Sergey Kirov

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Sergei Kirov
Серге́й Ки́ров
Sergey Kirov (2).jpg
First Secretary of the Central Committee of the Azerbaijani Communist Party
In office
July 1921 January 1926
Preceded by Grigory Kaminsky
Succeeded by Levon Mirzoyan
First Secretary of the Leningrad Regional Committee of the All-Union Communist Party (Bolsheviks)
In office
1 August 1927 1 December 1934
Preceded byPost established
Succeeded by Andrey Zhdanov
First Secretary of the Leningrad City Committee of the All-Union Communist Party (Bolsheviks)
In office
8 January 1926 1 December 1934
Preceded byGrigory Yevdokimov
Succeeded by Andrey Zhdanov
Full member of the 16th, 17th Politburo
In office
13 July 1930 1 December 1934
Candidate member of the 14th, 15th Politburo
In office
23 July 1926 13 July 1930
Member of the 17th Secretariat
In office
10 February 1 December 1934
Full member of the 17th Orgburo
In office
10 February 1 December 1934
Personal details
Sergei Mironovich Kostrikov

(1886-03-27)27 March 1886
Urzhum, Vyatka Governorate, Russian Empire
Died1 December 1934(1934-12-01) (aged 48)
Leningrad, Russian SFSR, Soviet Union
Cause of death Assassination
Nationality Russian
Political party Russian Social Democratic Labour Party
All-Union Communist Party

Sergei Mironovich Kirov [lower-alpha 1] (born Kostrikov; [lower-alpha 2] 27 March [ O.S. 15 March] 1886 – 1 December 1934) was a close, personal friend to Joseph Stalin, and a prominent early Bolshevik leader in the Soviet Union. Kirov rose through the Communist Party ranks to become head of the party organisation in Leningrad.

Old Style and New Style dates 16th-century changes in calendar conventions

Old Style (O.S.) and New Style (N.S.) are terms sometimes used with dates to indicate that the calendar convention used at the time described is different from that in use at the time the document was being written. There were two calendar changes in Great Britain and its colonies, which may sometimes complicate matters: the first was to change the start of the year from Lady Day to 1 January; the second was to discard the Julian calendar in favour of the Gregorian calendar. Closely related is the custom of dual dating, where writers gave two consecutive years to reflect differences in the starting date of the year, or to include both the Julian and Gregorian dates.

Joseph Stalin Soviet leader

Joseph Vissarionovich Stalin was a Soviet revolutionary and politician of Georgian ethnicity. He led the Soviet Union from the mid–1920s until 1953 as General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union (1922–1952) and Premier (1941–1953). While initially presiding over a collective leadership as first among equals, he ultimately consolidated enough power to become the country's de facto dictator by the 1930s. A communist ideologically committed to the Leninist interpretation of Marxism, Stalin helped to formalise these ideas as Marxism–Leninism, while his own policies became known as Stalinism.

Old Bolshevik, also Old Bolshevik Guard or Old Party Guard, became an unofficial designation for those who were members of the Bolshevik party before the Russian Revolution of 1917.


On 1 December 1934, Kirov was shot and killed by a gunman at his offices in the Smolny Institute. There is a widespread belief that Joseph Stalin and elements of the NKVD were behind Kirov's assassination, but evidence for this claim remains lacking. [1] Kirov's death was later used as a pretext for Stalin's escalation of repression against dissident elements of the Party, and disarming of the Party (every Party member was issued a revolver up to that time, when Stalin had them all taken away), culminating in the Great Purge of the late 1930s in which many of the Old Bolsheviks were arrested, expelled from the party, and executed. [2] Complicity in Kirov's assassination was a common charge to which the accused confessed in the show trials of the period.

Smolny Institute school building

The Smolny Institute is a Palladian edifice in St Petersburg that has played a major part in the history of Russia.

The People's Commissariat for Internal Affairs, abbreviated NKVD, was the interior ministry of the Soviet Union.

Political repression is the persecution of an individual or group within society for political reasons, particularly for the purpose of restricting or preventing their ability to take part in the political life of a society thereby reducing their standing among their fellow citizens.

