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Week 7 Notes

by: Victoria Miller

Week 7 Notes HY 362

Victoria Miller

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About this Document

Week 7 notes cover the Stalinist Terror
Russia-Soviet Union since 1894
Margaret Peacock
Class Notes
history, Russian Revolution, Soviet Union
25 ?




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This 2 page Class Notes was uploaded by Victoria Miller on Sunday March 20, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to HY 362 at University of Alabama - Tuscaloosa taught by Margaret Peacock in Spring 2016. Since its upload, it has received 25 views. For similar materials see Russia-Soviet Union since 1894 in History at University of Alabama - Tuscaloosa.


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Date Created: 03/20/16
Week 7  The Terror o Question #1: What made the Terror possible?  Systemic factors  The culture of the Party  Stalin was comfortable with torture and violence  Soviet society in the 1930ss  Culture of fear  Stalin’s underlying psychosis  The establishment of extra-legal organizations – a “machinery of despotism”  The NKVD, 1 led by Yagoda, the Yezhov  A Purge Commission led by Voroshilov o Managing the paperwork of everyone accused o The Special Sector of the Central Committee o A prosecutor-generalship by Vyshinsky o When did it start?  The Ryutin Trial  Ryutin is a remaining critic of Stalin in 1930s  His survival has lasting repercussions o The legacy of the Ryuntin plot o Stalin learns some disturbing lessons  The Assassination of Sergei Kirov (was it the teamsters, organized crime, Castro, or did Leonid Nikolaev act alone?) Dec 1, 1934  This becomes the crime of the century o Kinda like the Kennedy assassination  Sparks mass arrests, provides a reason for the Terror  1936 Kamenev and Zinoviev  Arrest  Interrogation o The “conveyor belt”  Confessions  False promises  Executions o The Terror in Full Swing  Red Army falls to the Terror in 1937  The trials and executions aren’t announced in the press until after they had happened  The consequences are significant for the state of Soviet readiness against the rise of Nazi Germany  The “flower of the Red Army” along with much of their families met their deaths  March 1938 trials  Bukharin, Krestinsky o Remaining questions  How much did Stalin believe?  How much did everyone else believe?  There’s no paper evidence anywhere so there should have been red flags  Why did all these people confess?  The Soviet mind, meaning it becomes impossible to speak out against it  Whatever the Party demands, you give it  Torture o Hit in stomach with sand bag, waterboarding, etc. o Hostages and threatening families  The tsarist government never did this  Self-preservation o Maybe you’ll get a lighter sentence or save family even if you couldn’t save yourself  Why did the state need these confessions?  Make it look legitimate since they have no other evidence  Stalin wanted to destroy his opponents politically, morally, and historically o Wipe them out of history  If they can get enough confessions, people will start to buy into it o Scope  2-3 million, most communist rank and file, many who fall outside of the Party, the Red Army, families, children 2/3 dead by 1940  Absence of confession would make it difficult to find fresh victims  Stalin needs to break the truth  Stalin and Trotsky are only party leadership that survive past 1940 o One last question (well, two): Who is responsible? What does it all mean?  Stalin or Russia?  NKVD going beyond their quota  Why did the Terror happen?  The larger impact/meanings of the Terror?  To explain why the Utopia wasn’t happening  scapegoat


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