GCSE History - 1919-1975 - Germany and Cold War


basically everything you need to know if you're learning about Germany and the Cold War etc 

Russian Revolution
Key words:

·         Abdicate – Give up power

·         Democracy – ‘Power to the people’ – the public can vote for who is in power

·         Lenin – Communist Politician who led the Revolution into Russia

·         Peace, Bread + Land – End of Russian participation in WW1, improving living standards + land to peasants

·         Dictatorship – A government where one ruler has complete control

Who/Why people were afraid of communism:

·         Politicans – Communist Politicians usually came from rich backgrounds à became redundant à views = not important

·         Landowners – Their land = taken away + distributed equally

·         Shopkeepers – No longer working for profit – lack of variety = business loss

·         Accountants + Bankers – Lose their jobs b/c everyone has the same income à no need for a money count

·         Workers – Women are allowed to work à men might get angry
Women = paid less

Russian Revolution: Timeline

1.      Before 1917, Russia was ruled by a Tsar (King)

2.      The country had few rich people – many were in great poverty

3.      In 1917, the Tsar was forced to abdicate
For during WW1, life for the poor became intolerable

4.      A new govt. tried to introduce democracy – ending in chaos

5.      November 1917 – communists (Bolsheviks) took over.

6.      Their leader, Lenin promised, “Peace, Bread and Land”

7.      1918 – Tsar + Family were murdered

8.      All wealthy/powerful people in Russia = Killed/Imprisoned

9.      New communist govt. = DICTATORSHIP

10.  1924 – Lenin died à Replaced by Stalin



Freedom of Choice

Everybody = equal

Opportunities to be wealthy

Nobody should be unemployed

Businesses owned by individuals

Businesses controlled by the state

Businesses produce what will earn them most money

Govt. decides what should be produced

Taxation is low enough to allow business to prosper

Taxation is high enough to provide for everyone’s needs



Little choice of goods in the shops


Germany, 1918-1945

Key words:

·         Constitution – Law determining the fundamental political principles of a govt

·         Annihilate – destroy completely

·         Keil – Town in N.Germany

·         Armistice – Agreement to stop fighting

·         Right Wing – Traditional/Conservative beliefs

·         Weimar Republic – German govt. = Ebert is leader

·         ‘November Criminals’ – People who formed the Weimar Constitution

·         Freidrich Ebert – President of Weimar Republic

Impact of WW1 on Germany

War left 600,000 widows and 2 million children without fathers. There were huge standard gaps between rich + poor
By 1925, the state was spending
1/3 of the budget in war pensions

Ex-Soldiers and civilians despised new democratic leaders + came to believe that the Heroic leader Field Marshall Hindenburg had been betrayed by


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