How and why Stalin Became Ruler of the USSR by 1928.

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Farzin  Dadashi                                                                            History Coursework      

How and why Stalin Became Ruler of the USSR by 1928

In 1924, the USSR was governed by the communists (known as the extreme left.) Communism is based on the writings of a nineteenth- century thinker named Karl Marx, Communism was also known as Marxism. Their leader was Lenin who emerged as their superior leader through the revolution in 1920. Lenin introduced ‘War Communism’ to help the communists win the war. Under this system food for soldiers and town workers was seized without payment from the peasants (farmers) in the rural areas. This also meant that factory workers were put under military discipline, including the death penalty for striking. This was to make sure they made enough war material. Factories were also put under Government control.

Although war communism helped the communists to win the civil war, the peasants that had been robbed were furious, (it had ruined Russia anyway.) War communism also caused famine in 1921, killing an estimated 7.5 million people and leaving millions more starving (this is because the peasants decided that it was not worth growing food if the communists were going to steal it, so they sowed less grain.) This  and the uprising of the Russian Army convinced Lenin that he must abandon the policy of War Communism. In its place he introduced a New Economic Policy (NEP) , this meant that NEP stopped the government from seizing food from the peasants, therefore allowing them to sell any surplus food they had to private traders. Also government control of factories was relaxed and business men were allowed to own and run all but the largest business’s.

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Stalin was master at using situations to his own advantage,(the split in the politburo for instance) and that he was never perceived by others as a threat. He also manipulated people, mainly through propaganda. By now Stalin was in the Politburo, the ruling body of the communist party. The Politburo decided USSR’s policies. Stalin had now gained ‘Unlimited Authority’ by taking on ‘Dogsbody’ jobs (jobs that none of the other politburo members wanted.) Stalin gained four positions of authority from these jobs;

  1. He was member of the politburo. Being part of this seven group made him one ...

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