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Lenin’s Last Testament-the name given to a document written by Vladimir Lenin in the last weeks of 1922 and the first week of 1923. In the testament, Lenin proposed changes to the structure of the Soviet governing bodies. He also commented on the leading members of the Soviet leadership and suggested that Stalin be removed from his position as General Secretary of the Soviet Communist Party's Central Committee .
NKVD- People's Commissariat for Internal Affairs was the public and secret police organization of the Soviet Union that directly executed the rule of terror, including political repression , during the Stalinist era. The NKVD contained the regular, public police force of Soviet Russia and the USSR (including traffic police , firefighting , border guards and archives ) but is better known for the activities of the Gulag and the Main Directorate for State Security (GUGB), which eventually became the Committee for State Security ( KGB ). It conducted mass extrajudicial executions , ran the Gulag system of forced labor , suppressed underground resistance, conducted mass deportations of nationalities and " Kulaks " to unpopulated regions of the country, guarded state borders , conducted espionage and political assassinations abroad, was responsible for subversion of foreign governments, and enforced Stalinist policy within Communist movements in other countries.
Cheka (KGB) - the first of a succession of Soviet state security organizations. It was created by a decree issued on December 20 , 1917 , by Vladimir Lenin and subsequently led by an aristocrat turned communist Felix Dzerzhinsky .  After 1922, the Cheka underwent a series of reorganizations . From its founding, the Cheka was an important military and security arm of the Bolshevik communist government. In 1921 the Troops for the Internal Defense of the Republic (a branch of the Cheka) numbered 200,000. These troops policed labor camps , ran the Gulag system, conducted requisitions of food , liquidated political opponents (on both the right and the left), put down peasant rebellions, riots by workers, and mutinies in the Red Army , which was plagued by desertions  . Predecessor to the KGB (replaced in 1954).
Council of People’s Commissars-was the highest government authority under the Bolshevik system after the success of the Russian Revolution of which Lenin was the Secretary, Stalin the Commissariat of Nationalities and Trotsky that of Foreign Affairs.
“ socialism in one country”-thesis held that given the defeat of all communist revolutions in Europe from 1917–1921 except in Russia , the Soviet Union should begin to strengthen itself internally. Though promoted at the time as an ideology of necessity, not core belief, the theory came to define the course of political construction within the Soviet Union throughout its history.
Trotsky- Bolshevik revolutionary and Marxist theorist. He was one of the leaders of the Russian October Revolution , second only to Lenin . During the early days of the Soviet Union , he served first as People's Commissar for Foreign Affairs and later as the founder and commander of the Red Army and People's Commissar of War. He was also among the first members of the Politburo . After leading a failed struggle of the Left Opposition against the policies and rise of Joseph Stalin in the 1920s and the increasing role of bureaucracy in the Soviet Union, Trotsky was expelled from the Communist Party and deported from the Soviet Union. An early advocate of Red Army intervention against European fascism , Trotsky also opposed Stalin's peace agreements with Adolf Hitler in the 1930s. As the head of the Fourth International , Trotsky continued in exile to oppose the Stalinist bureaucracy in the Soviet Union, and was eventually assassinated in Mexico by Ramón Mercader , a Soviet agent.  Trotsky's ideas form the basis of Trotskyism , a term coined as early as 1905 by his opponents in order to separate it from Marxism . Trotsky’s ideas remain a major school of Marxist thought that is opposed to the theories of Stalinism . He was one of the few Soviet political figures who was never rehabilitated by the Soviet administration.
Zinoviev, Kamenev-others in the “triumvirate” following Lenin’s death. Both originally opposed Trotsky but joined with Lenin’s widow, Krupskaya, to oppose Stalin as “anit-Leninist”. They soon with Trotsky to form the United Opposition. They were both put on “trial” in 1936 following the murder of Kirov in 1934, starting the Great Purges.
United Opposition-1926 by Leon Trotsky , Lev Kamenev , and Gregory Zinoviev in opposition to Joseph Stalin . It demanded, among other things, greater freedom of expression within the Party (in effect, lifting the Ban on Factions imposed by Lenin as a temporary measure in 1921) and less bureaucracy. By this time, Stalin's supporters had already voted Trotsky out from the Politburo .
Right Opposition- Nikolai Bukharin , Alexei Rykov . The right tendency was identified with the supporters of Nikolai Bukharin and Rykov. It was asserted that they represented the influence of the peasantry and the danger of capitalist restoration.[ citation needed ] Their policy was closely identified with the New Economic Policy developed by Bukharin. 
