THE YALTA CONFERENCE Met at Yalta Feb 1945. War still going. Aim to plan for the world after victory. Much of the focus on Poland. Why do you think they would try to avoid disagreement at this time?
WHO? ROOSEVELT President of US throughout war. Very sick at this stage – poor judgment? Keen to ensure Eastern Europe would be democratic BUT… personally trusted Stalin and keen to ensure USA and USSR friends after WW1
WHO? CHURCHILL British PM for most of war Did not like or trust Stalin Wanted to ensure Poland democracy after war Worried whole E Europe would become communist as USSR army invades (hates) Moral obligation – why war in first place!
STALIN Obsessed with security for USSR Wanted ensure Poland friendly and communist A buffer zone (with rest of E Europe) to prevent an invasion in the future. Does not trust Chruchill
Why was Poland so important? LARGEST – most important country in E Europe. LONDON POLES – The government, intellectuals fled to London in 1939 when Hitler invaded. They were recognised by GB as ‘real’ government – they hated USSR as had been ruled by Russia until 1917 and Nazi Soviet Pact in 1939 (also massacres by USSR of Polish Officers at Katyn) LUBLIN POLES – As USSR came close to liberating Poland in 1944 they set up a communist ‘real’ government. Stalin knew these Poles were friendly. WARSAW UPRISING – London Poles ordered their supporters in Warsaw to revolt against Germans as USSR army approached. Felt only way to stop Stalin taking over. USSR sits and does not help – watches on the outskirts as Germans surround, massacre and destroy. Shocks other allies.