The cities of Kirov, Kirovohrad, Kirovakan, and Kirovabad, as well as a few Kirovsks, were renamed in Kirov's honour after his assassination. Following the collapse of the Soviet Union, Kirovakan and Kirovabad returned to their original names: Vanadzor and Ganja, respectively. In order to comply with decommunisation laws, Kirovohrad was renamed in July 2016 by the Ukrainian parliament to Kropyvnytskyi. [3]

Kirov, Kirov Oblast City in Kirov Oblast, Russia

Kirov is a city and the administrative center of Kirov Oblast, Russia, located on the Vyatka River. As of the 2010 Census, its population was 473,695.

Kropyvnytskyi City of regional significance in Kirovohrad Oblast, Ukraine

Kropyvnytskyi is a city in central Ukraine on the Inhul river, and is the administrative center of the Kirovohrad Oblast. Population: 232 052 (2015 est.).

Kirovsk is the name of several inhabited localities in Russia.

Early life

Sergey Kirov was born Sergei Mironovich Kostrikov into a poor family in Urzhum (then in Vyatka Governorate of the Russian Empire, subsequently in Kirov Oblast) as one of seven children born to Miron Ivanovich Kostrikov and Yekaterina Kuzminichna Kostrikova (née Kazantseva); their first four children had died young, while Anna (born 1883), Sergey (1886) and Yelizaveta (1889) survived. [4]

Urzhum, Urzhumsky District, Kirov Oblast Town in Kirov Oblast, Russia

Urzhum is a town and the administrative center of Urzhumsky District in Kirov Oblast, Russia, located on the left bank of the Urzhumka River about 10 kilometers (6.2 mi) from its confluence with the Vyatka River. Population: 10,213 (2010 Census); 11,514 (2002 Census); 12,101 (1989 Census).

Vyatka Governorate governorate of the Russian Empire

Vyatka Governorate was a governorate of the Russian Empire and Russian SFSR, with its capital in city Vyatka, from 1796 to 1929. In the governorate’s area were situated most parts of modern Kirov Oblast and Udmurt Republic.

Russian Empire former country, 1721–1917

The Russian Empire, also known as Imperial Russia or simply Russia, was an empire that existed across Eurasia and North America from 1721, following the end of the Great Northern War, until the Republic was proclaimed by the Provisional Government that took power after the February Revolution of 1917.

Kirov as a child Kirov child.jpg
Kirov as a child

Miron, an alcoholic, abandoned the family around 1890. In 1893, Yekaterina died of tuberculosis. The children's paternal grandmother, Melania Avdeyevna Kostrikova, raised Sergey and his sisters for a brief time, but she could not afford to take care of them all on her small pension of 3 rubles per month. Through her connections, she succeeded in having Sergey placed in an orphanage, but he saw his sisters and grandmother regularly. [5]

Tuberculosis Infectious disease caused by the bacterium Mycobacterium tuberculosis

Tuberculosis (TB) is an infectious disease usually caused by Mycobacterium tuberculosis (MTB) bacteria. Tuberculosis generally affects the lungs, but can also affect other parts of the body. Most infections do not have symptoms, in which case it is known as latent tuberculosis. About 10% of latent infections progress to active disease which, if left untreated, kills about half of those affected. The classic symptoms of active TB are a chronic cough with blood-containing sputum, fever, night sweats, and weight loss. It was historically called "consumption" due to the weight loss. Infection of other organs can cause a wide range of symptoms.

In 1901, a group of wealthy benefactors provided a scholarship for him to attend an industrial school at Kazan. After gaining his degree in engineering he moved to Tomsk in Siberia. Kirov became a Marxist and joined the Russian Social Democratic Labour Party (RSDLP) in 1904. [6]

Kazan City of republic significance in Tatarstan, Russia

Kazan is the capital and largest city of the Republic of Tatarstan, Russia. With a population of 1,243,500, it is the sixth most populous city in Russia. Kazan is one of the largest religious, economic, political, scientific, educational, cultural and sports centers in Russia. Kazan lies at the confluence of the Volga and Kazanka Rivers in European Russia, about 715 kilometres (444 mi) east from Moscow. The Kazan Kremlin is a World Heritage Site.

Engineering applied science

Engineering is the application of knowledge in the form of science, mathematics, and empirical evidence, to the innovation, design, construction, operation and maintenance of structures, machines, materials, devices, systems, processes, and organizations. The discipline of engineering encompasses a broad range of more specialized fields of engineering, each with a more specific emphasis on particular areas of applied mathematics, applied science, and types of application. See glossary of engineering.

