Stalin's Rise to Power notes.
Stalin rise to Power.
Iosif Vissaionovich Dzugashvili born 21 December 1879 in Gori Georgia.
His native tongue was Georgian, started learning Russian at age 8.
Georgian not an indo-european language, distant relation to Basque, own alphabet.
Father Vissarion, was a cobbler (skomakare)
Mother Yekaterina, was a maid.
They had three sons, only Iosif survived.
Vissarion is described as a brutal and violent alcoholic. Mother protective. No actual proof of this.
Young Iosif does fairly well in school, gets a scholar to go on study, the principal signing the scholar happens to be Kerensky’s father…
After finishing school he starts to study to become a priest.
First takes the alias Koba, a name that he will use during his early revolutionary activity.
Between the years 1902 and 1913 he gets arrested 6 times for revolutionary activity. Rumor of him as a great escaper.
This is a preview of the whole essay
Takes the alias Stalin around this time. Aliases are used to confuse the Czarist Secret Police.
The Revolution and until Lenin’s death.
Described by his comrades as a very rude and harsh person, but a typical “doer”, he gets things done.
Stalin helped starting up the newspaper Pravda (the Truth).
After the revolution he becomes Commissar for nationalities.
Stalin was also one of six members of the Central Committee of the Communist Party.
From 1922 Stalin held the key position General Secretary of the party.
Lenin’s death 1924:
Trotsky vs Stalin.
The Struggle for Power.
General Secretary meant access to personal files on opponents.
Dzerzhinsky, head of secret police, reported to Stalin every week.
“Lenin Enrolment”, Stalin recruited 500 000 new members to the Com Party. Stalin kept control over these.
“The Lenin Legacy”, I personally think this is one of the smartest move Stalin made, the Great Leader was dead, Stalin made himself “chief mourner”, promising to carry on everything that the Great Leader stood for, no changes no critic. Trotsky on the other hand started talking about own ideas, what went wrong before and how to improve it etc. Trotsky didn´t attend the funeral, Stalin had Lenin put in a mausoleum…..
Lenin’s Testament spoke very unkindly of Stalin, but he also criticized other members of the Central Committee, hence nobody wanted it published.
The defeat of the Left.
Trotsky launched an attack on the growing bureaucracy in 1924.
Stalin, working with Zinoviev and Kemenev, claimed that this was against the Lenin Legacy from “On Party Unity”.
The banning of factionalism became a very powerful tool for Stalin.
In 1926 Zinoviev and Kamenev joined forces with Trotsky and formed “United Opposition” = The Left.
They were against the NEP, claiming that it was a capitalistic policy and a betrayal of the revolution.
Lenin gave no timelimit for NEP, but said that was a temporarily solution.
Stalin, then belonging to the Right said that NEP was a good a policy as long as it provided food for the workers.
Stalin and the Right won this battle.
Trotsky also claimed that a “permanent revolution” had to be the goal.
Stalin claimed that the idea of “Revolution in one country” would strengthen the Bolshevik revolution and that only when that goal was accieved would there be talk about an international revolution.
Stalin won this battle and got Trotsky, Zinoviev and Kemenev expelled from the Politburo. Trotsky were expelled from the Party, Z and K renounced their old views and kept the place in the Party.
The Defeat of the Right.
In winter 1927-28 the Party was split over the issue of Industrialization.
Stalin’s idea, a Five year plan was opposed by the Right, the NEP-men.
The Right claimed:
More food would be needed if the industrialization should be done, otherwise people in the cities would starve. Remembering the failures of War Communism the wanted a slower ind keeping the NEP-policy.
Leaders were Tomsky, Rykov and Bukharin.
A slow ind would mean that Socialism in one country would fail, it had to be rapid, strong and done by force.
Stalin outmaneuvers the Right and is the sole ruler of the Soviet Union by early 1929.