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Stalin and His Hangmen

By Donald Rayfield
  • Format : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Random House
  • Isbn : 0307431835
  • Pages : 592
  • Category : History
  • Reads : 485
  • File Pdf: stalin-and-his-hangmen.pdf

Book Summary:

Stalin did not act alone. The mass executions, the mock trials, the betrayals and purges, the jailings and secret torture that ravaged the Soviet Union during the three decades of Stalin’s dictatorship, were the result of a tight network of trusted henchmen (and women), spies, psychopaths, and thugs. At the top of this pyramid of terror sat five indispensable hangmen who presided over the various incarnations of Stalin’s secret police. Now, in his harrowing new book, Donald Rayfield probes the lives, the minds, the twisted careers, and the unpunished crimes of Stalin’s loyal assassins. Founded by Feliks Dzierzynski, the Cheka–the Extraordinary Commission–came to life in the first years of the Russian Revolution. Spreading fear in a time of chaos, the Cheka proved a perfect instrument for Stalin’s ruthless consolidation of power. But brutal as it was, the Cheka under Dzierzynski was amateurish compared to the well-oiled killing machines that succeeded it. Genrikh Iagoda’s OGPU specialized in political assassination, propaganda, and the manipulation of foreign intellectuals. Later, the NKVD recruited a new generation of torturers. Starting in 1938, terror mastermind Lavrenti Beria brought violent repression to a new height of ingenuity and sadism. As Rayfield shows, Stalin and his henchmen worked relentlessly to coerce and suborn leading Soviet intellectuals, artists, writers, lawyers, and scientists. Maxim Gorky, Aleksandr Fadeev, Alexei Tolstoi, Isaak Babel, and Osip Mandelstam were all caught in Stalin’s web–courted, toyed with, betrayed, and then ruthlessly destroyed. In bringing to light the careers, personalities, relationships, and “accomplishments” of Stalin’s key henchmen and their most prominent victims, Rayfield creates a chilling drama of the intersection of political fanaticism, personal vulnerability, and blind lust for power spanning half a century. Though Beria lost his power–and his life–after Stalin’s death in 1953, the fundamental methods of the hangmen maintained their grip into the second half of the twentieth century. Indeed, Rayfield argues, the tradition of terror, far from disappearing, has emerged with renewed vitality under Vladimir Putin. Written with grace, passion, and a dazzling command of the intricacies of Soviet politics and society, Stalin and the Hangmen is a devastating indictment of the individuals and ideology that kept Stalin in power.

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  • File Pdf: stalin-s-curse.pdf

Book Summary:

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Book Summary:

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  • File Pdf: stalin-s-wars.pdf

Book Summary:

This breakthrough book provides a detailed reconstruction of Stalin's leadership from the outbreak of the Second World War in 1939 to his death in 1953. Making use of a wealth of new material from Russian archives, Geoffrey Roberts challenges a long list of standard perceptions of Stalin: his qualities as a leader; his relationships with his own generals and with other great world leaders; his foreign policy; and his role in instigating the Cold War. While frankly exploring the full extent of Stalin's brutalities and their impact on the Soviet people, Roberts also uncovers evidence leading to the stunning conclusion that Stalin was both the greatest military leader of the twentieth century and a remarkable politician who sought to avoid the Cold War and establish a long-term detente with the capitalist world. By means of an integrated military, political, and diplomatic narrative, the author draws a sustained and compelling personal portrait of the Soviet leader. The resulting picture is fascinating and contradictory, and it will inevitably change the way we understand Stalin and his place in history. Roberts depicts a despot who helped save the world for democracy, a personal charmer who disciplined mercilessly, a utopian ideologue who could be a practical realist, and a warlord who undertook the role of architect of post-war peace.

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  • File Pdf: all-the-kremlin-s-men.pdf

Book Summary:

An extraordinary behind-the-scenes portrait of the court of Vladimir Putin, the oligarchs that surround it, and the many moods of modern Russia that reads like a "real House of Cards"(Lev Lurie). All the Kremlin's Men is a gripping narrative of an accidental king and a court out of control. Based on an unprecedented series of interviews with Vladimir Putin's inner circle, this book presents a radically different view of power and politics in Russia. The image of Putin as a strongman is dissolved. In its place is a weary figurehead buffeted--if not controlled--by the men who at once advise and deceive him. The regional governors and bureaucratic leaders are immovable objects, far more powerful in their fiefdoms than the president himself. So are the gatekeepers-those officials who guard the pathways to power-on whom Putin depends as much as they rely on him. The tenuous edifice is filled with all of the intrigue and plotting of a Medici court, as enemies of the state are invented and wars begun to justify personal gains, internal rivalries, or one faction's biased advantage. A bestseller in Russia, All the Kremlin's Men is a shocking revisionist portrait of the Putin era and a dazzling reconstruction of the machinations of courtiers running riot.

