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Stalin: From Patriot to Oppressor

Written by Animus AniKor Saxcian


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A few months after the Conference, in 1917, Lenin urged the immediate action to topple, the Kerensky-led government. The war was going terribly, and a struggle between Kerensky and the General Kornilov, had brought uprisings. Due to the distractions, Stalin and Sverdlov assumed public leadership, organizing workers strikes in July. Finally, Leon Trotsky and Sverdlov conceived of the blueprint for the revolution, and organized the Bolsheviks seizure of power. Stalin had supported the plan since the beginning, where as many-including Kamenev-had objected to it. In November of the same year, revolutionaries began their revolt with the assault of train stations and electric plants with in the city of Petrograd. Soon after, a war ship under the control of pro-Bolshevik sailors targeted the Winter Palace, where the Provisional Government remained hidden. Eventually, Kerensky fled from Russia and took sanctuary in the Unites States. With this .November Revolution. completed, a new government was needed, thus the establishment of the .Council of Peoples Commissars., a group led by Lenin who would assume authority over Russia. Stalin, however had little part in this revolution, despite his loyalty to Lenin. In fact, Stalin seemed timid.eager for compromise and slow to adjust to the new situations. This weakness of not being able to think fast in crisis, would later prove to be a handicap in his leadership ability.

In November 1917, the Bolsheviks controlled St. Petersburg and little else, due to the vastness of the Russian Empire. The Bolsheviks moved with haste to consolidate their power, and in 1918, broke up the first, and only, meeting of the Constituent Assembly. Proceeding these events, two months later, they signed the Brest-Litovsk with German, taking Russia out of World War I. This also led to the transfer of the capital from St. Petersburg to Moscow. In March the Assembly was re instituted as the .Communist Party.. This Party would remain in power for nearly 70 years. For next three years this party would hold a loose power over all, due to a confused civil war against both the White Army, and soldiers sent from a series of countries, to scrape out the Revolution. The White Army was a coalition of many armies, fighting only for their one common cause their enmity toward the Bolshevik .Reds.. The Communist cause was only held up by the failure of the White and foreign armies to unite, and the alienation and terrorizing of many peasantry. These horrid war tactics were from the atrocity of the Red Armies strategy. In this era, Russia was going through a phase called the Red Terror; this period in time consisted of the massacre of thousands of people for either opposing the Bolsheviks or Belong to the Bourgeois class. The doctrine of .Class warfare. took on a dreaded new appeal as the .Cheka,. the Russian secret police, defined all bourgeois as the enemy of the revolution. On July, 16, 1918, Czar Nicholas II was murdered along with his entire family, actions probably taken due to the former Czars strict oppression. In 1921, after Lenin ordered massive seizures of food from peasantry, Russia was led into a famine. Nearly five million people had deceased and eventually led to the government's program named, N.E.P. or New Economic Policy, which was a limited market economy.

Stalin, during the era of the civil war, worked as the People's Commissar for Nationalities, and in an attempt to use propaganda, assisted Lenin in creating the .Decree on Nationality. a false promise for the right of self-determination to all minorities in Russia. After this Decree had been passed, Stalin was appointed a position of military command. Stalin is said to have been a brilliant commander, although some facts contradict this statement. At Many battles, including the one in St. Petersburg in June 1919, he was said to have an undeniable victory; however, in some battles he was said to be careless, most notable of these was the defense of Tsaritsyn. Here it is believed that he feuded with Trotsky, and failed to follow orders. Although, Stalin still emerged victorious in the end, this was a prequel to the controlling manner of Stalins leadership. It was also during this era that Stalin wed his second wife, Nadezhda Alliluyevah, his secretary and daughter of a family he was acquainted with in Georgia. Stalins second son, Vasily, was born in 1921, during the beginning of a peace period in Russia. This left him with much more time to spend with his new family.


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