Questions tagged [soviet-union]

The Soviet Union or USSR (1922–1991) was a socialist state in Eurasia. After the 1924 death of founding leader Lenin (who led the October Revolution in 1917), Stalin established a planned economy and suppressed political opposition. After World War II, the Soviet Union emerged as one of the world's two superpowers, opposing the USA in the Cold War. 1980s leader Gorbachev attempted reform with perestroika and glasnost but the country collapsed in 1991.

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How efficiently did the Red Army conduct itself during the invasion of Poland in 1939?

In 1937, Stalin purged the majority of his top military officers, starting with Marshal Tukhachevsky This disorganized the Red Army, to say the least, and helped account for its later poor performance ...
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Why were Soviet losses consistently so high?

The combat losses of Soviet Union were always higher than Nazi Germany, regardless of whether they won or lost. Even in Stalingrad or at the siege of Berlin the losses of Soviet Union were higher. In ...
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Why did USSR allow US to acquire rutile from Soviet manufacturers to make weapons that were to be deployed against the Soviets? [duplicate]

The American SR71 reconnaissance aircraft, in the Cold War, was the counterpart of the Soviet Mig-25 playing the same role. It makes high use of Titanium dioxide (rutile). The developers sought a ...
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How secure was Germany's last foothold in the Caucasus in 1943?

In January, 1943, after the collapse of Fall Blau and just before the fall of Stalingrad, Germany withdrew most of Army Group A from the Caucasus. But they left a rearguard consisting of the ...
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Why did Stalin pressure Allies to open second front even though his purpose was to grab as much land as possible for his future satellite states?

After the surprise German attack in 22 June 1941 on Soviet Union, the latter suffered a series of catastrophic defeats during the following months, up to the point it is still debatable today whether ...
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Is Alexander Matrosov's service record publicly available?

Alexander Matrosov is a Hero of the Soviet Union who perished on the 27th of February in 1943 during the Battles of Rzhev (8th of January, 1942 - 31rd of March, 1943) when he blocked the fascist ...
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What operations were carried out by the partisans of the Chernihiv junction in the Great Patriotic War?

I am interested in finding out more about the Chernihiv partisan junction which was an important force throughout the Great Patriotic War, and their leader Alexei Fyodorovich Fyodorov. Unfortunately, ...
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Which operation came last in World War 2? [closed]

Which operation came last in World War 2? I know that the Kwantung Army was defeated on the 2nd of September 1945 during the Soviet Manchurian Strategic Offensive Operation (9th of August - 2nd of ...
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Did the Balkans campaign delay Operation Barbarossa for the Nazis and was it therefore an important reason why they lost against the Soviets in WWII?

I have heard it previously that the Balkans Campaign delayed Operation Barbarossa, but I found out that Antony Beevor wrote in his 2012 book "the Second World War" the following: Hitler was ...
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What was the policy on academic research being published beyond the iron curtain?

If a little background to my curiosity were to help: when I was studying logic as a philosophy student, we covered the topic of defining probability, where we looked at Kolmogorov's axioms of ...
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How did conditions in Nazi labor camps and the Gulag compare?

I've recently read first-person accounts of men who were held at Auschwitz and the Gulag, respectively. The foci of the narratives are very different (Primo Levi, Walter Ciszek), although at least in ...
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Why did the Soviet Union out-pace the US during the space-race?

At the end of World War II, the US Government's Operation Paperclip plucked rocket scientists from Germany and brought them to the U.S. to work on military weapons. Most famous among these scientists ...
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After the Cold War, how did Berlin develop so much more rapidly than Moscow? [closed]

How did Berlin redevelop so rapidly that today its economy is way better than Moscow's following the Cold War?
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Why didn't the Soviets keep their encircled forces supplied by airlifting supplies? [closed]

I was watching a video on World War 2 and learned that the Nazis kept their encircled troops supplied by air for weeks, till the pocket was liberated. I also know that earlier in the war, Soviet ...
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Why wasn’t the USSR “rebranded” communist?

I found that the Third International sponsored a worldwide transformation of former “socialist” parties (that was concretely related to the rejection of so-called “reformism”, to be somewhat upgraded ...
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Had the Chinese leadership considered the famine in Soviet Union in 1930s before starting the Great Leap Forward?

