- What were the aims of the Five Year Plans?
- Stalin believed that the Soviet Union was 100 years behind the West. He was afraid that the West would attack and that the Soviet Union would be unable to defend itself.
- The main aim was to turn Russia into a major industrial power, like the West. To do this the emphasis was to be firmly on heavy industry - Coal, Iron, Steel, Electricity and the infrastructure needed to move such bulky goods.
- A second emphasis was to build these new industries in the East - beyond the Urals - away from the threat of Western invasion.
- Much of the infrastructure was missing, so railways, power lines, and roads all had to be built from scratch in many areas: all with a skilled labour force and with a severe shortage of capital.