Roosevelt's Secret War

By Joseph E. Persico
  • Format : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Random House
  • Isbn : 1588361241
  • Pages : 592
  • Category : History
  • Reads : 661
  • File Pdf: roosevelt-s-secret-war.pdf

Book Summary:

Despite all that has already been written on Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Joseph Persico has uncovered a hitherto overlooked dimension of FDR's wartime leadership: his involvement in intelligence and espionage operations. Roosevelt's Secret War is crowded with remarkable revelations: -FDR wanted to bomb Tokyo before Pearl Harbor -A defector from Hitler's inner circle reported directly to the Oval Office -Roosevelt knew before any other world leader of Hitler's plan to invade Russia -Roosevelt and Churchill concealed a disaster costing hundreds of British soldiers' lives in order to protect Ultra, the British codebreaking secret -An unwitting Japanese diplomat provided the President with a direct pipeline into Hitler's councils Roosevelt's Secret War also describes how much FDR had been told--before the Holocaust--about the coming fate of Europe's Jews. And Persico also provides a definitive answer to the perennial question Did FDR know in advance about the attack on Pearl Harbor? By temperament and character, no American president was better suited for secret warfare than FDR. He manipulated, compartmentalized, dissembled, and misled, demonstrating a spymaster's talent for intrigue. He once remarked, "I never let my right hand know what my left hand does." Not only did Roosevelt create America's first central intelligence agency, the OSS, under "Wild Bill" Donovan, but he ran spy rings directly from the Oval Office, enlisting well-placed socialite friends. FDR was also spied against. Roosevelt's Secret War presents evidence that the Soviet Union had a source inside the Roosevelt White House; that British agents fed FDR total fabrications to draw the United States into war; and that Roosevelt, by yielding to Churchill's demand that British scientists be allowed to work on the Manhattan Project, enabled the secrets of the bomb to be stolen. And these are only a few of the scores of revelations in this constantly surprising story of Roosevelt's hidden role in World War II.

Rasputin

By Douglas Smith
  • Format : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Farrar, Straus and Giroux
  • Isbn : 0374711232
  • Pages : 848
  • Category : Biography & Autobiography
  • Reads : 655
  • File Pdf: rasputin.pdf

Book Summary:

On the centenary of the death of Rasputin comes a definitive biography that will dramatically change our understanding of this fascinating figure A hundred years after his murder, Rasputin continues to excite the popular imagination as the personification of evil. Numerous biographies, novels, and films recount his mysterious rise to power as Nicholas and Alexandra's confidant and the guardian of the sickly heir to the Russian throne. His debauchery and sinister political influence are the stuff of legend, and the downfall of the Romanov dynasty was laid at his feet. But as the prizewinning historian Douglas Smith shows, the true story of Rasputin's life and death has remained shrouded in myth. A major new work that combines probing scholarship and powerful storytelling, Rasputin separates fact from fiction to reveal the real life of one of history's most alluring figures. Drawing on a wealth of forgotten documents from archives in seven countries, Smith presents Rasputin in all his complexity--man of God, voice of peace, loyal subject, adulterer, drunkard. Rasputin is not just a definitive biography of an extraordinary and legendary man but a fascinating portrait of the twilight of imperial Russia as it lurched toward catastrophe.

Stalin's Last Crime

By Jonathan Brent,Vladimir Naumov
  • Format : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Harper Collins
  • Isbn : 006201367X
  • Pages : 416
  • Category : Biography & Autobiography
  • Reads : 566
  • File Pdf: stalin-s-last-crime.pdf

Book Summary:

A new investigation, based on previously unseen KGB documents, reveals the startling truth behind Stalin's last great conspiracy. On January 13, 1953, a stunned world learned that a vast conspiracy had been unmasked among Jewish doctors in the USSR to murder Kremlin leaders. Mass arrests quickly followed. The Doctors' Plot, as this alleged scheme came to be called, was Stalin's last crime. In the fifty years since Stalin's death many myths have grown up about the Doctors' Plot. Did Stalin himself invent the conspiracy against the Jewish doctors or was it engineered by subordinates who wished to eliminate Kremlin rivals? Did Stalin intend a purge of all Jews from Moscow, Leningrad, and other major cities, which might lead to a Soviet Holocaust? How was this plot related to the cold war then dividing Europe, and the hot war in Korea? Finally, was the Doctors' Plot connected with Stalin's fortuitous death? Brent and Naumov have explored an astounding arra of previously unknown, top-secret documents from the KGB, the presidential archives, and other state and party archives in order to probe the mechanism of on of Stalin's greatest intrigues -- and to tell for the first time the incredible full story of the Doctors' Plot.

