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Alexander Vasilyevich Kolchak
Kolchak.jpg
Supreme Ruler of Russia
In office
18 November 1918 – 6 February 1920
Preceded by Position established
(Nikolai Avksentiev as Chairman of the Provisional All-Russian Government)
Succeeded by Anton Denikin
(de facto)
Personal details
Born 16 November 1874
Saint Petersburg, Russian Empire
Died 6 February 1920
Irkutsk, Russian SFSR (aged 45)
Military service
Allegiance
Branch/service
Years of service 1886–1920
Rank Admiral (from 1918 Onward)
Battles/wars Russo-Japanese War
World War I
Russian Civil War

Alexander Vasilyevich Kolchak (Russian: Александр Васильевич Колчак; 16 November [O.S. 4 November] 1874 – 7 February 1920) was an Imperial Russian admiral, military leader and polar explorer who served in the Imperial Russian Navy and fought in the Russo-Japanese War of 1904-1905 and the First World War. During the Russian Civil War of 1917-1922 he established an anti-communist government in Siberia — later the Provisional All-Russian Government — and became recognised as the "Supreme Leader and Commander-in-Chief of All Russian Land and Sea Forces" by the other leaders of the White movement from 1918 to 1920. His government was based in Omsk, in southwestern Siberia.

For nearly two years, Kolchak served as Russia's internationally recognized head of state. However, his efforts to unite the White Movement failed; Kolchak refused to consider autonomy for ethnic minorities and refused to cooperate with non-Bolshevik leftists, looking for foreign support instead. This served only to boost the Bolsheviks' morale, as it allowed them to label Kolchak as a "Western Puppet". As his White forces fell apart, he was betrayed and detained by the chief of the Allied military mission in Siberia French general Maurice Janin and the Czechoslovak Legion (December 1919) who handed him over to local Socialist-Revolutionaries in January 1920; soon afterwards the Bolsheviks executed him in February 1920, in Irkutsk.

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