August 30 - 1918 - The Attempted Assassination of Vladimir Lenin
At the end of summer 1918, the Bolsheviks began to consolidate their power in what had until recently been the Russian Empire through the Soviets, or local committees. This did not mean they were in full control of the government, but instead were opposed by various groups. The Bolsheviks were Marxists led by Vladimir Lenin who had launched the October Revolution, the second Revolution in Russia in 1917, against the democratically elected Constituent Assembly. This made Lenin a target for a variety of people. So it was not too surprising someone fired shots at Lenin after he gave a speech at a Moscow arms factory. The would-be assassin was identified as Fanny Kaplan, a member of the democratic-socialist Socialist Revolutionary Party. She gave a statement after her arrest that she viewed Lenin as a "traitor to the Revolution." The Bolsheviks then instigated the Red Terror, a term they embraced for their violent purge of political opponents. Kaplan was shot at the Kremlin. Many other people were rounded up and killed during the next few months, which helped secure the Bolshevik position in the Russia Civil War and the creation of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics in 1922.