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"Petrograd is in an unprecedented catastrophic condition. There is no bread. The population is given the remaining potato flour and crusts. The Red Capital is on the verge of perishing from famine," stated Lenin. "The political situation has become extremely critical owing to both external and internal causes." This view of Lenin's summed up the horrendous plight of the Russian Revolution in May 1918, some six months after the successful Bolshevik insurrection and the introduction of Soviet rule. The "external and internal causes" which threatened the Revolution were the aggressive actions of the imperialist powers, foreign blockade, the organisation of internal counter-revolution, and the economic sabotage of the landlords and capitalists.