Trotsky: The Eternal Revolutionary

Dmitri Volkogonov, Author
Dmitri Volkogonov, Author Free Press $32.5 (560p) ISBN 978-0-684-82293-8
Hardcover - 978-0-02-874119-2
Hardcover - 978-0-02-933436-2
Open Ebook - 560 pages - 978-1-4391-0573-3
Paperback - 524 pages - 978-0-684-84717-7
Paperback - 560 pages - 978-1-4165-7664-8
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Although for years Trotsky had condemned Lenin as a potential dictator, in 1917 he became a radical Bolshevik, a hard-line Leninist committed to a one-party state with a monopoly of power sustained through terror and violence. Together with Lenin, the military leader and fiery orator (born Lev Davidovich Bronstein in 1879) liquidated opponents, inaugurated forced collective labor and unleashed a violent campaign against religion. Using hitherto unavailable materials from Soviet archives, Volkogonov, special assistant to Boris Yeltsin, persuasively argues that Trotsky, while preaching global revolution, helped Lenin lay the foundations of a repressive domestic system that grew organically into the totalitarian dictatorship presided over by Stalin, Trotsky's rival. Assassinated in Mexico in 1940 by one of Stalin's henchmen, Trotsky, according to this meticulous, dense political biography, shares responsibility for the Red Terror that claimed him as victim. Complementing Volkogonov's recent critical biographies of Stalin and Lenin, this compelling study lays to rest the image of Trotsky as a persecuted idealist, blameless victim of Stalin's duplicity. (Mar.)
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