A Comparison of Lenin and Stalin Essay

A Comparison of Lenin and Stalin Essay

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"A great luck for Russia was that at the times of hardships she was
headed by such a genius and talented commander as Joseph Stalin." W. Churchill
Stalin was a man of extraordinary energy, erudition and a powerful
will. Him even I, a person taught by the Parliament, could not counter.
W. Churchill

     “Stalin is the Lenin of today,” said a popular propaganda slogan of the thirties and the forties. The situation has changed drastically since that time; people’s opinion of Stalin has changed in light of the new facts that came out during the course of history. One of such influencing factors was the “secret” speech given by Khrushchev during the Twentieth Congress of KPSS. This speech, however, does not give a real picture of either Stalin or Lenin: Khrushchev denounces the idolization of Stalin but supports the cult of Lenin. He also does not pay attention to Stalin’s deeds that do deserve to be criticized (from an non-Communist point of view), but looks sharply onto something that Stalin should be thanked for. Khrushchev puts Stalin in opposition to Lenin and fails to recognize that those leaders were in many ways similar.
     The first blame that Khrushchev puts on Stalin is idolization. To be honest Khrushchev never says that Stalin created it himself, but he never denounced it either. Khrushchev puts Lenin as an example of modesty. However, the cult of Lenin has been created as well, and though, Lenin did denounce it, his denunciation never had much result. Stalin’s personal modesty is known as well. He had never concerned himself with having many awards, as, for example, did Brezhnev with Five Stars of the Hero of the Soviet Union. Stalin only had one, but never wore it (the only award we see him wearing is the Star of Hero of Socialist Labor). At his fiftieth birthday, to all the panegyrics Stalin answers: “ To all the organizations and comrades congratulating me… Your greetings I refer to the great party of the working class, which gave me birth and taught me.” (Radzinsky, 262) Stalin did not care for the pleasant words. His concern was real power. Stalin also wanted to look good in the eyes of history. That is why all the history books were rewritten.
Khrushchev also indicts him of fabricating cases against honest Bolsheviks. That is his major blame of Stalin. How could he ...

... middle of paper ...

...rest-Litovsk Peace Treaty, when Lenin had to threaten to quit in order to influence the rest of the Bolsheviks. Stalin came up with a more efficient way to get his opinion to prevail.
     Therefore, when Khrushchev talks about Stalin deceiving Lenin’s principles, he is mistaking most of the time. Stalin was politically raised the same way Lenin was and only diverted from Lenin’s ways achieving goals by developing and improving them. Stalin was successful in many areas where Lenin failed.


     Radzinsky, Edward. “Stalin.” Moscow
          Vagrius, 1997

     Suvorov, Viktor. “The Cleansing.” Moscow
          AST, 1998

     Volkogonov, Dmitrij. “Trotsky.” Vol. 1 Moscow
          AST, 1998

Khrushchev, Nikita. “De-Stalinization speech.” Revolutions in Russia and China. 4th ed Ed. June Grasso et al. New York: McGaw-Hill. 2000. 75-90

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