Russia Under Three Tsars

Irene Vartanoff
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REDISCOVERED: EYEWITNESS HISTORY Opening with an intimate, dramatic account of the assassination of Tsar Alexander II in 1881, this long-lost history describes the personalities and actions of the last tsars during the years leading up to the Russian Revolution. Glittering royals, politicians, military officers, scoundrels and anarchists all walk across these pages as they did in life during the last years of the tsars. 

Alexander II, Alexander III, and the last tsar—the ill-fated Nicholas II—each attempted to forestall the forces of revolution. This eyewitness history is based on exclusive access to the original manuscript memoirs of Count Loris-Melikov, Tsar Alexander II's chief minister, and by the author's personal experience in Tsar Nicholas II's government as Secretary-in-Chief of the Duma.

Appendix: Interview with Count Leo Tolstoy
Edited and with an introduction by Irene Vartanoff

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About the author

Michael N. Kalantar, L.L.D., was a graduate of the University of St. Petersburg, Heidelberg University, and the Sorbonne. He was secretary-in-chief of Tsar Nicholas II's Imperial Senate, the Duma.

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Additional Information

Publisher
Irene Vartanoff
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Published on
Aug 9, 2015
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Pages
186
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ISBN
9780986125287
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Features
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Language
English
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Genres
History / Europe / Baltic States
History / Europe / Great Britain / Victorian Era (1837-1901)
History / Europe / Great Britain / Wales
History / General
History / Modern / 19th Century
History / Modern / 20th Century
History / Modern / General
History / Revolutionary
History / Russia & the Former Soviet Union
History / World
Political Science / World / Russian & Former Soviet Union
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This content is DRM free.
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Eligible for Family Library

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This set of four volumes is an indispensable reference work for the study of modern Russia in general and Soviet Communism in particular. Ever since its foundation on the eve of the twentieth century, the organization now called the Communist Party of the Soviet Union has been embodying its major policies in documents called 'resolutions and decisions.' These form a much more continuous and extensive record of the evolution of Soviet Communism than the writings of any single leader, and the standard Soviet anthology of these materials has gone through eight editions over a fifty-year period. Yet most of this essential material has been available only in Russian, and even in that language the standard editions have been marred by selectivity and editorial comment that is often politically motivated.

At last students of modern Russian studies have access to a multi-volume work that not only presents the most important Communist Party resolutions and decisions in English, but also amplifies the standard Soviet anthology in important respects and provides editorial explanation that is independent of Kremlin politics. The rich store of materials in these four volumes ranges from the formation of the party to the fall of Khrushchev, and it deals with a wide range of issues. The clearly organized volumes each contain a major introductory essay as well as shorter background essays on each party congress, conference or Central Committee plenum. The documents approved by these meetings are often fundamental in importance, but the centralist operation of the party in power has been such that many of the most vital decisions have been issued in the name of the Central Committee when there was no meeting of that body at all. It is one of the signal achievements of these volumes that the selection of materials included was based on a list of all known part decisions, whether or not they have been included in the main Soviet reference work.

The four volumes in this series are edited as an integral set. Each contains a subject index in which Russian abbreviations and acronymic names are translated. Tables summarizing the personnel of the main party executive bodies since 1917 are also provided. At the same time each of the volumes is built around a coherent period in the development of Russian Communism, and each reflects the special features of its time.

Volume 2 deals with the period from the October Revolution to the establishment of Stalin's regime. Documents from this period emphasize the transformation of the party into a new kind of bureaucratized authority, controlling such areas as the press, trade unions, armed forces, and youth organization. Factionalism within the party and its suppression are a major theme. The volume opens with the documents (previously unavailable in English) concerning Lenin's crisis of control within the Central Committee shortly after the seizure of power, and it goes on to provide extensive material on both Lenin's and Stalin's suppression of critical groups within the party.