Stalin

By Kevin McDermott
  • Format : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Bloomsbury Publishing
  • Isbn : 0230204783
  • Pages : 240
  • Category : Political Science
  • Reads : 607
  • File Pdf: stalin.pdf

Book Summary:

Stalin's massive impact on Soviet history is often explained in terms of his inherent evil, personality defects and power lust. While not rejecting these notions, Kevin McDermott argues that Stalin's thoughts and actions are best contextualised in the inter-relationship between war and revolution in the first half of the twentieth century. The author presents the case for taking the Soviet dictator seriously as a Marxist revolutionary whose fundamental beliefs and modus operandi were forged in the cauldron of civil and international wars, ideologically driven class wars and revolutionary upheavals associated with the 'age of catastrophe', 1914-45. Only by so doing can the complex motivations for such cataclysmic events as the Great Terror be adequately addressed. Incorporating recently declassified materials from the former Soviet Party archives, this new appraisal of Stalin also provides a critical review of the latest western and Russian historiography. It is essential reading for anyone studying the debates on one of the leading figures of Soviet history.

Stalin and Stalinism

By Martin McCauley
  • Format : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Routledge
  • Isbn : 0429849761
  • Pages : 200
  • Category : History
  • Reads : 424
  • File Pdf: stalin-and-stalinism.pdf

Book Summary:

One of the most successful dictators of the twentieth century, Stalin transformed the Communist Party of the Soviet Union into one of the world’s leading political parties. Stalin and Stalinism explores how he ammassed, retained and deployed power to dominate, not only his close associates, but the population of the Soviet Union and Soviet Empire. Moving from leader to autocrat and finally despot, Stalin played a key role in shaping the first half of the twentieth century with, at one time, around one-third of the planet adopting his system. His influence lives on – despite turning their backs on Stalin’s anti-capitalism in the later twentieth century, countries such as China and Vietnam retain his political model – the unbridled power of the Communist Party. First published in 1983, Stalin and Stalinism has established itself as one of the most popular textbooks for those who want to understand the Stalin phenomenon. This updated fourth edition draws on a wealth of new publications, and includes increased discussion on culture, religion and the new society that Stalin fashioned as well as more on spying, Stalin's legacy, and his character as well as his actions. Supported by a chronology of key events, Who’s Who and Guide to Further Reading, this concise assessment of one of the major figures of the twentieth-century world history remains an essential read for students of the subject.

Stalin and the Lubianka

By David R. Shearer,Vladimir Khaustov
  • Format : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Yale University Press
  • Isbn : 030021071X
  • Pages : 392
  • Category : History
  • Reads : 943
  • File Pdf: stalin-and-the-lubianka.pdf

Book Summary:

This fascinating documentary history is the first English-language exploration of Joseph Stalin's relationship with, and manipulation of, the Soviet political police. The story follows the changing functions, organization, and fortunes of the political police and security organs from the early 1920s until Stalin’s death in 1953, and it provides documented detail about how Stalin used these organs to achieve and maintain undisputed power. Although written as a narrative, it includes translations of more than 170 documents from Soviet archives.

The Immortalization Commission

By John Gray
  • Format : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Doubleday Canada
  • Isbn : 0307375730
  • Pages : 288
  • Category : Social Science
  • Reads : 121
  • File Pdf: the-immortalization-commission.pdf

Book Summary:

A great philosopher will change the way you think about your life. For most of human history, religion provided a clear explanation of life and death. But in the late 19th and early 20th centuries new ideas — from psychiatry to evolution to Communist — seemed to suggest that our fate was now in our own hands. We would ourselves become God. This is the theme of a remarkable new book by one of the world's greatest lving philosophers. It is a brilliant and frightening look at the problems and opportunities of a world coming to grips with humankind's now solitary, unaided place in the universe. Gray takes two major examples: the belief that the science-backed Communism of the new USSR could reshape the planet, and the belief among a group of Edwardian intellectuals — popularized through mediums and automatic writing — that there was a non-religious form of life after death. Gray presents an extraordinary cast of philosophers, journalists, politicians, charlatans and mass murderers, all of whom felt driven by a specifically scientific and modern world view. He raises a host of fascinating questions about what it means to be human. The implications of Gray's book will haunt its readers for the rest of their lives.

