Soviet History - Purges and Show Trials
"Of the 17 defendants in the Russian 'circus trial', four were still alive in Moscow last week. Thirteen others, convicted of having acted on the instigation of exile Leon Trotsky to sabotage Soviet railways, mines and factories, were taken to a cellar of Moscow's Lubianka Prison, where they were yanked into cells to have have their brains blown out by pointblank pistol shots."
Stalin's bloody purges had their own Hollywood propaganda film: Mission to Moscow (Warner Brothers, 1943)
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In response to Stalin's Moscow "show trial" convicting Leon Trotsky of anti-revolutionary sedition - a second kangaroo court was convened in Mexico in which Trotsky and his fellow travelers offered a public defense on behalf of the accused.
FDR's second ambassador to Moscow, Joseph E. Davies (1876 - 1958), wrote this stunning article in which he makes clear that he was all in favor of Stalin's purges and believed that the trials "indicated the amazing far-sightedness of Stalin and his close associates". He believed every one of the trumped-up charges and swallowed them hook, line and sinker. He concluded the article by advising other "liberty loving nations" to follow Stalin's example.
"Congratulations were in order in Soviet Russia last week. The occasion was the 20th anniversary of the famed N.K.V.D., secret police, and celebration of that organization's success in 'rooting out the enemies of the people'"
"The party purge had been widened to include the Soviet Secret Police itself, with 50 of its number being arrested."
On the afternoon of August 20, 1940, in the Mexico City suburb of Coyoacán, Leon Trotsky (b. 1878) was murdered by Ramón Mercader (1914 - 1978). Mercader (alias Jacques Mornard) was a Spanish Communist and a Moscow-trained agent of Joseph Stalin's secret police, the NKVD.
The attached article pertains to Mercader's 20-year incarceration at the Mexican Lecumberri Penitentiary, where he was constrained in semi-luxurious accommodations, complete with a telephone, silk pajamas, a book collection, newspapers and weekly conjugal visits - courtesy of "the Worker's Paradise".
Click here to read a 1938 interview with Leon Trotsky.