Who Was He?
Born November 7, 1879 in Kirovohrad, Ukraine.
Full name: Lev Davidovich Bronshtein.
He was a writer, a communist, a leader in the 1917 Russian
Revolution, a people’s commissar, and the head of the Red
What Was He A Part Of?
• He joined Social Democratic Party, which split into two
• Became member of the Menshevik (minority) faction.
• There, he developed his theory of permanent revolution.
His Introduction to
• Marxism: the political, economic, and social, theories of Karl Marx
including the belief that the struggle between social classes is a major
force in history and that there will eventually be a society where there
are no classes.
• Trotsky skipped to school to talk with political exiles and he read
many illegal books.
• He met people who had revolutionary ideas, which led to the
development of his own.
The 1917 Russian Revolution
• He lead the communist faction.
• He became a war commissioner.
• He eventually joined the Bolshevik (majority) party and became
an ally of Vladimir Lenin, leader of the new Soviet government.
• Trotsky became second to Lenin.
• He became a people’s commissar for his new role in
• He was responsible for negotiating a peace treaty with Russia
so that they wouldn’t participate in World War I.
• This led to him becoming a commissar of the army and navy
after he resigned his position.
The Red Army
• After becoming the commissar of the army and navy, Trotsky
raised a powerful new army, which was called the Red Army.
• Red Army: early beneficiary of two ongoing sources of strength
for communist Russia; a willingness to use people of humble
background, but great ability and an ability to inspire mass
loyalty in the name of a brighter communist future.
• Recruited able generals and masses of loyal conscripts.
• Red Army fought and won against White Russian forces in the
civil war, which kept the Bolshevik regime alive.
Tension With Joseph Stalin
• When Lenin’s health started deteriorating, the people started
questioning who his successor would be.
• Trotsky seemed to be a good choice because of his success.
• However, Trotsky was very arrogant, grating him very few friends.
• His Jewish background went against him.
• Once Lenin died, a man named Joseph Stalin came and politically
• This led to Trotsky’s downfall and exile out of the country.
• Trotsky was first exiled to Alma-Ata, which is now
• Soon after, he was banned from the entire Soviet Union.
• He continued writing books, articles, and memoirs regarding
• He also criticized Stalin, which caused him to name Trotsky a
conspirator in taking him out of power.
• Throughout the years that followed, Trotsky lived in
Turkey, France, Norway.
• He eventually ended up in Mexico, where he spent his final
• Trotsky escaped the first assassination attempt by Stalin on
May 24, 1940.
• On August 20, 1940, Ramon Mercader murdered Trotsky with
an ice pick.
• A day later, Trotsky died due to his injuries at the age of 60.
• Mercador assassinated Trotsky by the orders of Joseph Stalin.