Stalin’s Purges There are many different types of insectides and pesticides. Aldrin is a an insecticide which is one of several isomers, compounds that have the same make-up but different structure of hexachlorohexahydrodimethanonaprthalene which is a chlorinated hydrocarbon. Aldrins were first prepared in the late 40s, it comes as a light tan or brown solid or as a powder. Aldrins are the result of the reaction of hexachlorocyclopentadiene with bicycloheptadiene, which both come from hydrocarbons obtained from petroleum. Aldrins are very similar to another pesticide dieldrin, because aldrin is can easily convert to dieldrin.
The two pesticides toxicities do not differ that much. Aldrins were used mainly in the 1950s and the early 1970s. Aldrins were used as a soil insecticide to control root worms, beetles, and termites. In 1974 the use of aldrins were banned by the EPA and production of it stopped in America, since then there has been a decrease in the amount of aldrin in our food. Aldrin can enter the body numerous ways. You can eat food from soil treated with the pesticide, you can eat animal meat that had been exposed to the aldrin, or drink water or milk containing the compound.
It is also possible to inhale air that has been treated with the pesticide. If you are exposed to high levels of aldrin in a short period of time the main effects are headaches, dizziness, irritability, loss of appetite, nausea, muscle twitching, convulsions, and loss of consciousness. Death may be a result from high exposures or doses. Long term exposure at random doses of aldrin and dialdrin have not been documented. Studies have been done on rats showing liver damage and the bodies immune system to protect against infections can be suppressed. Test were aldrin is admitted orally show that mice have come up with liver cancer but not rats. Although there is little evidence to assume that aldrin is carcinogenic the EPA considers it probable.
It has not be determined if the compounds are as dangerous to humans as to animals but scientists believe if animals react badly to something it is a likely that humans would be effected the same way. Stalins Massacre By 1945 the world knew the name Adolf Hitler. Many had heard of his demented plans to rule the world, and knew of his attempt at trying to destroy a race of people. Although the many had heard of Stalin, they would not come to know him in the same respect they did of Hitler. Stalin would in the course of about five years would have more people put to death for crimes they did not commit than Hitler ever did. Stalins Purges would claim millions of innocent Russian lives.
Stalins principal objective for having some many of his fellows Russians executed was to gain and ensure personal power over Russia. He would stop at nothing to make sure that he had absolute power, and by the end of his terror he would come close to eliminating all of his opposition. In Russian the word for purge is Yezhovshchina. The first to use purging as a device to gain power was Lenin, not Stalin (Dmytrshyn 541). Lenin would never use it to the magnitude that Stalin would under his rule though. Like Lenin though the purges were used as a political tool to gain power. Stalins first attempt at purging his so called opposition, sometimes close friends or allies, who he felt were gaining to much power or popularity in the government came against an Old Bolshevik, N. Riutin.
Ruitin had written a 200-page essay about Stalin, the document bashed Stalin and requested his removal. Stalin, outraged, tried to have Riutin assassinated but his attempts and plans failed. Stalin could never gain control of the secret police in Russia so he would eventually eliminate it and place the NKVD in its place. The NKVD would be Stalins greatest tool in wreaking havoc over Russia (mars 1). In December of 1934 a party leader in Leningrad, Sergei Kirov, was assasinated.
Later eveidence revealed that Stalin was behind Kirovs. Stalin felt that Kirov was gaining popularity and he feared this. This fear would drive Stalin to have Kirov assasinated. Kirovs murder would signal off the beginning of Stalins Great Purge. Stalin would use Kirovs murder as a pretext to blame those who threatened his power. He would use the murder to have innocent politicians, all of whom Stalin saw as a enemy, convicted for the murder.
These victims would either be murdered or sent to prison. As result 14 men, who were supposedly involved in the murder, were shot. They would be the first of numerous people who would suffer under the mass murder of Stalin. Many others would suffer the same consequences, for being involved with Kirovs. If victims were not sentenced to death they were forced into exile or prison camps, were the majority would die. The camps were located in some of worst areas of Russia, mainly Siberia or the Arctic region of Russia.
One reason for the purges ending when it did, was because the labor camps, that so many of the victims were sent to, had reached maximum capacity. Stalins greatest purges came against the government. Countless numbers of delegates, officials, and politcal leaders would suffer the greastest from Stalins rampage. The most prominent and well known Communist would be arrested. Of the 1956 members of the Seventeenth Party Congress, known as the victors Congress, 1108 were arrested, charged with counterrevolutionary activities (mars 3).
