An archival investigation case of military researcher A.A. Svechin in 1931–1932

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Ganin A.V.,

Moscow, Russian Federation

An archival investigation case of military researcher A.A. Svechin in 1931–1932


In 1930-31 in the USSR turned the case of the all-Union military officer counterrevolutionary organization “Spring” directed against former officers in the Red army. Despite a number of publications, this case remains practically unexplored. The materials are stored in Departmental archives of the security service of Ukraine. There were many bright individuals arrested as part of the “Spring”. Protocols of their interrogations contain valuable materials on military-political history of our country. An article on the basis of the archival data is introducing for the first time into scientific circulation the investigation materials of the outstanding Russian military scientist and theorist, A.A. Svechin, arrested on the case of “Spring” in 1931-1932. All the evidences by Svechin are fully published for the first time. They concern the events of the Russian Civil war, history of Russian army, the life of former officers in the Soviet Russia and the USSR, the relations in the circle of former General Staff officers. The logic of the investigation and tactics of the detainee is analyzed and the conclusions on the peculiarities of political repressions of that period from the Svechin case are made. Publication of the materials of Svechin case gives an opportunity to fill a gap in the biography of an outstanding Russian military leader, his testimony contains interesting data about the relationship in the circle of former officers remaining in the USSR. The investigation materials are quite typical and similar in the other cases of former officers. The file is opened by an objective evidence relating to the epoch of the revolution and the Civil war and the 1920s and to the relationship of the «former». Then they are followed by self-incriminating testimonies, where Svechin repents of belonging to an organized counter-revolutionary underground. Further, it contains testimonies on his comrades, who were accused of the same offences. But there is no documentary evidence of counter-revolutionary manifestations. The materials of the case “Spring” testify to one of the stages of “crackdown” by the Soviet leadership, committed to the establishment of large industrial power and eliminating any manifestations of dissent.


Sources, A.A. Svechin, “Spring” case, political repressions, General Staff officers, Workers and Peasants Red army.

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About author

Ganin Andrey Vladislavovich, Ph.D. in history, editor of military history department, Russian history magazine “Rodina”; senior research fellow, Russian Academy of Science, Institute of Slavic studies, Moscow, Russian Federation, This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

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