It was further argued that these three tendencies (a working-class "left", a bureaucratic "centre" and a peasant-oriented "right") could be found in many of the major Communist Parties throughout the world. Indeed, a "left wing" which agreed with Trotsky and supported world revolution could be found in almost every section of the Communist International (Comintern), just as representatives of Stalinism and the idea of " Socialism in One Country " could also be found.[ citation needed ] But a "right wing" only developed in a limited number of countries, and in each country where it did develop it stood between the left and the centre factions. This was because the right tendencies were usually not critical of the Comintern or of Stalin's regime but only of the leaderships of their own Communist parties [ citation needed ]
Five Year Plans
First Plan, 1928-1932: Stalin introduced the first plan in 1928, and its success in achieving its goals was declared ahead of schedule, in 1932. Stalin made his motivation in formulating the plan clear when he stated, in a speech to factory managers in February 1931, that Russia was "fifty or a hundred years behind the advanced countries. We must make good this distance in ten years. Either we do it, or they will crush us."
The First Five-Year Plan emphasized heavy industry to lay the foundations for future industrial growth. Stalin argued that if rapid industrialization did not occur then Russia would be at risk from aggressive foreign, capitalist countries, which, was a very accurate prediction as it turned out, if not for the five year plans it is doubtful that the Soviet Union would have defeated Nazi Germany in the Second World War. The five year plans did have some remarkable results. For instance, coal and iron production both quadrupled their output, electric power production increased and 1500 new industrial plants were built. The First Five-Year Plan ended up being a success in the welfare of Russia, the lifestyle for poorer people improved and it was catching up in time with other countries. However, there was also a great deal of suffering for many peasants. Prisoners were forced into work at Gulags, or labor camps, and the chances of freedom were slim.
During this period, Stalin pursued the policy of " collectivization ", destroying the agrarian sector of the country's economy and imprisoning, torturing and murdering millions of farmers (referred to collectively as " kulaks " and labeled "enemies of the State") which led to a widespread famine and abject poverty for millions and millions of citizens right at a time when the Great Depression was creating tremendous stress for the world economies, a condition the new Soviet system was ill-equipped to manage even before the collectivization began. The policy of political persecutions in the face of economic failures became the hallmark of authoritarian communist and socialist regimes around the world, as dismal economic performance was being masked with a very active campaign of terror aimed at " class enemies ", though the definition of class enemies was continually extended until all citizens were at risk of being labeled class enemies.
Five Year Plans
The Second Plan, 1933–1937
Because of the success of the first plan, the government went ahead with the Second Five-Year Plan in 1932, although the official start-date for the plan was 1933. The Second Five-Year Plan gave heavy industry top priority, placing the Soviet Union not far behind Germany as one of the major steel-producing countries of the world. On top of this communications, especially railways, became faster. As was the case with the other five-year plans, the second was not uniformly successful, failing to reach the recommended production levels in such crucial areas as coal and oil. The second plan employed incentives as well as punishments and the targets were eased as a reward for the first plan being finished ahead of schedule in only four years. Women were encouraged to participate in the plan as childcare was offered to mothers so they could go to work and not need to worry about their children.
During this time, the new Soviet system of government continued to evolve as different solutions were applied in an attempt to revive the agrarian sector of the country's economy, but these efforts were largely unsuccessful because almost all of the farmers had already been evicted, imprisoned and systematically murdered as the political persecutions shifted into high gear, culminating in the Great Purge . The sum total of The Second Five-Year Plan was a deterioration of the standard of living because the focus of "planners' preferences" replaced consumer preferences in the country's economy, with an emphasis on military goods and heavy industry, so that is what the economy provided. The people paid the price because very little attention was applied to consumer goods of any kind.
Five Year Plans
The Third Plan, 1938–1941
The Third Five-Year Plan ran for only 3 years, up to 1941, when Russia entered the Second World War . As war approached, more resources were put into developing armaments, tanks and weapons.
The first two years of the Third Five-Year Plan proved to be even more of a disappointment in terms of proclaimed production goals. Even so, the value of these goals and of the coordination of an entire economy's development of central planning has been undeniable. For the 12% to 13% rate of annual industrial growth attained in the Soviet Union during the 1930s has few parallels in the economic history of other countries. Since Russia's economy had always lagged behind the rest of Europe, these increases appeared all the more dramatic. Additionally, this high rate of growth was continued after World War II, as much devastation needed to be repaired, and continued into the early fifties, after which it had gradually declined.[ citation needed ]
Five Year Plans
The Fourth and Fifth Plans, 1946–1950 and 1951–1955
After the Second World War, the emphasis was on reconstruction , and Stalin in 1945 promised that the USSR would be the leading industrial power by 1960.
