|Chairman of Provisional Government|
November 28, 1918 – January 29, 1919
(chairman of VUTsVK)
|Preceded by||position created|
|Succeeded by||Christian Rakovsky|
|1st Secretary of Central Committee of the CP(b)U|
July 12, 1918 – September 9, 1918
|Preceded by||position created|
|Succeeded by||Serafima Hopner|
|3rd Secretary of Central Committee of the CP(b)U|
March 6, 1919 – May 30, 1919
|Preceded by||Emmanuel Kviring|
|Succeeded by||Stanislav Kosior|
August 18, 1890|
Cherkassy uyezd, Kiev Governorate, Russian Empire
|Died||January 30, 1937
Moscow, Soviet Union
|Political party||RSDRP (since 1910)|
|Communist Party (Bolsheviks) Ukraine (1918)|
|Alma mater||Saint Petersburg University|
Pyatakov (party pseudonyms: Kievsky, Lyalin, Petro, Yaponets) was born August 6, 1890 in the settlement of the Mariinsky sugar factory which was owned by his father, an ethnic Russian, Leonid Timofeyevich Pyatakov.
He started political activity as an anarchist while he was in secondary school, but joined the Russian Social Democratic Labour Party in 1910. In 1912 he joined the Bolshevik faction. He was arrested and exiled to Siberia in 1912 with his partner, Evgenia Bosh, but they soon escaped and made their way to Switzerland where they joined the émigré revolutionary community. Pyatakov and Bosh remained together until she died by suicide in 1925 as a protest against the Stalinist regime.
His opinion on some points of the theory and tactics of the revolutionary struggle contradicted that of the party Central Committee.
He was one of Lenin’s fiercest opponents on the national problem, with regard to the question of the course to be followed towards the socialist revolution, and on the issue of the Bolseviks' peace settlement with Germany.
Pyatakov lived in Ukraine from March 1917, heading the Kiev Committee of the RSDLP. He was repeatedly elected a member of the Central Committee. But he opposed the Ukrainian nationalists and stood for the transfer of power to the Soviets of Worker’s, Peasant’s and Soldier’s Deputies in Ukraine. He also headed the Kiev Military-Revolutionary Committee. He declared that the party had to throw out the idea of self-identification of every nation. He stood on the anti-chauvinistic international principles.
In 1918 Pyatakov was a leader of a group of Left Communists in Ukraine. He was one of the initiators of Communist Party (Bolsheviks) of Ukraine formation. At the First Congress of CP(b)U in Moscow, Pyatokov was elected the Central Committee secretary, and headed the unsuccessful anti-Hetman rebellion in August 1918. From October 1918 until mid-January 1919 he was a head of the Provisional Worker’s and Peasant’s Government formed by Bolsheviks for the fight with the Directory, and took part in the formation of the Red Army in Ukraine.
Pyatakov was placed in charge of the management of Donbass coal mining industry in 1921, becoming a deputy head of the Gosplan (State Planning Committee) of the RSFSR in 1922, and deputy Chairman of the Supreme Council of the National Economy of the USSR.
The likeness of Pyatakov’s Left-Communist views and Trotsky’s ideas led to his participation in practically all the opposition trends then designated as "Trotskyist".
He was expelled from the party for belonging to the "Trotskyite-Zinovievite" bloc, but was reinstated in 1928 after he renounced Trotskyism, and became Deputy head of Heavy Industries.
In 1936 he was again accused of anti-party and anti-Soviet activity, and expelled from the party. At his trial, he was accused of conspiring with Trotsky in connection with the case of the so-called Parallel anti-Soviet Party Centre, to overthrow the Soviet Government. He was accused of entering into a conspiracy with the Nazis with the intent of seizing power in the Soviet Union, promising to reward the Germans with large tracts of Soviet territory. The prosecution presented evidence that he had secretly met with Trotsky in Norway for these purposes. However, it later emerged that the Oslo airdrome reported that no foreign planes had arrived at the time of Pyatakov's supposed visit to Trotsky at the Hotel Bristol in Oslo. The Hotel Bristol itself had been closed down years before the alleged meeting.
On January 30, 1937, he was sentenced to death and executed.
Pyatakov was rehabilitated posthumously.
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