1)Historians debate over whether Stalin’s dictatorship marked a decisive break with previous communist practice (i.e. Was Stalin a “traitor” to the “true” communist revolution?)

2)OR was Stalin a logical continuation of the brutal and dictatorial system installed under his predecessor, Lenin??? Did Stalin finish what Lenin started?

3)According to scholar Richard Pipes, “Every ingredient of what has come to be known as Stalinism save one – murdering fellow communists – he had
learned from Lenin; his ideology and modus operandi (ways of operating) were Lenin’s.”

4)Lenin’s “Principles of Revolution” included, 1)a small group of “professional” revolutionaries; 2)strict “party” discipline and 3)conspiracy and secrecy. (“gangland” tactics)

5)Was Stalin “Michael Corleone” in relation to Lenin, “The Godfather”???
Were the Bolsheviks “gangsters”. with Stalin being the world’s ultimate “gangster”.

6)Was Marx’s “dictatorship of the Proletariat” and “Bolshevism” destined to become just “plain” old dictatorship? Did Marxist, utopian “heaven on earth” become hell?

7)When Stalin’s mother was on her deathbed, Josip visited her briefly. When she asked him what he did with his time, he paused and told her,
“I’m something like the Czar.”

Ironically, after working to overthrow the “corrupt” rule and legacy of the Czars, did Stalin become the “ Greatest Czar”?

8)Was the relationship between Stalin, Communist Party and proletariat (workers) much different than the Czar, Boyars and peasant serfs of “feudal” Russia?

9)OR was Stalin man times more abusive, oppressive and “autocratic”
than any “tyrannical” Czar who had ever lived?

10)Stalin created a “totalitarian” state in which all aspects of life were controlled and/or regulated by the state.

11)Totalitarianism insisted on mass conformity – one way to do things.

12)Stalin’s dictatorship went beyond just authoritarian control and loyalty.
Stalin used the state to control the hearts and minds of the Soviet people.

13)Did Russians trade the “iron fist” rule of the Mongols and Czars for the “steel fist” rule of Stalin, replacing feudal “tyranny” with a “modern” dictatorship?


14)Was Stalin an historic “MONSTER” and/or “freak” ACCIDENT of Russian
history, an “evil” causing the unnecessary deaths of tens of millions of people?

15)OR was Stalin a “Modernizing Magician”, who took Russia from “victim state” to “world power,. from “dominated” to “dominator in world record time”. (20+ years)

16)World War One was a disaster for Russia, ending Romanov Czarist rule. (1613-1917)

17)After near disaster during World War Two (1939-1945), the Soviet Union would emerge