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Political campaigns of a Stalin era in the Russian province. "Matter of doctors" in Gorky area

i. V. Loseva


Work is presented by department of social and humanitarian disciplines of the Arzamas polytechnical institute (branch) of the Nizhny Novgorod state technical university.

The research supervisor — the doctor of historical sciences, professor G.Sh. Sagatelyan

"Business of doctors" — the last repressive campaign of a Stalin era which finished itself the whole period of the Soviet history. In all regions of the country including Gorky area, on meetings the ordinary workers accused Jews of all the problems. After Stalin's death the liberalization of all spheres of life of society began.

I. Loseva


& #34; The Doctors&plot" was the last political campaign of the Stalin epoch, which finished the whole period of the Soviet history. All over the country, as well as in the Gorky region, workers blamed the Jews for all their problems. After Stalin&s death liberalization of all fields of society started.

A tenok, but because of the death of the leader Don was not the last large repressive kampa- since 1948 and having obvious anti-Semitic from-niyey, I.V. Stali who occurred during lifetime- there was "a business of doctors". It had to to Vedeno up to the end.

to become a result of the whole series of campaigns on bor- The message about arrest of doctors and a detail

be with cosmopolitism, carried out by party "plot" were published in unsigned article "Under -

Political campaigns of a Stalin era in the Russian province. "Matter of doctors" in Gorky area

ly spies and murderers behind a mask of professors-doctors", published in the Pravda on January 13, 1953. The new large-scale promotional campaign directed against "murderers in white dressing gowns" was so launched. Though among the arrested doctors there were many Russians, in promotion the main emphasis was put on persons with the Jewish surnames which among arrested there was a majority.

Total number of arrested on "business of doctors" by February, 1953 reached 37 people from whom 28 were doctors, and the others — members of their families. Under tortures many of them gave necessary evidences, often stipulating something objectionable figures of a party and military top — members of Presidium of the Central Committee and representatives of generals of the Soviet Army [3 pages 317].

According to many modern researchers, "business of doctors" had to become the beginning of the whole turn of the cleanings and repressions which were outlined the leader which could surpass in scale even similar actions of the 30th of the 20th century [5, page 323]. Similar thoughts occupied minds of many public figures of the beginning of the 50th. Here is how K. Simonov writes in the memoirs: "The second half of January, February and the first half of March, including weeks one and a half after Stalin's death — around business of doctors murderers the oppressive atmosphere was created. It seemed that something terrible hangs, repetition of the thirty seventh — the eighth years" [6, page 250].

"Business of doctors" received the reflection and in regions. In January, 1953. Gorky regional committee of the All-Union Communist Party (bolsheviks) launched a broad campaign against "doctors murderers" in the best traditions of Stalin promotion. In the second half of January it was decided to organize plenums of district committees of party with the question "About a Condition of Ideological Work in Areas", and in the second half of February — a meeting of propagandists with the main question "About Increase in Political Vigilance" [4, l. 113]. Feature of "business of doctors" was the fact that it the only thing from all post-war campaigns was made wide public public in this connection the party leadership on places sought to provide nearly absolute participation of workers on

meetings and meetings on discussion of article in the Pravda newspaper. Workers of the enterprises with indignation met the message about doctors murderers. In the speeches they damned the whole nation and called party and the Soviet court as it is possible to deal with enemies of socialism and all Soviet people more strictly. The bulk of performances strikes with the anti-Semitic moods. For example, on a meeting of workers of the plant of Lenin of. Gorky it was stated that "among the Jewish nation after all there are a lot of such people ready for money for any crimes, we have to show consideration for their work, life, behavior very much. Now it is visible that Jews live beyond means" or such statements: "All Jews — in the reservation", "Among Jews as much good people, how many among the Russian rascals (including that rascals among Russians are not enough now)" [4, l. 2].

Workers accused of all the household problems of Jews: certain speakers suggested to reduce to Jews access to higher education institutions, and especially in medical and special faculties, and employees of garment factory No. of 1 g. Gorky asked the government to move away Jews from all leading posts, "they not firm and quickly are on sale" [4, l. 2, 8].

In the middle of Cold War it was not without search of patrons of enemies of the people "behind a hillock". Many speakers specified that it is the next intrigues of the American imperialists who by all means try to win world supremacy. At meetings said that despite everything, the country of Councils grows and grows rich unlike the capitalist countries which "could send spies and saboteurs on our Homeland". A.V. Yemelyanov, the worker-katolizatorshchik of carriage depot, assumed that "branches of groups are probably and in other cities of the USSR" [4, l. 3].

