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What if Beria had become leader after Stalin's death?

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Soviet cogitations: 4177
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 18 Sep 2004, 16:21
Politburo
Post 04 Apr 2005, 01:57
When Stalin died, there was a power struggle between Beria, Khrushchev, Malenkov and the other Soviet leaders to decide who would inherit Stalin's position of authority. What if Beria had won that power struggle? Would he have re-introduced private property and capitalism into Soviet society, leading to a Chinese-style government based on authoritarian state capitalism decades before it happened in China, or would there have been some other outcome?
"Comrade Lenin left us a great legacy, and we fucкed it up." - Josef Stalin
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Soviet cogitations: 1236
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 05 Feb 2005, 05:12
Unperson
Post 04 Apr 2005, 02:41
Beria? I do not think that Beria would have introduced state capitalism, most likely he would have been even more strict than Khruschev and as Stalinist as Stalin.
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Soviet cogitations: 59
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 31 Mar 2005, 11:14
Pioneer
Post 04 Apr 2005, 13:30
Many historians now believe that Stalin was poisoned by Beria.

After Stalin's funeral, Beria was the first to set about discrediting him in the eyes of the supreme communist leadership. Secret tapes of Stalin's conversations were played to the central committee. The "cult of the individual" was denounced. Beria campaigned for a basic revision of Soviet policies at home and abroad.

Apparently, at Stalin's funeral Beria said things to high-ranking communists such as, 'I stopped him, no need to worry now.' (Or something like that. I can't find the exact quote.)

What do you think of this?

Was Stalin murdered?
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'Permit us to put you before a firing squad for saying that.'
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Soviet cogitations: 4177
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 18 Sep 2004, 16:21
Politburo
Post 04 Apr 2005, 13:54
Sanctus wrote:
Many historians now believe that Stalin was poisoned by Beria.

After Stalin's funeral, Beria was the first to set about discrediting him in the eyes of the supreme communist leadership. Secret tapes of Stalin's conversations were played to the central committee. The "cult of the individual" was denounced. Beria campaigned for a basic revision of Soviet policies at home and abroad.

Precisely. Beria was an arch-revisionist. If you think Khrushchev was a de-Stalinising pro-capitalist revisionist, Beria was 10 times worse.

Quote:
Apparently, at Stalin's funeral Beria said things to high-ranking communists such as, 'I stopped him, no need to worry now.' (Or something like that. I can't find the exact quote.)

I believe his exact words were, "I saved you all. I did him in." Whether he actually did murder Stalin or was merely claiming to have done so is an open question.

Quote:
What do you think of this?

Was Stalin murdered?

Who knows? The chances are we'll never know. But if anyone murdered Stalin, it was Beria. He had the means, the motive and the opportunity.
"Comrade Lenin left us a great legacy, and we fucкed it up." - Josef Stalin
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Soviet cogitations: 59
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 31 Mar 2005, 11:14
Pioneer
Post 04 Apr 2005, 14:49
Thankyou for that Comrade Potemkin.

I actually saw a documentary, 'Who Killed Stalin?' on Channel 4 a while ago. It had suspects from Kruschev to Beria. They actually decided it was Beria who killed Stalin, or plotted to kill Stalin.

It's extremely interesting to hear what Beria said at the funeral. I'll remember that for next time.

I definately don't think Beria would have continued to lead Russia down the road to communism.
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'Permit us to put you before a firing squad for saying that.'
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Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 18 Sep 2004, 16:21
Politburo
Post 04 Apr 2005, 15:18
Sanctus wrote:
I definately don't think Beria would have continued to lead Russia down the road to communism.

I agree. He once told Charkviani, the Central Committee Inspector in Moscow, "The USSR can never succeed until we have private property." Beria's only aim was to maximise the efficiency of the Soviet system, and specifically the Gulag system of forced labour camps. The actual Communist ideology which was the basis and the entire raison d'etre of that system was a matter of profound indifference for him. He thought capitalism was more efficient, and would therefore have imposed state capitalism on the Soviet Union if he had had the power to do so. He was clearly the most right-wing and revisionist of all the Politburo members at the time of Stalin's death, and if he had gained power instead of being shot like the mad revisionist dog he was, the Soviet Union would have turned state capitalist in the mid-50s, just as China did in the mid-70s. The final collapse of the Soviet system would probably have been advanced by two or three decades.
"Comrade Lenin left us a great legacy, and we fucкed it up." - Josef Stalin
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Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 06 Jan 2005, 22:13
New Comrade (Say hi & be nice to me!)
Post 09 Apr 2005, 03:05
It's very likely Beria did kill Stalin. I believe one of his most famous quotes were:

"Create chaos; leave a nation leaderless. And bring to Earth, through communism, the greatest peace man has ever known."