From the author of the Pulitzer Prize-winning history The Dead Hand comes the riveting story of a spy who cracked open the Soviet military research establishment and a penetrating portrait of the CIA’s Moscow station, an outpost of daring espionage in the last years of the Cold War
 
   While driving out of the American embassy in Moscow on the evening of February 16, 1978, the chief of the CIA’s Moscow station heard a knock on his car window. A man on the curb handed him an envelope whose contents stunned U.S. intelligence: details of top-secret Soviet research and developments in military technology that were totally unknown to the United States. In the years that followed, the man, Adolf Tolkachev, an engineer in a Soviet military design bureau, used his high-level access to hand over tens of thousands of pages of technical secrets. His revelations allowed America to reshape its weapons systems to defeat Soviet radar on the ground and in the air, giving the United States near total superiority in the skies over Europe.
   One of the most valuable spies to work for the United States in the four decades of global confrontation with the Soviet Union, Tolkachev took enormous personal risks—but so did the Americans. The CIA had long struggled to recruit and run agents in Moscow, and Tolkachev was a singular breakthrough. Using spy cameras and secret codes as well as face-to-face meetings in parks and on street corners, Tolkachev and his handlers succeeded for years in eluding the feared KGB in its own backyard, until the day came when a shocking betrayal put them all at risk. 
   Drawing on previously secret documents obtained from the CIA and on interviews with participants, David Hoffman has created an unprecedented and poignant portrait of Tolkachev, a man motivated by the depredations of the Soviet state to master the craft of spying against his own country. Stirring, unpredictable, and at times unbearably tense, The Billion Dollar Spy is a brilliant feat of reporting that unfolds like an espionage thriller.
Imagine a hot zone in which Ebola is being spliced—using the latest techniques of genetic engineering—with smallpox, the most infectious disease known to man. Now imagine that cocktail is meant for you.
        
For fifty years, while the world stood in terror of a nuclear war, Russian scientists hidden in heavily guarded secret cities refined and stockpiled a new kind of weapon of mass destruction—an invisible weapon that would strike in silence and could not be traced. It would leave hundreds of thousands dead in its wake and would continue to spread devastation long after its release. The scientists were bioweaponeers, working to perfect the tools of a biological Armageddon. They called it their Manhattan Project. It was the deadliest and darkest secret of the cold war.
        
What you are about to read has never before been made public. Ken Alibek began his career as a doctor wanting to save lives and ended up running the Soviet biological weapons program—a secret military empire masquerading as a pharmaceutical company. At its peak, the program employed sixty thousand people at over one hundred facilities. Seven reserve mobilization plants were on permanent standby, ready to produce hundreds of tons of plague, anthrax, smallpox, and Venezuelan equine encephalitis, to name only a few of the toxic agents bred in Soviet labs. Almost every government ministry was implicated, including the Academy of Sciences and the KGB.
        
Biohazard is a terrifying, fast-paced account of tests and leaks, accidents and disasters in the labs, KGB threats and assassinations. The book is full of revelations—evidence of biowarfare programs in Cuba and India, actual deployments at Stalingrad and in Afghanistan, experiments with mood-altering agents, a contingency plan to attack major American cities, and the true story behind the mysterious anthrax outbreak in Sverdlovsk. But beyond these is a twisted world of lies and mirrors, and the riveting parable of the greatest perversion of science in history.
        
No one knows the actual capabilities of biological weapons better than Dr. Alibek. Many of the scientists who worked with him have been lured away from low-paying Russian labs to rogue regimes and terrorist groups around the world. In our lifetime, we will most likely see a terrorist attack using biological weapons on an American city. Biohazard tells us—in chilling detail—what to expect and what we can do. Not since Arthur Koestler’s Darkness at Noon has there been such a book—a report from inside the belly of the beast.

