(i)Describe the main events in the career of Leon Trotsky
Trotsky was sent to Odessa by his father, where he became an outstanding student in a German secondary school. He became a populist at an early age, and in late 1896, he was strongly attracted to Marxism. Later, after escaping from his first imprisonment, he went to London and joined up with Lenin. After the split in the Russian Social Democratic party, he became a leading Menshevik spokesman, but later, he established an independent course, wavering between Bolshevism and Menshevism.
Trotsky returned to Russia in 1905, and became chairman of the St Petersburg soviet but was arrested during his last meeting. While in prison, Trotsky developed the theory of permanent revolution. He declared that in Russia a bourgeois and a socialist revolution would be combined and that a proletarian revolution would then spread throughout the world. He was banished to Siberia again, and he worked as a journalist.
At the outbreak of World War One, he was an active in pacifist and radical propaganda.
Trotsky hailed the outbreak of revolution in Russia in February as the opening of the permanent revolution he had predicted. He reached Petrograd in mid-May and assumed the leadership of a left-wing Menshevik faction.
By 1917, he had returned to Russia and become a member of the Bolshevik party. He was one of the chief organizers of the October Revolution, which bought the Bolsheviks to power.
As Foreign commissar, Trotsky's first charge was to implement the Bolshevik's program of peace by calling for immediate armistice negotiations among the warring powers. Germany and its Allies responded, and in mid-December peace talks were begun at Brest-Litovsk, though Trotsky continued vainly to invite support from the Allied government. In January 1918, Trotsky entered into the peace negotiations personally...