Tomsk City Under Oblast Jurisdiction in Tomsk Oblast, Russia

Tomsk is a city and the administrative center of Tomsk Oblast in Russia, located on the Tom River. The city's population was 524,669 (2010 Census); 487,838 (2002 Census); 501,963 (1989 Census).

Russian revolutions

Kirov took part in the 1905 Russian Revolution and was arrested and later released. He joined with the Bolsheviks soon after being released from prison. In 1906, Kirov was arrested once again, but this time jailed for over three years, charged with printing illegal literature. Soon after his release, he again took part in revolutionary activity. Once again being arrested for printing illegal literature, after a year of custody, Kostrikov moved to the Caucasus, where he stayed until the abdication of Tsar Nicholas II.

By this time, Sergei Kostrikov had changed his name to Kirov in order to make his name easier to remember[ citation needed ], a practice common among Russian revolutionaries of the time. Kostrikov began using the pen name "Kir", first publishing under the pseudonym "Kirov" on 26 April 1912. One account states that he chose the name "Kir" (Cyrus, from the Greek Kūros), after a Christian martyr in third-century Egypt from an Orthodox calendar of saints' days, russifying it by adding an "-ov" ending. A second story is that he based it on the name of the Persian king Cyrus. [7]

Kirov became commander of the Bolshevik military administration in Astrakhan. Following the Russian Revolution of 1917, he fought in the Russian Civil War until 1920. Simon Sebag Montefiore writes: "During the Civil War, Kirov was one of the swashbuckling commissars in the North Caucasus beside Ordzhonikidze and Mikoyan. In Astrakhan he enforced Bolshevik power in March 1919 with liberal bloodletting; more than 4,000 were killed. When a bourgeois was caught hiding his own furniture, Kirov ordered him shot." [8]


Lobov, Nikolai Bukharin, Sergey Kirov and Vyacheslav Molotov on the City Communist Party conference Leningrad, February 1926 Kirov on the Leningrad Party Conference 1925.jpg
Lobov, Nikolai Bukharin, Sergey Kirov and Vyacheslav Molotov on the City Communist Party conference Leningrad, February 1926
Kirov with Sergo Ordzhonikidze in Leningrad factory S.M. Kirov i G. K. Ordzhonikidze v paroturbinnom tsekhe Metallicheskogo zavoda.jpg
Kirov with Sergo Ordzhonikidze in Leningrad factory

In 1921, he became manager of the Azerbaijan party organisation. Kirov was a loyal supporter of Joseph Stalin, and in 1926 he was rewarded with the command of the Leningrad party organisation.

Kirov was a close, personal friend of Stalin, and a strong supporter of industrialisation and forced collectivisation. At the 16th Congress of the All-Union Communist Party (Bolsheviks) in 1930 he stated: "The General Party line is to conduct the course of our country industrialisation. Based on the industrialisation, we conduct the transformation of our agriculture. Namely we centralise and collectivise." [9]

At the 17th Congress of the All-Union Communist Party (Bolsheviks), in 1934, Kirov delivered the speech called "The Speech of Comrade Stalin Is the Program of Our Party", which refers to Stalin's speech delivered at the Congress earlier. Kirov praised Stalin for everything he did since the death of Vladimir Lenin. Moreover, he personally named and ridiculed Nikolai Bukharin, Alexei Rykov and Mikhail Tomsky. Bukharin and Rykov were tried in the show trial called The Trial of the Twenty-One. Tomsky committed suicide expecting the arrest.

Assassination and aftermath

The Leningrad office of the NKVD – headed by Kirov's close friend, Filipp Medved – looked after Kirov's security. Stalin allegedly ordered the NKVD Commissar, Genrikh Yagoda, to replace Medved with Grigory Yeremeyevich Yevdokimov, a close associate of Stalin. However, Kirov intervened and had the order countermanded. According to Alexander Orlov, Stalin then ordered Yagoda to arrange the assassination. Yagoda ordered Medved's deputy, Vania Zaporozhets, to undertake the job. Zaporozhets returned to Leningrad in search of an assassin; in reviewing the files he found the name of Leonid Nikolayev. [10]

