Wolfs Fang, Fox’s Tailrnby Wayne Allensworthrn”War is war. Guns are not just for decoration.”rn—V.I. LeninrnRed Victory:rnA History of the Russian Civil Warrnhy W. Bruce LincolnrnNew York: Da Capo Press;rn602 pp., $18.95rnBy March 1920, Russia’s \/liites-anrnodd and disparate conglomerationrnof monarchists, anti-Bolshevik socialists,rnjaded liberals, reactionary clerics, frightenedrnnobles, disinherited landowners,rnand loyalist army officers and soldiershadrnturned what looked like certain victoryrnover the Reds into an ignominiousrndefeat. Disconsolate and grim, the remnantsrnof Denikin’s Russian VolunteerrnArmy of the South loaded themselves intornships at the port of Novorossisk, boundrnfor die Crimea, the last fragment of thernonce-mighty empire that remained arnrefuge for the Whites. Torn by dissensionrnfrom within—with monarchists hatingrnthe anti-Bolshevik socialists (whomrnthey partiy blamed for the chaos that hadrnensued in Russia after the Februan’ 1917rnrevolution) as much as they hated thernReds who had successfully engineeredrnthe “Crcat October Revolution,” andrnwith liberals distrusting both —the KolchakrnWliite dictatorship had collapsed inrnSiberia and kidenich’s motlev army hadrndisintegrated in the north. The WesternrnAllies, disenchanted with the disarray,rncorruption, and incompetence of thernWhites, were abandoning the struggle,rngradually withdrawing support to thernstill-intact Army of the South. As late asrn1919, the Wliite armies, never effectivelyrnunited, much less coordinated, in action,rnhad still posed a serious threat to Sovietrnpower in Russia. Wiat went wrong?rnDenikin, a competent tactician whornhad fallen prey to the Russian diseases ofrnorganizational ineptitude and ideologicalrnconstriction, had handed over com-rnWayne Allensworth is the author ofrnThe Russian Question: Nationalism,rnModernization, and Post-CommunistrnRussia (Rowman & Little field).rnmaud of the remaining White forces tornGen. Baron Petr Wrangel. To Wrangelrnfell the dut}’ of sustainiug White honorrn(for even he had no illusions about victorvrnin the foreseeable future), and hernsaw —too late for the anti-Bolshevikrncause—what had deprived the Whites ofrnvictory even as the great powers of thernWest irresolutely heeded WinstonrnChurchill’s adamant demands that theyrnstrangle the infant Bolshevik menace inrnits Russian crib.rnWrangel, of Baltic Cerman stock, appearedrnimmune to the romantic illusionsrnof the Wliite reactionaries, who actuallyrnbelieved that a restoration was possible,rnand to the dreamy republican mysticismrnof the liberals. He made peace with thernsocialists and set about patching togetherrna program that would appeal to the massesrnin the age of lumpen democracy.rn”Aristocratic to the core,” Wrangel “hadrnno scruples about the strange bedfellowsrnthat politics in a democratic worldrnbrought his way.” “For Russia andrnagainst the Bolsheviks,” Wrangel proclaimedrnthat he was prepared to make arnpact “even with the devil.” Without regardrnto class or politics, the slim, sternrnaristocrat began his search for “men ofrnstrong character, who know how thernmasses live and how to shape theirrnlives” —or at least their political sympathies.rnHe found them in Petr Struve, whornhad drifted from left to right in a careerrnthat had made its focus the study of allrnthings Russian in culture and politics,rnand Aleksandr Krivoshein, an agingrnczarist statesman who would follow inrnthe footsteps of Russia’s greatest statesmanrnof the late Empire and perhaps ofrnany other period, Petr Stolypin. Wrangelrnbuilt his White cabinet around thesernmen and formulated a “leftist programrnwith rightist hands” designed to “tear ourrnenemies’ principal political weapon fromrntheir hands, ignite the imagination of thernarmy and the masses, and make a favorablernimpression on opinion abroad,” asrnhe later explained. Land, according tornthe new political sales pitch of the Wliitesrn(the old “Autocracy, Orthodoxy, andrnNarodnost,” or “National Roots,” trinit)’rnhad long since turned to dust), woidd gornto those who tilled it in the form of privaternproperty. Wrangel offered hisrnStolypinesque version of land reform asrnan alternative to the Bolshevik slogan ofrn”Peace, Land, and Bread!” that had inclinedrnthe restie and land-hungry massesrnof a peasant coimtry to turn a blind eyernto the suppression of the pro-land reform,rnelected Constituent Assembly in 1918.rnThese tended subsequently—and understandably,rnin view of their fear of arnrestorationist land repartition in the eventrnof a Wliite victory’-to support the Redsrnover the Wliites in the civil war that followed.rnWrangel had promised the rule of lawrnover the terror of the Bolshevik secret police,rnthe Cheka, or the pogroms and lootingrnof the undisciplined armies of his predecessors.rnHe enforced strict disciplinernin his revived Army of the South, rootedrnout incompetence, and punished corruption.rnWrangel enforced unity within hisrnWhite leadership and readily recruitedrnRed Army veterans who had grown disil-rn28/CHRONlCLESrnrnrn