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Historic Unedited Photos They Don't Want You To See
Publication: Historical Archives.
Posted by
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Joseph Stalin

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A ruthless dictator who ruled with an iron fist, Stalin's actions contributed to the death of millions (if not tens of millions) of people while he was in control of the Soviet Union.
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Joseph Stalin


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There have been many polarizing leaders throughout world history, but perhaps none more so than Joseph Stalin. Stalin was the leader of the Soviet Union following the death of Vladimir Lenin in the 1920s and assumed power for more than 30 years. Even more than 60 years following his death, Stalin remains talked about for better or worse. While there are people that see Stalin in a positive light, there are many that remember Stalin for the negative aspects that include overseeing problems that led to the deaths of millions of people while also shipping out many from the Soviet Union during his regime.

Stalin was born as Ioseb Besarionis dze Jughashvili on in the town of Gori, Georgia on December 18, 1878. At the time, Georgia had been a part of Russia and Stalin had lived a mixed childhood. There were times when the Stalin family had money and other times when they were struggling mightily. Stalin himself was described as being a good student but also one that got into a lot of problems with his peers. This included getting into multiple fights, but his academics still shined through.

That was until Stalin got a bit older during his teenage years and had lost interest in school and the subjects that were being taught, choosing instead to educate himself and focus on reading. This included getting involved with Marxism for the first time, which had made up for a lot of his thought process. Stalin decided to leave school and gathered others that were interested in socialism. The young Stalin was a quick riser in this realm, becoming the leader of the Russian Social Democratic Labor Party.

Eventually, Stalin became part of Vladimir Lenin’s government, and the former leader had started to suffer from health problems in the early 1920s. They had their differences in Lenin’s final days, but it was Stalin that was ultimately appointed as the General Secretary that started to assume more power the longer that he was in office. In his early days, Stalin wasn’t described as a dictator, but that would eventually change.

Stalin had his own views on how to develop the Soviet economy so that they became a world power, but not everything that had gone smoothly. Instead, millions of people had passed away as the result of a major famine in the early 1930s at the same time that Germany started to develop their military in preparation for World War II. Of course, the Soviet Union would become involved in the war as the Soviets joined the side of the Allies to fight against Germany and the other countries of the Axis.

Stalin did receive a fair share of credit for the Allies being able to win World War II, but it also came with a lot of negative impact. The Stalin regime had been oppressive against millions, and similar to Nazi Germany had their own ideals of ethnic cleansing. Many were kicked out of the Soviet Union as a result, though Stalin felt his leadership was the right kind. “The death of one man is a tragedy,” Stalin said. “The death of millions is a statistic.” At the same time, though, Stalin wanted to bring the classes of people closer together, saying that “Mankind is divided into rich and poor,” and that “From the antagonism between poor and rich means abstracting oneself from fundamental facts.”

Considered as a dictator to many around the world, Stalin didn’t pass away at a young age due to an overthrow like many in his position had been throughout the years. Instead, Stalin lived to be 74 years old. He had started to suffer from poor health at the beginning of the 1950s, which included the doctors that were working with him being tortured and charged with crimes, leading to thousands of people being deported.

On the first day of March 1953, Stalin’s declining health had caught up to him as he had a brain hemorrhage that had brought on the final days of his life. After four days of struggling, Stalin passed away on March 5, 1953 with some claiming that he was actually murdered since he was still in charge. With no new leader in place just yet, Georgy Malenkov became the de facto leader of the Communist Party before Nikita Khrushchev assumed the role in 1953.

There were many throughout the Soviet Union that were unable to react with their true feelings toward Stalin’s death. Many that had done so continued to be imprisoned, but there were reactions on both sides. Many had mourned Stalin’s death in the USSR while others were celebrating the change of power. These days, those reactions are still mixed with many modern Communists claiming that he was a great leader.

One Russian poll said that Stalin was the “most outstanding person” compared to any other world leader, with many still following his ideals. Many point to this as being a cult of personality, and Russians throughout the country still celebrate his life. Again, the word polarizing certainly comes to mind for Stalin’s regime.

Russian teacher Stephan Bochkarev said that “From my nearly 15 years of teaching, I have the impression that Stalin is the central figure in Russian history of the 20th century in the eyes of the vast majority of students. And, often, this image basks in an aura of heroic grandeur.” One of his students added onto this, saying that “I think that Stalin’s terror will be imprinted on people’s minds for a long time. And even now you can hear its echo in the position ‘I do not care about what does not concern me directly.’ Stalin is often spoken about in a half-bad, half-good light.”