The stroke weakened Lenin, and many feared that he would not have long to live. to create and use symbols to his advantage. official repudiation of their views as "anti-Leninist." Stalin was not the natural successor of Vladimir Lenin, but he was able to use his position within the Soviet Communist Party to become the undisputed leader of the Soviet Union. Stalin, unwittingly, helped to strengthen the German economy in an attempt to avoid war with Hitler (Schwendemann, 169). on economic policy from Zinoviev and Kamenev (who drew their support Stalin’s entire revolution, therefore, was a radical departure from traditional Bolshevik thinking that called for world revolution. Log in now! Trotsky, Zinoviev, and Kamenev, who had once viewed Stalin as their ally, were then faced with the daunting task of unseating Stalin (Marples, 73). Lenin was a product of the middle-class. Why did the Soviet Union create the Warsaw Pact in 1955? and a lull settled over the political struggle. After leaving school, Stalin went to a seminary. Realizing this newfound power, Stalin quickly capitalized upon the Red Army’s success through both militaristic and political moves. You must have JavaScript enabled in your browser to utilize the functionality of this website. 4 (Council on Foreign Relations, 1947). [1], Joseph Stalin, the future leader of the Soviet Union, often referred to as the ‘Red Tsar,' was born on 18 December 1878 to a Georgian cobbler in Gori, Georgia and his wife in a small, impoverished village. Sorry, but downloading is forbidden on this website. This Testament was, in effect, his analysis of the current Bolshevik Part, the future of the Revolution and an indictment of Stalin's character. Another factor, in the growing isolation of Leon Trotsky, despite his achievements during the Russian Civil War, was his Jewish heritage. Purges, which had been an ideological aspect of the Bolshevik revolution from 1917 onwards, were a means of exerting total control through fear (Marples, 108-110). In the first years of the Bolshevik regime, however, few thought of Stalin as a potential leader. to twist it to his advantage, a habit that proved useful in the This can be shown by the combination of manipulation and luck which resulted in the damage of Trotsky's reputation as a result of what happened at Lenin's funeral where Stalin manipulated Trotsky by misleading him about the date of the funeral and then attacking him in a speech. Stalin went behind Lenin’s back and with the help of his new alliances with two men named Lev Kamenev and Grigory Zinoviev he was able to keep Lenin’s testament from getting to the Twelfth Party Congress in 1923. him and said that the funeral would be held immediately, so there Stalin never had to deliver grand speeches to impress the council who would later be electing him as leader of Russia. more. of Lenin instantly sprang up among the Bolsheviks, who ordered He led the opposition to Stalin in the Politburo. SparkNotes is brought to you by Barnes & Noble. From the time of Vladimir Lenin’s death in 1924 to his demise in 1953, Stalin controlled the Soviet Union through an exploitation of political opponents (and allies), and through a relentless drive for absolute power. Stalin is in the center. Kamenev realized that Stalin, whom they had saved from political This victory in collectivization would result in unspeakable hardship for hundreds of millions of peasants throughout the Soviet Union countries for years to come (Ellison, 202). Many believe Stalin’s rise to power began when he met Vladimir Lenin. The previous equivalent position, the Responsible Secretary was occupied by his greatest ally, Molotov. [9], However, Stalin made his reputation during the Russian Civil War. Stalin never questioned his authority, though he might have been intimidated with Lenin’s lack of attention towards him during Stalin’s early years. By January 1925, Zinoviev and Kamenev were urging He was short but physically strong, his face scarred by a bout of childhood smallpox. Vorishilov joined the Politburo, and the suddenly weakened Kamenev Get Your Custom Essay on, By clicking “Write my paper”, you agree to our. Updated January 28, 2019, October Revolution and the Russian Civil War, Stalin as General Secretary of the Bolshevik Party.