* The Jews hated the Czar due to the pogroms and were active in the socialist movement. The Georgians also hated the Czar due to the suppression of local nationalism and were active in the socialist movement (Georgia independently formed a social democratic state). Additionally there is a coalition of the fringes aspect; the ethnic minorities tended not to like Russians which made them more loyalty to the reds; Jews were/are infamous for this, but others were more essential- the Lithuanians made up the backbone of the early revolution and their contribution to the secret police and red army helped win the day.
* I just finished Steven Kotkin’s second volume of Stalin’s biography. Beria was a really bad guy. Unlike most of the others he actually enjoyed participating in torturing and murdering his opponents. The others leadership members had others do their murdering for them. He was underhanded and quite cruel. However he was an opportunist not an ideological idiot. He understood that Communism did not work and he was quite a capable manager (he was the General Groves of the soviet A-Bomb construction). My guess is that he would have been better choice to lead the Soviet Union out of its blackhole than Kruschev was. Probably would have been a more formidable foe too.
* Jews were over represented in early soviet government because they were the most capable group that was untainted by ties to pre revolutionary government (Slezkine’s: The Jewish Century goes into this). Most Jewish and non Russian Soviet leadership were purged in the great Terror which resulted in a Russification of the soviet state. Stalin hated being reminded of his Georgian background so that may have not been a strong point for Beria. However, it is likely that Stalin liked Beria since their backgrounds were similar.