Murder/ execution of the Romanovs

Jan 2014
990
Rus
#21
Don't know if this topic has been dealt with before. I raise it because I'm interested in the opinions of others.

16-17 July 1918, Czar Nicholas 11, his wife Tsarina Alexandra, their 5 children, and several courtiers were shot, clubbed and bayonetted in what was apparently an especially nasty, botched execution.

My question is was it politically necessary to kill them ?

A perhaps simplistic answer is "Yes, Of course it was necessary, to remove legitimate Romanov claimants the the throne and remove figureheads for a White's counter revolution"

BUT; there had been White Russian opposition from the beginning of the Revolution. Did they ever have a realistic chance of defeating the Bolsheviks and restoring the Czar?

It is my understanding that several, more distantly related members of the Romanov family escaped from Russia to Europe and England. The established rules of royal succession would have applied, surely not that hard to find an acceptable pretender?

I do not argue the escape of any the executed Romanovs because ,as far as I'm aware, all have now been accounted for through DNA tests of skeletal remains

I did read a bit ,and saw a TV series of the sad story of Anna Anderson, who claimed to be the Grand Duchess Anastasia. .She seems to have been the most plausible contender, even though it became clear that she had been extensively coached and did not speak or understand Russian.

It was politically necessary to kill them. But it was only part of deal. Their execution was symbolically execution of whole old Russia.

Monarchical moods are quite present in Russia. But they dont tie with Romanovs descendants, because they are bastards. The main point is the dispute about: Who was Nikolay II offender or hero.
 
Jan 2014
990
Rus
#22
Despite being first cousins, there was a marked reluctance by the British royal family to welcome the Romanovs to Britain-although their murder made the issue redundant.
I am not sure Britain's Georg personally had real power to save Nikolay II. Whole British political class hated Russian Tsars. American's too. Dont sure about French. And all they stood behind the backs of Bolshevik's murderers.
 
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Linschoten

Ad Honoris
Aug 2010
15,254
Welsh Marches
#23
Lloyd George, the Prime Minister, was willing to take the Romanovs, but the King's private secretary, Lodr Stamfordham, advised him strongly against it, arguing that it would threaten the position of the monarchy if he became associated with an absolute ruler who had blood on his hands (pogroms, violent suppression of unrest). Stamfordham was wrong, I think, and underestimated the stability of the monarchy, but his attitude, and that of the King himslef, is understandable when so much of the old order seemed to be tottering. It should be remembered that this was in Kerensky's time, when the life of the imperial family did not seem to be under threat; if it was necessary to take them in to save their lives, I am sure that the King and government would have done so, and they did tell the secret service to look into the matter after the Bolsheviks came to power, but it was then too late.

Review of a recent book on the matter:
https://www.washingtonpost.com/outl...ory.html?noredirect=on&utm_term=.f9b88ecf2c08

Interesting documents here:
Anatomy of a Royal Betrayal
 
Likes: Edratman

sparky

Ad Honorem
Jan 2017
3,621
Sydney
#24
I believe the original plan to travel to Britain was delayed by the Tsarevitch sickness , then the window of opportunity closed
 

Linschoten

Ad Honoris
Aug 2010
15,254
Welsh Marches
#25
The British government offered to take the imperial family in mid-March 1917, but the idea aroused opposition on the left, and the King's advisers told might be used to foment unrest or even revolution (one should remember the 1917 uprising in Ireland and take account of labour unrest at that period) and endanger the monarchy, prompting him to ask that the offer should be withdrawn, the essential decision being made in April. The Russian provisonal government was informed of this in mdi-April. The October revolution and consequent threat to their lives was not of course foreseen. The Romanovs were transferred to Yekatrinburg in April 1918 and murdered in July 1918, events moved very quickly, there was no possiblity of getting them out in the winter and they were killed before any plans could be developed even if that were possible..
 
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rvsakhadeo

Ad Honorem
Sep 2012
8,846
India
#26
Totally peaceful?