I highly doubt if he killed Stalin he did it to create chaos, but who knows. The quote sounds somewhat cryptic coming from a man like Beria.
"It cannot be argued that there are no heroes in the world, but without the courage and hard work of every man that came before him, the individual hero is nothing." -KGB Superspy
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Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 19 Jul 2004, 16:21
Party Bureaucrat
Post 10 Apr 2005, 20:17
That is a variation of another quote.
Quote:
Loose a rabid lion in the streets and while everyone is panicking order it to be slayed. After that order it to be skinned and have its head placed on a pole. Continue giving orders and people will obey you because you saved them from the lion.

I cannot remember who this quote came from originally but likely some greek or roman guy.
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Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 08 Oct 2004, 10:25
Komsomol
Post 27 May 2005, 12:59
i saw that channel 4 progrrame and i thought they concluded he was not murdered, altohough everyone in his circle had a motive.

Beria, because he had fallen out of favour with Stalin, Kruschev as he hated Stalin for turning him into the 'jester' of his circle, Molotov whos wife was in prison and his son (but i forget his motive)

i personally dont think he was murdered, he lived a very unhealthy lifestyle and was an old man by then, his death was only a matter of time. I dont beleive any one in Stalin's inner circle had the balls to murder him.
End Hypocrisy!
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Soviet cogitations: 4177
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 18 Sep 2004, 16:21
Politburo
Post 27 May 2005, 13:10
Quote:
i personally dont think he was murdered, he lived a very unhealthy lifestyle and was an old man by then, his death was only a matter of time. I dont beleive any one in Stalin's inner circle had the balls to murder him.

Considering that Stalin was probably planning another Great Purge of the Party on the same sort of scale as 1937, the question should be, would the people in Stalin's inner circle have had the balls not to murder him? I personally doubt that he was murdered, but there is at least the possiblity that Beria had him poisoned. Beria actually boasted of having done so. He whispered to one of the Politburo members, "I saved you all! I did him in." Not proof of guilt, certainly, but very suspicious....
"Comrade Lenin left us a great legacy, and we fucкed it up." - Josef Stalin
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Soviet cogitations: 282
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 08 Oct 2004, 10:25
Komsomol
Post 27 May 2005, 14:04
i admit out of all of them Beria is the most likely. with regards to how he would have ran things assuming he had come to power, he actually propsed some liberal policiess after Stalin's death but i suspect that was just a front, he was evil Frag.
End Hypocrisy!
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Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 18 Sep 2004, 16:21
Politburo
Post 27 May 2005, 14:21
Quote:
i admit out of all of them Beria is the most likely. with regards to how he would have ran things assuming he had come to power, he actually propsed some liberal policiess after Stalin's death but i suspect that was just a front, he was evil Frag.

He was certainly an evil Frag, but his proposed 'liberal' reforms were not just a front. He was more of a Revisionist even than Khrushchev. I think you have to make a distinction between political liberalisation and economic 'liberalisation'. Beria wanted to introduce elements of competition and the free market into the Soviet economy, in the interests of efficiency. Beria was a brilliant manager, and for him efficiency mattered more than ideology. He regarded a free market based on private property as more efficient than a rigid command economy. He even said to Khrushchev once that "the Soviet Union will never get anywhere unless we reintroduce private property". This does not mean that he was in favour of liberal democracy or free elections or anything like that. Absolutely not - he would have maintained the political terror and the political monopoly of the Communist Party. He would actually have done pretty much what the Chinese government is currently doing: liberalise the economy but maintain the strictest dictatorship, using Tiananmen Square-type mass terror if needed. In other words, state capitalism. This was not a front; this was what he actually believed and what he would have worked for if he had succeeded in gaining power.