It was strange that the collectivization in the Soviet Union led to the Soviet famine of 1932-33 and the history repeated itself in 1959-61 in China. So far as I know the Soviet Union helped the ...
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In which way are the industrial revolution and the famine during the first years of Soviet rule comparable? [closed]

The other day, I was having a conversation about corruption in Russia under Putin rule, and his use of 'altered' historical narratives according to what would more beneficial to his rule as Russia's ...
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How did the countries devolved from USSR turn from communism to democracy or other ideology peacefully after the collapse?

After the Soviet Union dissolution, the countries independent from the Union, or the countries in the East Europe that were puppets of the Soviet Union turned to the current government without a civil ...
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Was the US dollar, the Soviet reserve currency too?

Was the Soviet rouble also backed by the US dollar, which was the global reserve currency at the time? I remember reading something about Soviets taking aid from the US, in the 1970s, after Soviet ...
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Did Soviet people know Stalin's birth name?

We all know now that Stalin's real name was Jughashvili (Ioseb Besarionis dzе Jughashvili). Lenin was actually Ulyanov, Trotsky was Lev Davidovich Bronstein, Kamenev was Leo Rosenfeld, etc. Searching ...
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Why was Lenin's brother executed, when he himself was only banished?

Alexander was executed. But Lenin was sent abroad. He settled in Germany, before he came back for the Revolution (and, as some people say, to avenge his brother). (A related question.)
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How true is the Soviet killing quota under Stalin? [closed]

In The Soviet Story from 1:37:54 to 1:38:54, killing quotas of Soviet citizens are talked about. I could not find any concrete reason, evidence, or documentation suggesting that such "killing ...
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What was the source of “presidium” as used by the Soviets?

A presidium/praesidium, was frequently used by the Soviets to refer to various executive councils such as the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet which in 1938 replaced the Presidium of the Central ...
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Were there often intra-USSR wars? If not, why not?

There's an article listing many post-Soviet conflicts on Wikipedia, which indicates that there have been many wars between regions/countries that were once part of the USSR. The causes of the wars, ...
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Was Zhukov's wit portrayed accurately in The Death of Stalin?

The Death of Stalin is a black comedy about a period of Soviet history running from the event from which the title is taken to the execution of Beria near the end of the film. I am perfectly aware ...
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Did the Germans try to “Pearl Harbor” Russia's Black Sea fleet?

Pearl Harbor of course, is a reference to the Japanese sneak attack that destroyed half the battleships of the U.S. Pacific fleet. Earlier in the war, the Germans managed to decimate the Russian ...
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How did residents of Estonia and Latvia prove that their family settled in the country prior to 1940, in order to become citizens in 1989?

In a related question, @defaultlocale posted this excerpt: Article 2. Possession of Latvia citizenship Citizens of Latvia are: persons who were citizens of Latvia on June 17, 1940 and their ...
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What alternate north-south supply routes did the Soviet Union have when the Volga and Stalingrad were under attack?

During World War II, an important route for getting supplies to Russia was the Persian Corridor. After landing on the south coast of Iran, Lend Lease supplies could be transported north across the ...
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During the breakup of the Soviet Union, on what basis was citizenship granted or withheld for each of the fifteen new republics?

The politics and economics of the Soviet Union caused large numbers of people to be transplanted from one region to another, for example: The Crimean Tatars were deported to Central Asia; Ethnic ...
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How were USSR oblasts and cities governed?

From Wikipedia “During the Soviet period, the high authority in the oblast was shared between three persons: The first secretary of the “Oblast” CPSU Committee (who in reality had the biggest ...
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Why were so many Soviet films shot in 1938–39 about a future German invasion?

Why were so many Soviet films about an anticipated Nazi German invasion into the USSR shot in 1938–1939, both before the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact and after it? Before the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact Nazi ...
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How successful was the NDEA?

The National Defence Education Act (NDEA) was passed shortly after the Soviet launch of the satellite Sputnik I with the goal of remedying what the American government believed to be a gap in ...
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Which Soviet leader has said “there is censorship in the West too - it's called money”!

I vaguely remember hearing a quote from soviet leader (might be Gorbachev, could be someone else), acknowledging media censorship in the Eastern bloc but arguing there is censorship in the West as ...
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When did the Russians first employ a successful envelopment tactic?

