Andropov Yury Vladimirovich (1914-1984)
Chairman of KGB, after it General Secretary of the Сentral Сommittee of CPSU
Yury Vladimirovich Andropov was born on June 15, 1914 in a small town of Nagutskoye in the family of a railway inspector. Before entering technical school and later Petrozavodsk University, Andropov changed many jobs: was a telegraph operator, projectionist, and even boatman in Rybinsk (this Volga city was later renamed Andropov, though in 1990s original name was returned to the town). After graduation from the University Yury Andropov was sent to Yaroslavl, where he headed local Komsomol organization. In 1939 he joined CPSU. Vigorous activity, which the young worker organized in political area, was marked and fully estimated by senior party "colleagues": in 1940 Andropov was appointed the head of Komsomol in just created Karelian-Finnish autonomous republic.
Turning point of Andropov's brilliant public career became his move to Moscow in 1951, where he was recommended for the Secretariat of Communist Party. In those years the Secretariat was a place, where future prominent party workers were trained. There he caught eye of the chief party ideologist, "grey cardinal" Mikhail Suslov. Since July 1954 till March 1957, Andropov was the ambassador of the USSR in Hungary and played one of key roles during establishment of pro-Soviet regime and placement of the Soviet forces in this country.
After returning from Hungary Yury Vladimirovich Andropov began dynamical and successful promotion on party scale of rank, and in 1967, he was appointed the head of KGB (State Security Committee). Andropov's policy as head of KGB was, naturally, accordant to the political regime of that time. In particular, Andropov's department realized prosecutions of dissidents among who were such personalities as Brodsky, Solzhenitsyn, Vishnevskaya, Rostropovich and others. They were deprived of the Soviet citizenship and exiled from the country. But besides political prosecutions, KGB, under guidance of Andropov, was engaged also in its direct duties - it is provided state security of the USSR very well.
Being the head of KGB Yury Andropov was elected a member of the Political Bureau. It happened in 1973. When at the end of 1982 L.I. Brezhnev's soon death became obvious, Andropov was the most real successor to Brezhnev as the General Secretary of Central Committee of CPSU. It happened on November 12, 1982, in several days after Brezhev's death. For consolidation of his power Andropov needed the post of the Chairman of Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR, which he took up on June 16, 1983.
Yury Vladimirovich Andropov as the head of the state intended to carry out a number of reforms, but poor health did not allow him to realize them. As early as autumn of 1983 he was transported to hospital, where he stayed till his death on February 9, 1984.
Formally, Andropov had been in power for 15 months. He really wanted to reform Soviet Union, though, by rather strict measures, but he did not have enough time - he died. And the population remembers Andropov's time by toughening of disciplinary responsibility at workplaces and mass checks of documents in the afternoon to find out why a person during working hours is not working, but is walking along the street.