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How did Stalin consolidate power in the Soviet Union?

Stalin consolidated power in the Soviet Union through political manipulation, purges, propaganda, and control over the economy.

Stalin's rise to power began after Lenin's death in 1924. He was initially in a power struggle with Leon Trotsky, but he managed to outmanoeuvre him politically. Stalin aligned himself with two other prominent Bolsheviks, Kamenev and Zinoviev, to form a triumvirate against Trotsky. Once Trotsky was removed from power, Stalin then turned against his former allies, accusing them of forming a faction against the party, which was against party rules. This political manipulation allowed Stalin to remove his rivals and consolidate his power.

Stalin also used purges to consolidate his power. The Great Purge, also known as the Great Terror, was a campaign of political repression in the Soviet Union from 1936 to 1938. It involved a large-scale purge of the Communist Party and government officials, repression of peasants, and widespread police surveillance, suspicion of "saboteurs", "counter-revolutionaries", imprisonment, and arbitrary executions. These purges instilled fear in the population and eliminated potential threats to Stalin's power.

Propaganda was another tool used by Stalin to consolidate his power. He controlled the media and used it to promote his image as a great leader. He was often portrayed as a father figure and a hero of the Soviet Union. This cult of personality helped to secure his position as the undisputed leader of the Soviet Union.

Finally, Stalin consolidated his power through control over the economy. He introduced a series of Five-Year Plans to transform the Soviet Union from a peasant society into an industrial superpower. These plans were often brutal, leading to widespread famine and death, but they also allowed Stalin to control the economy and the people. By controlling the economy, Stalin was able to control the people, further consolidating his power.

In conclusion, Stalin's consolidation of power in the Soviet Union was achieved through a combination of political manipulation, purges, propaganda, and control over the economy. His tactics were ruthless and often brutal, but they were effective in securing his position as the leader of the Soviet Union.

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