Stalin's Agent

By Boris Volodarsky
  • Format : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : OUP Oxford
  • Isbn : 0191045527
  • Pages : 832
  • Category : Political Science
  • Reads : 761
  • File Pdf: stalin-s-agent.pdf

Book Summary:

This is the history of an unprecedented deception operation - the biggest KGB deception of all time. It has never been told in full until now. There are almost certainly people who would like it never to be told. It is the story of General Alexander Orlov. Stalin's most loyal and trusted henchman during the Spanish Civil War, Orlov was also the Soviet handler controlling Kim Philby, the British spy, defector, and member of the notorious 'Cambridge Five'. Escaping Stalin's purges, Orlov fled to America in the late 1930s and lived underground. He only dared reveal his identity to the world after Stalin's death, in his 1953 best-seller The Secret History of Stalin's Crimes, after which he became perhaps the best known of all Soviet defectors, much written about, highly praised, and commemorated by the US Congress on his death in 1973. But there is a twist in the Orlov story beyond the dreams of even the most ingenious spy novelist: 'General Alexander Orlov' never actually existed. The man known as 'Orlov' was in fact born Leiba Feldbin. And while he was a loyal servant of Stalin and the controller of Philby, he was never a General in the KGB, never truly defected to the West after his 'flight' from the USSR, and remained a loyal Soviet agent until his death. The 'Orlov' story as it has been accepted until now was largely the invention of the KGB - and one perpetuated long after the end of the Cold War. In this meticulous new biography, Boris Volodarsky, himself a former Soviet intelligence officer, now tells the true story behind 'Orlov' for the first time. An intriguing tale of Russian espionage and deception, stretching from the time of Lenin to the Putin era, it is a story that many people in the world's intelligence agencies would almost definitely prefer you not to know about.

The Soviet Writers' Union and Its Leaders

By Carol Any
  • Format : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Northwestern University Press
  • Isbn : 0810142767
  • Pages : 344
  • Category : History
  • Reads : 252
  • File Pdf: the-soviet-writers-union-and-its-leaders.pdf

Book Summary:

The Soviet Writers’ Union offered writers elite status and material luxuries in exchange for literature that championed the state. This book argues that Soviet ruler Joseph Stalin chose leaders for this crucial organization, such as Maxim Gorky and Alexander Fadeyev, who had psychological traits he could exploit. Stalin ensured their loyalty with various rewards but also with a philosophical argument calculated to assuage moral qualms, allowing them to feel they were not trading ethics for self-interest. Employing close textual analysis of public and private documents including speeches, debate transcripts, personal letters, and diaries, Carol Any exposes the misgivings of Writers’ Union leaders as well as the arguments they constructed when faced with a cognitive dissonance. She tells a dramatic story that reveals the interdependence of literary policy, communist morality, state-sponsored terror, party infighting, and personal psychology. This book will be an important reference for scholars of the Soviet Union as well as anyone interested in identity, the construction of culture, and the interface between art and ideology.

Stalin’s Terror Revisited

By M. Ilic
  • Format : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Springer
  • Isbn : 0230597335
  • Pages : 236
  • Category : History
  • Reads : 566
  • File Pdf: stalin-s-terror-revisited.pdf

Book Summary:

In this ground-breaking collection, a team of leading experts offer a detailed examination of under-researched aspects of Soviet political repression in the 1930s. Drawing on archival documents and materials that have received little attention in Western historiography, much of the information detailed here is in English for the first time.

On Stalin's Team

By Sheila Fitzpatrick
  • Format : Pdf, ePub, Mobi, Kindle
  • Publisher : Princeton University Press
  • Isbn : 1400874211
  • Pages : 384
  • Category : History
  • Reads : 834
  • File Pdf: on-stalin-s-team.pdf

Book Summary:

The first chronicle of Stalin's inner political and social circle—from a leading Soviet historian Stalin was the unchallenged dictator of the Soviet Union for so long that most historians have dismissed the officials surrounding him as mere yes-men and political window dressing. On Stalin's Team overturns this view, revealing that behind Stalin was a group of loyal men who formed a remarkably effective team with him from the late 1920s until his death in 1953. Drawing on extensive original research, Sheila Fitzpatrick provides the first in-depth account of this inner circle and their families. She vividly describes how these dedicated comrades-in-arms not only worked closely with Stalin, but also constituted his social circle. Stalin's team included the wily security chief Beria; Andreev, who traveled to provincial purges while listening to Beethoven on a portable gramophone; and Khrushchev, who finally disbanded the team four years after Stalin's death. Taking readers from the cataclysms of the Great Purges and World War II to the paranoia of Stalin's final years, On Stalin's Team paints an entirely new picture of Stalin within his milieu—one that transforms our understanding of how the Soviet Union was ruled during much of its existence.