The Russian Revolution was not the first workers’ revolution. In 1871 the Communards set up the Paris Commune. It lasted for just two months before the French army massacred them. Between 10,000 to 20,000 were killed with many more put in prison & thousands deported. Lenin’s book State & Revolution, written a year before the October Revolution, has the experience of the Commune at its heart. He repeats Marx’s assertion that the Commune is the form of working-class democracy, not bourgeois parliament. It was to be the ‘dictatorship of the proletariat’ that waged on-going class struggle after the revolution to create the classless society of communism.
The Soviet Union failed. In 1991 it ceased to exist. The people of the ex-Soviet Republics then experienced a collapse in living standards of historical proportions, with life expectancy plummeting & the oligarchs plundered the economy with the intellectual support of western neo-liberal economists. Marx was dead & the market reigned. But what did the Soviet Union achieve?