Khrushchev #10 – Best Russian Ruler List


Khrushchev Nikita

Nikita Sergeyevich Khrushchev is in my opinion, #10 on the list of best Russian rulers. Many might disagree but he did some impressive things in his time following the terror that was the rule of Joseph Stalin. Khrushchev was in a tough position when he came to power and he tried as much as possible to reform a corrupt and broken system. While he ultimately failed, the fact that he tried as hard as he did was good enough in my humble opinion to make the good ruler list.

Born on April 15, 1894 to a peasant family, this unlikely man rose to the pinnacle of power in the Soviet Union in 1953. Khrushchev survived the Great Purges of the late 1930’s, the Great Patriotic War (World War II) and the intrigues following Stalin’s death to make the grab for power. While many condemn him for participating in Stalin’s purges, it was either that or face his own demise. He did what he had to to survive. But when he had the opportunity to expose the murderous era he did so with great bravery and put himself into a great deal of peril as well.

His administration and rule were marked by a lot of highs and lows. One of Khrushchev’s high points is the so-called Secret Speech where he exposes the abuses of Stalin. Of his lows, there is little doubt that the Cuban Missile crises is top of the list.  In between, he tried as hard as any Russian or Soviet leader to better the plight of his people. Reading his memoirs and studying his time in office, it is apparent that he truly tried to make the necessary reforms to raise up the standard of living in his country.

While erratic in his behavior, sometimes coming off as a buffoon, he was a man of conviction in a system that was corrupt at its core. Khrushchev stood far above any Soviet leader in my opinion and deserves a spot in the list of best rulers of Russia.



About Mark Schauss

Hi, I'm Mark Schauss and I an internationally known lecturer on environmental and nutritional health issues having spoken in North America, Asia, South America, Europe and soon in Australia. I also have a deep interest in history, especially Russian history because of my heritage through my mother's side of the family. Another large influence on my love of Russian History is my college professor the late Dr. Paul Avrich. His classes were always full and his passion for history was amazing. I wish he could have found out about my podcast before he passed away.

7 Responses to Khrushchev #10 – Best Russian Ruler List

  1. mark December 27, 2012 at 3:58 pm #

    I don’t mean to complain, but I couldn’t listen to episode 101-We Will Bury You Nikita

    Sergeyevich, because iTunes rated it ‘explicit’.

  2. Mark Schauss December 27, 2012 at 4:01 pm #

    I will change that. Did have a few curse words in it but they were there for realities sake not for effect.

  3. mark December 28, 2012 at 7:36 pm #

    Thankyou for that. I have to ask though, how could he have just assumed his comrades

    would let him live after they ousted him?

    • Mark Schauss December 28, 2012 at 8:24 pm #

      Brezhnev wanted to allow him to live. Kind of like a payback for being his mentor.

      • James Leseke December 30, 2012 at 12:09 pm #

        And Brezhnev had an interest in breaking the trend set by Stalin and Beria. That way should he fall from power, he would still alive to tell the tale. It was a good precedent to set : Don’t kill your mentor, it’s bad for business.

  4. James Leseke December 30, 2012 at 12:36 pm #

    I have to agree that Mr. K was one of a kind. It is amazing that Mr. K did manage to survive Stalin and Stalinism. But number 10 on the best rulers? Definitely the best Communist ruler of the lot, I will give you that. Still, that is a pretty low bar to clear.

    If I had to give a one word description of Khrushchev it would have to be “reckless.” Yes the man was a dynamo, yes he was often brave, sometimes he was canny. But as the New Lands program and the Cuban Missile Crisis proved, he just did not think things through. All pasion and no preparation is the best description of the man I can offer. Like Charlie Sheen he had only one setting “GO!”

    Still, without his (not so) Secret Speech who knows how the USSR would have ended up. The Speech was all Khrushchev all the time, full of pasion, going all out until it hit the stops.

    But even with the Speech, I can not place any laurels on Nikita Sergeyevich Khrushchev’s head. There is the small matter of how he and JFK damn-near handed this great, good, green earth over to the cockroaches; ie, the Cuban Missile Crisis. Khrushchev’s overcompensation for the USSR’s weakness visa-vie the USA was epically dangerous. While the grim, grey men who replaced Mr. K were talentless hacks and mediocrities, they were at least predictable. With Khrushchev you never knew what madcap misadventure he might be cooking up. A great man to be sure, but number ten on the the ten best Russian Rules? Meh, not feeling it Mark.

    • Mark Schauss December 30, 2012 at 1:02 pm #

      Knew it would be controversial. My problem is who was better and I wanted to include one Soviet leader. Only one other ruler did I have as a potential to overtake Khrushchev and that was Yaroslav the Wise. It was close.
      Mark Schauss recently posted…Alexander I – #9 On The Best Russian Ruler listMy Profile

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