Dictator of USSR (1924-1953)
(Union of Soviet Socialist Republics)
Born in the Georgia region of
Went to Seminary (School to
become a priest), but gave up
Russian Orthodoxy (Russian
Catholic Church) to follow socialist
Stalin held the position of Secretary
under Vladimir Lenin in the
Bolshevik party in 1922
Stalin’s Rise to Power
When Lenin died there was a
struggle for who would become the
Since Stalin was Secretary of the
Party, he was in charge of the
complete list of party members, their
position and their status of loyalty.
Stalin used this power to kick out
party members who challenged him
to authority and slowly moved to
become the most powerful man in
Stalin will eventually force Leon
Trotsky (who is Trotsky?) to leave
the USSR. He flees to Mexico where
he is eventually assassinated by one
of Stalin’s spies.
Stalin was extremely paranoid about political opponents
trying to kill him or take power from him.
Stalin will purge, or kill and get rid of, all opponents.
Wants glory for the USSR internationally and fame for
Prove to the world that communism works
Stalin distrusted the United Kingdom and United States.
Thought they just wanted to end communist power in USSR.
Wanted UK and USA to open a Western
Front in war sooner to help out.
Government owns everything
No private property, it’s all shared
People receive same amount of resources
Is this really true though?
Totalitarianism: Total control of country
Through means of terrorism, fear
Secret Police= The Cheka (later the KGB)
Single Party Politics
Stalin decides what USSR thinks
Forced growth in industry
Worker camps, and labor
All churches must stop
Religion outlawed and illegal
Stalin-Hitler Pact 1939: Deal between Hitler
and Stalin not to attack each other if war
breaks out in Europe
Shocks Western powers (UK and USA), because
communists and fascists hate each other.
Pact broken when Hitler invades Russia two
years later in 1941
Terms to Know
Gulag- Forced labor camps where men and women were
sent to work to benefit the industries.
5 Year Plan- Push industry production up 200% in 5 years,
and agricultural production up 300% in 5 years.
Forced collectivization (forced farmers to give up crops and
farms for benefit of all USSR)
Secret Police = The Cheka (later would become the KGB)
Terror Famine in Ukraine- Forced farmers in Ukraine to hand
over nearly 100% of their crops, land, and farming resources
to feed industrialists.
Thousands of Ukrainians will starve and die
Some resort to cannibalism, others eat their pets, or manure
from their horses.
Gulags and Labor Camps
Was Stalin Successful?
YES and NO!
Industry rose, but at a brutal
Millions lost their lives
Owners faked production
numbers to avoid being
The work that they did was
extremely fast, and therefore
weak, low quality, and didn’t last
Had to continually re-do
Stalin speaking to the USSR after Hitler
betrays him and invades.
USSR War Propaganda