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Leon Trotsky

Updated on July 23, 2013

Trotsky fled to Mexico after his expulsion from the Communist Party, but it was not far enough to escape Stalin

Leon Trotsky (born Lev Davidovich Bronshtein on November 7, 1879) was one of the leaders of the October Revolution in Russia and was second only to Vladimir Lenin, but his opposition to Stalin and the bureaucratization of the USSR led to his expulsion from the communist party, his deportation and his eventual assassination.

Trotsky was a supporter of the Menshevik Internationalists faction of the Russian Social Democratic Labor Party initially. Just prior to the 1917 October Revolution he joined the Bolsheviks. He eventually became a leader within the Party. He served first as People's Commissar for Foreign Affairs in the early days of the Soviet Union, and later served as the founder and commander of the Red Army as People's Commissar of Military and Naval Affairs. Trotsky was a major figure in the Bolshevik victory in the Russian Civil War and was among the first members of the Politburo.

After he led a failed struggle of the Left Opposition against the policies and rise of Joseph Stalin in the 1920s and the increasing role of bureaucracy in the Soviet Union, Trotsky was removed from power in 1927. He was expelled from the Communist Party, and finally deported from the Soviet Union in 1929. As the head of the Fourth International, Trotsky continued to oppose the Stalinist bureaucracy in the Soviet Union while in exile in Mexico. Trotsky was an early advocate of Red Army intervention against European fascism and in the late 1930s he opposed Stalin's non-aggression pact with Adolf Hitler. In August of 1940 he was assassinated on Stalin's orders in Mexico by Ramón Mercader, a Spanish-born Soviet agent.

Leon Trotsky

Leon Trotsky
Leon Trotsky

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