Was Stalin a good leader?
A question that could not be answered at his times “no he is a bad leader” but these days noone can refer to him as a good leader after evaluating all the facts. He came to power by knowing the general secretary who informed him about everything that was going on in the party a made sure all the posts were filled with Stalin’s supporters. He menaged to put trough the command economy but the kulaks burnt their crops and killed their animals rather than handing them over. This was the first part of the 5-year plan. Factories were given a target, which was to be met every year for five years. As a result of Sergei’s Kirov murder (communist party leader) “the purges” were initiated by Stalin, which lead to 7 million people disappearing. The leading Bolsheviks were given “show trials” where they were forced to confess to ridiculous crimes, which they couldn’t have possibly committed. In 1930’s Stalin began to rewrite the history of Russia. After all a leader that gets his post by filling all the government posts with his own people and eliminating everyone that could be of smallest harm and making millions starve to death can not be referred to as a good leader.
A good leader would welcome opposition but Stalin got rid of all of his political enemies and filled all the posts with his supporters. He managed to do this by knowing the General Secretary who informed him about everything that was going on in the party. When the other leaders discovered what was going on it was too late to do anything about it. In 1922 Lenin wrote a "Political Testament". In it he said that Trotsky should become the leader of Russia after him. Lenin also suggested that the other Bolshevik leaders should find a way of getting rid of Stalin. However, when the will was given to the Bolshevik leaders after Lenin's death in 1924, they decided not to publish it, because they did not want Trotsky to take over. He was unpopular. This was probably the biggest mistake that the Bolsheviks have done throughout their reign in Russia. Between 1924 and 1929 Stalin managed to force most of the other leading Bolsheviks out of power. He sided with one group and then another, gradually isolating the other leading Bolsheviks and making sure that he was the only and the true Leader of Russia. Stalin's main target was Trotsky, who left the Soviet Union (as Russia was now called) for good in 1929. The others, like Kamenev, Bukharin and Zinoviev retired from their posts.
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