Joseph Stalin: The Life
Joseph Vissarionovich Stalin was one of the most famous dictators of his time. He is known for ruling the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) by terror and how he took the Soviet Union from economic shambles to a superpower, but at the high cost of human sacrifice. Stalin is also compared to Adolf Hitler, who is known for being just as terrible as Stalin, if not more. Just how did he become such a fierce, leader? What made him the way he was?
Joseph Stalin was born in Gori, Georgia in Russia on December 18, 1878. Being bore into a poor family, Joseph was a frail child. At age seven he contracted smallpox, leaving his face scarred. A few years later he got injured in a carriage accident which gave his arm a slight deformity. Due to this, the other children in his village would pick on him a lot, instilling in him a sense of inferiority. This made Joseph want to endure a quest for greatness and respect. He did well in school, therefore earning himself a scholarship to Tiflis Theological Seminary in 1894.
About a year later Joseph came in contact with Mesame Dasi, a secret organization which supported Georgian independence from Russia. Some of the members of the organization were socialists. They introduced Joseph to the writings of Karl Marx and Vladimir Lenin. He joined the secret organization in 1898. Joseph left Tiflis in 1899 and noone is sure exactly why. There are multiple rumors about why this happened. I think it was so he could focus more on his political viewings and standpoints. In 1901 he joined the Social Democratic Labor Party so he could work full-time for the revolutionary movement. He was arrested in 1902 for coordinating a labor strike, for which he was exiled to Siberia. This was just the first of his many arrests and exiles in the following years of the Russian Revolution. He was actually an impressive advocate for the revolution, organising meetings, strikes, and doing much more. He escaped from exile quite often, therefore he was marked by the Okhranka (secret police) as an outlaw of Russia. He had to continue his work for the revolution in hiding, and since he couldn’t be out in the open, he relied on raising money through kidnappings, robberies, and extortion. Stalin became infamous because he was associated with the 1907 Tiflis bank robbery, which resulted in 250,000 rubies stolen and several deaths. He was now known, and this helped with winning the Russian Revolution. Stalin was a close follower of Vladimir Lenin, and after his death, he became his successor and was now dictator of the Soviet Union and controlled the communist party.
In a country in complete disarray and chaos, a great leader is needed to restore order. That leader was Joseph Stalin. He ruled the Soviet Union from 1922 until his death in 1954. His belief was socialism in one country. Once he came in power, his goal was to make Russia a powerful communist country. Stalin felt they had to rapidly industrialize since after all, they were 100 years behind advanced countries. So he did just that. As heavy industry was being developed, agriculture was standardized as part of achieving his goal. This meant replacing individual farms and putting them in government control. He certainly achieved his goal of making Russia a powerful state, but at what cost?
There was no doubt that millions of people died through his strategies. “Death is the solution to all problems. No man – no problem.” said Joseph Stalin himself. Stalin ruled by terror and fear, and with w totalitarian grip in order to eliminate any kid of threat or anyone who might oppose him. He not only expanded the power of the secret police, he also encouraged Russian citizens to spy on one another. He had millions of people killed or had them sent to the Gulag system of forced labor camps. Although this is a terrible way to instill power, it worked and everyone knew who he was and feared him. People today know his name and when they think of his name they think of death and terror.
Although he was a terrible ruler, he also did a handful of god things for the country. He declared men and women equal, which was rarely heard of at this time. He also had the government require every child to go to school, free of charge. This was great because every child regardless of economic background, got an equal, free education. Soviet Healthcare was much better under him. The soviet women were the first women to give birth in a hospital. So even though so many people died under his rule, in some ways he was still sort of a great leader.
I do not necessarily admire him, but he did accomplish some extraordinary things. I just find it really interesting how he is known for being this terrible ruler, but somehow he also did some good thing as well. He was an evil dictator of the Soviet Union during the time of WWII and millions of his citizens died under his rule. If Joseph Stalin never existed, Those people that died would have lived and they could’ve had, who would have had kids and their would be more people in this world today. Maybe those people could have made a mark on the world if they hadn’t died under Stalins rule. Joseph Stalin definitely left his mark on the world.
To summarize everything previously stated, Joseph Stalin was a terrible, but great leader. He accomplished many of his goals, regardless of what others thought of him. He overcame many obstacles and proved many people wrong. He turned the Soviet Union from a peasant country into an industrialized superpower. Joseph Stalin was one of the most famous dictators of his time. Without him, many things would be different in the world today.