20 Facts About Nikita Khrushchev


Nikita Sergeyevich Khrushchev was a politician who led the Soviet Union during part of the Cold War.

The Soviet Union, officially the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, abbreviated to USSR, was a socialist state on the Eurasian continent that existed from 1922 to 1991.

The Cold War was a state of political and military tension after World War II between powers in the Western Bloc and powers in the Eastern Bloc.

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He served as First Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union from 1953 to 1964, and as Chairman of the Council of Ministers, or Premier, from 1958 to 1964.

The Communist Party of the Soviet Union, abbreviated in English as CPSU, was the founding and ruling political party of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics.

Secretary is a title often used in organizations to indicate a person having a certain amount of authority, power, or importance in the organization.

A communist party is a political party that advocates the application of the social and economic principles of communism through state policy.

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Khrushchev was responsible for the de-Stalinization of the Soviet Union, for backing the progress of the early Soviet space program, and for several relatively liberal reforms in areas of domestic policy.

The Soviet space program comprised the rocketry and space exploration programs conducted by the former Soviet Union from the 1930s until its dissolution in 1991.

De-Stalinization refers to a process of political reform in the Soviet Union that took place after the death of long-time leader Joseph Stalin in 1953.


Khrushchev's party colleagues removed him from power in 1964, replacing him with Leonid Brezhnev as First Secretary and Alexei Kosygin as Premier.

Leonid Ilyich Brezhnev was the General Secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, presiding over the country from 1964 until his death in 1982.


Khrushchev was born in 1894 in the village of Kalinovka, which is close to the present-day border between Russia and Ukraine.

Ukraine is a sovereign state in Eastern Europe, bordered by Russia to the east and northeast, Belarus to the northwest, Poland and Slovakia to the west, Hungary, Romania, and Moldova to the southwest, and the Black Sea and Sea of Azov to the south and southeast, respectively.

Russia, also officially known as the Russian Federation, is a federal state in Eurasia.


He was employed as a metal worker during his youth, and he was a political commissar during the Russian Civil War.

The Russian Civil War was a multi-party war in the former Russian Empire immediately after the Russian Revolutions of 1917, as many factions vied to determine Russia's political future.

The political commissar is the supervisory political officer responsible for the political education and organization, and committed to the civilian control of the military.

A civil war is an armed conflict within a nation.


With the help of Lazar Kaganovich, he worked his way up the Soviet hierarchy.

Lazar Moiseyevich Kaganovich was a Soviet politician and administrator and one of the main associates of Joseph Stalin.


He supported Joseph Stalin's purges, and approved thousands of arrests.


In 1938, Stalin sent him to govern Ukraine, and he continued the purges there.


During what was known in the Soviet Union as the Great Patriotic War, Khrushchev was again a commissar, serving as an intermediary between Stalin and his generals.


Khrushchev was present at the bloody defense of Stalingrad, a fact he took great pride in throughout his life.

Volgograd, formerly Tsaritsyn, 1589–1925, and Stalingrad, 1925–1961, is an important industrial city and the administrative center of Volgograd Oblast, Russia.


After the war, he returned to Ukraine before being recalled to Moscow as one of Stalin's close advisers.

Moscow is the capital and most populous city of the Russian Federation, with 12.2 million residents within the city limits and 16.8 million within the urban area.


Stalin's death in 1953 triggered a power struggle, and after several years Khrushchev emerged victorious.


On 25 February 1956, at the 20th Party Congress, he delivered the "Secret Speech", which denounced Stalin's purges and ushered in a less repressive era in the Soviet Union.


His domestic policies, aimed at bettering the lives of ordinary citizens, were often ineffective, especially in agriculture.


Hoping eventually to rely on missiles for national defense, Khrushchev ordered major cuts in conventional forces.


Despite the cuts, Khrushchev's rule saw the most tense years of the Cold War, culminating in the Cuban Missile Crisis.

The Cuban Missile Crisis, also known as the Caribbean Crisis, or the Missile Scare, was a 13-day confrontation between the United States and the Soviet Union concerning American ballistic missile deployment in Italy and Turkey with consequent Soviet ballistic missile deployment in Cuba.


Khruschev's popularity was eroded by flaws in his policies.


This emboldened his potential opponents, who quietly rose in strength and deposed the Premier in October 1964.


However, he did not suffer the deadly fate of previous losers of Soviet power struggles, and was pensioned off with an apartment in Moscow and a dacha in the countryside.

A dacha is a seasonal or year-round second home, often located in the exurbs of Russian and other post-Soviet cities.

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