Milda Draule and Leonid Nikolayev AlexanderNikolayev.jpg
Milda Draule and Leonid Nikolayev

Leonid Nikolayev was well-known to the NKVD, which had arrested him for various petty offences in recent years. Various accounts of his life agree that he was an expelled Party member and failed junior functionary, with a murderous grudge and an indifference towards his own survival. He was unemployed, with a wife and child, and in financial difficulties. According to Orlov, Nikolayev had allegedly told a "friend" he wanted to kill the head of the party control commission that had expelled him. His friend reported this to the NKVD. [10]

Zaporozhets then allegedly enlisted Nikolayev's "friend" to contact him, giving him money and a loaded 7.62 mm Nagant M1895 revolver. [10] However, Nikolayev's first attempt at killing Kirov failed. On 15 October 1934, Nikolaev packed his Nagant revolver in a briefcase and entered the Smolny Institute where Kirov worked. Although he was initially passed by the main security desk at Smolny, he was arrested after an alert guard asked to examine his briefcase, which was found to contain the revolver. [10] A few hours later, Nikolayev's briefcase and loaded revolver were returned to him, and he was told to leave the building. Though Nikolayev had clearly broken Soviet laws, the security police had inexplicably released him from custody; he was even permitted to retain his loaded pistol. [11]

With Stalin's approval, the NKVD had previously withdrawn all but four police bodyguards assigned to Kirov. These four guards accompanied Kirov each day to his offices at the Smolny Institute, and then left. On 1 December 1934, the usual guard post at the entrance to Kirov's offices was left unmanned, even though the building housed the chief offices of the Leningrad party apparatus and was the seat of the local government. [10] [12] According to some reports, only a single friend, Commissar Borisov, an unarmed bodyguard of Kirov's remained. [12] [13] Other sources [ who? ] state that there may have been as many as nine NKVD guards in the building. Whatever the case, given the circumstances of Kirov's death, as former Soviet official and author Alexander Gregory Barmine noted, "the negligence of the NKVD in protecting such a high party official was without precedent in the Soviet Union." [11]

On the afternoon of Saturday, 1 December 1934, Nikolayev arrived at the Smolny Institute offices. Unopposed, he made his way to the third floor, where he waited in a hallway until Kirov and Borisov stepped into the corridor. Borisov appears to have stayed some 20 to 40 paces behind Kirov, (some sources allege Borisov parted company with Kirov in order to prepare his lunch). [13] As Kirov turned a corner, passing Nikolayev, the latter drew his revolver and shot Kirov in the back of the neck. [13]

Molotov, Voroshilov, Stalin and Kalinin carrying Kirov's funeral bier Kirovfuneral.jpg
Molotov, Voroshilov, Stalin and Kalinin carrying Kirov's funeral bier

The Sergei Kirov Museum [14] maintains that the circumstances of Kirov's death "remain unknown to this day." There are no doubts on the aftermath, however: "the bloodiest round of Stalin's terror and repression."

After Kirov's death, Stalin called for swift punishment of the traitors and those found negligent in Kirov's death. Nikolayev was tried alone and secretly by Vasili Ulrikh, Chairman of the Military Collegium of the Supreme Court of the USSR. He was sentenced to death by shooting on 29 December 1934, and the sentence was carried out that very night.

The hapless Commissar Borisov died the day after the assassination, supposedly by falling from a moving truck while riding with a group of NKVD agents. Borisov's wife was committed to an insane asylum. According to Orlov, Nikolayev's mysterious "friend" and alleged provocateur, who had supplied him with the revolver and money, was later shot on Stalin's personal orders. [10]

Nikolayev's mother, brother, sisters and cousin, and some other people close to him, were arrested and later killed or sent to labour camps. Arrested immediately after the assassination, Nikolayev's wife, Milda Draule, survived her husband by three months before being executed as well. Their infant son (who was named Marx following the Bolshevik naming fashion) was sent into an orphanage. Marx Draule was alive in 2005 when he was officially rehabilitated as a victim of political repressions, and Milda was also found innocent retrospectively. However, Nikolayev was never posthumously acquitted.

