Stalin-era prison

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Possible Answers: GULAG.

Last seen on: LA Times Crossword 9 Nov 18, Friday

Random information on the term “GULAG”:

Under the 1977 Constitution of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR), the Chairman of the Council of Ministers, or Premier, was the head of government[1] and the Chairman of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet was the head of state.[2] The office of the Chairman of the Council of Ministers was comparable to a prime minister in the First World[1] whereas the office of the Chairman of the Presidium was comparable to a president in the First World.[2] In the Soviet Union’s seventy-year history there was no official leader of the Soviet Union office, but during most of that era there was a de facto top leader who usually led the country through the office of Premier or the office of the General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union (CPSU). In the ideology of Vladimir Lenin, the head of the Soviet state was a collegiate body of the vanguard party (see What Is To Be Done?).

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Following Joseph Stalin’s consolidation of power in the 1920s,[3] the post of the General Secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party became synonymous with leader of the Soviet Union[4] because the post controlled both the Communist Party and the Soviet Government.[3] The post of the General Secretary was abolished in 1952 under Stalin and later re-established by Nikita Khrushchev under the name of First Secretary. In 1966, Leonid Brezhnev reverted the office title to its former name. Being the head of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union (CPSU),[5] the office of the General Secretary was the highest in the Soviet Union until 1990.[6][incomplete short citation] The post of General Secretary lacked clear guidelines of succession, so after the death or removal of a Soviet leader the successor usually needed the support of the Politburo, the Central Committee, or another government or party apparatus to both take and stay in power. The President of the Soviet Union, an office created in March 1990, replaced the General Secretary as the highest Soviet political office.[7]

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