Similar judgments confirmed numerous publications in local mass media. For example, on February 17, 1953 the Voroshilovets newspaper wrote: "It is impossible in a present international situation for a minute to weaken vigilance. It is impossible to forget that we kept remnants of bourgeois ideology, private-ownership psycho -


a logiya and morals, carriers of bourgeois views and bourgeois morals — living people remained. Hidden enemies of the Soviet people" [1, l. 3]. Workers called the people and also security service to enhance vigilance, and in return many staff of the enterprises and certain workers undertook socialist obligations to improve the work and ahead of schedule to implement the plan of January [4, l. 66, 1].

Says the fact that many of workers demanded for doctors of the death penalty about influence of a promotional campaign. For example, the foreman of loaders I.V. Murzin performed with words: "I express opinion of all collective and I demand death to degenerates of mankind". The group of workers of Pharmazavod, workers of garment factory No. 2 also condemned "gang of murderers", held them up to shame, demanded an execution through hanging, expressed confidence that the Soviet court will pronounce a fair sentence [4, l. 1].

Similar meetings on discussion of article took place in institutions of education and health care. Doctors on behalf of all health workers said that it is offensive for them to hear about colleagues, "dishonored medical science, having applied it to extermination of people". They appealed to all doctors to improve work, to produce more quality medicines, noting that "only selfless work on the post" [4, l can be the response to actions of group of doctors wreckers. 44, 65].

Due to "business of doctors" by Gorky regional committee of the CPSU measures for revaluation of some executives were taken. Special attention was paid to medical shots. So, in January — February, 1953 from Gorky medical institute the group of doctors headed by professor A.I. Gefter and associate professor E.E. was fired. Tsiryulni-kovym. In such conditions of Jewish people forced to condemn the nation for "the committed crimes". So, the school teacher E.A. Korgan expressed offense for the fact that among Jewish "the nations were such people who sell honor of the people and subjects for money put a big spot on our nationality. I, as well as other Jews,

I consider that the dedicated work for the benefit of our state, we will prove the devotion to the Soviet state" [4, l. 47].

The panic before medicine was one more form of reaction of the population to "business of doctors". On meetings of Jewish doctors accused of spread of flu in. Gorky, lack of necessary amount of drugs in pharmacies and even in killing of babies in maternity hospitals [2, page 62]. People began nastorozhenny to treat health workers, to ask less for the help in policlinics, pharmacies. Everywhere over the country rumors and tales about the facts of deterioration in health of patients after application of the treatment appointed by the doctor, about cases of death of patients after the visit of the doctor, etc. were spread. In each city, the area found the "murderers in white dressing gowns" including. Gorky. Workers of the plant Red Etna addressed to regional committee of the CPSU with the complaint to city therapeutic hospital No. 10 (chief physician S.A. Gelfer). They reported that they in hospital very roughly and tactlessly treat patients, especially Russian. The main part of medical personnel is made by Jews who "became isolated in the institution and do not take measures to improvement of service of the industrial enterprises of our area. The greatest part of local community is served by the ninth out-patient clinic" [4, l. 111].

Anti-Semitism wave in the country accrued, threatening to turn into uncontrollable process, but with I.V. Stalin's death on March 5, 1953 the investigation of "business of doctors" stopped, all arrested on this business were rehabilitated and restored at work. This measure, on the one hand, became the first serious step on the way to liberalization of the country, however, with another — made workers think of the causes of some events which are taking place around them. In particular, there was a question: why several months ago about doctors spoke as about "murderers in white dressing gowns", and now released, explaining that their own recognitions were gained by "illegal methods".

Having become the last political process of a Stalin era, "business of doctors" finishes itself the whole period of the Soviet history, svya-

zonal with toughening of command methods of management in social and political and cultural life. After Stalin's death of so large-scale repressions

in the country did not occur, on the contrary — the gradual liberalization of all spheres of public life connected with a name of N.S. Khrushchev began.


1. Voroshilovets. 1953. February 17.
2. N.V. Zanozin. Post-war repressive campaigns and their carrying out in Gorky area//Russia in the XX century: Interhigher education institution. sb. article / Otv. edition G.Sh. Sagatelyan. Arzamas: OO "Association of Scientists" of Arzamas, 2008. 128 pages
3. The contemporary history of Russia 1914 — 2002 / Under the editorship of M.V. Hodyakov. M.: Yuright-Izdat, 2004. 525 pages
4. About responses of workers to messages of TASS about arrest of group of doctors of wreckers//SSPANNR (State Social and Political Archive of the Nizhny Novgorod Region) F. 3. Op. 1. 9488.
5. G. Sagatelyan, V. Sayechnikov. Soviet society: political campaigns of the 50th years//Soviet society: everyday life of Cold War: Materials of "a round table" / Under the editorship of and. N, professor V.S. Lel-chuk, and. N, professor G.Sh. Sagatelyan. Moscow; Arzamas: IRI RAS; AGPI, 2000. 339 pages
6. K. Simonov. Eyes of the person of my generation. M.: Publishing house of News agency of News, 1988. 480 pages
Timmermans Siebe
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