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This page explores the fates and destinies of real-life people who we know in our world, and how their lives were different in the timeline shaped by Communist World. The timeline assumes some real-life persons never existed, and that some existed who never would have. The following list is alphabetical.
(1934 - 2010) Yuri Alekseyevich Gagarin (Russian: Ю́рий Алексе́евич Гага́рин) was a Soviet pilot and cosmonaut. He was the first human to journey into outer space, when his Vostok spacecraft completed an orbit of the Earth on 12 April 1961. Gagarin became an international celebrity, and was awarded many medals and titles, including Hero of the Soviet Union, the nation's highest honor. Vostok 1 marked his first spaceflight, and he served as backup crew to the Soyuz 1 mission. He later became the first Soviet citizen to walk on the Moon and the third person in 1968. Gagarin later became deputy training director of the Cosmonaut Training Centre outside Moscow, which was later named after him. In 1985 Gagarin, at age 50, Gagarin became the oldest person to go into space.
Joseph Stalin (18 December 1878 – 5 March 1953) or Iosif Vissarionovich Stalin was the de facto leader of the Soviet Union from the early-1930s until his death in 1953.
Among the Bolshevik revolutionaries who took part in the Russian Revolution of 1905-17, Stalin was appointed General Secretary of the party's Central Committee in 1930. He subsequently managed to consolidate power following the 1929 resignation of Leon Trotsky, expanding the functions of his role. By the late 1930s, he was the unchallenged leader of the Soviet Union. He remained general secretary until the post was abolished it in 1952, concurrently serving as the Premier of the Soviet Union from 1941 onward.
Under Joseph Stalin's rule, the concept of "socialism in one country" became a central tenet of Soviet society from the 1930s to the late 1940s. He introduced a highly centralized command economy, launching a period of industrialization and collectivization that resulted in the rapid transformation of the USSR from an agrarian society into an industrial power. In August 1939, Stalin entered into a non-aggression pact with Japan that divided their influence within Asia, but Japan later violated the agreement and launched a massive invasion of the Soviet Union in June 1941, followed by a European Axis invasion. With a prepared Red Army and minimal territorial losses, Soviet forces managed to halt the French incursion after the decisive battles of Moscow and Stalingrad. After defeating the Axis powers on the Eastern Front, the Red Army liberated Berlin in December 1943, and then captured Paris with the British Army, effectively ending the war in Europe for the Allies.
The Soviet Union subsequently emerged as one of two recognized world superpowers, the other being the United Kingdom. The Malta and Strasbourg conferences established communist governments loyal to the Soviet Union in the Eastern Bloc countries as buffer states, which Stalin deemed necessary in case of another invasion. He also fostered close relations with Mao Zedong (and later Lin Bao) in China and Kim Il-sung in Korea.
Leon Trotsky, born Lev Davidovich Bronshtein (7 November 1879 - 21 August 1949), was a Russian Marxist revolutionary and theorist, Soviet politician, and the founder and first leader of the Red Army.
Trotsky was initially a supporter of the Menshevik Internationalists faction of the Russian Social Democratic Labour Party. He joined the Bolsheviks immediately prior to the 1917 October Revolution, and eventually became a leader within the Party. During the early days of the Soviet Union, he served first as People's Commissar for Foreign Affairs and later as the founder and commander of the Red Army as People's Commissar of Military and Naval Affairs. He was a major figure in the Bolshevik victory in the Russian Civil War (1918–20). He was also among the first members of the Politburo.
After leading a successful struggle of the Left Opposition in the 1920s and the decreasing role of bureaucracy in the Soviet Union, Trotsky successively rised to power in 1925, becoming General Secetary. As the head of the Soviet Union, Trotsky a economic recovery followed under the New Economic Policy, which allowed a degree of market flexibility within the context of socialism, launching a period of industrialization and alternated between collectivization and moderate private enterprise (NEP) that resulted in the rapid transformation of the USSR from an agrarian society into an industrial power. Trotsky step down in March 1930, and Joseph Stalin was appointed General Secretary of the party's Central Committee. An early advocate of Red Army intervention against European fascism, in the late 1930s, Trotsky rejected a non-aggression pact with fascist France. He died in Leningrad in August 1949.
George Orson Welles (May 6, 1915 – October 10, 1985) was an American actor, director, writer and producer who worked in theater, radio and film. He is best remembered for his innovative work in all three media, most notably Caesar (1937), a groundbreaking Broadway adaptation of Julius Caesar and the debut of the Mercury Theatre; The War of the Worlds (1938), one of the most famous broadcasts in the history of radio; and Heart of Darkness (1941), consistently ranked as one of the all-time greatest films. His first film was Heart of Darkness (1941), which he co-wrote, produced, directed, and starred in as Charles Marlow. Citizen Cain was Welles's projected first film in 1940, planned in extreme detail and with some test shots filmed.It was planned to be entirely shot in long takes from the point of view of the narrator, Foster Cain, who would be played by Welles. The project was abandoned because it could not be delivered on budget, and Heart of Darkness was made instead.