Tuesday, May 17, 2022

The Great Purge in Russia

The Great Purge, also known as the “Great Terror,” was a brutal political campaign led by Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin to eliminate dissenting members of the Communist Party and anyone else he considered a threat.

Stalin was known for demonizing anyone he saw as a threat, labeling them Trotskyites and counter-revolutionaries. Thousands were expelled from the Communist Party in the early 1930s.

In 1934, Stalin used the murder of Sergey Kirov as a pretext to launch the Great Purge, in which many prominent Old Bolsheviks were found guilty of treason and executed or imprisoned.

The Great Purge began in July-August 1936 when Lev Kamenev, Grigorii Zinoviev, and fourteen others were convicted of having organized a Trotskyite-Zinovievite terrorist center that allegedly had been formed in 1932 and was held responsible for the assassination of Sergei Kirov in December 1934.

The Great Purge successfully eliminated the major real and potential political rivals and critics of Joseph Stalin.

It was believed at least 750,000 people were executed during the Great Purge, which took place between about 1936 and 1938. More than a million other people were sent to forced labor camps, known as Gulags, the name given to the network of prisons and work camps throughout the Soviet Union where criminals and political prisoners were sent.
The Great Purge in Russia

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