Much of the USSR at this stage had been devastated by the war. Officially, 98,000 collective farms had been ransacked and ruined, with the loss of 137,000 tractors, 49,000 combine harvesters, 7 million horses, 17 million cattle, 20 million pigs, 27 million sheep; 25% of all capital equipment had been destroyed in 35,000 plants and factories; 6 million buildings, including 40,000 hospitals, in 70,000 villages and 4,710 towns (40% urban housing) were destroyed, leaving 25 million homeless; about 40% of railway tracks had been destroyed; officially 7.5 million servicemen died, plus 6 million civilians, but perhaps 20 million in all died (cf. 250,000 from the US). In 1945, mining and metallurgy were at 40% of the 1940 levels, electric power was down to 52%, pig-iron 26% and steel 45%; food production was 60% of the 1940 level. After Poland, the USSR had been the hardest hit by the war. Reconstruction was impeded by a chronic labour shortage due to the enormous number of Soviet casualties in the war. Moreover, 1946 was the driest year since 1891, and the harvest was poor.
The USA and USSR were unable to agree on the terms of a US loan to aid reconstruction, and this was a contributing factor in the rapid escalation of the Cold War . However, the USSR did gain reparations from Germany, and made Eastern European countries make payments in return for the Soviets having liberated them from the Nazis . In 1949, the Comecon (Council for Mutual Economic Aid) was set up, linking the Eastern bloc countries economically. One-third of the Fourth Plan's capital expenditure was spent on Ukraine, which was important agriculturally and industrially, and which had been one of the areas most devastated by war.
By 1947, food rationing had ended, but agricultural production was barely above the 1940 level by 1952. However, industrial production in 1952 was nearly double the 1941 level.
Collectivization-introduced by Stalin in the late 1920s as a way, according to the theories of communist leaders, to boost agricultural production through the organization of land and labor into large-scale collective farms ( kolkhozy ). At the same time, Soviet leaders argued that collectivization would free poor peasants from economic servitude under the kulaks . Stalin believed that the goals of collectivization could be achieved voluntarily, but when the new farms failed to attract the number of peasants hoped, the government blamed the oppression of the kulaks and resorted to forceful implementation of the plan, by murder and wholesale deportation of farmers to Siberia . Millions of unfortunates who remained died of starvation, and the centuries-old system of farming was destroyed in one of the most fertile regions in the world for farming, once called " the breadbasket of Europe ." The immediate effect of forced collectivization was to reduce grain output and almost halve livestock, thus producing major famines in 1932 and 1933.In 1932-1933, an estimated 3.1–7 million people, mainly in Ukraine , died from famine after Stalin forced the peasants into the collectives (this famine is known in Ukraine as Holodomor ). Most modern historians believe that this famine was caused by the sudden disruption of production brought on by collective farming policies that were implemented by the government of the Soviet Union . Some believe that, due to unreasonably high government quotas , farmers often received far less for their labor than they did before collectivization, and some refused to work; others retaliated by destroying their crops. It was not until 1940 that agricultural production finally surpassed its pre-collectivization levels.  
Kulaks-According to Marxism-Leninism, the kulaks were a class enemy of the poorer peasants.  From this theory's point of view, poor peasants and farm laborers had to be liberated by the revolution alongside the proletariat (the urban workers). In addition, the planned economy required the collectivization of farms and land to allow industrialization of large-scale agricultural production. The "state of workers and farmers" desired to remove the kulaks as a class, which gave them the chance to integrate in the new classless system with equal rights. However, many resisted these changes and terror was organized against the new collectives with the help of former tsarist military.[ citation needed ] Many farmers and communists were killed, fields were burned, and many machine tractor stations were destroyed. This often caused pronounced hunger and created large problems in agriculture and the economy of the Soviet Union.[ citation needed ] The view of many kulaks was different, as told by Mikhail Gorbachev whose family were "kulaks." The kulaks stated they had suffered from political repressions under the rule of Joseph Stalin in the 1930s. 
“ Dizzy With Success”-The price of collectivization was so high that the March 2 , 1930 , issue of Pravda contained Stalin's article Dizzy with success , in which he called for a temporary halt to the process: "It is a fact that by February 20 of this year 50 percent of the peasant farms throughout the U.S.S.R. had been collectivized. That means that by February 20, 1930, we had over fulfilled the five-year plan of collectivization by more than 100 per cent... some of our comrades have become dizzy with success and for the moment have lost clearness of mind and sobriety of vision.“ After the publication of the article, the pressure for collectivization temporarily abated and peasants started leaving collective farms. According to Martin Kitchen , the number of members of collective farms dropped by 50% in 1930. But soon collectivization was intensified again, and by 1936, about 90% of Soviet agriculture was collectivized.
