When Vladimir Lenin died in 1924, he was succeeded by Joseph Stalin, one of the cruelest people ever to hold power. To Stalin, the rising national revival movement and continuing loss of Soviet influence in the their satellite states was completely unacceptable. To destroy his subject's free spirit, he began to implement the same methods he had successfully used in the Soviet Union. Those arrested were either shot on sight like animals or deported to prison camps in remote areas of Russia. Joseph Stalin was a brutal dictator responsible for countless atrocities, including multiple genocides.
In the pre-revolution days of the struggling Bolshevik party, Stalin became known to the party leadership as an indefatigable party worker. However, once appointed to General Secretary by Lenin, who was gravely ill, he began a campaign of consolidating as much power as he could into his hands. His actions were not unnoticed, as stated in what is known as Lenin’s “Testament” against Stalin, as he explained,
“….Stalin is too rude, and this fault, entirely supportable in relations among us Communists, becomes insupportable in the office of general secretary. Therefore, I propose to the comrades to find a way to remove Stalin from that position and appoint to it another who in all respects differs from Stalin only in superiority—namely, more patient, more loyal, more polite and more attentive to comrades, less capricious, etc"(Glotzer)
In 1929, over 5,000 Ukrainian cultural and religious leaders, scholars, and scientists were arrested after being falsely accused of plotting an armed revolt. An infamous instance of Stalin's brutality came with his conflict with rich Ukrainian fa...
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...and transported to their death near Kazakhstan. Estimated deaths from this act of genocide were 170,000 to 200,000 in the first four years alone (Operation Lentil). This bears a reminiscence to the policies of a certain German-speaking nation not long before. The deportation was explained by Stalin by the fact that Chechens "... voluntarily joined formations organized by Germans and stood up with weapons against the Red Army,” (Operation Lentil).
Although it is said that Stalin was one of the men who greatly influenced the 20th century, it is also agreed that his contributions to the world and his country came at an appalling cost. Stalin’s ruthless ambition, consuming paranoia, and callous disregard for human life will mark him down as one of the most inhumane, savage leaders in history.
“One death is a tragedy, one million is a statistic.”
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