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Stalin's Power In The Soviet Union

1558 words - 6 pages

Stalin's Power in the Soviet Union

The above were all important reasons why Stalin was able to hold on to
power in the Soviet Union. In the 1930s Stalin consolidated his
position as "Supreme Dictator" of the Soviet Unionand he maintained
this position using many different methods, the main two were
controlling the people by terror and having control of and
manipulating their ideas. Also Stalin's economic policies were
extremely successful, had he not had these successes he would not have
been able to hold on to power.

When Stalin emerged as leader in 1928 the USSR was a backward country
and lacked in industry. Stalin however managed to transform the
country into a modern, powerful, industrial nation and he did this in
several ways. Stalin wanted to protect the country from foreign
invasion and protect it from other dictators by creating a strong
industry. He did this by three main methods: 5 year plans,
collectivisation and the building of showpieces of Soviet achievement.
The 5 year plans on the whole were very successful and even though
sometimes the unrealistic targets were not met amazing achievements
were made, for example in the first 5 year plan between 1928 and 1932
when coal and iron doubled in output. In 1927 35 millions of tons of
coal were produced but by 1932 this figure had risen to 64 millions of
tons, also under the plan electric power trebled with 1,500 new
industrial plans built. To Stalin these plans were a symbol of what
socialist planning could achieve and he set production targets which
industries must meet and if these targets were not met then the price
would be paid in lives, the so called "saboteurs" would be found and
blamed and this led to show trials and terror.

Stalin was able to frighten the workers into producing what was
needed. The building of such spectacles as the Metro and Magnitogorsk
were solid examples of the success of the Soviet Union with Stalin as
its leader. However, one of Stalin's policies was not that successful
in comparison it was called collectivisation, a very autocratic system
which Stalin used to control the peasants and to get grain more
easily. It resulted in the near dissolution of an entire class; the
Kulaks, famine between 1932 and 1933 and the deaths of thirteen
million peasants but at the same time Stalin was exporting grain to
other countries successfully which was his main aim. All of this was
very important in consolidating Stalin's power in the Soviet Union as
it showed he was a good leader and could and did make a success of the
USSR which was what the people wanted, even if it did come at a price;
many believed the price was worth it.

One of the main ways by Stalin held onto power in the Soviet Union was
by terror, people were too afraid to oppose his regime especially with
the introduction of Show...

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