Soviet Man-an archetype of a person with certain qualities that were said to be emerging as dominant among all citizens of the Soviet Union , irrespective of the country's long-standing cultural, ethnic, and linguistic diversity, creating a single Soviet people , Soviet nation .
Kirov-prominent early Bolshevik leader whose assassination in 1934 precipitated the Great Purge , which represented the dismissal, arrest, or execution of many Old Bolsheviks from the Soviet government.
Great Purge-series of campaigns of political repression and persecution in the Soviet Union orchestrated by Joseph Stalin in 1936-1938.   Also described as a "Soviet holocaust" by several authors,    it involved the purge of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union , repression of peasants , Red Army leadership, and the persecution of unaffiliated persons, characterized by widespread police surveillance, widespread suspicion of "saboteurs", imprisonment, and killings.  Estimates of the number of deaths associated with the Great Purge run from the official figure of 681,692 to nearly 2,000,000. In Russian historiography the period of the most intense purge, 1937-1938, is called Yezhovshchina ( Russian : Ежовщина , literally: Yezhovism ), after Nikolai Yezhov , the then head of the Soviet secret police , NKVD .
Popular Front-In response to the growing threat of fascism in the 1930s, Communist parties that were members of the Comintern (then largely under the control of Joseph Stalin ) adopted a policy of forming broad alliances with almost any political party willing to oppose the fascists. These were called "popular fronts". Some popular fronts won elections and formed governments, as in France ( Front Populaire ), the Second Spanish Republic , and Chile . Others never quite got off the ground. There were attempts in the United Kingdom to found a Popular Front against the National Government 's appeasement of Nazi Germany , between the Labour Party , the Liberal Party , the Independent Labour Party , the Communist Party , and even rebellious elements of the Conservative Party under Winston Churchill , but they failed mainly due to opposition from within the Labour Party but incompatibility of Liberal and socialist approaches also caused many Liberals to be hostile  . The Popular Front policy of the Comintern was introduced in 1934, succeeding its ultra-left " Third Period " during which it condemned non-Communist socialist parties as " social fascist ". The new policy was signalled in a Pravda article of May 1934, which commented favourably on socialist-Communist collaboration.  In June 1934, Leon Blum 's Socialist Party signed a pact of united action with the French Communist Party , extended to the Radical Party in October. In May 1935, France and Russia signed a defensive alliance and in August 1935, the Comintern's Seventh Congress officially endorsed the Popular Front strategy.  In the elections of May 1936, the Popular Front won a majority of parliamentary seats (378 deputies against 220), and Leon Blum formed a government.  In Italy, the Comintern advised an alliance between the Italian Communist Party and the Italian Socialist Party , but this was rejected by the Socialists. Similarly, in the United States, the CPUSA sought a joint Socialist-Communist ticket with Norman Thomas 's Socialist Party of America in the 1936 presidential election but the Socialists rejected this overture. The CPUSA also offered critical support to Franklin Roosevelt 's New Deal in this period. The Popular Front period in the USA saw the CP taking a very patriotic and populist line, later called Browderism . According to some historians, Joseph Stalin used the concept of the Popular Front to solidify control of the Communist Party of the United States (CPUSA) and to suppress criticism from those in the radical left after the Moscow show trials and subsequent series of executions and assassinations.  The Popular Front period came to an end with the Molotov- Ribbentrop pact between Nazi Germany and Russia, at which point Comintern parties turned from a policy of anti-fascism to one of advocating peace.
Supreme Soviet-highest legislative body in the Soviet Union in the interim of the sessions of the Congress of Soviets , and the only one with the power to pass constitutional amendments. It elected the Presidium , formed the Soviet government , the Supreme Court , and appointed the Procurator General of the USSR . From the formation of the USSR (1922) until the approval of the 1936 Soviet Constitution , it was named Central Executive Committee of the USSR (Центральный Исполнительный Комитет СССР or ЦИК СССР, or, romanized, ) and functioned until 1938 under this name. It was made up of two chambers according to the 1924 Soviet Constitution: the Soviet of the Union and the Soviet of Nationalities . Beside it there were Central Executive Committees in federal republics, such as All-Russian Central Executive Committee (in Russia), Belorussian Central Executive Committee (in Belorussia) and All-Ukranian Central Executive Committee (in Ukraine). The Supreme Soviet was made up of two chambers, each with equal legislative powers, with members elected for four-year terms:  The Soviet of the Union , elected on the basis of population with one deputy for every 300,000 people in the Soviet federation The Soviet of Nationalities , supposed to represent the ethnic populations, with members elected on the basis of 32 deputies from each union republic (excluding the autonomous republics, autonomous oblasts , and autonomous okrugs in its territory, which would send in separate members), 11 from each autonomous republic , five from each autonomous oblast (region), and one from each autonomous okrug (district). The administrative units of the same type would send in the same number of members regardless of their size or population. Until Perestroika and the partially free elections in 1989, the Supreme Soviet functioned as a rubber stamp to legislation originating from less representative but more powerful bodies, like the Politburo . After 1989 it consisted of 542 deputies (down from previously 1,500). The meetings of the body were also more frequent from six to eight months a year.  The Presidium carried out the day-to-day operations of the Supreme Soviet when it was not in session.
