Blücher, Vasily Konstantinovich (vəsyēˈlyē kənstäntyēˈnəvĭch blüˈkhər) [key], 1889–1937?, Russian general. An enlisted man in the czarist army, Blücher joined the Bolshevik party in 1916. He rose to high command in the civil war that followed the Bolshevik revolution. Appointed commander in the Russian Far East, he drove the Japanese interventionists from Vladivostok (1922). He was sent (1924) to China as military adviser to the Kuomintang-Communist alliance. The Chinese knew him as "Galen." He later returned to Moscow and was assigned to command Soviet forces in East Asia. He was created marshal in 1936 but was a victim soon afterward of Joseph Stalin's purge of the military hierarchy. He was posthumously rehabilitated in 1956.
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