[877] The biographer Dmitri Volkogonov characterised him as "one of the most powerful figures in human history",[878] while McDermott stated that Stalin had "concentrated unprecedented political authority in his hands",[879] and Service noted that by the late 1930s, Stalin "had come closer to personal despotism than almost any monarch in history". [678] Stalin believed in the need to adapt Marxism to changing circumstances; in 1917, he declared that "there is dogmatic Marxism and there is creative Marxism. He argued that Jewish nationalism, particularly Zionism, was hostile to socialism. [675] Some of these derived from political expediency rather than any sincere intellectual commitment;[675] Stalin would often turn to ideology post hoc to justify his decisions. [136], Stalin's finished article was titled Marxism and the National Question,[137] and first published in the March, April, and May 1913 issues of the Bolshevik journal Prosveshcheniye;[138] Lenin was very happy with it. [205] Eager to prove himself as a commander,[206] once there he took control of regional military operations.

[213], In December 1918, Stalin was sent to Perm to lead an inquiry into how Alexander Kolchak's White forces had been able to decimate Red troops based there. [230] Lenin believed that the Polish proletariat would rise up to support the Russians against Józef Piłsudski's Polish government. "[546], With Germany defeated, Stalin switched focus to the war with Japan, transferring half a million troops to the Far East. [330] Famine broke out in many areas,[331] with the Politburo frequently ordering the distribution of emergency food relief to these regions.

[341] Large debts were accrued purchasing foreign-made machinery.

[709] This concept synthesised Marxist and Leninist ideas with nationalist ideals,[691] and served to discredit Trotsky—who promoted the idea of "permanent revolution"—by presenting the latter as a defeatist with little faith in Russian workers' abilities to construct socialism.

His mother, Ekaterina Gheladze, supported herself and her son (her other three children died young a… [84] On arrival, he met Lenin's wife Nadezhda Krupskaya, who informed him that the venue had been moved to Tampere in the Grand Duchy of Finland. [496] Stalin exploited Nazi anti-Semitism, and in April 1942 he sponsored the Jewish Anti-Fascist Committee (JAC) to garner Jewish and foreign support for the Soviet war effort. [628] He was further angered by Israel's growing alliance with the U.S.[629] After Stalin fell out with Israel, he launched an anti-Jewish campaign within the Soviet Union and the Eastern Bloc. [621] Stalin was concerned that Mao might follow Tito's example by pursuing a course independent of Soviet influence, and made it known that if displeased he would withdraw assistance from China; the Chinese desperately needed said assistance after decades of civil war.

[278] Stalin also developed close relations with the trio at the heart of the secret police (first the Cheka and then its replacement, the State Political Directorate): Felix Dzerzhinsky, Genrikh Yagoda, and Vyacheslav Menzhinsky. [923] He remains a revered figure among many Russian nationalists, who feel nostalgic about the Soviet victory over Nazi Germany in World War II,[924] and he is regularly invoked approvingly within both Russia's far-left and far-right. [27] He joined 600 trainee priests who boarded at the institution.

[409] Germany and Italy backed the Nationalist faction, which was ultimately victorious in March 1939.

[437] Such functionaries often carried out a greater number of arrests and executions than their quotas set by Stalin's central government. [884], A vast literature devoted to Stalin has been produced. By 1932, about 62% of households involved in agriculture were part of collectives, and by 1936 this had risen to 90%. [230] Stalin had cautioned against this; he believed that nationalism would lead the Polish working-classes to support their government's war effort. [248] There was also internal turmoil in the Communist Party, as Trotsky led a faction calling for the abolition of trade unions; Lenin opposed this, and Stalin helped rally opposition to Trotsky's position. [588] In April 1949, the Western powers established the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO), an international military alliance of capitalist countries. [488] In June 1941, he ordered a scorched earth policy of destroying infrastructure and food supplies before the Germans could seize them,[489] also commanding the NKVD to kill around 100,000 political prisoners in areas the Wehrmacht approached. [231], In mid-August 1920, the Poles repulsed the Russian advance, and Stalin returned to Moscow to attend the Politburo meeting. [430] He also initiated "national operations", the ethnic cleansing of non-Soviet ethnic groups—among them Poles, Germans, Latvians, Finns, Greeks, Koreans, and Chinese—through internal or external exile. [835] According to Service, Stalin "regarded women as a resource for sexual gratification and domestic comfort". Unrest soon spread across the Russian Empire in what came to be known as the Revolution of 1905. [355] Conservative social policies were promoted to enhance social discipline and boost population growth; this included a focus on strong family units and motherhood, the re-criminalisation of homosexuality, restrictions placed on abortion and divorce, and the abolition of the Zhenotdel women's department. [97] There, Mensheviks confronted Stalin about the robbery and voted to expel him from the RSDLP, but he took no notice of them. [788] By the 1920s, he was also suspicious and conspiratorial, prone to believing that people were plotting against him and that there were vast international conspiracies behind acts of dissent.

