„When Nicholas II was crowned tsar of Russia in 1894, the country was seething with unrest. Brought up by private tutors, he had little training in the affairs of state. He was dull, reactionary, and an ineffective ruler who was easily influenced.
Although revolution was slowly brewing, Russia on the surface remained a prisoner of its feudal past. In order to maintain the appearance of stability, Nicholas II engaged ina policy of suppreission and later on supported pogroms against Jews.
Such anti-Semitic views were not new. Even before the assassination in 1881 of Alexander II (Nicholas II’s grandfather) the Romanov family had been convinced of p-lots against the tsar.
During his own reign, Nicholas II was easily swayed by strong opinions. He veered from one plan to another depending on the advice of the most articulate in his council. His most trusted adviser was Sergei Yulievich Witte, a clever but sometimes unpopular councilor who was known to have liberal modernistic views regarded as controversial by conservatives, who dominated the court.
Witte had two very resentful enemies…Gorymikine and Rachkobsky, who were associated with the secret police.“
— Will Eisner American cartoonist 1917 - 2005