The Gulag Archipelago, 1918-1956 - Part 1, Chapter 2 Summary & Analysis

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Part 1, Chapter 2 Summary and Analysis

From the start, it is clear that Russia is not suited for socialism. The Cadet Party (Constitutional Democrats), deemed by the tsar as the most dangerous revolutionaries, are evaluated similarly by the Bolsheviks and members arrested. Prisons fill with the wealthy and prominent, officers, and former officials. Foreseeing anarchy, Lenin demands "merciless suppression" and purging of "harmful insects," including class enemies, malingerers, and intellectuals. This "hygienic purge" would have been impossible had the Soviets not adopted the new form of "extrajudicial reprisal" carried out by the "Sentinel of the Revolution," the Cheka, the first body in history to handle in total investigation, arrest, interrogation, prosecution, trial, and execution.

In 1918, the Soviets ransack the churches to speed their cultural victory. Many of those who protest are eliminated on the spot and the rest arrested. In 1919, returning officers of the Russian...

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This section contains 790 words
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Buy The Gulag Archipelago, 1918-1956 Study Guide
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