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|cameras from Moscow, Kiev and Leningrad under hammer and sickle|
The Russian Revolution of 1917 spearheaded the spread of communist regimes by establishing the first one over one of the largest empires in history. The Russian Empire became the Soviet Union, the Red Empire. Red meant that the people's ideology was that the welfare of the masses of common people had to replace the welfare of the single bourgeois. The communist party was the only legitimate owner of the truth in that system.
Fortunately photography was one of the things that fit in the conception of people's welfare - Soviet people were allowed to own cameras if they didn't photograph military or other communist secrets. Unfortunately the good photographic products of communist countries soon got dedicated to export to rich capitalistic countries, or at least to rich communist party officials. And most of the best products were just made in small quantities, like the Sport and the Leningrad, thus maybe not complying with the wishes of the masses of common people.