Yeltsin, Boris Nikolayevich

(1931– )
   Boris Yeltsin rose quickly in the Communist Party to head the Sverdlovsk party apparatus in the late 1970s. He was, however, twice deeply embarrassed by the KGB in the 1970s. KGB Chair Yuri Andropov ordered him to destroy the house in Sverdlovsk in which the Romanov family had been murdered in 1918. A few years later, when a biological weapons plant released anthrax spoors into the atmosphere in 1979 and 69 people died, he was ordered to cover up the mistake by claiming the problem came from rotten meat.
   Catching the eye of reformist party leader Mikhail Gorbachev in 1985, Yeltsin was brought to Moscow as party first secretary in 1985, and he gained a reputation of being a reformer willing to take on party officials. But Yeltsin quarreled with Gorbachev in November 1987 and was fired. Gorbachev publicly humiliated his one-time protégé, dragging him before a Central Committee meeting while he was recovering from a heart attack. In 1988 Yeltsin took over the leadership of the reformist movement in the Soviet Union, opposing Gorbachev from the left. Yeltsin called for massive reforms of the party and government, including changes in the KGB. While Yeltsin made enemies of many reactionaries in the security service, others saw him as a necessary champion of change.
   At the time of the August putsch of 1991, the plotters failed to arrest Yeltsin, which allowed him to lead the opposition for three days at the Russian White House, the parliament building in the center of Moscow. Following the failure of the putsch, Yeltsin cemented his role as president of the newly minted Russian Federation. As president, Yeltsin sought to end some of the traditional abuses of the security service and oversaw the division of the service into a number of independent organizations, but he assured that he would maintain control of the services from the president’s office. The president’s former bodyguard, Aleksandr Korzhakov, helped him restructure the security community to make it responsive to him alone. Once entrenched in power, Yeltsin used the Russian intelligence services to guarantee his political power, much like any Communist Party general secretary. During his years in power, the services prevented investigations of major financial crimes and protected his “family” of supporters. The new Russian services are run by experienced Chekists, who use many of the same tools as their communist predecessors. Yeltsin’s hand-picked successor, Vladimir Putin, was a KGB officer and served as chief of the FSB (Federal Security Service).

Historical dictionary of Russian and Soviet Intelligence. . 2014.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Yeltsin,Boris Nikolayevich — Yel·tsin (yĕltʹsĭn), Boris Nikolayevich. Born 1931. Russian politician who was elected president of the republic of Russia in 1991. He was reelected to the position in 1996. * * * …   Universalium

  • Yeltsin, Boris Nikolayevich — (1931–2007)    Born in the village of Butko in Sverdlovsk Oblast, Boris Yeltsin was the son of a construction worker and a seamstress. As a youth, he lost the thumb and index finger of his left hand while dismantling a grenade he stole from a… …   Historical Dictionary of the Russian Federation

  • Yeltsin, Boris (Nikolayevich) — born Feb. 1, 1931, Sverdlovsk, Russia, U.S.S.R. Russian politician and president of Russia (1990–99). After attending the Urals Polytechnic Institute, he worked at construction projects in western Russia (1955–68). He became Communist Party… …   Universalium

  • Yeltsin, Boris Nikolayevich — ▪ 2008  Russian politician born Feb. 1, 1931 , Sverdlovsk [now Yekaterinburg], Russia, U.S.S.R. died April 23, 2007 , Moscow, Russia as independent Russia s first popularly elected president (1991–99), guided the country through a stormy decade… …   Universalium

  • Yeltsin, Boris — ▪ president of Russia in full  Boris Nikolayevich Yeltsin   born February 1, 1931, Sverdlovsk [now Yekaterinburg], Russia, U.S.S.R. died April 23, 2007, Moscow, Russia  Russian politician, who became president of Russia in 1990. In 1991 he became …   Universalium

  • Boris Yeltsin — Yeltsin redirects here. For other uses, see Yeltsin (disambiguation). Boris Nikolayevich Yeltsin Борис Николаевич Ельцин 1st President of the Russian Federation In office 25 December 1991 – …   Wikipedia

  • Borís Yeltsin — Borís Nikoláyevich Yeltsin Борис Николаевич Ельцин …   Wikipedia Español

  • Nikolayevich — (as used in expressions) Nikolay Nikolayevich Aleksandr Nikolayevich Baryshnikov Mikhail Nikolayevich Benois Alexandre Nikolayevich Kosygin Aleksey Nikolayevich Kuropatkin Aleksey Nikolayevich Milyukov Pavel Nikolayevich Ostrovsky Aleksandr… …   Universalium

  • Boris — /bawr is, bohr , bor /; Russ. /bu rddyees /, n. a male given name. * * * (as used in expressions) Becker Boris Franz Boris I Chain Sir Ernst Boris Godunov Boris Fyodorovich Karloff Boris Pasternak Boris Leonidovich Spassky Boris Vasilyevich… …   Universalium

  • Boris Nikolajewitsch Jelzin — Boris Jelzin, offizielles Porträt Boris Nikolajewitsch Jelzin (russisch Борис Николаевич Ельцин …   Deutsch Wikipedia

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