Question by Ghjtyjt: If lavr beria scared joey stalin so much, why didn’t he have him killed between WW2 and his death?
I know beria was important at silencing opposition and organizing Totsky’s death, during the War.But from 1946-52,could not stalin have killed him.
But Malenkov and Khrushchev did?
Answers and Views:
Answer by Spellbound
Stalin was not so much scared of Beria as concerned about him.
This is because Beria controlled nearly all the means of repression in the Soviet Union. Soviet Politics was a curious mix of mind-numbing bureaucracy and personal contacts. Beria, even after he was removed from the head of the NKVD still had a vast personal network in all the police / secret police and military organisations. To arrest Beria was risky, huge numbers of his contacts would have to be simultaneously arrested and compliant replacements immediately found. And the only organisations capable of conducting such an operation were all loyal to Beria. Stalin simply did not have the manpower that was personally loyal to him to be able to arrest him.
Stalin, A Biography by Robert Service
Beria, My Father by Sergo Beria (this is a fascinating read)
True, they did arrest him. But they did it quickly and quietly, Khrushchev denouncing him as a British spy (this is a possibility) on 26th June 1953 and arresting him. Marshall Zhukov was the chief arresting officer. It is probable that Zhukov’s compliance was necessary – something that Stalin did not have – as he had the moral authority to cut through Beria’s personal networks.
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