By the close of 1917 it was evident to the Soviet government that the Russian Army, tired of the three-year war and propaganded by Bolsheviks, lost its fighting efficiency. Bolsheviks' support - the Regional Guards (about 465 thousand of people) wasn't battle-tried and lacked of arms and command cadres.
Therefore on November, 10 SNK (the Soviet of People's Commissars) decided to start gradual reduction of the Russian army, and on the 16th of December subjugated it to itself, implemented appointment of the officers and officials by election, cancelled all the military ranks and gave full authority of the army to soldiers committees and Soviets. On the 15th of January 1918 SNK passed the decree of formation of the Workers' and Peasants Red Army (RCCA) on a voluntary basis, and on the 29th of January - the Workers' and Peasants' Socialist Red Fleet.In the beginning of March the Supreme military council for supervision of all military operations under the chairmanship of narkom (people's commissar) of military affairs L.D.Trotsky's was founded. In April compulsory military training of workers and peasants was introduced, the institute of military commissioners, volost, district, provincial and regional military commissariats were established. Simultaneously the election system of commissariat stuff, which hadn't justified itself, was cancelled, " the Formula of solemn promise " (the oath of allegiance) at enrolling in the army, and in May - new system of military - district division of the country were introduced. A number of former officers and generals were involved in military service. From the officer corps totaling by October 1917 in 200 thousand people, 75 thousand had served in the Red Army and on the fleet during civil war.
In April of 1918 SNK ratified the plan of expansion of the million army. In May 29 the Central Executive Committee (VTSYK) made a decision of compulsory recruitment to RCCA. It allowed to increase its number by the end of 1918 up to 725,4 thousand soldiers. August, 19 1918 the SNK passed the decree of unification of all Armed forces of the Republic, foundation of the People's Commissariat (narkomat) of military affairs, and on the 2nd of September the VTSYK decided to transform the country into a military camp, create the supreme body of military authority - the Revvoensovet (the Revolution Military Council) of the republic (chairman - Trotsky) and to introduce the post of the Commander-in-chief of all Armed forces of RSFSR (I.I.Vatsetis).
Finally, under presidency of V.I.Lenin the Soviet of Working and Country Defense was established on the 30th of November, which was given the full rights of mobilization of forces and facilities of the country for the sake of its defense. The important decisions on military question were taken on the VIIIth congress of the RCP (b) (Russian Communist Party of Bolshevics) (in March 1919). The Congress demanded to put an end to vestiges of guerilla warfare and raise the regular Red Army with strong military discipline, make a wider use of experience and knowledge of military experts. The Congress abolished the All-Russia bureau of military commissioners, made the decision of formation of the political Department of the RVSR (the Revolution Military Soviet of the Republic), transformed in May to the Political administration headed by I.T.Smilga. The TSK (Central Committee) was put in charge of reorganization measures of the Field staff of the RVSR, improvement of activity of the RVSR and the All-Russia general staff.
On the initiative of the Commander-in-chief I.I.Vatsetis on the 1st of June the VTSYK took the decision " About unification of military forces of the Soviet republics: Russia, Ukraine, Latvia, Lithuania and Byelorussia ". Strength of the army and fleet grew from 1,6 million in May 1919 to 2,6 million in March 1920. In July 8, 1919. I.I.Vatsetis was dismissed from the post of the Commander-in-chief for " belonging to the White Guard organization " (subsequently that accusation didn't not prove to be true) and replaced by the commander of the East front S.S. Kamenev. With a purpose of unification of all victual affair except for the products delivered by the narkomat of foodstuffs, on the 9th of July the VTSYK founded a post of the Emergency authorized by the Soviet of Defense for the supply of the Red Army (it was occupied by A.I.Rykov). There were taken measures on intensification of the influence of Bolsheviks in the army and fleet. The number of army communists increased from 35 thousand in October 1918 up to 121 thousand in October 1919.