Leon Trotsky Quote
Actually, the decision was not only expedient but necessary. The severity of this summary justice showed the world that we would continue to fight mercilessly, stopping at nothing. The execution of the Tsar's family was needed not only in order to frighten, horrify, and dishearten the enemy but also in order to shake up our own ranks, to show them that there was no turning back, that ahead lay either complete victory or complete ruin.
Trotsky's Diary in Exile, 1935 (ed. 1976)