Author Topic: Rasputin's Murder  (Read 152902 times)

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Offline investigator

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Rasputin's Murder
« on: January 28, 2004, 09:24:06 PM »
Rasputin's murder was very gruesome and strange.  First he was poisoned and he did not die and then he was shot several times but he was still alive and then finally he was thrown in a  freezing river.  His cause of death was drowning.  That means he survived the poison and bullets.  I mean what was he, was he human or something evil.
Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.
Martin Luther King Jr.

Offline Nikolai04

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Re: Rasputin's Murder
« Reply #1 on: February 01, 2004, 02:45:50 PM »
Is it true that the british secret service MI6 played a role in the murder?
I heard it recently on a Discovery channel/BBC tv documentary...

Offline investigator

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Re: Rasputin's Murder
« Reply #2 on: February 02, 2004, 01:10:03 AM »
It is possible because Rasputin was a clear danger and they could have been involved.  I am not sure about what benefit they will get out of it.
Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.
Martin Luther King Jr.

insight

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Re: Rasputin's Murder
« Reply #3 on: February 02, 2004, 08:47:44 PM »
Did this come from declassified files? This is the first I've heard of this.

Given the events prior to and during the civil war, you could see that there would be quite a few different hands in many different cookie jars.


Theresa DeMeo

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Re: Rasputin's Murder
« Reply #4 on: February 05, 2004, 02:00:12 PM »
Hello, in Edvard Raszinsky's excellent book "The Last Tsar", the author posits that one of the assassins lost his nerve at the crucial moment and could not bring himself to poison the cakes and wine that were offered to Rasputin to eat.  (This doesn't explain the seeming immunity to the gunshots though.)  I highly recommend reading "The Last Tsar".

Offline BobAtchison

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Re: Rasputin's Murder
« Reply #5 on: February 05, 2004, 10:50:05 PM »
I think there are other reasons for the murder of Rasputin.  I'll try and take the time this weekend to write up my own theory.

James Hogland

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Re: Rasputin's Murder
« Reply #6 on: February 13, 2004, 02:26:28 PM »
I read in some account of the murder that Rasputin's daughter, Maria, scoffed at the attempt to poison her father. She said he did not like sweet wine and rarely ever drank wine lie maderia, not did he like pastry cakes and did not eat them either. This is all from memory and I can't verify the facts. One must remember that the only account of what went on in that basement room comes from Yusupov, and he changed his story several times. There is some indication that other members of the imperial family were present and took part besides GD Dimiti, namely several of the Konstanovich princes, John (Ioann) and Igor, and that other family members supported the conspiracy.

Offline BeenaBobba

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Re: Rasputin's Murder
« Reply #7 on: February 17, 2004, 01:09:01 PM »
I personally don't think the British secret service was involved.  Frankly, the murder was too "sloppy" and inefficient to have been an offical execution - but maybe they wanted it to look like that.  Can you say conspiracy?  I'm only joking.  I haven't seen any evidence to back up that claim.  But perhaps it's possible.

I think the accounts of his murder (by poisoning, etc.) were exaggerated to some degree or another by Yussupov.    Rasputin had this larger-than-life persona that had people gossiping left and right even before he died.  I think this persona (while probably exaggerated) was not wholly unfounded.  I think it's possible that Felix Yussupov more or less told the people what they wanted to hear; I think he might have made Rasputin's death seem much eerier than it probably was so that it's accounts confirmed everyone's deep suspicions.  So, in a way, his playing up to that would have justified his murderous actions in the eyes of the public.  And indeed it did.

But, of course, Rasputin truly was an evil man.  I just don't know if killing him was the only option.  I think there could have been non-violent means of keeping him away from the Imperial Family.  

I've actually heard speculations that Rasputin was possessed by the devil.  That certainly would explain his superhuman strength and "hypnotic powers" if that were true.  As a believing Roman Catholic Christian, I don't think this can be rejected outright, especially if one believes Rasputin was directly related to the fall of the Romanov dynasty who, while I dislike their methods of ruling, did protect the Orthodox Church and its believers to some degree or another - only to be replaced by atheistic and oppressive Commies.  I don't agree with the Russian Tsarist regime, but Communism was far worse.

I certainly love speculating and hearing theories on this.  They're all interesting.