Several NKVD officers from the Leningrad branch were convicted of negligence for not adequately protecting Kirov, and sentenced to prison terms of up to ten years. None of the NKVD officers were executed in the aftermath, and none actually served time in prison. Instead, they were transferred to executive posts in Stalin's labour camps for a period of time, in effect, a demotion. [11] According to Nikita Khrushchev, the same NKVD officers were shot in 1937 during Stalin's purges. [15]

Initially, a Communist Party communiqué reported that Nikolayev had confessed his guilt, not only as an assassin, but an assassin in the pay of a "fascist power", having received money from an unidentified "foreign consul" in Leningrad. [16] 104 defendants who were already in prison at the time of Kirov's assassination, and who had no demonstrable connection to Nikolayev, were found guilty of complicity in the "fascist plot" against Kirov, and summarily executed. [16]

However, a few days later, during a subsequent Communist Party meeting of the Moscow District, the Party secretary announced in a speech that Nikolayev was personally interrogated by Stalin the day after the assassination, an unheard-of event for a party leader such as Stalin: [17]

Comrade Stalin personally directed the investigation of Kirov's assassination. He questioned Nikolayev at length. The leaders of the Opposition placed the gun in Nikolayev's hand! [17]

Other speakers duly rose to condemn the Opposition: "The Central Committee must be pitiless – the Party must be purged... the record of every member must be scrutinised...." No one at the meeting mentioned the initial theory of fascist agents. [17] Later, Stalin even used the Kirov assassination to eliminate the remainder of the Opposition leadership, accusing Grigory Zinoviev, Lev Kamenev, Abram Prigozhin, and others who had stood with Kirov in opposing Stalin (or simply failed to acquiesce to Stalin's views), of being "morally responsible" for Kirov's murder, and therefore guilty of complicity. [16] All were removed from the Party apparatus and given prison sentences. While serving their sentences, the Opposition leaders were charged with new crimes, for which they were sentenced to death and shot.

Alexander Barmine, a Soviet defector who knew both Stalin and Kirov, asserted that Stalin arranged the murder with the Soviet secret police, the NKVD, who armed Nikolayev and sent him to assassinate Kirov. [18]

Author and Marxist scholar Boris Nikolaevsky argued: "One thing is certain: the only man who profited by the Kirov assassination was Stalin." [19]

Khrushchev, in his secret speech in 1956, said that the murder was organized by NKVD agents. [20] He noted that the NKVD agents tasked with protecting Kirov were eventually shot in 1937, and assumed that this was to "cover the traces of the organisers of Kirov's killing". [20]

Pospelov Commission investigation

In December 1955, after Khrushchev assumed control of the Party, the Presidium of the Central Committee (CPSU) entrusted P. N. Pospelov, Secretary of the Central Committee, to form a commission to investigate the repression of the 1930s (this was the same Pospelov who drafted the famous "Secret Speech" for Khrushchev at the 20th Congress). Khrushchev stated:

It must be asserted that to this day the circumstances surrounding Kirov's murder hide many things which are inexplicable and mysterious and demand a most careful examination. There are reasons for the suspicion that the killer of Kirov, Nikolayev, was assisted by someone from among the people whose duty it was protect the person of Kirov. A month and a half before the killing, Nikolayev was arrested on the grounds of suspicious behaviour, but he was released and not even searched. It is an unusually suspicious circumstance that when the Chekist [Borisov] assigned to protect Kirov was being brought for an interrogation, on 2 December 1934, he was killed in a car "accident" in which no other occupants of the car were harmed. After the murder of Kirov, top functionaries of the Leningrad NKVD were relieved of their duties and were given very light sentences, but in 1937 they were shot. We can assume that they were shot in order to cover the traces of the organizers of Kirov's killing. [15]

Pospelov subsequently spoke to Dr. Kirchakov and former nurse Trunina, former members of the party, who had been mentioned in a letter by another member of the commission, (Olga Shatunovskaya), as having knowledge of the Kirov murder. Dr. Kirchakov confirmed that he did talk to Shatunovskaya and Trunina about some of the unexplained aspects of the Kirov murder case, and agreed to provide the Commission with a written deposition. He stressed that his statement was based on the testimony of one Comrade Yan Olsky, a former NKVD officer who was demoted after Kirov's murder and transferred to the People's Supply System[ citation needed ].

