Khrushchev's ousting in 1964

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Reasons

  • Official reason: old age & health, however the real reasons were due to his hare brained unsuccessful shemes, hasty conclusions, rash decisions & actions based on wishful thinking.
  • Main reasons for K's downfall= De-Stalinisation, Economic Policy Failures & Foreign policy Failures (Cold War).
  • Political Failures is also a reason; these were influenced & are addressed under De-Stalinisation & Foreign Policy Failures.
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De-Stalanisation

  • Influenced K's attitudes & ideas,such as his political ones.
  • He also appeared anti Stai in the way he had handled foreign country relationships, this made him highly unpopular.
  • De-CentralisationExisting ministers in Moscow were abolished & replaced by 105 regional ministers correspondiing to existing administrative regions.
  • Party influenced these minitries- central planning principle remaining.
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Economic Policy Failures

  • 1954- Virgin Land Schemes: initially successful as total grain harvest had amost doubled from 1953-58, however from 58 the VLS was a failure due to unsuitabe soil, hasty planning, inexperienced management & insufficient fertilisers to replenish the soil.
  • 1956-65 Seven-Year Plan:  were some impressive gains with gross output of steel coal & oil increasing by 60-80%,  however it didn't meet plan targets as well as:
  • Resources got diverted to the wrong places, they ended up stranded in railway sidings.
  • Managers were afraid to innovate with new methods, due to fear of disrupting production.
  • Was replaced by the 7th Five-Year Plan in 1961.
  • Situation by 1964: only 5/1000 citizens owned a car, 82/1000 owned a TV & only 40/1000 owned a refrigerator; were falling well behind the West.
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Foreign Policy Failures

  • 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis= K had looked undeniably weak; it was humiliating how he had given in to Americ (* Stalin wouldn't have).
  • K had lost face when he had removed his missiles publicly from Cuba, whereas Kennedy was seen as though he fought down Communism; this essentially forced K to resign.
  • 1960s Split with Communist China= Mao Zedong didn't agree with K's De-Stalinisation policy, hw saw Khrushchev as weak & non-aggressive. 
  • International relations were one of Khrushchev's pivotal downfalls.
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Anti-Party conspiracy

  • May 1957= Presidium menbers; Malenkov, Molotov,Bulganin & Kaganovich plotted against Khrushchev as they were opposing his party influence.
  • The fact that his own party had detested him demonstrates how unpopular he was as a leader, especially as his reforms hadn't succeeded.
  • His populist brusque style was disliked; his personality had also contributed to his downfall.
  • Khrushchev even insulted his party members.
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