Zinoviev, Grigori Evseyevich


Zinoviev, Grigori Evseyevich
(1883–1936)
   Russian Communist leader. Zinoviev joined the Russian Social Democratic Party in 1901 when a student in Switzerland. He sided with the Bolshevik faction upon his return to Russia in 1903 and played an active role in the 1905 revolution and in subsequent underground activities. Exiled in 1908, he became one of LENIN’S closest collaborators. On the outbreak of World War I, he wrote, together with Lenin, an important treatise, Against the Tide, which attacked the war and those social democratic leaders who supported it.
   In April 1917 he travelled together with Lenin in the famous ‘sealed train’ which brought them back to Russia after the collapse of the czarist regime. He became chairman of the Petrograd Soviet in 1917, a member of the Central Committee of the Communist Party and a member of the Politbureau. He was the architect and first chairman of the Comintern, the Soviet instrument for formenting world revolution.
   In 1924 Zinoviev’s name became linked with a political scandal in Britain. Just before the elections, a letter was leaked to the press purporting to have been written by Zinoviev to one of the leaders of the British Communist Party, giving instructions for the conduct of subversive work in England. The Zinoviev letter was used to discredit Labour’s policy of improved relations with Soviet Russia and helped to bring about the defeat of the Ramsay MACDONALD government. However, subsequent research has thrown a great deal of doubt on the authenticity of the document.
   In 1926 Zinoviev, together with TROTSKY, became involved in a struggle against STALIN’S autocratic rule. It ended with Zinoviev being completely defeated and ousted from the party in December 1927. In 1936 the first great ‘purge trials’ of the Stalin era were held. Zinoviev, together with fifteen of his colleagues, was tried and executed for alleged terrorist plots. It was twenty years before Nikita Khruschev admitted during the Twentieth Party Congress of 1956 that the charges had probably been fabricated by Stalin’s secret police.

Who’s Who in Jewish History after the period of the Old Testament. . 2012.

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  • Zinoviev,Grigori Evseyevich — Zi·nov·iev (zĭ nōʹvē ĕf , zyĭ nôfʹyĭf), Grigori Evseyevich. 1883 1936. Soviet politician. A close colleague of Lenin, he shared power with Kamenev and Stalin after Lenin s death (1924). Joining Trotsky and Kamenev in opposition to Stalin, he was… …   Universalium


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