The Cold War Conferences

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The Tehran Conference - 1943

At Tehran they needed to agree on how to make sure that they would defeat Hitler as it was not certain in 1943, that the allies would win.

What was agreed:

  • Britain and USA would open up a second front against germany by invading France in May 1944
  • USSR was to wage war on japan once Germany was defeated
  • A United Nations organisation was set up after the war
  • An area of Eastern Poland was added to USSR. The borders of post-war Poland were to be on the Oder and Neisse rivers
  • They agree Eastern Europe will become a 'sphere of influence' for the USSR and the west/allies would have a 'sphere of influence' in the west of Europe (The term sphere of influence was never fully defined)

The term 'sphere of influence' was often open to interpretation and abuse - stalin would abuse it.

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The Yalta Conference - February 1945


What was agreed:

  • To divide Germany into 4 zones
  • Berlin (in the soviet zone) would be divided into 4 zones (American, British, Russian, French)
  • Stalin agreed to go to war with Japan once Germany had surrendered
  • All countries liberated from Nazi rule would be allowed to hold free elections
  • To establish a new organisation to promote peace - The United Nations
  • That Eastern Europe would be under a soviet 'sphere of influence'
  • Hunt down Nazi war criminals and brings them to trial
  • STALIN agreed to hold free elections in Poland

The leaders in Tehran and Yalta are:

Stalin, Churchill and Roosevelt

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The Potsdam Conference - July 1945


What was agreed:

  • To divide Gemany and Berlin as agreed at Yalta
  • Demilitarised Germany
  • Re-established democracy in Germany including free elections
  • Reparations paid by Germany would go mainly to the soviets. they would gain industiral goods fron the Western zone in return for food and coal from the Soviet zone
  • participate fully in the UN
  • Ban the Nazi party and put it's leaders on trial
  • Poland's border would be moved Westwards

Hitler commits suicide in May

Truman hates communism - distrusts Stalin

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The Tehran Conference - 1943

What was disagreed:

  • Stalin was upset by delay of USA and Britain launching second front in France to weaken the German army and take pressure off USSR forces in the east. Stalin thought Britain and USA were doing this to weaken communism
  • Churchill wanted to open up a second front through the Balkans to stop communism spreading but Roosevelt and Stalin refused
  • Churchill didnt trust Stalin because of the murders of Polish soldiers
  • REPARATIONS - Stalin wanted to punish/weaken Germany so USSR couldnt be invaded by them agian. Roosevelt and Churchill didn't want to as they didn't want extremism to take hold after Hitler so they agreed to wait to decide until the next conference

Roosevelt and Stalin get on very well

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The Yalta Conference - February 1945

What they disagreed:

  • How much reparations Germny should pay. Stalin wanted a much higher figure (due to the extreme hardship the Russians had suffered during the war) than Roosevelt and Churchill
  • Poland - Stalin wanted to shift border much further west (would allow him to gain more territory in the east). He also wanted a 'Soviet friendly' government to give Russia some protection against Germany. Roosevelt and Churchill were concerned that Poland would become Soviet controlled.  
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The Potsdam Conference - July 1945

What they disagreed:

  • what to do wih Germany. Stalin wanted to disable them competely after the suffering that had been caused to the Soviet Union by war with Nazis (over 20 million Russians died during WW2). Truman did not want Germany punishes the way it had been in ToV
  • Free elections - truman wanted free elections in all countries in Eastern Europe that were occupied by Soviet troops. Stalin refused and Truman began to adopt a 'get tough' policy
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