it was just expeditionary corpses with loyal Russian army units. who would not stop germans from invading bolshevik territory but would resist them from invading important war effort locations.


Yes. I think this is an interesting alternate scenario. If the Central Powers took Moscow and Petrograd in 1918, which seems was very possible, history would have been very different. Bolsheviks would have likely been overthrown and the Whites would have won the Civil War as at that time they controlled most of Eastern Russia. And of course, then all history changes.

The Germans must accept a large share of the blame for there ever being a Bolshevik regime to begin with.

If they hadn’t been so desperate (by early 1917 the German military knew Germany couldn’t win) Lenin and his friends never even get to Russia to begin with. The Bolsheviks remain a fringe group in this scenario.

The other large share of the blame belongs with the Provisional Government in general and Kerensky in particular. They should have stopped Russian participation in the war at once, but Kerensky felt more loyal to his liberal friends in France and Britain than he did to the Russian people themselves. The failed offensive as well as the July days (where Kerensky armed the Bolsheviks to oppose Kornilov) fatally undermined the Provisional Government.

Both Kerensky and Kornilov had Napoleonic ambitions and wanted to push the other out of the precarious balance of power situation. Kerensky gambled on the one group that he should not have gambled on, the Bolsheviks. After July 1917, the overthrow of Kerensky and the Provisional Government was a mere matter of time.

And even then, the leadership of the SR’s (by far the largest political grouping, much larger than the Bolsheviks) could have stopped the Bolshevik takeover, but instead Lenin managed to split them and temporarily ally himself with a wing of the SR movement and was able to knock out the opposition one after the other.

The vast difference in plans for the future also doomed the White movement from the start, they had little in common apart from being anti-Bolshevik. There were those who wanted the autocracy back, nationalists, SRs, liberals, progressives, constitutionalists, conservatives and so on. Had the Whites defeated the Reds the infighting between the various White groupings would have started immediately.

In my estimation, the SR movement likely prevails, if it acts decisively enough which in our timeline was always a problem. The autocratic Tsarist system was so widely discredited that hardly anyone, beyond the Black Hundreds, wanted it back.