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Stalin

4.2 - The purges of the 1930s

QuestionAnswer
THE REASONS FOR THE PURGES - What did Stalin never feel? Secure
THE REASONS FOR THE PURGES - How was it obvious that Stalin never felt secure? From his dealings with his political enemies during his rise to power.
THE REASONS FOR THE PURGES - As well as never feeling secure, what was Stalin also aware of? That some other 'Old Bolsheviks' were cleverer than he was.
THE REASONS FOR THE PURGES - What were the purges? A convenient way of excusing failure and setbacks. If targets were not met, the failure could be blamed on sabotage.
THE REASONS FOR THE PURGES - What did the fact that if targets were not met the failure could be blamed on sabotage (in the purges) provide? The reasons for getting rid of enemies of the State.
THE REASONS FOR THE PURGES - What have different people suggested abut the purges? Some have suggested that they provide evidence that Stalin suffered from paranoia. Others have suggested that he was a sadist who enjoyed cruelty.
THE REASONS FOR THE PURGES - How have some tried to excuse Stalin from total responsibility for the purges? By saying that he was a weak character easily influenced by others.
THE REASONS FOR THE PURGES - Whatever the explanations, what did the purges do? Unify the country by appealing to people's nationalism and loyalty at a crucial time when the USSR was increasingly threatened from abroad, especially with the expanding control of Eastern Europe by Hitler.
THE EXTENT OF THE PURGES - How did the purges begin? With the murder of Sergei Kirov in December 1934. He was a young and popular communist working in an office in Leningrad. The government newspapers announced that the murder was part of a terrorist conspiracy to kill Stalin.
THE EXTENT OF THE PURGES - What happened immediately after the government newspapers announced that the murder of Kirov was part of a terrorist conspiracy to kill Stalin? Leading communists such as Kamenev and Zinoviev were arrested on false charges of terrorism.
THE EXTENT OF THE PURGES - What did the murder of Kirov allegedly being part of a terrorist conspiracy to kill Stalin provide Stalin with? The excuse to mount a wave of arrests with punishments of hard labour or execution.
THE EXTENT OF THE PURGES - What is it now thought likely that happened (surrounding Kirov's murder)? That he was murdered on Stalin's orders.
THE EXTENT OF THE PURGES - Why is it now thought likely that Kirov was murdered on Stalin's orders? Because he was popular; he had criticised the cruel aspects of the collectivisation of agriculture in the early 1930s and some saw him as a future leader.
THE EXTENT OF THE PURGES - What was later published in a Soviet magazine? When? An explanation written by Nikita Khrushchev in the late-1950s after the death of Stalin saying that the murder was organised from above by Yagoda - who could only act on the secret instructions of Stalin. 1989.
THE EXTENT OF THE PURGES - Who was Khrushchev at the time of Kirov's murder (1934)? Moscow Party Secretary and a loyal supporter of Stalin.
THE EXTENT OF THE PURGES - After being Moscow Party Secretary and a loyal supporter of Stalin in 1934, what did Khrushchev later become? Ruler of the USSR and criticiser of Stalin's methods.
Created by: mollyyy