The Soviet Union to be the very first totalitarian state to develop itself after people War One. In 1917, Vladimir Lenin seized power in the Russian Revolution, developing a single-party dictatorship under the Bolsheviks. After suffering a series of strokes, Lenin died on January 21, 1924, v no clear course of succession. The apparent choice, to many, was Leon Trotsky, who had actually headed the army Revolutionary Committee that had brought out the Bolshevik Revolution. He had been a high-ranking member of the party transparent Lenin"s time in power, and also was taken into consideration by countless to be the Communist Party"s foremost Marxist theorist, however was also considered aloof and cold by many party members.

Trotsky"s key competition for strength was Joseph Stalin. Stalin had been connected in the Communist Party since before the Revolution. He served under Lenin together commissar for nationalities, and in 1923 came to be general secretary that the party. Lenin supported Trotsky over Stalin as his successor, explain Stalin to be "too rude" to command the government. However, Stalin"s place as general secretary permitted him to manipulate the party structure and also place his supporters in an important positions throughout the party, at some point insuring his victory.

During the struggle for strength an ideological rift started to open between Trotsky and also Stalin. Trotsky supported "permanent human being revolution," claiming that the Soviet Union need to strive repetitively to encourage proletarian transformations throughout the world. Stalin contrasted Trotsky"s view with a "socialism in one country" message, which stressed the consolidation the the communist regime within the Soviet Union, and concentration ~ above domestic breakthroughs and improvements before looking to civilization revolution. This rift, an unified with Stalin"s climb to power as party leader, sealed Trotsky"s fate. Through 1927, Trotsky had actually lost his position on the central Committee, and also was expelled from the party. That fled to Turkey, and also eventually come Mexico, wherein he was eliminated in 1940 by a Stalinist agent.

His main opposition gone, Stalin consolidated power, demonstrating his independence. In 1928 he exit Lenin"s financial policy and installed a system of main planning, which dictated whatever from wherein factories have to be developed to just how farmers have to plant your crops. That allocated natural resources for heavy industrial development, in ~ the cost of customer products, believing that heavy industry would certainly be the foundation of the financially rewarding state. Simultaneously, Stalin presented a plan of collectivization, under which were produced governmentally owned and also operated farms in i beg your pardon peasants pooled your lands. The an ext well off peasant class, the kulaks, rebelled against collectivization. Stalin would certainly accept no resistance, and also initiated a regime of terror throughout 1929 and also 1930, during which as plenty of as 3 million to be killed.

During the 1930s, Stalin seek to eliminate all barriers to his complete and also total exercise of power. In 1933, he created the central Purge Commission, which publicly investigated and also tried members that the Communist Party for treason. In 1933 and 1934, 1,140,000 members were expelled from the party. Between 1933 and also 1938, thousands were arrested and also expelled, or shot, including about 25 percent that the army officer corps. 1108 the the 1966 delegates attending the 1934 Communist Party Congress were arrested, and also of the 139 members of the main Committee, 98 to be shot. Countless longstanding and prominent party members to be tried. In all cases, the defendants were compelled to confess publicly, and also then to be shot.


Historians disagree over whether or not totalitarianism is one inherent element of Marxist-Leninist theory, or even if it is Joseph Stalin, as numerous claim, deviated from the true tenets of Marxism-Leninism in creating his government. Most have the right to agree, however, that the Marxist idea of "dictatorship that the proletariat" allowed the climb of the totalitarian state. Even if it is or no there to be an element of totalitarianism inherent in Lenin"s philosophy, he never consolidated strength to the same extent as Stalin did.

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Indeed, ~ above his deathbed, dictating his last testament, Lenin decried the dictatorial nature that his government and expressed the fear that in the dorn hands, totalitarianism can be used in a manner antagonistic to the masses, for which the government was intended to work.