Author Topic: Claimants of the Grand Duke Michael Alexandrovich  (Read 63213 times)

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Offline Annie

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Claimants of the Grand Duke Michael Alexandrovich
« on: December 30, 2005, 08:24:20 PM »
I have always wondered why there haven't been more claimants and survivor rumors on GD Michael/Mikhail/Mischa, the Tsar's younger brother, since his body was never found.

Here is something I found in the book "Memories of the Russian Court" by Anna Vryobova, written in 1923. She had been imprisoned many times by both the Provisional Gov't and the Bolsheviks, and spent much time hiding from them. She met a lot of strange people who had been through a lot in that time period too. Here is something one of them told her, take it for what it's worth, might be a fun distraction from all the worn out old AA rehashing. From Chapter 22 of her memoirs:

The most fantastic contradictions concerning all these alleged murders have from time to time cropped up. When I was in prison in the autumn of 1919 a fellow prisoner of the Chekha, the wife of an aide-de-camp of Grand Duke Mikhail, told me positively that she had received a letter from the Emperor's brother, safe and well in England.

« Last Edit: May 28, 2009, 10:25:32 AM by Alixz »

calebGmoney

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Re: Claimants of the Grand Duke Michael Alexandrovich
« Reply #1 on: December 30, 2005, 09:38:56 PM »
Quote
I have always wondered why there haven't been more claimants and survivor rumors on GD Michael/Mikhail/Mischa, the Tsar's younger brother, since his body was never found.

Here is something I found in the book "Memories of the Russian Court" by Anna Vryobova, written in 1923. She had been imprisoned many times by boht the Provisional Gov't and the Bolsheviks, and spent much time hiding from them. She met a lot of strange people who had been through a lot in that time period too. Here is something one of them told her, take it for what it's worth, might be a fun distraction from all the worn out old AA rehashing. From Chapter 22 of her memoirs:

The most fantastic contradictions concerning all these alleged murders have from time to time cropped up. When I was in prison in the autumn of 1919 a fellow prisoner of the Chekha, the wife of an aide-de-camp of Grand Duke Mikhail, told me positively that she had received a letter from the Emperor's brother, safe and well in England.

LOL I was a bit worried this was a thread about that CIA agent who said he was Alexis. I guess the reason there were no claims to be Michael is because he was not a young child. It's strange how his body has never been found. We don't even know when, how, or if he died, although we have been told he was shot.

Offline Phil_tomaselli

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Re: Claimants of the Grand Duke Michael Alexandrovich
« Reply #2 on: December 31, 2005, 04:46:08 AM »
British intelligence sources put Michael at Omsk heading a counter-revolutionary movement in the summer of 1918.  they also seem to have thought he was connected with the White coup that opened up Archangel to the allied fleet in August 1918.  Certainly I have seen signals regarding both, though the first turns out to be based on a story from a Swedish businessman who was in Siberia at the time.

One day, when I've time I shall have to look at the Archangel papers again.

Phil Tomaselli

Offline cimbrio

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Re: Claimants of the Grand Duke Michael Alexandrovich
« Reply #3 on: December 31, 2005, 10:16:33 AM »
I suppose that had Michael survived he would have made it public, unless he remained in the USSR and could not openly admit he was a Grand Duke (for obvious reasons). Nevertheless, if so little is known about his death (of which I know very little), and if his body along with his secretary's was burned, I suppose it'd be fairly difficult to find ashed in a forest, maybe a few feet below the ground...

calebGmoney

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Re: Claimants of the Grand Duke Michael Alexandrovich
« Reply #4 on: December 31, 2005, 04:06:49 PM »
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I suppose that had Michael survived he would have made it public,

Very true

Offline Annie

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Re: Claimants of the Grand Duke Michael Alexandrovich
« Reply #5 on: December 31, 2005, 07:31:48 PM »
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Very true



Not necessarily. If I had a 'hit' on my head, the last thing I'd ever want is to be found out and make a public spectacle of myself in the media and in courts! That's why I believe if anyone did survive, they'd have remained obscure for their own safety.

calebGmoney

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Re: Claimants of the Grand Duke Michael Alexandrovich
« Reply #6 on: December 31, 2005, 11:52:32 PM »
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Not necessarily. If I had a 'hit' on my head, the last thing I'd ever want is to be found out and make a public spectacle of myself in the media and in courts! That's why I believe if anyone did survive, they'd have remained obscure for their own safety.
Perhaps you would, but personally I would want recognition as a survivor.

