Stalin's Rise To Power!

GeorgeJWood
Mind Map by GeorgeJWood, updated more than 1 year ago
GeorgeJWood
Created by GeorgeJWood almost 5 years ago
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Mind Map on Stalin's Rise To Power!, created by GeorgeJWood on 04/15/2015.

Resource summary

Stalin's Rise To Power!
1 Stalin
1.1 Political And Personal Ability
1.1.1 He was General Secretary, and was also a member of the Orgburo, Secretariat and Politburo.
1.1.1.1 Stalin was the only man to occupy all of these positions simultaneously and made effective use of it.
1.1.2 As General Secretary, Stalin ran the party machine, doing so occupied the most powerful single position in the USSR and could decide promotions to party positions.
1.1.3 As a member of the Politburo, Stalin was one of the small of leading Communists who met regularly to make policies, they were effectively the decision makers of the USSR.
1.1.4 Stalin was also head of the Workers' and Peasants' Inspectorate, supervising the work of all governement departments.
1.1.5 After Lenin's death, he cleverly presented himself as the upholder of the former leader's legacy. He was instrumental in creating the Lenin cult, which included having LEnins body embalmed in Moscow's Red Square.
1.1.5.1 Due to Lenin being regarded as the fount of wisdom and the ultimate authority on Marxism, Stalin began to use Lenins's nameto justify his own policies, making it very difficult for colleagues to argue with him.
1.1.5.1.1 With the use of all the methods, some of Lenin's immense authority, his repuation had undoubtably rubbed off on Stalin!
1.1.5.2 Stalin arranged Lenin's funeral, delivered the funeral speech, and stated his determination to continue translating Lenin's ideas into practice.
1.1.6 In the ideological battle over future Soviet policy in the mid-1920's, Stalin was careful to present himself as the man of the in the middle, he avoided many of the part bickerings of those rivals who aruged of the best path to Socialism.
1.1.6.1 When Stalin did commit himself to a policy, notable 'Socialism in One Country', it was a policy that had general appeal due to it being focused on Russia focusing on their own problems and not trying to change the world.
1.1.6.2 Party Congresses were packed with his supporters - party members who, in most cases, owed their positions to Stalin. Contrary to the impression given, Stalin was capable of speaking quite eloquently or wittly, and with apparent conviction at important party gatherings. Many of those who underestimated Stalin came to regret it.
1.2 Ambition
1.2.1 Stalin gave few indications until the late-1920's that he was aiming for power, had risen to prominence under Lenin not because he was regarded as a potential leader, but because her was a good second ranked party man who they could count on to 'get things done', whilst more intellectual members debated policies and decisions
1.2.2 Historians working back from the 1930's and trying to explain Stalin's rise to power credit him with unbridled ambition or a lust for power.
1.3 Luck
1.3.1 Stalin, like many successful politicians enjoyed some luck, especially in his rise to power in the party and eventually the USSR.
1.3.2 One of the most crucial instances was after Lenin's death, when his colleagues (Trotsky) decided not to publish Lenin's will, this contained a damning criticism of Stalin, including references to the rough way in which he treated comrades. And a call to remove Stalin from his leading positions in the party. If this would of been published it would most likely of been the end of Stalin's career.
2 Key Profiles
2.1 Grigori Zinoviev
2.1.1 Zinoviev was with Lenin in exile until April 1917, he then joined Kamanev in opposing Lenin's call for an uprising. Between 1918 and 1926, Zinoviev was influential as the head of the Leningrad party organisation. He was allied with Kamanev first against Trotsky, and then with Trotsky and Kamanev in the United oppositon against Stalin after Lenin's death.
2.1.2 Zinoviev was tried and imprisoned in 1935, given another trial in 1936 and then executed with Kamenev.
2.1.3 Advantages in the struggle for power
2.1.3.1 One of the party's best speakers
2.1.3.2 Regarded as intelligent, energetic and with a wide knowledge of European culture
2.1.3.3 An 'Old Bolshevik' and therefore commanded respect from colleagues
2.1.3.4 One of Lenin's closest associates, regarded by him as his 'closest and most trusted assistant'
2.1.3.5 Had important and influential positions in the Politburo and Leningrad party
2.1.4 Disadvantages in the struggle for power
2.1.4.1 Gained a reputation for inconsistency, seen in his oppositon to Lenin in 1917 and switching alliances between Stalin and Trotsky.
2.1.4.2 Seriously underestimated his opponents, especially Stalin
2.1.4.3 Seen as an ambitious compromiser, without a clear philosophy , someone who was lacking in political courage and buckled under pressure.
2.2 Lev Kamanev
2.2.1 Returned to Petrograd in 1917, where he allied with Zinoviev, after Lenin became ill in 1922, Kamanev joined Zinoviev and Stalin in opposing Trotsky. He had a power base in Moscow but by 1927 he had lost this and Stalin ended his political career. He supported Stalin at the 1934 17th Party Congress, this didn't save him he was arrested after the Kirov ass assassination, given a show trial and executed in 1936.
2.2.2 Advantages in the struggle for power
2.2.2.1 Had influence in Moscow where he ran a local party
2.2.2.2 An 'Old Bolshevik', who helped form policy and was close to Lenin
