Questions tagged [stalin]

For questions about Joseph Stalin, the leader of the U.S.S.R. from 1922 to 1952 and a leading figure in the Bolshevik Revolution.

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Were the deaths under Stalin an unavoidable part of industrialization? [closed]

I have seen it argued that the deaths under Stalin were not much worse than the enclosure acts in the UK but took place over a shorter period of time and on a larger scale. How true is this argument?
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How did Charles de Gaulle become the leading figure of French liberation movement?

How did Charles de Gaulle become the leading figure of French liberation movement? While acknowledging his talents and the personality, I find it hard to believe that he was the only or the most ...
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Why did Stalin pressure Allies to open second front even though his purpose was to grab as much land as possible for his future satellite states?

After the surprise German attack in 22 June 1941 on Soviet Union, the latter suffered a series of catastrophic defeats during the following months, up to the point it is still debatable today whether ...
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What turns a man into a tyrant? [closed]

First of all, I must apologize for my bad English as it is not my first language. So first, a bit of background. I'm doing a project on J. Stalin, A. Hitler, P. Pot and M. Zedong and why did these ...
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1answer
405 views

Did Soviet people know Stalin's birth name?

We all know now that Stalin's real name was Jughashvili (Ioseb Besarionis dzе Jughashvili). Lenin was actually Ulyanov, Trotsky was Lev Davidovich Bronstein, Kamenev was Leo Rosenfeld, etc. Searching ...
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227 views

Would Stalin have dropped the nuclear bomb on Germany in 1945, if he had it then? [closed]

In an interview on RT Putin said, "I really doubt that Stalin, in the Spring of 1945, if he had a nuclear bomb, I doubt that he would have dropped it on Germany. In 1941 or 1942, when it was a ...
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1answer
213 views

How true is the Soviet killing quota under Stalin? [closed]

In The Soviet Story from 1:37:54 to 1:38:54, killing quotas of Soviet citizens are talked about. I could not find any concrete reason, evidence, or documentation suggesting that such "killing ...
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What was Louise Bryant's view of the Soviet Union at end of her life?

American journalist and radical Louise Bryant (1885-1936), was, with her husband and fellow newspaper reporter John Reed, a sympathetic eyewitness to the 1917 October Revolution and beginning of the ...
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Why wasn't Stalin deposed? How did he keep power for so long? [closed]

Stalin's two next successors, Malenkov and Khrushchev, were both ousted. Why wasn't Stalin? Note that the cult of personality around Stalin was not so much directly tied to the man and his vanity, ...
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1answer
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How did the world react to Trotsky's assassination?

Exiled former Russian leader Leon Trotsky was murdered in Mexico in August 1940 (with an ice pick) by a Soviet agent in the interest of Trotsky's old rival for power, the then Soviet dictator Stalin. ...
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1answer
232 views

Was the assassination of Kirov really that significant in consolidating Stalin's power? [closed]

I understand that the assassination of Kirov was what triggered the launch of the Great Purge and therefore, what allowed for Stalin to consolidate his power, but would there be something more ...
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Did Stalin kill all Soviet officers involved in the Winter War?

Did Stalin kill all of the Soviet officers involved in the Winter War, when it ended? A documentary called "Warlords: Hitler vs Stalin" made this claim, but Wikipedia doesn't seem to mention this. ...
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343 views

After the split with Stalin, what was Yugoslavia's official attitude towards Soviet history before Stalin's takeover?

In 1939, Tito published a pamphlet attacking Trotsky and Trotskyism. Unsurprising since he was still no different to any other Communist at that time, and was a supporter of Stalin. Josip Broz Tito: ...
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Looking for good documentation about daily life under Stalinist USSR

I am contemplating the idea of making a role playing game set in USSR under Stalin, specifically the period between when he gained full power (roughly 1930) and operation barbarossa (June 1941). I am ...
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Why did the rest of the Eastern Bloc not invade Yugoslavia?

When Tito was resisting Stalin/Soviet rule, according to the Wikipedia article on Tito: An invasion of Yugoslavia was planned to be carried out in 1949 via the combined forces of neighbouring ...
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1answer
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Why did Stalin exile Trotsky instead of killing or imprisoning him?