Offline Annie

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Re: Claimants of the Grand Duke Michael Alexandrovich
« Reply #7 on: January 01, 2006, 08:15:06 AM »
Even at the expense of being killed, and no longer being a survivor, spending your whole life in hiding?

Offline Louis_Charles

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Re: Claimants of the Grand Duke Michael Alexandrovich
« Reply #8 on: January 01, 2006, 01:31:43 PM »
I don't think that Michael survived, but I do think that it is worth addressing this whole question of "being killed", "hunted down", etc., because it comes up a lot. Can anyone name a single Romanov that made it out of the country, with a chance of royal succession (Nikolasha, Kyril, perhaps Sandro and Ksenia's children, etc.) who was ever assassinated by Soviet agents?

Most of the Romanovs that survived the Revolution led very public lives, as in they moved about freely. No one ever put a hit on, say, Dmitri or Felix and Irina.  Don't you think that this is because Lenin, and then Stalin, considered the Imperial Family irrelevant? It seems to me, anyway, that they shot the people they held captive, as an act of spite rather than a considered political policy that carried on throughout the twenties and thirties.

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Simon
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Offline AGRBear

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Re: Claimants of the Grand Duke Michael Alexandrovich
« Reply #9 on: January 04, 2006, 12:34:14 PM »
Quote
I have always wondered why there haven't been more claimants and survivor rumors on GD Michael/Mikhail/Mischa, the Tsar's younger brother, since his body was never found.

Here is something I found in the book "Memories of the Russian Court" by Anna Vryobova, written in 1923. She had been imprisoned many times by boht the Provisional Gov't and the Bolsheviks, and spent much time hiding from them. She met a lot of strange people who had been through a lot in that time period too. Here is something one of them told her, take it for what it's worth, might be a fun distraction from all the worn out old AA rehashing. From Chapter 22 of her memoirs:

The most fantastic contradictions concerning all these alleged murders have from time to time cropped up. When I was in prison in the autumn of 1919 a fellow prisoner of the Chekha, the wife of an aide-de-camp of Grand Duke Mikhail, told me positively that she had received a letter from the Emperor's brother, safe and well in England.



Do you have the name of the wife of an aide-de-camp of GD Mikhail?

AGRBear
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Offline AGRBear

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Re: Claimants of the Grand Duke Michael Alexandrovich
« Reply #10 on: January 04, 2006, 01:07:48 PM »
Quote
I don't think that Michael survived, but I do think that it is worth addressing this whole question of "being killed", "hunted down", etc., because it comes up a lot. Can anyone name a single Romanov that made it out of the country, with a chance of royal succession (Nikolasha, Kyril, perhaps Sandro and Ksenia's children, etc.) who was ever assassinated by Soviet agents?

Most of the Romanovs that survived the Revolution led very public lives, as in they moved about freely. No one ever put a hit on, say, Dmitri or Felix and Irina.  Don't you think that this is because Lenin, and then Stalin, considered the Imperial Family irrelevant? It seems to me, anyway, that they shot the people they held captive, as an act of spite rather than a considered political policy that carried on throughout the twenties and thirties.

Regards

Simon


I don't think Tsar Outside of Russia Kyrill was much of a threat.  However, the tall one, GD Nicholas, was.  I believe he  constantly went into hiding or if he wasn't in hiding was highly protected because everyone knew that he might be able to lead forces against the Bolsheviks in those early times.

The various White military leaders,  who remained and fought in Russia,   are more widely known, and, those who managed to survive and go into exile were more of a threat than the Romanovs.  

It appears to me  not many posters have read about the various groups of Russians who were hoping to return to Russia and eliminate the Bolsheviks.

If you ever get a chance, watch the PBS series on Sidney Reilly, Ace of Spies.  He was constantly in the mix of the anti-Bolhsevik plots.  Whomever it was who put togather the series seem to have had an excellent expert on those times [clothes, cars, furniture, buildings, etc.] in Europe and Russia.

The Bolshevik's CHEKA leader Felix Dzerzhinsky and some other chap,  I've forgotten his name at the moment,  organized a Bolshevik Front known as the TRUST.  This organization brought in all the anti-Bolshevik leaders and others interested in defeating the Bolsheviks who were not aware that the TRUST was laden with Bolshevik agents who reported back to Dzerzhinsky each and all plots of any kind.

The success of the TRUST for the Bolsheviks was unbelieveable.

