Assess the Reasons Why Stalin Was Able to Rise to Power Between 1924 and 1929 Essay

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“Assess the reasons why Stalin was able to rise to power between 1924 and 1929” In 1924, just two years after the end of the Russian Civil War, Lenin died. Since he had left no writings of who he wanted to be his successor, a power struggle emerged between the left and the right wings of the Bolshevik Party. Some of the key figures included Leon Trotsky, Nikolai Bukharin and Grigory Zinoviev. Nevertheless, Stalin was able to outmanoeuvre his way past all of these men to become undisputed leader of the USSR by 1929. The main reason that Stalin was able to rise to power was his ingenious defeats of both the left and right wings of the Party. The key figure Stalin had to take down from the left wing was Leon Trotsky. Trotsky was important because in effect, it was his leadership of the Red Army during the Civil War that had won the war for the Reds. If it hadn’t been for Trotsky, the Bolsheviks may not have been in the position they were by 1924. The first step Stalin took towards removing the threat of Trotsky was to lie to him about the date of Lenin’s funeral. As a result, Trotsky was absent. This is important because it appeared that Trotsky wasn’t interested in being present at Lenin’s burial. It also allowed Stalin to steal on a march on Trotsky because, in Trotsky’s absence, Stalin gave a speech, in which he dedicated himself to the continuation of Lenin’s ways. This speech was important because it allowed Stalin to appear as one of the leading mourners, and also suggesting continuity between himself and Lenin. At the same time, Stalin also took on the other members of the left wing part of the Party – Zinoviev and Kamenev. These men were important for Stalin to remove as he saw them as threats to his leadership. Throughout 1925 and 1926, Kamenev and Zinoviev form the United Opposition, which called for an end to NEP and for enforced industrialisation. This

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