And were the families of the 500 state rulers 'executed'? Did any of the 500 rulers lead an insurrection in order to have them placed back on the throne?

Numerous Monarchies have been toppled in the 20th century (Spain, Italty, Austro-Hungary etc) all under different circumstances but how many have seen counter-revolutions to place them back on the throne?

The Kaiser was removed at almost exactly the same time was he and his family executed? he went to live in nearby Netherlands-- did he lead a counter revolution?

Now to be fair the Revolutionaries didn't have the benefit of hindsight and could not have known this but it does challenge the idea that the Romanovs 'had' to be executed.

It could have equally misfired and created martyrs and ,as in the French Revolution, played into the hands of the exiled counter-revolutionaries, the Revolution held the Monarch and the 'rightful' heir in their hands by killing both now the 'rightful heir' is now an exile and able to act as a rally point.[/QUOTE
Totally peaceful?

And were the families of the 500 state rulers 'executed'? Did any of the 500 rulers lead an insurrection in order to have them placed back on the throne?

Numerous Monarchies have been toppled in the 20th century (Spain, Italty, Austro-Hungary etc) all under different circumstances but how many have seen counter-revolutions to place them back on the throne?

The Kaiser was removed at almost exactly the same time was he and his family executed? he went to live in nearby Netherlands-- did he lead a counter revolution?

Now to be fair the Revolutionaries didn't have the benefit of hindsight and could not have known this but it does challenge the idea that the Romanovs 'had' to be executed.

It could have equally misfired and created martyrs and ,as in the French Revolution, played into the hands of the exiled counter-revolutionaries, the Revolution held the Monarch and the 'rightful' heir in their hands by killing both now the 'rightful heir' is now an exile and able to act as a rally point.
Thanks for that. Also my understanding. That is why I couldn't understand an attempt to compare India with Russia in terms of revolution.

I have not forgotten about revolts, especially the one Indians call "The First War of Independence" and the British (to this day) call "The Indian Mutiny". Hardly on par with the Russian revolution.The British still don't seem to have grasped the fact that they were ,and were seem as, invaders. The very notion of imperialism makes the assumption that imperial powers have some kind of right to colonise any country weak enough to be exploited in that way. Colonised peoples rarely seem to have agreed.

Mention has been made of the legality of of the execution of the Romanovs. I'm not sure that's relevant.The Bolsheviks were the defacto government in power in1917. The problem with revolutions generally is that they are usually illegal and treason. There is only one legitimate excuse for rebellion; winning. The question of legality in terms of the displaced power's laws tend to be pretty much ignored at the time. Sometimes, although not always, such actions are given legality after the fact, by the new regime. (Eg Stalin and his government denied committing the Katyn Forest massacres, blaming the Nazis)*** Didn't work, it was apparently an open secret in Poland at the time, and later.


The execution of the Romanovs was mostly certainly horrible.,and certainly illegal under existing Russian Law. Necessary? In my opinion, absolutely. The Bolsheviks, still unsure of their power, could not afford to have a the Czar and his family alive, unless it was certain there would be no counter revolution with them as figureheads. No such certainty exitsed, so they had to die. This was a political decision no doubt argued for the common good. Consequently, it is acceptable to refer to the deaths as execution rather than murder.. I think perhaps this argument comes down to personal opinion; each side of the argument presents justification for their opinion.. I think I understand the opposing view,, I simply disagree.


______________________________________________________________________________________________


***The Katyn massacre (Polish: zbrodnia katyńska, "Katyń crime"; Russian: Катынская резня Katynskaya reznya, "Katyn massacre", or Russian: Катынский расстрел, "Katyn execution by shooting") was a series of mass executions of Polish officers and intelligentsia carried out by the Soviet Union, specifically the NKVD ("People's Commissariat for Internal Affairs", aka the Soviet secret police) in April and May 1940. Though the killings took place at several places, the massacre is named after the Katyn Forest, where some of the mass graves were first discovered.

