The Russian February Revolution: Kerensky’s Missed Opportunity

From a letter to The New York Times, March 6, from John Quiggin

The February Revolution is one of history’s great “What if” moments. If this revolution had succeeded in producing a constitutional democracy in place of the czarist empire as its leaders hoped, the world would be a very different place.

If the leading figure in the provisional government, Aleksandr Kerensky (pictured above in 1917), had seized on an opportunity presented by a now-forgotten vote in the German Reichstag, World War I might have been over before American troops reached Europe. In this alternative history, Lenin and Stalin would be obscure footnotes, and Hitler would never have been more than a failed painter….


2 responses to “The Russian February Revolution: Kerensky’s Missed Opportunity


    Dear Eric,

    Thanks for this piece about Kerensky. You might be interested to know that I have a personal memory of Kerensky. I saw him once at Washington’s Russian Orthodox cathedral. It must have been in the early 1960s. I was amazed that he was still alive, as even then he seemed a figure from a forgotten world.


  2. mike holliday

    History is littered with What Ifs. What if Harald Hardrada had arrived in England after William the Bastard ….