Take care,

Jennifer Benjamin

Offline Greg_King

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Re: Rasputin's Murder
« Reply #8 on: February 18, 2004, 12:47:04 AM »
Quote
I read in some account of the murder that Rasputin's daughter, Maria, scoffed at the attempt to poison her father. She said he did not like sweet wine and rarely ever drank wine lie maderia, not did he like pastry cakes and did not eat them either. This is all from memory and I can't verify the facts. One must remember that the only account of what went on in that basement room comes from Yusupov, and he changed his story several times. There is some indication that other members of the imperial family were present and took part besides GD Dimiti, namely several of the Konstanovich princes, John (Ioann) and Igor, and that other family members supported the conspiracy.


Through my research it seems (and this from a number of official documents including the original Petrograd police report) that those present were not the Konstantinovichii but rather at least two of the sons of Xenia and Sandro-Feodor and another.  The actress Vera Karelli was also, I believe, present, as were several other woman.  This would have given the affair more the appearance of the "party" Felix says he suggested to Rasputin.  But then in this murder-as with many things in his life and in his memoirs-Felix lied-he is notoriously unreliable on a number of things, and I don't for a minute believe his version of the murder itself.

Greg King

Offline Greg_King

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Re: Rasputin's Murder
« Reply #9 on: February 18, 2004, 01:02:26 AM »
Hi Jennifer-

Your points about Felix being unreliable are well-founded, but I have to say I strongly disagree with the characterization of Rasputin as "an evil man."  This probably isn't a popular position to take, but of anyone involved in the last years of the Dynasty and even the murder of the Romanovs, I think Rasputin's got the worst of it, for nearly a hundred years now.  There's nothing supernatural about his murder, nor about his having studied and learned hypnosis, which he did in Petersburg around 1912.  But his study of hypnosis had, I don't think, anything to do with his ability to alleviate Alexei's symptoms-it happened too many times, and a distance, when there was no interaction.  And while the idea that Bob Massie proposed in his book of Rasputin's assurances having a calming effect on Alix that she then transmitted to Alexei might have some support, in many cases Alexei wasn't conscious and would not have been subject to this kind of influence.

There have been far too many myths built up round Rasputin and while there is a lot of information and evidence that helps correct them and put things into proper perspective no one has yet done so-Radzinsky's book was worthless in that respect.  I have no problem believing that which was most obvious-that he had certain powers-certainly what Nicholas and Alix themselves believed.  It always amazes me that so many of those who later wrote memoirs and were Russian-and thus raised in a Church that recognized the supernatural and miracles-should deny this basic tenet of the faith when it came to Rasputin-from resentment, jealousy, and belief in rumor and innuendo.  Rasputin was, no doubt, a complex but simple man who found himself in over his head, and nothing in his life indicates any intentional evil.  He-like the rest of humanity-succumbed to temptations-which in his case-being surrounded by power-seeking sycophants-often took the form of reprehensible behavior.  His drinking (often exaggerated) was responsible for much of this-but it helps explain how he acted-he was, after all, a peasant, uneducated, moving through this strange world and being offered things at every turn.  While not innocent, he certainly wasn't evil in the sense that I think you mean.

Greg King

Offline BeenaBobba

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Re: Rasputin's Murder
« Reply #10 on: February 18, 2004, 05:57:40 AM »
Quote
Rasputin was, no doubt, a complex but simple man who found himself in over his head, and nothing in his life indicates any intentional evil.  He-like the rest of humanity-succumbed to temptations-which in his case-being surrounded by power-seeking sycophants-often took the form of reprehensible behavior.  His drinking (often exaggerated) was responsible for much of this-but it helps explain how he acted-he was, after all, a peasant, uneducated, moving through this strange world and being offered things at every turn.  While not innocent, he certainly wasn't evil in the sense that I think you mean.


Hi Greg,

You make an excellent point.  That Rasputin may have had a dual nature seems a probable and balanced opinion.  When I use "evil man," however, I'm referring to his deceitfulness in having the Empress, particularly, believing him to be practically a saint.  Had she known about his "other side" (and maybe she did to some  degree or another), I think she would have been far more selective when it came to his advice.  I don't think the fall of the Empire can be chalked up entirely to Rasputin and his influence on the Empress; frankly, I think it was nearly inevitable, i.e., almost a time bomb, by the time Nikolai came to the throne.  But I do, however, think the whole Rasputin ordeal (and how it was perceived by the public) certainly served as a catalyst.  Perhaps, had there been no Rasputin, the dynasty could have survived long enough for the last Imperial family to have survived.  Who knows?

Also, while I understand Rasputin's struggles (heck, I'm a sinner myself), I can in no way justify them morally.  If he did study hypnotism and did in fact use it on Alexei, he should have been more honest about it - instead of claiming that he held powers from God.  His so-called "powers from God" are what endeared him to Alexandra.  The study of the occult, to the best of my knowledge, is sinful in the Orthodox Church.  And if his "powers" were based on the occult, and if he was deliberately deceitful about them to the family, I most certainly think he was an evil man.

