DOI: https://doi.org/10.21847/1728-9343.2013.6(126).20688

Traditions and novations in combating against criminal offenses in the soviet Ukraine in a liberalized society during the Khrushchev's period

Oksana Mikheieva

Abstract


State policy in the field of law enforcement during the Khrushchev's period wasn't a stabile. The first wave of changes was associated with the abolition of some legislative acts of the Stalinist period, a significant softening of punitive line, narrowing of the scope of capital punishment, empowerment convicted people etc. On the one hand, these steps are partially rehabilitating the Soviet law enforcement. On the other hand, government actions were unreasoned and populist, designed for quick political effect.

The next wave of change was due to the spread of the idea of the gradual withering away of the state in terms of building a communist society. As a consequence of this ideology was the reduction of employees in the field of law enforcement and attracting a variety of civic organizations, labor groups and citizens to fulfill a variety of law enforcement functions (voluntary civil police, civil judges, civil assistant investigator, civilian prosecutors, civil lawyers, etc.).

And finally, the soviet leadership made steps in the field of law enforcement toward stricter penalties for serious crimes, as well as expanding the scope of the death penalty.

The country's leadership was actively intervened in the work of law enforcement. Communist Party took control the law enforcement agencies due to the appointment to senior positions along party lines and managing work of party members through the party cell.

One of the major controversies of the time was mixing the steps to improve of law enforcement sphere (increased attention to the frames, structural changes, strengthening analytical work in the study of crime statistics), with a desire to demonstrate the advantages of the socialist way of life (which was manifested in the silencing of certain criminal manifestations, artificially lowering their significance by reducing the liability on them, outright ignoring problems and their causes, etc.).

Contradictions were observed in the conduct of state punitive line too. On the one hand, it was a significant step up from the Stalinist penal system by expanding the rights of prisoners, procedural rules, which led to a softening of the repressive pressure on the population.

On the other hand, the state retained its attitude to dissent; applying the new forms social exclusion of dissidents, for example, applying to them the impact of psychiatric measures.

These moments hampered consolidation of the new format of normative behavior in the minds of ordinary citizens, and gave rise to "double standards", the imbalance between what is declared and what actually happened.


Keywords


Khrushchev thaw; law enforcement; normative behavior; new forms social exclusion; voluntary civil police; civil judges; civil assistant investigator; civilian prosecutors; civil lawyers

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