Josip Broz Tito (1892-1980)

Born in Kumrovec, Croatia, Tito was taken prisoner of war in 1915 and joined the Red Guard in Omsk in 1917. He returned to Croatia in 1920 and joined the illegal Yugoslav Communist Party in the following year. In 1928, he was sentenced to five years' imprisonment. On his release in 1934, he was elected to the communist party Central Committee and Political Committee. In 1934-6, he worked at Comintern in Moscow as a political rapporteur in the Yugoslav section, and then returned to Yugoslavia. After the Stalin purges, he became leader of the Yugoslav Communist Party as Moscow' s choice. He remained general secretary until 1966 of what in 1952 became the League of Yugoslav Communists, and then its president until his death. From 1941 to 1945, Tito was commander-in-chief of the Yugoslav partisans fighting the German occupation. He was promoted to marshal in November 1943 and president of the Yugoslav National Liberation Committee, which acted as a government. In 1945- 6, he headed the provisional government, serving as prime minister and defence minister until 1953. From then until his death, he was president of Yugoslavia. Tito' s refusal to conform to the Soviet model of socialism led to a break with Stalin in 1948 and his party's expulsion from Cominform. The existence of Tito's more decentralized system and the efforts by Khrushchev to heal the breach with Yugoslavia were important international factors before, during and after the Hungarian Revolution of 1956. Yugoslavia under Tito played an important role in the movement of non-aligned countries after 1961].

Please send comments or suggestions.

This page was created: Wednesday, 3-Dec-2003
Last updated: Wednesday, 3-Dec-2003
Copyright © 2003 The Institute for the History of the 1956 Hungarian Revolution

Top of the page