The Bolshevik revolution was the revolution of Lenin and Trotsky. lf Lenin provided the theoretic foundation, Trotsky was the primary architect of the new superstructure. He was a brilliant organizer. Since 1917, Trotsky did the actual organisation and direction of the armed forces. He was the commissar of the new Red Army and Chairman of the Revolutionary Military Soviet.
Lenin and Trotsky both were great leaders. Among the Bolsheviks there were no others like them, none so bold, resourceful and commanding. There were occasional differences between them, but the two under stood each other.
“Lenin before 1917 was too masterful and exacting, too fond of preaching discipline, too careless of freedom, too verbose and confused, too much addicted to quoting from the scriptures as if he were in sole possession of their truth, too much surrounded by men duller and weaker than himself.”
Trotsky was a clever man, who valued his independence. He did not like the conception of a severely disciplined and exclusive party. “He was also vain and moody, neither a good subordinate nor a leader who could inspire lasting confidence in his followers. He was more admired than trusted, more envied than feared. He cared for doctrinal purity about as little as for party discipline ; if he was ruthless, it was not in the defence of orthodoxy but for victory’s sake and in the quest for power.” Perhaps this trait in the character of Trotsky that explains why Trotsky lost in the struggle for power after Lenin. In spite of his fame, he could not control the party machine.