Purging for the Good of the State

Stalin had a clear agenda for what he wanted to get done in the Soviet economy. The base of the society rests on if they can get food, so naturally agriculture is very important to the success of an economy. Due to the poor results he was getting from the agricultural sector, he sought to find new ways to inspire production from the Soviet people.

Interestingly, the dominant force within Soviet argriculture were the kulaks, the peasants who controlled the majority of production or were doing well for themselves.… Read the rest here

Stalin’s Accusations of Subversion

Stalin’s attempts to remove any political factions that were pitted against him provide an iconic example of a totalitarian rise to power.  These ambitions are summarized definitively in “Purges,” a document published in 1935.  In this passage, Stalin’s prose reveals his feelings that the extant companions of Lenin in the Soviet Union constituted a threat to his own political prowess and thus needed to be eliminated by whatever means necessary to decimate their power and credibility with the general public.… Read the rest here

Gulag Archipelago and Labor Camp

In the Gulag Archipelago,  Solzhenitsynt describes the labor camps in which mass numbers of prisoners and political undesirables were literally worked to death. The first question this article elicits from me is if these prison workers had the same frame of mind Podlubnyi had in his diaries. The labor process was used as a means of rehabilitation for the mind of a law breaker or political deviant, and maximum efforts were vehemently supported by the state.… Read the rest here