When I say evil, I'm not referring to Rasputin being evil to the core, i.e., I don't think that his very essense was evil.  Of course, it's hard to paint anyone as completely evil, and I realize that.  But I do think that he was closer to evil than he was to saint.

Take care, Greg, and thanks for your thoughtful reply,

Jennifer Benjamin

Offline BeenaBobba

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Re: Rasputin's Murder
« Reply #11 on: February 18, 2004, 06:00:58 AM »
Btw, I really don't have any set opinion on Rasputin yet.  I'm more or less exploring different theories about him and am trying to find the most probable.

Offline Janet_Ashton

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Re: Rasputin's Murder
« Reply #12 on: February 18, 2004, 07:22:00 AM »
Jennifer wrote:

"When I use "evil man," however, I'm referring to his deceitfulness in having the Empress, particularly, believing him to be practically a saint.  Had she known about his "other side" (and maybe she did to some  degree or another), I think she would have been far more selective when it came to his advice.  I don't think the fall of the Empire can be chalked up entirely to Rasputin and his influence on the Empress; frankly, I think it was nearly inevitable, i.e., almost a time bomb, by the time Nikolai came to the throne.  But I do, however, think the whole Rasputin ordeal (and how it was perceived by the public) certainly served as a catalyst. "

Hello Jennifer - re. your good points above - I think there's little doubt that Alix DID know about Rasputin's "other side" to some degree, and that she chose not to ignore this (as some claim) but to accept it. Her letters include such comments as "He was very merry, though not tipsy", and even Olga Alexandrovna agreed in her memoirs that both the Emperor and Empress were fully aware of the dark side of his nature. I'm no expert on Orthodox theology, but I have the impression that Russian Church tradition places a greater than usual emphasis upon the redemptive power of suffering, and there was a certain cultural tendency in Russia to view sinning and self-humiliation as a form of suffering. Alix owned a book called "Holy fools of the Russian Church", which she leant to a friend with a sentence underscored. That sentence declared that great saintliness was often accompanied by sexual dissolution for one thing. I think she viewed Rasputin as a sort of voluntary Holy Fool and interpreted his behaviour in that light.  The best book currently available about Rasputin is in my opinion Joseph Fuhrmann's "Rasputin", published by Praeger in 1990. It may be out of print but you can probably pick up a copy online.
Also iluminating but probably only if you get really into this subject is "The slave soul of Russia: moral masochism and the cult of suffering" by Daniel Rancour-Laferriere. It's not about Rasputin but certainly helped me put him into context.

Janet

Offline LisaDavidson

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Re: Rasputin's Murder
« Reply #13 on: February 23, 2004, 12:29:06 AM »
Excellent points, all, Janet.

I don't know of a mother or father who would not do all they could to help their child if he or she were ill. I agree that Alix probably knew how bad GIR was when away from the palace. But, since he was helping her son, she chose to overlook his excesses.

RobMoshein

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Re: Rasputin's Murder
« Reply #14 on: February 23, 2004, 09:18:15 AM »
We know for a fact that three official investigations were undertaken on Rasputin and presented to Nicholas and Alexandra, the final one ordered and presented by Stolypin himself.  The problem was that they were sloppy reports, with some of the worst accusations not researched for accuracy.  Each report wanted to present Rasputin in the worst possible light to the Emperor, so as to discredit Rasputin totally in his eyes.  Unfortunately, each report relied more heavily on gossip, half-truths and innuendo than on actual facts, and so when Nicholas himself had these official accusations against Rasputin investigated, it turned out they were mostly not true. So the  true stories about him suddenly did not seem so "bad" in their eyes when compared to the outrageous lies also reported to them at the same time.

To me, the most logical answer is simply this: N and A knew that Rasputin was no "pure" man...yes he drank, yes he chased loose women...but beyond that, anything worse they heard about him they chalked up as a lie told to them out of jealousy, envy, spite or malice against Rasputin.  And remember, many other good and decent men around the Imperial Family also drank, and chased women.  Don't forget Admiral Tchagine, the commander of the Standardt, one of their closest and dearest friends, shot himself in the head because he had been having a sexual affair with a 16 year old girl from Yalta, who followed him back to Petersburg with her parents, who demanded he marry her for "soiling her virginity and reputation"....

I feel sure that after those "official" reports, Alexandra would have rejected the worst tales about him altogether, and as for the tamer stories she would have said "Judge others not lest ye be judged yourself" when it came to much of Rasputin's behavior.