The Red Terror in Soviet Russia was a campaign of mass arrests, executions, and atrocities conducted by the Bolshevik government. In Soviet historiography, the Red Terror is described as having been officially announced on September 2, 1918 by Yakov Sverdlov and ended about October 1918. However, many historians, beginning with Sergei Melgunov, apply this term to political repression during the whole period of the Russian Civil War, 1918–1922. The mass repressions were conducted by the Cheka (the Bolshevik secret police), together with elements of the Bolshevik military intelligence agency (the GRU).
The term "Red Terror" was originally used to describe the last six weeks of the "Reign of Terror" of the French Revolution, ending on July 28, 1794 with the execution of Maximilien Robespierre, to distinguish it from the subsequent First White Terror. (Historically this period has been known as the Great Terror (French: la Grande Terreur).)
Famous quotes containing the words red and/or terror:
“The silence is death.
It comes each day with its shock
to sit on my shoulder, a white bird,
and peck at the black eyes
and the vibrating red muscle
of my mouth.”
—Anne Sexton (19281974)
“To provoke dreams of terror in the slumber of prosperity has become the moral duty of literature.”
—Ernst Fischer (18991972)