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Political System

In 1920s the dictatorship of Bolsheviks Party - a variant of political system of one politic party - was firmly established on almost all the territory of former Russian Empire (except Finland, the Baltic States, Western Ukraine and Belarus, Bessarabia). In the beginning of the decade the other, so called soviet parties - Mensheviks and Socialist Revolutionary Party (S.R.) were either liquidated by the RCE (the All-Russian Commission on Emergency) or declared dismissal, and in 1921 Bund also declared its dismissal.

In summer 1922 in Moscow the S.R. leaders were put on open trial for counterrevolutionary terrorist activity. Protests on the side of world community made the Bolsheviks refuse the idea of the similar 'trial of Mensheviks'. The organized political opposition to bolshevist's regime was done with.

In the years of the Civil War Bolsheviks Party took the form of militarized organization. This status was approved by the X Congress RCP (b)(Russian Communists Party of Bolsheviks) (spring 1921), at which any fraction activity was prohibited. In fact, the Politic Bureau (Politbureau) of the Central Committee (TSK) of the RCP became the real governing body of the country. In 1921 G.Y.Zinoviev, L.B.Kamenev, V.I.Lenin, I.V.Stalin, L.D.Trotsky were the members of the Politbureau, and N.I.Bukharin, M.I.Kalinin, V.M.Molotov were the candidates. All the important political and economical problems were discussed and solved in the Politbureau, and only after that they were got through the appropriate government organs.

Assigning in 1922 I.V.Stalin as General Secretary of the TSK of the RCP fastened the process of centralization of the Party. The structure of the Party committees of different levels was unified, the secretaries, who were to deal with the Party affairs only, became the Heads of the committees.
In 1920s the original 'technology of authority' formed: assigning to any amenable post in the field of government and economical management, culture and others was prerogative of the appropriate organs of the Party - the TSK, regional, city, district committees.

In those conditions the process of formalization of the organs of Soviet authority, which had began in the years of the Civil War, continued. In 1920s, as a matter of fact, the same pre-revolutionary structure of authority was being restored: the firm vertical of the Party secretaries (in tsars Russia - governors-generals), surrounded by the structure of local representation - soviets (before the Revolution - zemstvos) with tens (if not hundreds) of thousands of peasants' meetings as a base (in 1920s the general part of population of Russia lived in village, just like before the Revolution).

The one-party system worked in a comparatively 'mild' way. The members of the Bolshevists Party occupied the key posts in organs of authority. The state really functioning in accordance with law wasn't built, but terror quickly grew less. During 1922 Criminal Code and Civil Code were prepared and approved, the judicial reform was conducted (revolutionary tribunals abolished, the institution of public prosecutors and barristers established) and censorship was constitutionally approved, the RCA of time of the Civil War was transformed into the State Political Administration (SPA), and later into the United State Political Administration (USPA) attached to the Council of People's Commissars (CPC) of the USSR.

The regime conducted punitive policy towards the Church (especially the Orthodoxy Church) and some trends of Art. Having chosen the way of compromises in the field of economics, Bolsheviks, despite militant declarations heard from time to time and outbursts of terror, had to accept certain compromises in politics too, in particular, in national policy.

By the end of the Civil War and foreign military intervention the territory of connected by military-political union of soviet republics was formed: Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic, Ukraine, Belarus, Azerbaijan, Armenia, Georgia Soviet Socialist Republic, Bukhara and Khorezm Soviet Peoples' Republics (in November 1922 Far East Republic became the part of RSFSR).
In most of these Republics national Communist Party were in authority in 1921-1922.

Each Republic had its own constitution, organs of authority and governing. In 1921-1922 economical and political uniting of Soviet States in Federal Union started. It was conducted by concluding agreements and union treaties between the RSFSR and other Republics. However, this system appeared to be not effective, that brought to different conflicts between leaders of the RSFSR and some republics (Ukraine, Georgia).

In December 1922 the RSFSR, Belarus, Federation, which in March 1922 united Azerbaijan, Armenia and Georgia, having signed Union Treaty formed the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. The treaty differentiated the competence between new governing organs of the USSR and republican organs.

The new Central Executive Committee of the USSR was elected; on Lenin's proposal it was to have four chairmen (M.I.Kalinin, N.N.Narimanov, G.I.Petrovsky, A.G.Chervyakov), representing each of the Union Republics. In 1922-1924 working out the base of structure of state was being continued, after the numerous discussions it was formulated in the new Constitution accepted on January 31, 1924. The Constitution of the USSR for each Republic left the right to leave the Union freely, and the territory of a republic couldn't be changed without receiving its agreement.

Created with the use of administrative-political pressing the USSR was formally federative but in fact unitary state. National-territorial formations mostly had only cultural-national autonomy. In 1920s considerable number of national schools, theatres, newspapers were established; the literature in languages of different nations of the USSR were published; many nations for the first time received the system of writing worked out by scientists.

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