Bavarian Soviet Republic
After the war ended, Leviné joined the Communist Party of Germany and helped to create a socialist republic in Bavaria. However, the republic lasted only several weeks, replaced quickly by a soviet republic after the assassination of Kurt Eisner, then leader of the Independent Social Democratic Party of Germany (USPD).
The ruling government of the new republic lasted only six days, due to poor leadership under the German playwright Ernst Toller. Leviné rose to power as the Communists assumed control of the government.
Leviné attempted to pass many reforms, such as giving the more luxurious apartments to the homeless and giving workers control and ownership of factories. He also planned reforms for the education system and to abolish paper money, neither of which he ever completed.
Under orders from Leviné, the Red Guards began rounding up people they considered to be hostile to the new regime, as hostages against imminent outside attack. As the German president Friedrich Ebert gave orders to subdue the Soviet Republic and reinstate the Bavarian government under Johannes Hoffmann, the Red Guards murdered eight hostages on 29 April 1919.
The German Army, assisted by Freikorps, with a force of roughly 39,000 men, invaded and quickly conquered Munich on May 3, 1919. In retaliation for the execution of the hostages, the Freikorps captured and executed some 700 men and women. Leviné himself was arrested, found guilty as part of those executions, and was shot by firing squad in Stadelheim Prison.
Read more about this topic: Eugen Levine
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