This book forms the second volume of Tucker's biography of Stalin, the first volume of which was "Stalin as Revolutionary". The author shows that Stalin was a Bolshevik of the radical right whose revolution cast the country deep into its imperial, autocratic past. In 1929 Stalin plunged Soviet Russia into a coercive "revolution from above", a decade-long effort to amass military-industrial power for a new war. He forced 25 million peasant families into state-run collectives and transformed the Communist Party into a servile instrument. In 1939, he concluded the pact with Hitler that enabled him to grasp at Eastern Europe while Hitler made war in the West. Tucker brings a fresh analysis to these events and to the Terror of the 1930s, revealing the motives and methods of what he calls the greatest murder mystery of this century.