Using new documents and reevaluating existing material, "The Chief Culprit" analyzes Joseph Stalin??'s strategic design to conquer Europe and his support for Germany, which helped bring Hitler to power and sustained him. Stalin??'s strategy leading up to World War II grew from Vladimir Lenin??'s belief that if World War I did not ignite the worldwide Communist revolution, then a second world war would be needed to achieve it. Stalin saw Germany as the power that would fight and weaken capitalist countries so Soviet armies could sweep across the European continent to the Atlantic. Viktor Suvorov reveals how Stalin conspired with German leaders to bypass the Versailles Treaty, which forbade German rearmament. Secretly, the Soviet Union trained German engineers and officers as well as provided bases and factories for war. In 1939, the nonaggression pact between the Soviet Union and Germany allowed Hitler to proceed with his plans to invade Poland, fomenting war in Europe. Stalin emerges as a diabolical genius consumed by visions of a worldwide Communist revolution at any cost, the leader who wooed Hitler and Germany in his own effort to conquer the world. The author debunks the myth that the Soviet Union was a victim of Germany??'s aggression. Instead, he insists that Stalin neither feared Hitler nor mistakenly trusted him. Suvorov argues that after Germany occupied Poland, defeated France, and started to prepare for an invasion of Great Britain, Hitler??'s intelligence services detected the Soviet Union??'s preparations for a major war against Germany. In 1940, Germany drafted a preemptive war plan, which it launched in June 1941, the invasion of the USSR.