Please note that the content of this book primarily consists of articles available from Wikipedia or other free sources online. Pages: 55. Chapters: Joseph Stalin, Vyacheslav Molotov, Lavrentiy Beria, Kliment Voroshilov, Anastas Mikoyan, Erich Mielke, Nikolai Yezhov, Lazar Kaganovich, Vasili Blokhin, Ivan Serov, Andrey Vyshinsky, Genrikh Yagoda, Andrei Zhdanov, Mikhail Frinovsky, Matvei Berman, Vasiliy Ulrikh, Yakov Agranov, Stanislav Redens. Excerpt: Joseph Vissarionovich Stalin (18 December 1878 - 5 March 1953) was the Premier of the Soviet Union from 6 May 1941 to 5 March 1953. He was among the Bolshevik revolutionaries who brought about the October Revolution and had held the position of first General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union's Central Committee from 1922 until his death in 1953. While formally the office of the General Secretary was elective and was not initially regarded as the top position in the Soviet state, after Vladimir Lenin's death in 1924, Stalin managed to consolidate more and more power in his hands, gradually putting down all opposition groups within the party. This included Leon Trotsky, the Red Army organizer, proponent of world revolution, and principal critic of Stalin among the early Soviet leaders, who was exiled from the Soviet Union in 1929. Instead, Stalin's idea of socialism in one country became the primary line of the Soviet politics. In 1928, Stalin replaced the New Economic Policy of the 1920s with a highly centralised command economy and Five-Year Plans, launching a period of rapid industrialization and economic collectivization in the countryside. As a result, the USSR was transformed from a largely agrarian society into a great industrial power, and the basis was provided for its emergence as the world's second largest economy after World War II. However, during this period of rapid economic and social changes, millions of people were sent to penal labor camps, including many political convicts, and ...
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