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"The skull is a mind weapon. It will open a new frontier of psychic warfare. It was Stalin's dream."
Irina Spalko[src]

Joseph Stalin (Russian: Иосиф Сталин; Georgian: იოსებ სტალინი) was the former leader and dictator of the Soviet Union.


By 1931, Joseph Stalin had grown to value the diamond mines at the north of Norilsk in Siberia, Russia.[1]

On the eve of World War II, Stalin was paranoid about Adolf Hitler, so the Soviet police turned a blind eye to Nazi misdeeds. This allowed Colonel Klaus Kerner to steal a copy of the Hermocrates from a Leningrad museum in 1939 and leave unhindered.[2] Russian peasants also claimed that Stalin feared the legendary Baba Yaga.[3] Since the war's beginning, due to German attempts to invade the Soviet Union, Stalin pressured his allies to open a second front in Western Europe so, in his mind, the pressure on the East would lessen. This would eventually lead the Allies to launch an invasion to Normandy, France in what became known as the D-Day.[4]

During the war, Stalin was greatly disturbed by German action against Russia and the subsequent advent of the United States' nuclear capabilities. He turned to the KGB to explore the hidden potential of the human mind.[5] At some point, the Soviets learned of the 1947 crash in Roswell, New Mexico and its ties to the South American legend of Akator from which a Crystal Skull was stolen by the Spanish conquistador Francisco de Orellana in the 16th century.[6]

Interested in psychic warfare, Stalin brought in Irina Spalko to search for the Crystal Skull with which the USSR could brainwash the American military army's minds to gain the advantage during the Cold War,[7] as harnessing the crystal skull's power could let them achieve Soviet domination over the world.[8]


The city of Stalingrad was named after him during his lifetime.

Spalko continued to pursue Stalin's dream in the years following his death and, in 1957, was known by American forces to be leading teams in a global hunt for artifacts believed to have psychic applications. Spalko eventually found the Crystal Skull but it would be her undoing as the unearthly object took her life.[6]

Behind the scenes[]

"Like Hitler was a nut on the Ark of the Covenant and the Spear of Destiny, Stalin was a nut on the subject of psychic spying. So there was a historial precedent in involving the Communists in a search for a way into the consciousness of free nations and free individuals..."
Steven Spielberg on how Stalin inspired the Crystal Skull story[src]

Joseph Stalin's obsession with psychic abilities was brought into the story of Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull in a similar way to how Adolf Hitler's interest on the Ark of the Covenant and the Spear of Longinus inspired the early Indiana Jones films. In turn, this provided the filmmakers a historial precedent to involve the Soviets in the search for the titular MacGuffin, comparing their inclusion in the film with the depiction of Communist villains in the 1960s James Bond movies.[9]



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