An introduction to the history of the soviet union

The Russian Revolution Late tsarist Russia Sometime in the middle of the 19th century, Russia entered a phase of internal crisis that in would culminate in revolution.

An introduction to the history of the soviet union

Of course, not everything that happened in the Soviet Union at this time was done with the approval of Stalin. In the case of the Soviet-German Non-Aggression Pact ofhowever, we have the testimony of Stalin's closest collaborator, Vyacheslav Molotov, that: The conclusion of the Soviet-German non-aggression pact.

The charge that this was a serious mistake on Stalin's part must, therefore, be examined seriously. We stop the endless German movement to the south and west, and turn our gaze towards the land in the East.

If we speak of soil in Europe today, we can primarily have in mind only Russia". Thus, the coming to power of the Nazi government in Germany in January heralded a situation in Europe which clearly presented great danger to the Soviet Union -- and not, of course, to the Soviet Union alone.

The Marxist-Leninists in the leadership of the Soviet Union, concerned to defend the socialist state, responded to this new, more dangerous situation by reorientating Soviet foreign policy, by adopting a policy of striving for collective security with other states which had, objectively, an interest in maintaining the status quo in the international situation.

The Objective Basis of Collective Security The objective basis of the Soviet policy of collective security was that the imperialist Powers of the world could be divided into two groups. One group -- Germany, Italy and Japan had a relatively high productive power and relatively restricted markets and spheres of influence.

As a result, these Powers had an urgent need to change the world to their advantage; they were relatively aggressive Powers. Another group of imperialist Powers -- Britain, France and the United States -- had relatively large markets and spheres of influence and thus had objectively more need to keep the world as it was than to see it changed; they were relatively non-aggressive Powers.

Thus we are witnessing an open re-division of the world and spheres of influence at the expense of the non-aggressive states. As a socialist state, a working people's state, the Soviet Union had the strongest interest of any state in the preservation of peace. The Soviet government's policy in the s, therefore, was to strive to form a collective security alliance with the European non-aggressive imperialist states, Britain and France -- a collective security alliance strong enough either to deter the aggressive imperialist states from launching war or to secure their speedy defeat.

The Soviet Government summed up this post foreign policy in Historical Information'; London; ; p Appeasement Although, as we have seen, Stalin maintained that the British and French imperialists had, objectively, an interest in joining the Soviet Union in such a collective security alliance, the governments of Britain and France, led respectively by Neville Chamberlain and Edouard Daladier, did not recognise this objective fact because of their detestation of socialism and the Soviet Union and their wish to see it destroyed.

Thus we are now witnessing an open redivision of the world and spheres of influence at the expense of the non-aggressive states, without the least attempt at resistance, and even with a certain amount of connivance.

How is it that the non-aggressive countries. Is it to be attributed to the weakness of the non-aggressive states? Combined, the non-aggressive, democratic states are unquestionably stronger than the fascist states, both economically and militarily.

The chief reason is that the majority of the non-aggressive countries, particularly England and France, have rejected a policy of collective security, of collective resistance to the aggressors, and have taken up a position of 'non-intervention' The policy of non-intervention reveals an eagerness, a desire, not to hinder Germany, say.

One might think that the districts of Czechoslovakia were yielded to Germany as the price of an undertaking to launch war on the Soviet Union". British Foreign Secretary Lord Halifax is on record as telling Hitler in November that "he and other members of the British Government were well aware that the Fuehrer had attained a great deal.

Having destroyed Communism in his country, he had barred the road of the latter to Western Europe and Germany was therefore entitled to be regarded as a bulwark of the West against Bolshevism. When the ground has been prepared for an Anglo-German rapprochement, the four great West European Powers must jointly set up the foundation of lasting peace in Europe".

Nevertheless, the Soviet Marxist-Leninists understood that this policy of 'appeasement' ran, objectively, counter to the interests of the British and French imperialists and counter to the interests of the British working people They therefore calculated that, if the Soviet government persisted in its efforts to form a collective security alliance with Britain and France, sooner or later the appeasers in Britain, which dominated France.

This, of course, actually occurred inbut only after war had broken out in Europe. If Russia has not been brought into this matter because of certain feelings that Poles have that they do not want the Russians there.

The Anglo-French guarantee stimulated public pressure on the appeaser governments to at least make gestures in the direction of collective security.

So, on 15 April the British government made an approach to the Soviet government suggesting that it might like to issue a public declaration offering military assistance to any state bordering the Soviet Union which was subject to aggression if that state desired it.

Two days later, on 17 April the Soviet government replied that it would not consider a unilateral guarantee, which would put the Soviet Union in a position of inequality with the other Powers concerned. Firstly, a trilateral mutual assistance treaty by Britain, France and the Soviet Union against aggression; Secondly, the extension of guarantees to the Baltic States Estonia, Finland, Latvia and Lithuaniaon the grounds that failure to guarantee these states was an open invitation to Germany to expand eastwards through invasion of these states; Thirdly, that the treaty must not be vague, but must detail the extent and forms of the military assistance to be rendered by the signatory Powers.

On 27 May the British and French governments replied to the Soviet proposals with the draft of a proposed tripartite pact. It is really a most ingenious idea". Vyacheslav Molotov, who had just taken over the post of People's Commissar for Foreign Affairs from Maksim Litvinov, rejected the draft on the grounds that it proposed in the event of hostilities not immediate mutual assistance, but merely consultation through the League of Nations.The Soviet Union: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions) - Kindle edition by Stephen Lovell.

Download it once and read it on your Kindle device, PC, phones or tablets. Use features like bookmarks, note taking and highlighting while reading The Soviet Union: A Very Short Introduction (Very /5(16).

If you enjoy military history, you should definitely get this book. The Soviet Union was one of the pre-eminent military powers of the 20th century, and this compendium of essays by military scholars explains how a rag-tag would-be world power that collapsed in disarray during World War I, first fought a complex civil war for five years, then built a military force capable of defeating the.

The Soviet Union: A Very Short Introduction blends political history with an investigation into the society and culture of the time.

An introduction to the history of the soviet union

This VSI takes a thematic approach to the history of the Soviet Union. It covers the workings of Soviet society and its political system from –91, emphasizing the contradictions and paradoxes of this large and complex state.

Oct 18,  · The United States and the Soviet Union divvied up Europe in the aftermath of the war, and then proceeded to spend the next 45 years fighting .

The Cold war is a period of sustained political and military duress and unrest between the Western Superpowers, viz. The USA Of America, and its NATO allies, and the communist world, led by the erstwhile Soviet Union, its satellite states and allies - The KGB was the primary security agency for the Soviet Union from until its collapse in The KGB served a multi-faceted role outside of and within the Soviet Union, working as both an.

Soviet Union - HISTORY