You mustn't fall into the trap of believing what the neo-liberals and the neo-cons keep on asserting: that capitalism and the free market always brings freedom and democracy with it. Reality indicates otherwise. Chile under Pinochet was a brutal Fascist dictatorship, yet followed a neo-liberal economic policy. Singapore is capitalist to the core of its being, yet has an authoritarian state with few democratic rights. Then there is Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, etc etc etc.... I think you get the picture. The Soviet Union under Beria would have ended up as little more than a larger version of Pinochet's Chile.
"Comrade Lenin left us a great legacy, and we fucкed it up." - Josef Stalin
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Soviet cogitations: 282
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 08 Oct 2004, 10:25
Komsomol
Post 27 May 2005, 15:13
i fully agree, free market economics and poltical freedom bear no relation to one another, as you rightly point out there are many examples of when the two are seperate. US foriegn policy however, seems to believe the countrary.
End Hypocrisy!
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Soviet cogitations: 4177
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 18 Sep 2004, 16:21
Politburo
Post 27 May 2005, 16:42
Quote:
i fully agree, free market economics and poltical freedom bear no relation to one another, as you rightly point out there are many examples of when the two are seperate. US foriegn policy however, seems to believe the countrary.

Which is why the people controlling US foreign policy at the moment - the neo-cons - are either lying clever bastards, or sincere stupid bastards. I haven't yet decided which, though I lean towards the former hypothesis.
"Comrade Lenin left us a great legacy, and we fucкed it up." - Josef Stalin
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Soviet cogitations: 4
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 22 Jun 2005, 10:13
New Comrade (Say hi & be nice to me!)
Post 22 Jun 2005, 10:28
Sanctus wrote:
Secret tapes of Stalin's conversations were played to the central committee


wow, i'm really amazed! where did you get this from? if those tapes really existed can you imagine what a historical seansation it would be today? No wonder why most interesting former Soviet archives are still sealed...
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Soviet cogitations: 147
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 13 Sep 2004, 06:06
Pioneer
Post 22 Jun 2005, 11:20
Stalin was murdered by all his closest comrades in the inner circle. According to various biographies, the Central Committee members took ridiculously long to do anything about what was happening. They were more worried about the reprecussions of him dying than trying to save his life. They didn't even call for a doctor until many hours had passed by.

Beria and Kruschev could have done it, I also remember reading somewhere a woman told someone that she did it, but I can't remember her name. I think she was a secretary or attendant.

Molotov was too much of an old, trained dog to touch Stalin.

As for what Beria would do, he would definately have led the state to an early grave.
Soviet cogitations: 4
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 22 Jun 2005, 10:13
New Comrade (Say hi & be nice to me!)
Post 22 Jun 2005, 11:58
Station wrote:
They were more worried about the reprecussions of him dying than trying to save his life. They didn't even call for a doctor until many hours had passed by.



I'm somewhat deeply satisfied that Stalin died the way he always feared all his life and did everything to avoid it - murdered by conspirators. Finnaly he got what he deserved - slow and painful death. This leaves a hope there's some justice after all...
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Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 30 Jun 2005, 18:01
Komsomol
Post 30 Jun 2005, 18:10
I agree with Potmekin when he/she says that Beria was a revisionist and would of brought Capitalism into the Soviet Union on a grander scale than the traitor Khrushchev. I don't know whether or not Beria murdered Comrade Stalin, but I have no doubt Beria was capable of such a thing. I'm sure you guys have heard that Beria manipluted his position in the party and allegedly stalked the streets for young girls to molest.
Soviet cogitations: 43
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 17 Jun 2005, 00:19
Pioneer
Post 02 Jul 2005, 01:32
Possible indeed, likely? I don't know. I won't comment if I think that he deserved it but I think that some free market ideas wouldn't hurt the Soviet Union. Look at China! The market is very free and they are still communist (perhaps only on the paper, what do you think comrades?) and Chinas economy is becoming massive!

I strongly recommend "When China awakes, the world will tremble" or something I don't know the English title.. However it is written in the 70's or something and it is quite interesting, all the things the author are thinking will occur actually have occured!

US BEWARE!
By powerful artillery fire, air strikes and a wave of attacking tanks we're supposed to swiftly crush the enemy. -G.K. Zhukov
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Soviet cogitations: 2272
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 12 May 2005, 13:28
Party Bureaucrat
Post 02 Jul 2005, 02:34
I dont think china is much( or a bit )of communist nation. If i understan correctly its like capitalism rich are very rich and poor very poor. I am not sure tought.
-With solidarity, FC

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