2.2.3 Disadvantages in the struggle for power
2.2.3.1 seriously underestimated his oppenents especially Stalin
2.2.3.2 Regarded by too many as soft, without the wish or ability to be a leader
2.2.3.3 Similar to Zinoviev, gained a reputation for inconsistency and opportunism by opposing Lenin in 1917 and switching alliances between Stalin and Trotsky
2.3 Leon Trostky
2.3.1 Trotsky was prominet in Lenin's new Russis, he was Commissar for war and served in the Politburo alongisde Stalin. He played a crucial part in the civil war, creating the red army and leading them to victory.
2.3.2 During Lenin's illness Trotsky faced an opposition alliance of Stalin, Zinoviev and Kamenev, all afraid of Trotsky's influnece and ambition
2.3.3 Advantages in the struggle for power
2.3.3.1 He had been Lenin's right hand man during the revolution and the Civil war
2.3.3.2 Trotsky was clever, a dynamic speech maker and had shown himself to be a man of action from 1917-1921
2.3.3.3 He had demonstrated a combination of formidable leadership skills, ruthlessness and decision-making abilities during key periods
2.3.4 Disadvantages in the struggle for power
2.3.4.1 Trotsky was a late convert to the Bolsheviks which made some 'Old Bolsheviks' suspect him
2.3.4.2 Trotsky completely underestimated Stalin
2.3.4.3 Trotsky made no attempt to build a base of support within the party, a crucial mistake when it came to party clashes after Lenin's death. He couldn't confront party congresses that where packed with Stalin's supporters
2.3.4.4 He could be indecisive at times
2.3.4.5 Made crucial errors of judgement, he attacked the party bureaucracy in 1924 when he needed its support, he also argued against publicising Lenin's will and therefore saving Stalin.
2.4 Nikolai Bukharin
2.4.1 Advantages in the struggle for power
2.4.1.1 Intelligent and regarded as the best thinker in the party
2.4.1.2 For many years he was a very close associate of Stalin and respected by him
2.4.1.3 Popular within the party, close to Lenin, and for a long time friendly with Trotsky
2.4.2 Disadvantages in the struggle for power
2.4.2.1 In trying to remain loyal to everyone and avoiding taking sides in the factional in-fighting, he lacked power base
2.4.2.2 Appeared inconsistent and underestimated Stalin
2.4.2.3 Naive and lacked the qualities of intrigue, making him unsuited to the internal party fights
2.4.3 Bukharin was an intellectual and a thinker, Lenin regarded him as 'the most valuable theoretician in the party'. After Lenin's death he alongside Stalin was the most influential member of the party, he supported Stalin and opposed Trotsky. he helped Stalin defeat the left opposition, by 1928 Stalin easily outmanoeuvered Bukharin due to Stalin being set on collectivisation
3 Mistakes or miscalculations by others
3.1 With all of Stalin's talent, determination, slight luck and ambition, his rise to power was considerably aided by the mistakes and shortcomings of his opponents, and their weaknesses that he exploited fully
3.2 At the time, Trotsky seemed the most likely rival for power, because he had been Lenin's right hand man during the revolution and aftermath of the Civil War, and in that period seemed a larger figure than Lenin himself, however Stalin crushed him by the mind 1920's.
4 Stalin's defeat of the Left and Right opposiiton and establishment of personal rule between 1924 and 1929
4.1 The defeat of the Left
4.1.1 Following Trotsky's attack on the party bureaucracy in 1924, Stalin allied himsefl with Zinoviev and Kamenev against Trotsky, still seen after Lenin's death as a potential threat to the new regime
4.1.2 Trotsky argued for permanent revolution, which meant a focus on encouraging and helping revolutions abroad, so that the USSR would not be an isolated revolutionary state, alone in a hostile world
4.1.2.1 In 1925, Stalin began to champion the policy of 'Socialism in one country', which meant the USSR concentration on developing its strenght and following its own path to Socialism, making itself formidable enough to hostile Capitalist States
4.1.2.1.1 Trotsky attacked Stalin's ideas and joined Kamanev and Zinoviev in the United or Left opposition, this alliance argued for a more rapid transition from the NEP to a socialist State, which meant a commitment to rapid industriaisation.
4.1.2.1.1.1 It was now that Stalin's growing power in the party proved invaluable
4.1.2.1.1.1.1 In 1926, the Left opposition failed to get its policies accepted at the 15th Party Conference due to Stalin's large support base. This signaled the start of the rapid decline of the Left opposition, who could no longer voice their opinions publically.
4.1.2.1.1.1.1.1 The Left's leaders were expelled from their official positions and from the Politburo. although Zinoviev and Kamenev remained in the party they were effectively silenced , Trotsky would not be silenced and was sent into internal exile before being forced to the leave the USSR for good in 1929
4.2 The defeat of the Right
4.2.1 Stalin overcame the left by using his power base in the party and with support of the right, led by Bukharion,Rykov and Tomsky.
4.2.1.1 The defeat of the left removed any dependence Stalin might have had on the right, by 1928 and Trotsky and the left effectively out of the picture, Stalin committed to rapid industrialisation, the policy previously of the left, when the right opposed Stalin's decision he got rid of leaders and removed them from the Politburo, Stalin was now effectively leader of the USSR
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