History's Greatest Heist
The Looting of Russia by the Bolsheviks
By (author) Sean McMeekin
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History's Greatest Heist by Sean McMeekin
Book DescriptionHistorians have never resolved a central mystery of the Russian Revolution: How did the Bolsheviks, despite facing a world of enemies and leaving nothing but economic ruin in their path, manage to stay in power through five long years of civil war? In this penetrating book, Sean McMeekin draws on previously undiscovered materials from the Soviet Ministry of Finance and other European and American archives to expose some of the darkest secrets of Russia's early days of communism. Building on one archival revelation after another, the author reveals how the Bolsheviks financed their aggression through astonishingly extensive thievery. Their looting included everything from the cash savings of private citizens to gold, silver, diamonds, jewelry, icons, antiques, and artwork. By tracking illicit Soviet financial transactions across Europe, McMeekin shows how Lenin's regime accomplished history's greatest heist between 1917 and 1922 and turned centuries of accumulated wealth into the sinews of class war. McMeekin also names names, introducing for the first time the compliant bankers, lawyers, and middlemen who, for a price, helped the Bolsheviks launder their loot, impoverish Russia, and impose their brutal will on millions.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9780300135589
(234mm x 156mm x 22mm)
Imprint: Yale University Press
Publisher: Yale University Press
Publish Date: 2-Jan-2009
Country of Publication: United States
Books By Author Sean McMeekin
Ottoman Endgame, Paperback (June 2016)
A single-volume history of the Ottoman empire's decade-long war for survival. Beginning with Italy's invasion of Ottoman Tripoli in September 1911, the opening salvo in what would soon spiral into a European conflict, it concludes with the establishment of Turkish independence in the Treaty of Lausanne, 1923.
July 1914, Paperback (May 2014)
Originally published in hardcover in 2013.
Russian Origins of the First World War, Paperback (May 2013)» View all books by Sean McMeekin
In a major reinterpretation, Sean McMeekin rejects the standard notion of the war's beginning as either a Germano-Austrian pre-emptive strike or a miscalculation. The key to the outbreak of violence, he argues, lies in St. Petersburg. Russian statesmen unleashed the war through policy decisions based on imperial ambitions in the Near East.
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Author Biography - Sean McMeekin
Sean McMeekin is assistant professor of international relations, Bilkent University, Ankara, Turkey. He is the author of The Red Millionaire: A Political Biography of Willy Munzenberg, Moscow's Secret Propaganda Tsar in the West, published by Yale University Press. He lives in Ankara.
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