Stalin’s show trials
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Stalin’s show trials






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    Stalin’s show trials Stalin’s show trials Presentation Transcript

    • Stalin’s Show Trials
      • Three Show Trials
      • 1936
      • 1937
      • 1938
      • Remove Political Opponents
    • Leon Trotsky
      • Stalin removes opponents
      • Left Opposition banned in 1927
      • Trotsky exiled to Kazakhstan in 1928
      • Expelled from Soviet Union in 1929
      • Murdered by Stalinist agent in Mexico in 1941
      • Trotsky’s son Leon Sedov murdered by Stalinist agent in Paris in 1938
      • Another son Sergei Sedov was murdered in 1937 during the Great Purges
    • The Moscow Show Trials
      • Stalin’s political enemies and rivals were accused of treason, spying for Germany and Japan and for having links with Trotsky.
      • A Military Show Trial takes place in 1937
      • 25 out of the top 29 army and navy commanders were executed
      • Half of the 35,000 Red Army officers were shot or imprisoned
      • The majority of those found guilty were sent to the Gulags (prison camps)
    • The First Show Trial 1936
      • The Trial of the 16.
      • Prosecutor Vyshinsky.
      • Principal defendants Kamenev and Zinoviev.
      • Defendants accused of murdering Kirov and attempting to kill Stalin, Lenin and others.
      • Amazingly – all 16 defendants plead guilty.
      • All defendants executed within 24 hours.
      • Family members killed or exiled.
      • Stalin promised Kamenev and Zinoviev their lives would be spared if the pleaded guilty and blamed Trotsky.
    • The Second Show Trial 1937
      • The Trial of the 17
      • Principal defendants Pyatakov and Radek
      • Most of the remainder had backed Trotsky against Stalin
      • Accused of working with Trotsky to wreck the Soviet Union and restore capitalism in Russia
      • Thirteen executed the day of their conviction
      • The other four given lengthy prison sentences after ‘implicating’ others in the ‘conspiracy’
      • Radek died two years later in a Gulag
    • The Third Show Trial 1938
      • The Trial of the 21
      • Principal defendants Bukharin, Rykov and Kretinsky.
      • Yagoda, who organised the earlier show trials was also accused.
      • Charged with spying and sabotage and attempting to murder Stalin.
      • All crimes were committed on the ‘instructions’ of Trotsky.
      • As with the other trials – the defendants were tortured and forced to make ‘prepared’ confessions.
      • Bukharin initially pleaded innocence and then guilty to no particular charge. He was repeatedly tortured and eventually caved in when the lives of his wife and infant son were threatened.
      • All the accused were executed immediately.
      • Bukharin’s wife spent 20 years in a Gulag.
      • She wrote a powerful and moving account of the Show Trials that was published in 1988.
      • His son grew up in orphanages. Yuri Larin only found out who his father was in 1956.
      The Third Show Trial 1938
    • Results of the Show Trials
      • The terror of the trials spread throughout the country.
      • After the Military Show Trial the army was unprepared for war with Germany due to the loss of its commanders.
      • Only 54 people were tried and found guilty.
      • At least 7 million people were executed or died in the Gulag.
      • Presentation prepared by:
      • Dominic Haugh
      • St. Particks Comprehensive School
      • Shannon
      • Co. Clare
      • Presentation can be used for educational purposes only – all rights remain with author