Leon Trotsky, one of the original founders of the Bolshevik Revolution, was strongly opposed to the leadership and policies of Joseph Stalin. In response to Trotskys public criticism of him, Stalin ...
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How did historians find out about the undoctored version of Stalin's doctored photographs?

Stalin ordered some photographs to be altered because his enemies were in it. How did historians get their hands on the undoctored version? Because many a sources describe this as erasing the people ...
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238 views

How was money transferred in early 1900s' Russia?

I'm reading Young Stalin by Simon Sebag Montefiore. The book frequently quotes letters between him and fellow revolutionaries, often when he was in internal exile in some obscure corner of Siberia. ...
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What was the logic behind Stalin's brutality?

In this article Stalin's behaviour is argued to be the result of a calculated and fanatical strategy. Stephen Kotkin's book 'Stalin' is referenced, and the suggestion is that criticism of Stalin as ...
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When did Josef Wissarionowitsch become "sexy" Stalin?

According to KnowYourMeme, among others, a relatively young Stalin is so good looking in a certain picture that he is often referred to as "sexy Stalin": This is indeed a pretty picture of a ...
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Did Stalin have full control of the government in 1936?

I know that Stalin was only one of several successors to Lenin (and not a favored one at that) when Lenin died. However, Stalin was able to quickly forge alliances within the Party to oust his most ...
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551 views

Statement Issued by Communist Party regarding Collectivization: Contradictory?

As seen in the following statement issued by the Central Committee of the Communist Party: (https://www.loc.gov/exhibits/archives/e2livest.html) Addendum to point 20, Politburo minutes no. 94 ...
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Did Stalin's son, Yakov, commit suicide?

In Milan Kundera's book "The Unbearable Lightness of Being" there's a mention of Stalin's son, Yakov, who, reportedly, committed suicide. Quoting from the book (emphasis mine): Not until 1980 were ...
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Why were Soviet attitudes towards Israel inconsistent in the late 40's and 50's?

What are the different theories explaining the inconsistent attitude Soviet Russia had towards the nascent State of Israel between the years 1947 and 1953? Communist Russia's hate of Zionism is well ...
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Why did the Hungarians protest and react so much about Khrushchevs secret speech? [closed]

I know that Khrushchev made a secret speech but I don't really understand what the speech was about and why it made the Hungarians so angry to protest. I know that the protest was about the lack of ...
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After WW2, why did Stalin let Finland off with some loss of territory rather than occupation and crushing reparations? [closed]

Finland did lose 10% of its territory and 20% of its industry according to Wikipedia, but given Stalin's paranoia, why was it not occupied by Soviet troops?
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Is this anecdote about Stalin, Roosevelt and Churchill true?

The first time I heard the story about the plans for German officers once the surrender happened was that Stalin wanted to summarily execute 50 thousand of them, Churchill was very angry about this ...
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Why did Stalin and the Soviet leadership have Leon Trotsky assassinated?

Leon Trotsky was killed with a mountaineering ice axe in Mexico. The method of murder chosen was interesting. If he was a political fugitive in far off Mexico, why bother dealing with him? What about ...
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2answers
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Is there evidence that Stalin stopped religious persecution during WW2? [closed]

I read in some articles that during WW2 the Soviets reopened the churches and allowed their people to do their religious practices. Is there any evidence to confirm such things? If yes up to which ...
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653 views

Did Stalin give special treatment for his home country?

Did Stalin during his reign gave any special interest or priviliges to Georgia and the Georgian people?
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555 views

Did Stalin disarm the Chinese Communist Party around 1927?

Can anyone provide a few details on this? Did Stalin telegraph to order disarmament of Chinese workers and to whom? And when? I am very confused about the chronology of Events. The book I mention ...
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Why was Stalin surprised by the German attack in June 1941?

Although he was warned by many, including Churchill, of the forthcoming German attack on 22 June, Stalin did not believe those warnings and was surprised when the attack started. I believe the ...
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Did Amadeo Bordiga tell off Stalin this way?

I read somewhere that Amadeo Bordiga, Italian Communist, said something along these lines to Stalin's face: If the Soviet Union is the homeland of all proletarians and the revolution, then let it ...
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How many Old Bolsheviks outlived Stalin?