It also worked in reverse p. 495 ALEXANDER ORLOV: THE FBI'S KGB GENERAL by Eduard Gazur:

>>The fictitious creation came to be known as the TRUST, after the Russian word "Trest", the so-called 'Monarchist Organisation of Central Russia', and became the vehicle which fed misinformation to the Western Powers.  In time, th TRUST was the avenue by which the prime enemies of the state were lured back to Russia and executed.  Sidney Reilly and Boris Savinkov, the fanatical White Russian General who ran the anti-Bolshevik organisation People's Union for the Defense of the Homeland and Freedom from abroad, would both be successfully lured back to Russia and their deaths by the TRUST.  The third prize target of the TRUST was General Kutyepov, the head of the ROVS, who was kidnapped off the streets of Paris in 1930 by the KBG and was eliminated.<<

Also, remember  p. 494:

>>The period in question is shortly before and after the end of the Russian Civil War in 1920, which was a time of turbulence when the fate of the newly formed Soviet Government hung in the balance and only a slight push could bring it down.<<

>>...Felix Dzerzhinsky correctly calculated that its immediate enemy was the leaders and remanants of the defeated White Army, who continued to pose a thread to the Soviet Union.<<

AGRBear
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 PM by AGRBear »
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Offline Phil_tomaselli

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Re: Claimants of the Grand Duke Michael Alexandrovich
« Reply #11 on: January 04, 2006, 02:19:46 PM »
Bear

Reilly Ace of Spies is excellent television but not necessarily even close to the truth about this most remarkable man or intelligence operations in the period.

The TRUST operation is as much a creation of KGB mythmakers in the 1950's and 60's as it is the truth.  It is often said that British intelligence were fooled by the TRUST who fed them false information via their White stooges.  In fact the British seem to have cottoned on failry quickly to the Whites being infiltrated.  I have somewhere in my files a Foreign Office request for information on the White Movement where one FO chap asks "which would be the best source of information on the Whites?" and another minutes back something along the lines of "Shame we can't ask the Reds as they have them penetrated at every level".

Having said that, as well as Kutyepov the OGPU also kidnapped General Miller (his successor) from Paris and took him back to the USSR for Stalin's pleasure.

Phil Tomaselli

Offline Louis_Charles

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Re: Claimants of the Grand Duke Michael Alexandrovich
« Reply #12 on: January 04, 2006, 03:35:14 PM »
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I don't think Tsar Outside of Russia Kyrill was much of a threat.  However, the tall one, GD Nicholas, was.  I believe he  constantly went into hiding or if he wasn't in hiding was highly protected because everyone knew that he might be able to lead forces against the Bolsheviks in those early times.

The various White military leaders,  who remained and fought in Russia,   are more widely known, and, those who managed to survive and go into exile were more of a threat than the Romanovs.  

It appears to me  not many posters have read about the various groups of Russians who were hoping to return to Russia and eliminate the Bolsheviks.

If you ever get a chance, watch the PBS series on Sidney Reilly, Ace of Spies.  He was constantly in the mix of the anti-Bolhsevik plots.  Whomeever put togather the series seem to have had an excellent expert on those times in Europe and Russia.

The Bolshevik's CHEKA leader Felix Dzerzhinsky and some other chap,  I've forgotten his name at the moment,  organized a Bolshevik Front known as the TRUST.  This organization brought in all the anti-Bolshevik leaders and others interested in defeating the Bolsheviks who were not aware that the TRUST was laden with Bolshevik agents who reported back to Dzerzhinsky each and all plots of any kind.

The success of the TRUST for the Bolsheviks was unbelieveable.

It also worked in reverse p. 495 ALEXANDER ORLOV: THE FBI'S KGB GENERAL by Eduard Gazur:

>>The fictitious creation came to be known as the TRUST, after the Russian word "Trest", the so-called 'Monarchist Organisation of Central Russia', and became the vehicle which fed misinformation to the Western Powers.  In time, th TRUST was the avenue by which the prime enemies of the state were lured back to Russia and executed.  Sidney Reilly and Boris Savinkov, the fanatical White Russian General who ran the anti-Bolshevik organisation People's Union for the Defense of the Homeland and Freedom from abroad, would both be successfully lured back to Russia and their deaths by the TRUST.  The third prize target of the TRUST was General Kutyepov, the head of the ROVS, who was kidnapped off the streets of Paris in 1930 by the KBG and was eliminated.<<