Tukhachevsky- Soviet military commander, chief of the Red Army (1925–1928), and one of the most prominent victims of Stalin's Great Purge of the late 1930s. Executed in 1937.
Moscow Trials-series of trials of political opponents of Joseph Stalin during the Great Purge . Many of the defendants were executed. After Nikita Khrushchev 's revelations in the 1950s, the Moscow Trials are today universally acknowledged as show trials in which the verdicts were predetermined, and then publicly justified through the use of coerced confessions. The purpose of the trials was to eliminate any potential political challengers to Stalin's authority, especially Old Bolsheviks with solid revolutionary credentials. The principal tactic was to charge the defendants, under Article 58 of the RSFSR Penal Code , with conspiring with the western powers to assassinate Stalin and other Soviet leaders, dismember the Soviet Union and restore capitalism.
Molotov-RIbbentrop Pact (1939)-renounced warfare between the two countries and pledged neutrality by either party if the other were attacked by a third party. Each signatory promised not to join any grouping of powers that was "directly or indirectly aimed at the other party." The Pact is known by a number of different titles. These include the Nazi–Soviet Pact , Hitler–Stalin Pact , German–Soviet Non-aggression Pact and sometimes the Nazi–Soviet Alliance .  It remained in effect until June 22, 1941 when Germany executed Operation Barbarossa and invaded the Soviet Union. In addition to stipulations of non-aggression, the treaty included a secret protocol "dividing Eastern Europe into spheres of influence." In effect, this opened the door for the Soviet Union to conquer most of Eastern Europe and absorb the independent countries of Estonia , Latvia and Lithuania . Only Finland was able to defend itself against the Soviets and remain an independent country. In exchange, the Soviet Union helped Nazi Germany attack Poland . After Poland fell, the country was split between the Nazis and the Soviets. Nazi Germany terminated the Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact with its invasion of the Soviet Union at 3:15am on June 22 , 1941 .  Stalin had ignored several warnings that Germany was likely to attack,    and ordered no full-scale mobilization of forces.  After the launch of the invasion, the territories gained by the Soviet Union due to the Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact were lost in a matter of weeks. Within six months, the Soviet military had suffered 4.3 million casualties  and Germany had captured three million Soviet prisoners.  The Soviet imports of raw materials into Germany over the duration of the countries' economic relationship proved vital to Barbarossa. Without Soviet imports, German stocks would have run out in several key products by October 1941, and Germany would have already run through their stocks of rubber and grain before the first day of the invasion were it not for Soviet imports. 
Operation Barbarossa- Nazi Germany 's invasion of the Soviet Union during World War II that commenced on 22 June 1941. The Germans were pushed back from Moscow and were never able to mount an offensive simultaneously along the entire strategic Soviet-German front again.  The failure of Operation Barbarossa resulted in Hitler's demands for additional operations inside the USSR, all of which eventually failed, such as continuation of the Siege of Leningrad ,   Operation Nordlicht , and Battle of Stalingrad , among other battles on the occupied Soviet territory. Operation Barbarossa remains the largest military operation, in terms of manpower, area traversed, and casualties, in human history.  Its failure is considered a turning point in the fortunes of the Third Reich . Most importantly, Operation Barbarossa opened up the Eastern Front , which ultimately became the biggest theater of war in world history. Operation Barbarossa and the areas which fell under it became the site of some of the largest battles, deadliest atrocities, terrible loss of life, and horrific conditions for Soviets and Germans alike - all of which influenced the course of both World War II and the 20th century history.
Yalta Conference- 4 February 1945 to 11 February 1945 among the heads of government of the United States , the United Kingdom , and the Soviet Union — President Franklin D. Roosevelt , Prime Minister Winston Churchill , and Premier Josef Stalin , respectively—for the purpose of discussing Europe's postwar reorganization. Mainly, it was intended to discuss the re-establishment of the nations conquered by Germany. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yalta_Conference#Major_points – go here to check on what it said.