The term "Old Bolshevik" refers to those who joined the Bolshevik party before the Russian Revolution of 1917. According to D. A. Chygayev (as quoted by Mark Deutsch), in 1922 there were 44,148 ...
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9answers
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Why did Stalin push for the Great Purge against the Red Army in 1936?

From what we now know of Stalin, he seemed to have believed in the basics of Marxist-Leninism. As a communist, didn't he fear that killing his own military's leadership would seriously endanger the ...
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447 views

Which historical figure is attributed with the most death of his people? [closed]

I've heard friends of mine say that Stalin's reign produced more death than the Third Reich. I have not been able to verify this anywhere. Wikipedia does not offer a figure as to how many deaths ...
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Why didn't Stalin use force to bring Tito into line?

In 1956 and 1968, the Soviets invaded Eastern European countries because they had deviated from Moscow's model. Why didn't they do this to Tito? His independent inclinations are usually explained by ...
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Why did Stalin keep the famine of 1932 a secret?

The famine of 1932 took millions of lives, before the Soviet authorities took some measures to alleviate the lives of the peasants. During the whole time, and for decades afterwards, the affair was ...
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1answer
739 views

Does any evidence exist that suggests Hitler’s primary reason for declaring war on America was an attempt to draw Japan into his war with Russia?

During the first few months of the Nazi invasion of Russia, Stalin feared a Japanese attack from the east would create a two front war. In August, he was finally convinced by intelligence reports that ...
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What were non-Communist contemporary reactions to Stalin's purges?

Stalin had people such as Kamenev, Zinoviev and Bukharin and many others convicted of trying to overthrow the Soviet Union, something which we know to be untrue. Abroad, foreign communist parties ...
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What is / are the specific reason(s) for Vyacheslav Molotov's fall from grace with Joseph Stalin?

From the 1930's through World War 2, Vyacheslav Molotov seemed to be the face of the Soviet Union in most diplomatic circles. Sometime after the war he lost favor with Stalin. Some reports say to the ...
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656 views

Did Hitler, or any non USSR residents in the 30s-40s know about Stalin's purges?

In Downfall, Hitler laments about how he should have purged the military officers like Stalin did, so my question is: would people have actually known about Stalin's purges during that time ?
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Did Trotsky serve as a hate-figure in PRC propaganda?

Maoism and Trotskyism share some similar ideas (by Maoism I am referring specifically to the guiding philosophies of the PRC during Mao's rule, and by Trotskyism I mean the beliefs of Trotsky, not ...
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When did the Great Purge start?

In what month of what year did the Great Purge begin in the Soviet Union? Wikipedia's individual page says it it started in 1934, but if I Google search for "Great Purge" and "1934," nothing much ...
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What mechanisms made Stalinism triumphant in Russia? [closed]

What mechanisms would you guys think made Stalinism triumphant? Firstly, what do you guys think, was Stalinism totalitarian? Was Stalin the absolute ruler over the totality of society and politics? ...
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Why did Shostakovich not release his 4th, but did release his 5th symphony?

Why did Shostakovich not release his 4th, but did release his 5th symphony? (The 4th was released eventually, just not when it was written)
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What legal or moral mechanism ensured Stalin's grip on power? [closed]

TL;DR version: How tyrants hold power, in general, and how did Stalin? I mean, for example, Hitler was voted (the "enabling bill") as the absolute ruler of Germany and his will became legally law (...
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Why did Stalin deem Quantum Mechanics 'counter-revolutionary'?

I've read that in the late 1940s Stalin planned to hold a conference to discuss the ideological difficulties of physics in the Soviet Union, but called it off (presumably because of the successful ...
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Did Stalin have any designs on Turkey and Greece?

I know of the famous Percentages Agreement between Stalin and Churchill. As is commonly known, Stalin reneged on his promise in regards to Hungary, Bulgaria and Romania which eliminated all British ...
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How did the Soviets decide what to annex in WW2?

During and after World War II Soviet Union annexed some countries while others eventually became member states of the Warsaw Pact. What is known about how the Soviets made the decisions about which ...