The Bolsheviks, who Stalin was once a part of, appeared to be gaining power over him so they became a main target for Stalin. The Bolsheviks reputation would be destroyed by Stalin, and many would be convicted for Kirovs murder, about 36% of the Bolsheviks were purged. The NKVD would force the Bolsheviks into to admitting to treason against the Marxist revolution for the Show Trials or they would be shot. Stalin would destroy books and records of the Bolsheviks and rewrite history in his favor. By May of 1935 the Society of Old Bolsheviks had been dissolved.
During Stalins Reign of Terror, Show Trials were put on. These public trials had some of the victims who confessed to the accusastions. This allowed Stalin to continue his purging longer because, it would look better to the public if those who they were charging were admitting to the accusations. It was in a way a display of Stalins use of propaganda. The first Show Trial took place in Moscow in August of 1936. This trial would serve as a pretext for a series of trials which was later to come.
In the trial the survivng leaders of the October Revolution were accused of proposterous crimes. Some confessed freely, others were forced to confess after being brutally tortured. All members were executed. The second and third trials consisted of leading Bolsheviks all were found guilty and were shot. Many others were put on the Show Trials which allowed Stalins work to continue for as long as it did.
Stalin in later years, during the Great Purge, began to take greater caution of the members of the CPSU, the Communist Party of Soviet Union. Those who were members and those looking to become members had to undergo several screening tests and those who showed at least the slightest signs of opposition were either forced out of the party or were put on trial. In 1936 Stalin ordered a new cleansing of the Communist Party. The members were forced into getting new identification cards, this act would lead to more arrests. By the end of the purging the membership of the party had dropped more than half.
Although younger members were accepted into the party because they seemed more loyal to Stalin. Stalins control over the NKVD, the Commissariat of Internal Affairs, had a profound impact on the amount of officials and citizens effected by Stalins massacre. The leader of the NKVD at the beginning of the purges was G.G. Iagoda. When Iagoda had failed to execute Stalins plans exactly, he would be replaced. The new leader of the was named Nikolai Yezhov and he was a trusted friend to Stalin and carried out Stalins desires to Stalins liking.
Yezhov, along with his men, would commit numerous murders against those who Stalin opposed. The NKVD would find those who appeared to be a threat to Stalin and murder or send them off to the work camps. Although the NKVD would be Stalins best tool for carrying out the purges, even high ranking officials in the NKVD were not safe from Stalins insanity. Stalin would not went through the government, to find the enemies, but he also would go through the military. Many of the top military leaders in Russia were given trials, but many were simply shot.
Between 1937 and 1938 half the regimental commanders, nearly all the brigade commanders, all commanders of army corps and military districts, members of military councils, heads of political directorates, the majority of political commissars in army corps, divisions and brigades, almost a third of regimental commissars and many other military instructors were put on trial for crimes they had not commited. In 1937 Stalin would turn special attention to the Red Army. Prominant generals and thousands of soliders were relieved of duty and many more were expelled. Stalins purging of the army got rid of important generals who would have been used as prime leaders in time of war. This was a good display of the fear and insecurity he had of his fellow Soviets.
Many have wondered what the reason was for Stalins rage. Some say it was to cover up the economic failure, others believe it came from his madness (Dmytryshyn 541). The general consent is that it was merely for him to gain and keep absolute power in the Russian government. Stalins purpose for killing countless amounts of people was to eliminate those who he thought were a threat to him. He felt opposition was all around him. He would have many prominent and important figures slaughtered for having to much power.
To some extent the accusation that he was insane or he was driven by his madness could be recognized as being true in a sense. His insecurity and nervousness would lead him to have so many put to death. To protect Stalin from massive public disapproval he would not only use the Show Trials but also work in the government by making what he was doing legal. Stalin would sign directives which would allow him to investigate those who he felt responsible for wrong doings or acts against the government. One directive allowed him to speed of the trials of victims, this would become his base for mass acts of mistreatment against socialist legality.
Stalin would also use propaganda as a tool to keep a good name. He controlled the news and would rewrite books which would proclaim him as a great man (CQI 190). Over a period of about 5 years Stalin would have a millions of people put to death or in prison. His obsession with having absolute power would cost so many innocent people their lives. It is estimated that over 10 million people were killed under Stalins purges.
He would use lies and propaganda to cover up his slaughter. Many of those who held some sort of office lived in fear, not knowing if they would be the next who would be accused for some outrageous crime and be dragged from their home and shot. By the end of the purges the NKVD was out of control and the purges began to effect the common people. Bibliography hfc History Reports.