September 01, 2012

Red Terror Begins

On August 30, 1918, Vladimir Lenin spoke at a rally at the Mikhelson Factory in Moscow. As he was leaving the rally, he was shot and wounded by a woman waiting for him in the factory’s courtyard. Her name was Fanny Kaplan, and she was a member of the Socialist Revolutionary Party – an SR.

That same day word reached Moscow that the chief of the Petrograd secret police, Moisei Uritsky, had been gunned down. A young poet by the name of Leonid Kannegiser had ridden his bicycle to the home of the Cheka boss and fired a fatal series of shots. Before the revolution, Kannegiser, a friend of the poet Sergei Yesenin, had been active in the Popular Socialist Party, which, in an ironic twist, had renounced the use of terror.

Both Kaplan and Kannegiser were arrested, and after several days of brutal interrogation, both were shot.

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