In his deposition, Dr. Kirchakov wrote that he had discussed the murder of Kirov and the role of Fyodor Medved with Olsky. Olsky was of the firm opinion that Medved, Kirov's friend and NKVD security chief of the Leningrad branch, was innocent of the murder. Olsky also told Kirchakov that Medved had been barred from the NKVD Kirov assassination investigation. Instead, the investigation was carried out by a senior NKVD chief, Yakov Agranov, and later by another NKVD bureau officer, [21] whose name he did not remember. During one of the committee sessions, Olskii said he was present when Stalin asked Leonid Nikolayev why Comrade Kirov had been killed. To this Nikolayev replied that he carried out the instruction of the "Chekists" [NKVD] and pointed towards the group of "Chekists" [NKVD officers] standing in the room; Medved was not among them.[ citation needed ]

Khrushchev's report, On the Cult of Personality and Its Consequences was later read at closed-door Party meetings. Afterward, new material was received by the Pospelov committee, including the assertion by Kirov's chauffeur, Kuzin, that Commissar Borisov, Kirov's friend and bodyguard, who was responsible for Kirov's round-the-clock security at Smolny, was intentionally killed, and that his death in a road accident was not an accident at all.[ citation needed ]

Politburo Commission headed by A. Yakovlev

The dismantled monument to Sergey Kirov in Kropyvnytskyi (Ukraine) Pam'iatnik Sergiiu Kirovu v Kirovogradi.jpg
The dismantled monument to Sergey Kirov in Kropyvnytskyi (Ukraine)

The last attempt in the Soviet Union to review the Kirov murder case was the Politburo Commission headed by Alexander Nikolaevich Yakovlev which was established in the Gorbachev period in 1989. The investigating team included personnel from the USSR Procurator's Office, the Military Procuracy, the KGB and various archival administrations. After two years of investigations, the working team of the Yakovlev commission concluded that: in this affair no materials objectively support Stalin's participation or NKVD participation in the organisation and carrying out of Kirov's murder. [22]


A portrait of Kirov from his museum (former apartment) in St.Petersburg Sankt-Peterburg - St Petersburg - Museum Apartment S.M.Kirov (Sergei Mironovich Kirov) 49.jpg
A portrait of Kirov from his museum (former apartment) in St.Petersburg

Kirov was buried in the Kremlin Wall necropolis in a state funeral, with Stalin personally carrying his coffin.

Many cities, streets and factories took his name, including the cities of Kirov (formerly Vyatka), Kirovsk (Murmansk Oblast), Kirovohrad (today Kropyvnytskyi in present-day Ukraine), Kirovabad (today Ganja, Azerbaijan) and Kirovakan (today Vanadzor, Armenia), the station Kirovskaya of the Moscow Metro (now Chistye Prudy), Kirov Ballet, and the massive Kirov industrial plant in Saint Petersburg. In order to comply with Ukrainian decommunization laws Kirovohrad was renamed Kropyvnytskyi by the Ukrainian parliament on 14 July 2016. [3] Ukraine's Kirovohrad oblast was not retitled because it is mentioned by name in the Constitution of Ukraine, and any alteration would require a constitutional amendment. [23]

The S. M. Kirov Forestry Academy, in Leningrad, was named after him; today it is the Saint Petersburg State Forest Technical University. [24]

In the city of Kirov a speedskating match, the Kirov Prize, was named for him. This match is the oldest annual organised race in speedskating, apart from the World Speed Skating Championships and the European Speed Skating Championships.

The English Communist poet John Cornford wrote an eponymous poem in his honour. [25]

For many years, a huge statue of Kirov, in granite and bronze, dominated the city of Baku. The monument was erected on a hill in 1939 and was dismantled in January 1992, after Azerbaijan gained its independence. The Kirov class of battlecruisers is named in his honor, though the first-of-class vessel originally named Kirov has since been renamed Admiral Ushakov .

Personal life

Kirov was married to Maria Lvovna Markus (1885 — 1945) from 1911, although they never formally registered their relations. His daughter Yevgenia Kostrikova (1921—1975) was a famous tank company commander and WW2 veteran.

Honours and awards

Accused of involvement in Kirov’s murder


  1. Russian: Серге́й Миро́нович Ки́ров
  2. Russian: Ко́стриков

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Leonid Zakovsky Soviet politician (1894-1938)

Leonid Zakovsky was an ethnic Latvian NKVD Commissar 1st Class of State Security.