[902], Historians continue to debate whether or not the 1932–33 Ukrainian famine—known in Ukraine as the Holodomor—should be called a genocide. [270] To bolster his image as a devoted Leninist, Stalin gave nine lectures at Sverdlov University on the "Foundations of Leninism", later published in book form. [413] This mixed approach began to change in December 1934, after prominent party member Sergey Kirov was murdered. [453] Between 1940 and 1941 he also purged the military, leaving it with a severe shortage of trained officers when war broke out. [481] The German tactic of blitzkrieg was initially highly effective; the Soviet air force in the western borderlands was destroyed within two days. [699] After Lenin's death, Stalin relied heavily on Lenin's writings—far more so than those of Marx and Engels—to guide him in the affairs of state. [519] When Stalin learned that people in Western countries affectionately called him "Uncle Joe" he was initially offended, regarding it as undignified. [334] Although he and Stalin had been close for many years,[335] Bukharin expressed concerns about these policies; he regarded them as a return to Lenin's old "war communism" policy and believed that it would fail. [834] Montefiore noted that Stalin's favoured types were "young, malleable teenagers or buxom peasant women",[834] who would be supportive and unchallenging toward him.

[377] Social unrest, previously restricted largely to the countryside, was increasingly evident in urban areas, prompting Stalin to ease on some of his economic policies in 1932.

6 December] 1878 – 5 March 1953) was a Georgian revolutionary and Soviet politician who ruled the Soviet Union from the mid-1920s until his death in 1953. [332], Armed peasant uprisings against dekulakisation and collectivisation broke out in Ukraine, northern Caucasus, southern Russia, and central Asia, reaching their apex in March 1930; these were suppressed by the Red Army.

[929] In this literature, Stalin's repressions are regarded either as a necessary measure to defeat "enemies of the people" or the result of lower-level officials acting without Stalin's knowledge.

[689] The new state would then be able to ensure that all citizens had access to work, food, shelter, healthcare, and education, with the wastefulness of capitalism eliminated by a new, standardised economic system. [625] The U.S. went to the UN Security Council—which the Soviets were boycotting over its refusal to recognise Mao's government—and secured military support for the South Koreans. [255] Residing at his Gorki dacha, Lenin's main connection to Sovnarkom was through Stalin, who was a regular visitor. [457] Stalin saw this as an opportunity both for territorial expansion and temporary peace with Germany.

[501] The Internationale was dropped as the country's national anthem, to be replaced with a more patriotic song. [100] In August 1907, he attended the Seventh Congress of the Second International—an international socialist organisation—in Stuttgart, Germany. [413] In May 1933, he released from prison many convicted of minor offenses, ordering the security services not to enact further mass arrests and deportations. The Russian equivalent of this is Iosif Vissarionovich Dzhugashvili (Иосиф Виссарионович Джугашвили). [920] His successor, Vladimir Putin, did not seek to rehabilitate Stalin but emphasised the celebration of Soviet achievements under Stalin's leadership rather than the Stalinist repressions;[921] however, in October 2017 Putin opened the Wall of Grief memorial in Moscow, noting that the "terrible past" would neither be "justified by anything" nor "erased from the national memory". Then he launched and saw through a bloody socialist remaking of the entire former empire, presided over a victory in the greatest war in human history, and took the Soviet Union to the epicentre of global affairs. [157] Stalin was required to serve four more months on his exile, and he successfully requested that he serve it in nearby Achinsk.

[712] In his work, he stated that "the right of secession" should be offered to the ethnic-minorities of the Russian Empire, but that they should not be encouraged to take that option. [174] A Bolshevik-controlled ship, the Aurora, opened fire on the Winter Palace; the Provisional Government's assembled delegates surrendered and were arrested by the Bolsheviks. [592] Stalin also initiated a new military build-up; the Soviet army was expanded from 2.9 million soldiers, as it stood in 1949, to 5.8 million by 1953. [291] In 1925, the two moved into open opposition to Stalin and Bukharin.

[841] Yakov had a daughter, Galina, before fighting for the Red Army in the Second World War. [554] He also pushed for "war booty", which would permit the Soviet Union to directly seize property from conquered nations without quantitative or qualitative limitation, and a clause was added permitting this to occur with some limitations.

[276] Stalin had much contact with young party functionaries,[277] and the desire for promotion led many provincial figures to seek to impress Stalin and gain his favour. [854] There are unproven rumours that from 1934 onward he had a relationship with his housekeeper Valentina Istomina.

[847] Stalin regarded Vasily as spoiled and often chastised his behaviour; as Stalin's son, Vasily nevertheless was swiftly promoted through the ranks of the Red Army and allowed a lavish lifestyle. [336] In November 1929 Stalin removed him from the Politburo. [905][906] Popular among some Ukrainian nationalists is the idea that Stalin consciously organised the famine to suppress national desires among the Ukrainian people. [374] [777] Despite his tough-talking attitude, he could be very charming;[778] when relaxed, he cracked jokes and mimicked others. [605], Churchill observed that an "Iron Curtain" had been drawn across Europe, separating the east from the west. As the majority of excess deaths under Stalin were not direct killings, the exact number of victims of Stalinism is difficult to calculate due to lack of consensus among scholars on which deaths can be attributed to the regime.

[935], "Stalin" redirects here. [584] Current estimates indicate that between one million and 1.5 million people died from malnutrition or disease as a result.

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