War communism is the name for the economic policies that introduced to Russia in 1918 by Vladimir Lenin, leader of Russia from 1917-24. The policy was ended in 1921 because it was not successful. Instead, he introduced the New Economic Policy in 1921.
War Communism was introduced for many reasons. However, the most important ones were:
- to feed and supply the hungry Red Army of Bolsheviks during the Russian Civil War
- to move towards complete communism
It was bad for the Russian economy because the government took away extra grain produced by the peasants. This was known as grain requisitioning. Peasants were not allowed to sell their extra food, so they stopped producing more than they needed to eat. This created a Russian famine with millions of people foodless and starving.
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