Greetings fellow history buffs. I read a book on the Soviet Army called, not surprisingly, Inside the Soviet Army. The author, Victor Suvorov (note this is an edit as there was confusion with the ...
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How much damage was USSR already capable of doing by the time of the Cuban Missile Crisis?

How much damage was USSR already capable of doing, in the event of a nuclear war, by the time of the Cuban Missile Crisis? How many ICBMs and strategic bombers did it have, and what were their ...
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Why did the Soviet Union take the risk of deploying missiles to Cuba, which precipitated the Cuban Missile Crisis? [closed]

During the Cuban Missile Crisis both sides risked further escalation into a WW3. However, under MAD, Wikipedia says: By the time of the 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis, both the United States and the ...
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Why did the USSR have two sources of currency?

An inscription on the 1, 3, and 5 rubles notes says that it is a State Treasury Note (Государственный Казначейский Билет), and that it is guaranteed by the entire property of the Union of SSR (...
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Did any deputies in the USSR ever get recalled via provisions in the 1977 constitution?

Many socialist countries, including the USSR, had provisions in their constitutions for recalling deputies by voters/citizens. For instance, 1977 constitution of the USSR has Article 107. Deputies ...
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Did the Soviet Union's successful northern campaign have an impact on Swedish iron ore shipments to Germany?

Late in World War II, the Soviet Union successfully invaded Finland and forced her to disassociate herself from Nazi Germany. This happened to the point where the Finns were forced to allow Soviet ...
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Which Soviet submarine was HMS Splendid tracking on 30th March 1982?

In 'Vulcan 607', R. White describes the background of the submarines that headed to the Falkland Islands. For the HMS Splendid, he notes that the submarine, under CO Lane-Nott was engaged in a mission ...
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Were there Jewish diplomats in Nazi Germany?

It is pretty well known that Nazis discouraged US companies from having local representatives who were Jews. I imagine it did not happen all at once and the way foreign Jews were treated was quite ...
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Why was there a “workers' militia” in Eastern Europe but not in the USSR?

After WWII, especially after 1956 in several Eastern European countries the ruling Communist Parties formed "workers' and peasants' militias", see for example, Worker's Militia or Combat ...
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Did the Soviet Union or its satellite states have any broadcast propaganda media for an international audience?

Since 1949, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty has been a U.S. Government funded broadcasting service aimed at Central Europe, Eastern Europe, and Central Asia. During the Cold War, it mainly targeted ...
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Did China repay Soviet grain aid?

The Sino-Soviet rift/split is a complicated issue. But there can be little doubt that it was complete by mid 1963, when the «Polemics on the General Line» were released by the Chinese Communist Party. ...
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Why did the USSR support the PRC entry into the UN?

In 1971, the USSR (and satellites) voted in favor of UN Resolution 2758, which recognized the People's Republic of China (PRC) as "the only legitimate representative of China to the United ...
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Can we meaningfully compare the poverty levels in the USSR to those in the USA at the same time and to those in the USA today? [closed]

I was told (by people who had lived there) that the USSR had homeless people but I would guess that the levels of homelessness were much lower and in general there were far fewer desperate people due ...
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Could the Soviet Union have supported Czechoslovakia primarily by air in 1938?

The Soviet Union was bound by treaty to support Czechoslovakia in 1938. One "sticking point" was that the Soviet Union would have to cross Polish and/or Romanian territory to do so. Was ...
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Did Boris Belousov join in his brother's conspiracy to kill the Emperor?

I'm working on a paper about the Belousov-Zhabotinsky-reaction (a chemical oscillator). I included some information about the history of oscillation reaction, in particular about Boris Pavlovich ...
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Did Boris Pavlovich Belousov die in 1970 or 1976?

I'm working on a paper about the Belousov-Zhabotinsky-reaction (a chemical oscillator). I included some information about the history of oscillation reaction, in particular about Boris Pavlovich ...
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Was the Volga really Russia's last line of defense before the Urals?

That was a claim made by General Vasily Chuikov in "The Battle For Stalingrad." He even went so far as to postulate a German column heading for Alma-Ata (Kazakhstan), toward the Chinese border. That ...

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