Praise for Biohazard
 
“Harrowing . . . richly descriptive . . . [an] absorbing account.”—The New York Times Book Review
 
“Remarkable . . . terrifying revelations . . . [Ken Alibek’s] overall message is ignored at great national peril.”—Newsday
 
“Read and be amazed. . . . An important and fascinating look into a terrifying world of which we were blissfully unaware.”—Robin Cook, author of Contagion
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • Turn: Washington’s Spies, now an original series on AMC

Based on remarkable new research, acclaimed historian Alexander Rose brings to life the true story of the spy ring that helped America win the Revolutionary War. For the first time, Rose takes us beyond the battlefront and deep into the shadowy underworld of double agents and triple crosses, covert operations and code breaking, and unmasks the courageous, flawed men who inhabited this wilderness of mirrors—including the spymaster at the heart of it all.

In the summer of 1778, with the war poised to turn in his favor, General George Washington desperately needed to know where the British would strike next. To that end, he unleashed his secret weapon: an unlikely ring of spies in New York charged with discovering the enemy’s battle plans and military strategy.

Washington’s small band included a young Quaker torn between political principle and family loyalty, a swashbuckling sailor addicted to the perils of espionage, a hard-drinking barkeep, a Yale-educated cavalryman and friend of the doomed Nathan Hale, and a peaceful, sickly farmer who begged Washington to let him retire but who always came through in the end. Personally guiding these imperfect everyday heroes was Washington himself. In an era when officers were gentlemen, and gentlemen didn’ t spy, he possessed an extraordinary talent for deception—and proved an adept spymaster.

The men he mentored were dubbed the Culper Ring. The British secret service tried to hunt them down, but they escaped by the closest of shaves thanks to their ciphers, dead drops, and invisible ink. Rose’s thrilling narrative tells the unknown story of the Revolution–the murderous intelligence war, gunrunning and kidnapping, defectors and executioners—that has never appeared in the history books. But Washington’s Spies is also a spirited, touching account of friendship and trust, fear and betrayal, amid the dark and silent world of the spy.
The story of five women who shared one of the most extraordinary and privileged sisterhoods of all time.

Vicky, Alice, Helena, and Beatrice were historically unique sisters, born to a sovereign who ruled over a quarter of the earth's people and who gave her name to an era: Queen Victoria. Two of these princesses would themselves produce children of immense consequence. All five would curiously come to share many of the social restrictions and familial machinations borne by nineteenth-century women of less-exulted class.

Victoria and Albert's precocious firstborn child, Vicky, wed a Prussian prince in a political match her high-minded father hoped would bring about a more liberal Anglo-German order. That vision met with disaster when Vicky's son Wilhelm-- to be known as Kaiser Wilhelm-- turned against both England and his mother, keeping her out of the public eye for the rest of her life. Gentle, quiet Alice had a happier marriage, one that produced Alexandra, later to become Tsarina of Russia, and yet another Victoria, whose union with a Battenberg prince was to found the present Mountbatten clan. However, she suffered from melancholia and died at age thirty-five of what appears to have been a deliberate, grief-fueled exposure to the diphtheria germs that had carried away her youngest daughter. Middle child Helena struggled against obesity and drug addition but was to have lasting effect as Albert's literary executor. By contrast, her glittering and at times scandalous sister Louise, the most beautiful of the five siblings, escaped the claustrophobic stodginess of the European royal courts by marrying a handsome Scottish commoner, who became governor general of Canada, and eventually settled into artistic salon life as a respected sculptor. And as the baby of the royal brood of nine, rebelling only briefly to forge a short-lived marriage, Beatrice lived under the thumb of her mother as a kind of personal secretary until the queen's death.

Principally researched at the houses and palaces of its five subjects in London, Scotland, Berlin, Darmstadt, and Ottawa-- and entertainingly written by an experienced biographer whose last book concerned Victoria's final days-- Victoria's Daughters closely examines a generation of royal women who were dominated by their mother, married off as much for political advantage as for love, and finally passed over entirely with the accession of their n0 brother Bertie to the throne. Packard provides valuable insights into their complex, oft-tragic lives as daughters of their time.

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