Gavril Myasnikov

Gavril Ilyich Myasnikov (1889-1945; ), also transliterated as Gavriil Il'ich Miasnikov, was a Russian metalworker from the Urals, who participated in the Revolution of 1905 and became a Bolshevik
The Bolsheviks, originally also Bolshevists , derived from bol'shinstvo, "majority") were a faction of the Marxist Russian Social Democratic Labour Party which split apart from the Menshevik faction at the Second Party Congress in 1903....

 underground activist in 1906. Tsarist police arrested him and he spent over seven years at hard labor in Siberia. In 1917, Myasnikov was active in factory committees, the soviet, and the Bolshevik party in his hometown of Motovilikha and in Perm
Perm is a city and the administrative center of Perm Krai, Russia, located on the banks of the Kama River, in the European part of Russia near the Ural Mountains. From 1940 to 1957 it was named Molotov ....


Gabriel Myasnikov is known as the execution initiator and murderer of the Grand Duke Michael Alexandrovich of Russia
Grand Duke Michael Alexandrovich of Russia
Grand Duke Michael Alexandrovich of Russia was the youngest son of Emperor Alexander III of Russia.At the time of his birth, his paternal grandfather was still the reigning Emperor of All the Russias. Michael was fourth-in-line to the throne following his father and elder brothers Nicholas and...


Myasnikov was a Left Communist in 1918, opposed to the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk
Treaty of Brest-Litovsk
The Treaty of Brest-Litovsk was a peace treaty signed on March 3, 1918, mediated by South African Andrik Fuller, at Brest-Litovsk between Russia and the Central Powers, headed by Germany, marking Russia's exit from World War I.While the treaty was practically obsolete before the end of the year,...

. He was dissatisfied with elements of Party policy toward workers, but he did not support the Workers Opposition in 1920-21. Myasnikov disagreed with the Workers' Opposition's call for unions to manage the economy. Instead, in a 1921 manifesto, Myasnikov called for “producers’ soviets” to administer industry and for freedom of the press for all workers. Leaders of the Workers Opposition Alexander Shlyapnikov
Alexander Shlyapnikov
Alexander Gavrilovich Shliapnikov was a Russian communist revolutionary, metalworker, and trade union leader. He is best remembered as a memoirist of the October Revolution of 1917 and as the leader of one of the primary opposition movements inside the Russian Communist Party during the decade of...

 and Sergei Medvedev
Sergei Medvedev
Sergei Pavlovich Medvedev was a Russian Bolshevik revolutionary, metalworker, and trade union organizer. He was born into the peasant estate and grew up in the countryside near Moscow and in St. Petersburg. After receiving a primary school education, he began factory work at age thirteen. He...

 feared that Myasnikov's proposals would give too much power to peasants. Despite their disagreements, however, they supported Myasnikov's right to voice criticisms of Party policy. Along with former members of the Workers' Opposition, Myasnikov signed the "Letter of the Twenty-Two" to the Comintern in 1922, protesting the Russian Communist Party leaders' suppression of dissent among proletarian members of the Communist Party.

In February 1922, Myasnikov was expelled from the Russian Communist Party. In 1923, he formed an opposition faction called “Workers Group of the Russian Communist Party” that opposed NEP
New Economic Policy
The New Economic Policy was an economic policy proposed by Vladimir Lenin, who called it state capitalism. Allowing some private ventures, the NEP allowed small animal businesses or smoke shops, for instance, to reopen for private profit while the state continued to control banks, foreign trade,...

. The group included some former members of the Workers' Opposition
Workers' Opposition
The Workers' Opposition was a faction of the Russian Communist Party that emerged in 1920 as a response to the perceived over-bureaucratisation that was occurring in Soviet Russia.-Membership:...

. Party leaders arrested Myasnikov in May 1923, but then released him and attempted to isolate him from his support base by assigning him to a trade mission in Germany in 1923. There Myasnikov formed ties to the Communist Workers' Party of Germany, a group at odds with the Russian Communist Party. These groups helped him publish the Manifesto of the Workers Group, without permission from the Russian Communist Party. Workers' Group was suppressed and later in 1923 Myasnikov was persuaded to return to Russia, where he was arrested and imprisoned.

In 1927, his sentence was changed to internal exile in Yerevan
Yerevan is the capital and largest city of Armenia and one of the world's oldest continuously-inhabited cities. Situated along the Hrazdan River, Yerevan is the administrative, cultural, and industrial center of the country...

, Armenia
Armenia , officially the Republic of Armenia , is a landlocked mountainous country in the Caucasus region of Eurasia...

. In 1928, he fled the USSR for Iran. He was arrested in Iran and then deported to Turkey. In 1930, he immigrated to France, where he worked in factories until 1945. In 1945, the Soviet secret police returned Myasnikov to the USSR, where he was executed.

He was rehabilitated on December 25th, 2001.

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