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8 Facts about Joseph Stalin

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1. In 1913 Hitler, Stalin, Trotsky, Tito, and Freud were all living at the same time in Vienna, Austria

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2. Hitler, Mussolini, and Stalin were all nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize

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3. When Joseph Stalin’s first wife died, he said “This creature softened my heart of stone. She died and with her died my last warm feelings for humanity.” He eventually went on to execute her brother, her sister, and her cousin.

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4. After the entire national Soviet hockey team was killed in an airplane crash in 1950, Stalin’s son Vasily, the manager of the team, covered up the disaster and replaced everyone on the team to avoid his father’s wrath. Stalin never noticed.

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5. Stalin’s son Yakov was captured while fighting Nazis in 1941. Nazis offered to exchange him for Friedrich Paulus, the German Field Marshal captured by the Soviets, but Stalin turned the offer down allegedly saying, “I will not trade a Marshal for a Lieutenant”; Yakov died in captivity

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6. Although Joseph Stalin officially killed around 2.9 million Russians during his reign, historians think that number may have been as high as 30 million, or around 22% of the population

601px-Bundesarchiv_Bild_183-29645-0001_Potsdamer_Konferenz_Stalin_Truman_Churchill7. Josip Broz Tito fed up with Stalin sending assassins wrote openly, “Stop sending people to kill me. We’ve already captured five of them, one of them with a bomb and another with a rifle (…) If you don’t stop sending killers, I’ll send one to Moscow, and I won’t have to send a second.”

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8. Joseph Stalin’s son shot himself because of Stalin’s harshness toward him, but survived. After this, Stalin said, “He can’t even shoot straight.”

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