Kaganovich, Lazar Moiseyevich (ləzärˈ mōĭsyāˈyəvich kəgənōˈvich) [key], 1893–1991, Soviet Communist leader. A Jewish shoemaker and labor organizer, he joined the Communist party in 1911. A capable administrator, he rose quickly through the party ranks after the revolution, and by 1930 he had become Moscow party secretary-general and a member of the Politburo. He was an influential proponent of forced collectivization and played a role in the purges of 1936–38. He became commissar for transportation (1935) and after the purges was responsible for heavy industrial policy in the Soviet Union. In 1957, he joined in an unsuccessful attempt to oust Khrushchev and was stripped of all his posts.
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