Famous Russian Leaders

Russia has been a land that has seen a number of different leadership philosophies over the years. Although is semi-democratic today, it has been ruled under a monarchy and under a communistic government that emphasized socialism. Here are some of the most famous names that have led this country over time.

1. Vladimir Putin

Putin is perhaps the most famous name in Russia in the modern age. He has maneuvered himself to stay in power over the course of two decades and has pushed through many reforms to make Russia become the power that it once was. Although the annexation of the Crimean Peninsula has not made him a popular figure, he is set in his view of making his country the greatest on the planet going forward.

2. Mikhail Gorbachev

The Gorbachev era was the last Soviet leadership era he was the leader when the country was dissolved in 1991. He was also the only leader in the history of the Soviet era to have been born after the October Revolution. He helped to push through policies of openness and restructuring that aimed to eliminate the Cold War and although he has been out of the spotlight since the breakup of the Soviet state, he is still active in Russian politics.

3. Boris Yeltsin

Yeltsin became the first leader of the Russian Federation after the elimination of the Soviet Union. The time in leadership was difficult because the reforms and privatization that were implemented put most of the nation’s wealth into the hands of a very few people. Corruption, inflation, and eventually the entire economic collapse of the country occurred within the first few years of his Presidency. He threw out the Constitution at the time, wrote a new one, and then abruptly resigned to bring Putin into power.

4. Joseph Stalin

Stalin was part of the Russian Revolution in 1917 and was appointed the general secretary of the Central Committee for his party in 1922. He consolidated power just two years later and expanded his role until the post was eliminated three decades later. Stalin is responsible for the concept of starting one country socialism and transformed the Soviet state into an industrial powerhouse, though correctional labor was used to make this happen.

5. Vladimir Lenin

Lenin was also part of the 1917 revolution and he served as the head of government for 5 years until his death. He was a Marxist and was even exiled to Siberia for three years at one point because of sedition. After an assassination attempt on his life, however, Lenin is most known for the Red Terror incidents where execution lists were formed and over 800 people were summarily killed by his order in 1918, including the Russian royal family.

6. Nikita Khrushchev

Khrushchev might have been the greatest mind of the Soviet era. He removed the Stalin influences and strategized quite successfully on how to disrupt the Western world. There were initial successes, especially with the space programs and the key alliance with Cuba, but eventually less oppression came during his rule and he made many cuts in the nation’s defense structure.

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