Also, remember  p. 494:

>>The period in question is shortly before and after the end of the Russian Civil War in 1920, which was a time of turbulence when the fate of the newly formed Soviet Government hung in the balance and only a slight push could bring it down.<<

>>...Felix Dzerzhinsky correctly calculated that its immediate enemy was the leaders and remanants of the defeated White Army, who continued to pose a thread to the Soviet Union.<<

AGRBear


Bear,

In fact, Grand Duke Nicholas lived openly in France. I am curious. Why do you assume that former White Army generals were more threatening to the Communist government that members of the Imperial Family? In fact, I think you may be correct, since as Phil points out, the ones repatriated against their will to Russia were, in fact, not Romanovs. Which the point that I was trying to make in my other post. Why do we assume that there was a need for Anna Andersen to hide, if she was Anastasia? In fact, no Romanov was "hunted down".

I will go back and watch the television series, if you think it is an acceptable source of information.


Simon
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Offline AGRBear

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Re: Claimants of the Grand Duke Michael Alexandrovich
« Reply #13 on: January 04, 2006, 04:02:24 PM »
It's been too long since I've seen the PBS Reilly series to comment on how accurate it was about everything, but,  I really enjoyed it and it gave me a general sense of what was happening in those times as Lockhardt  saw it and embelished upon.

Where the truth lies about Reilly, only Reilly knew.

Bruce Lockhardt wrote about him,  Reilly wrote about himself and Richard B. Spence's book TRUST NO ONE, THE SECRET WORLD OF SIDNEY REILLY gives us more insight on Reilly and  those times.  Including the TRUST p. 338:
>>....to be dubbed the "Trust" (Trest).  While most of its rank and file would be legitimate monarchists, thus flushing them out of the woodwork, the key positions would be held by Chekists and "reliable" operatives.  They, in turn, would be used to divert and infiltrate emigre groups and foreign intelligence services back them.  By one means or another, Yakushev agreed to cooperate and set up the metting for Kolesnikov, in reality a Polish Chekists named Stretkovich.<<

There were Polish Chekists.  

How much the SIS knew, wished they knew or didn't know about the TRUST in it's early stages should be a book all to itself.  How THE SIS reacted once this information reached their boss and what agents SIS used to combat the TRUST is worth a couple of dozen more books,  I'm sure.

THE CHEKA, LENIN'S POLICIAL POLICE by George Leggett, p. 294
>>...Lenin had instructed Dzerzhinsky to devise means of neutralising the machinations of such emigre bodies, and ways of preventing the creation of emigre combat units capable of effecting trans-border raids into Soviet territory.  In pompt responce on 5 December, Dzerzhinsky issued a secret directive order that 'for the detection of foreign agencies in our territories there be organissed pretended White Guard Associations', their purpose being to penetrate the most hostile emigre groups and lure their agents back to Russia; this was the provocation gambit which would develope into the classic Soviet deception opersations, Sidikat-2 and the  Trust, master-minded by KRO in the early 1920s, Dzerzhinsky'[s directive further proposed an increase in the number os hostages taken from the relatives in Russia of prominent emigres, and the formation of special detachments intended to carry out acts of terrorism against enemies of the Soviet sate living on foreign soil.<<

Perhaps Phil or another poster  knows if any situations of  "hostages" of the Romanov family who were taken and used in these agressive acts of the CHEKA's  Sidikat-2 and TRUST.  At the moment,  I do not know or remember any but then my knowledge is limited on the extended Romanov families.

The book  mentions "prominent emigres".   Does anyone have any idea who they were?  Perhaps direct us toward their stories.  

Thanks.

AGRBear

PS:  
KRO = Kontr-Razvedyvatelnyi Ordei = Counter-Espionage Department
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 PM by AGRBear »
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Offline cimbrio

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Re: Claimants of the Grand Duke Michael Alexandrovich
« Reply #14 on: January 04, 2006, 04:05:41 PM »
I think both lenin and Stalin must have felt their power fairly stable in the USSR... and if they wanted any of the Romanovs killed, in mi opinion they could have done it... look at how Staling had Trotsky killed, and in Mexico! I don't think Misha would have kept his identity a secret (if he escaped the USSR, ahd he lived); he would have inherited a fair amount of money and would no doubt be politically relevant... and I agree, the other Romanovs led public lives till their deaths, including the Tsar's sisters. Had he remained in Russia (had he lived) he would certainly have kept it a secret...