Georgy Safarov

Georgy Ivanovich Safarov was a Bolshevik revolutionary and politician who was a participant in the Russian Revolution and the Russian Civil War, and a participant in the executions of the Romanovs in Yekaterinburg and Alapayevsk. Later associated with Grigory Zinoviev's New Opposition and Leon Trotsky's United Opposition, he was purged from the Communist Party, and was later imprisoned in Vorkuta in 1937, after which he served as an NKVD informant. He was ultimately executed on 27 July 1942 by a Special Collegium of the NKVD. He is one of the only victims of Joseph Stalin's purges that was not posthumously rehabilitated or reinstated to the party after his death.


  1. The Whisperers, Orlando Figes, Allen Lane 2007, note, p. 236
  2. The Whisperers, Orlando Figes, Allen Lane 2007, ps. 236-237
  3. 1 2 Goodbye, Lenin: Ukraine moves to ban communist symbols, BBC News (14 April 2015)
    (in Ukrainian) Verkhovna Rada renamed Kirovograd, Ukrayinska Pravda (14 July 2016)
  4. Lenoe, pp. 128-129
  5. Lenoe, pp. 129-132
  6. Compare: Smolska, Anna. "Sergey Kirov – Russiapedia Politics and society Prominent Russians". Retrieved 2016-05-19. Sergey Kirov began his political activity in 1904 when he joined the Bolsheviks, a faction of the Russian Social Democratic Labor Party (RSDLP) founded by Vladimir Lenin. At the time the revolutionary movement in Russia was in rapid development despite constant suppression by the Tsarist authorities.
  7. Lenoe, p. 186
  8. Simon Sebag Montefiore, Stalin: The Court of the Red Tsar (Random House, 2005: ISBN   1-4000-7678-1), p. 112.
  9. Kirov, Sergey (1944). Selected articles and speeches 1918–1934 (Russian). Moscow Russia Valovay 28: OGIZ The State political literature publisher. pp. 106–117, 269–289.
  10. 1 2 3 4 5 6 Orlov, Alexander, The Secret History of Stalin's Crimes, New York: Random House (1953)
  11. 1 2 3 Barmine, Alexander, One Who Survived, New York: G.P. Putnam (1945), p. 252
  12. 1 2 Barmine, Alexander, One Who Survived, New York: G.P. Putnam (1945), pp. 247-252
  13. 1 2 3 Knight, Amy, Who Killed Kirov? The Kremlin's Greatest Mystery, New York: Hill and Wang (1999), ISBN   978-0-8090-6404-5, p. 190
  14. Official page of the Sergei Kirov Museum, retrieved 17 October 2011; the museum is a non-profit organization run by the Russian state.
  15. 1 2 Khrushchev, N.S., On the Cult of the Individual and Its Consequences, London (1989), p. 21
  16. 1 2 3 Barmine, Alexander, One Who Survived, New York: G.P. Putnam (1945), p. 248
  17. 1 2 3 Barmine, Alexander, One Who Survived, New York: G.P. Putnam (1945), p. 249
  18. Barmine, Alexander, One Who Survived, New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons (1945), p. 55
  19. Nikolaevsky, Boris, The Kirov Assassination: The New Leader, 23 August 1941
  20. 1 2 Nikita Khrushchev. "Speech to 20th Congress of the C.P.S.U". Retrieved 2015-12-11.
  21. The other NKVD official may have been Yefim Georgievich Yevdokimov, (1891–1939), a Stalin crony, mass-killing specialist, and architect of the Shakhty purge trials, who continued to lead a secret police team within the NKVD even after technically retiring from the OGPU in 1931.
  22. A. Yakovlev, 'O dekabr'skoi tragedii 1934', Pravda, 28 January 1991, p. 3, cited in J. Arch Getty, 'The Politics of Repression Revisited', in ed., J. Arch Getty and Roberta T. Manning, 'Stalinist Terror New Perspectives', New York, 1993, p. 46.
  23. Ukraine, The World Factbook
  24. St. Petersburg State Forest Technical University at the Wayback Machine (archived 20 April 2013)
  25. "Sergei Mironovitch Kirov Poem by Rupert John Cornford – Poem Hunter".

Further reading

Party political offices
Preceded by
Grigory Kaminsky
First Secretary of the Azerbaijan Communist Party
Succeeded by
Levon Mirzoyan