Lenin making a speech in Dvortsovaya Square, Petrograd, on July 19, 1920. Photo was taken during the 2nd Congress of the Communist International by the famous reportage photographer Viktor Bulla. The 2nd Congress is best remembered for formulating and implementing the 21 Conditions for membership in the Communist International. Vladimir Ilyich Lenin (April 22, 1870 - January 21, 1924) was a Russian Marxist revolutionary, communist politician, Russian statesman and Marxist theoretician. Lenin was the first premier of the Soviet Union. He was a gifted, charismatic orator and his extensive theoretic and philosophical developments of Marxism produced Marxism-Leninism, the pragmatic Russian application of Marxism. Unlike some Marxists, Lenin stressed bold, revolutionary action and insisted that a strong Communist party would be needed in a Marxist nation to direct the efforts of the workers. Lenin also argued that capitalist nations resort to aggressive imperialist moves as they decline and that Marxist nations must therefore be prepared for war. He died in 1924 at the age of 53. "Lenin on the Podium", painted posthumously in 1929 by Aleksandr Gerasimov.