The massacre was prompted by NKVD chief Lavrentiy Beria's proposal to execute all captive members of the Polish officer corps, dated 5 March 1940, approved by the Politburo of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, including its leader, Joseph Stalin. The number of victims is estimated at about 22,000.[1] The victims were executed in the Katyn Forest in Russia, the Kalinin and Kharkiv prisons, and elsewhere. Of the total killed, about 8,000 were officers imprisoned during the 1939 Soviet invasion of Poland, another 6,000 were police officers, and the rest were Polish intelligentsia the Soviets deemed to be "intelligence agents, gendarmes, landowners, saboteurs, factory owners, lawyers, officials, and priests".[1] As the Polish Army officer class was representative of the multi-ethnic Polish state, the killed also included Ukrainians, Belarusians, and Polish Jews including the Chief Rabbi of the Polish Army, Baruch Steinberg.


Katyn massacre - Wikipedia
 

rvsakhadeo

Ad Honorem
Sep 2012
8,846
India
#27
Totally peaceful?

And were the families of the 500 state rulers 'executed'? Did any of the 500 rulers lead an insurrection in order to have them placed back on the throne?

Numerous Monarchies have been toppled in the 20th century (Spain, Italty, Austro-Hungary etc) all under different circumstances but how many have seen counter-revolutions to place them back on the throne?

The Kaiser was removed at almost exactly the same time was he and his family executed? he went to live in nearby Netherlands-- did he lead a counter revolution?

Now to be fair the Revolutionaries didn't have the benefit of hindsight and could not have known this but it does challenge the idea that the Romanovs 'had' to be executed.

It could have equally misfired and created martyrs and ,as in the French Revolution, played into the hands of the exiled counter-revolutionaries, the Revolution held the Monarch and the 'rightful' heir in their hands by killing both now the 'rightful heir' is now an exile and able to act as a rally point.
Yes, totally peaceful. No member of the families of the 500 or so princes was harmed. Except, the Nizam of the big state of Hyderabad, objected to the merger in a violent way by forming a body of hoodlums called RazAkArs. The only violence there was because of them. It petered out as soon as the Indian Army entered the state. The ruler of the small state of Junagadh also demurred for a time. But eventually he ran away to Pakistan along with his pet dogs but leaving his wives here.
 
Oct 2018
1,209
Adelaide south Australia
#28
Yes, totally peaceful. No member of the families of the 500 or so princes was harmed. Except, the Nizam of the big state of Hyderabad, objected to the merger in a violent way by forming a body of hoodlums called RazAkArs. The only violence there was because of them. It petered out as soon as the Indian Army entered the state. The ruler of the small state of Junagadh also demurred for a time. But eventually he ran away to Pakistan along with his pet dogs but leaving his wives here.

Well, you may not say 'totally peaceful' and then add an exception. 'Virtually 'works, gives you some wiggle room.
 

Kevinmeath

Ad Honoris
May 2011
13,697
Navan, Ireland
#29
Yes, totally peaceful. No member of the families of the 500 or so princes was harmed. Except, the Nizam of the big state of Hyderabad, objected to the merger in a violent way by forming a body of hoodlums called RazAkArs. The only violence there was because of them. It petered out as soon as the Indian Army entered the state. The ruler of the small state of Junagadh also demurred for a time. But eventually he ran away to Pakistan along with his pet dogs but leaving his wives here.
I partly meant 'Partition' can not really be called 'peaceful'.

However of these 500 princess who were not executed (plus their family) how many launched insurrections to regain their 'rightful crown' ?

I suspect few if at all, so perhaps the executions of the Romanovs (and especially his family) was not as imperative as it seemed to some.

Of all the European monarchs deposed in the last 150 years how many launched successful insurrections?
 
Oct 2018
1,209
Adelaide south Australia
#30
"I partly meant 'Partition' can not really be called 'peaceful'."

A talent for understatement.

The partition of India was a catastrophe, in which an estimated 2 million people died..

Not sure the 500 petty Indian rulers can be meaningfully compared with European countries in numbers or size.
 
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