Stalin's Deportations

The year is 1944, and Zulpa, a Chechen girl only ten years of age, is being forcefully removed from her home in the Soviet Union along with her family and tribe. They have been identified as a threat and accused of collaboration with the Nazi party. Stalin and his men have taken their cows to a collective farm, and herded the people there as well. When the morning comes, they will be loaded into cattle trucks to begin their journey to concentration camps called gulags in Central Asia or Siberia, but many Chechens will not survive the journey. Some will needlessly be shot by soldiers, while others won’t be able to withstand the climate, conditions, or lack of food. Zulpa will be one of the few who make it, and she will be considered one of the lucky ones; even after all the hardship she endures. At ten, she cannot understand why she and her family are being pushed out, but they are not the only ones, and there is a long story behind their sorrow. Here is what happened:

Joseph Stalin is the key character in this story. He became a significant figure when he was appointed as General Secretary of the Communist Party’s Central Committee in 1922. He abused this position; manipulating whatever he could so that eventually most of the Party staff owed their positions to him before they realized what was happening. Once they did, it was too late, and Lenin, the only person to challenge him, was too ill to do much about it. However, Lenin sent a letter to Leon Trotsky, who made an agreement to help work against Stalin in the future. Stalin realized that they were collaborating, and when Lenin passed away in 1924, Trotsky was the only one left in Stalin’s path. Within the next year, Stalin arranged for Trotsky to be removed from the government.

Stalin became ruler of the Soviet Union in 1929, and decided to use his power to modernize the country and its industries with his Five Year Plans, the first of which included collective farming. Over 80% of the Soviet population...