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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Were the NKVD hated by the regular army like the SS was?

I remember reading about how the Wehrmacht and the SS soldiers never got along, and I was wondering if it was the same way in the Soviet Union, with the regular Red Army not liking the NKVD?
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Why didn't Stalin use force to bring Tito into line?

In 1956 and 1968, the Soviets invaded Eastern European countries because they had deviated from Moscow's model. Why didn't they do this to Tito? His independent inclinations are usually explained by ...
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Why did Fall Blau start at Voronezh instead of further south?

The main objectives of Fall Blau, the German 1942 summer offensive, were the Volga River, to cut off Soviet oil supplies from further south, and the Caucasus oil fields themselves, for German use. ...
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Could the Germans have “sealed off” the Sea of Azov in World War II?

After the fall of Sevastopol in June, 1942, the Soviet navy retreated to the east coast of the Black Sea. North of the Black Sea is the much smaller Sea of Azov, with a narrow access through the ...
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Why did people in the USSR participate in elections?

It is well known that the elections in the USSR had only one candidate on the list, giving no real choice to the voter. While it was possible to vote against a candidate, there was no realistic ...
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At the time of Sputnik, what kind of radios were common in the Soviet Union?

Sputnik was launched 1957 Oct 4. At that time, what kind of radios were common in the Soviet Union? I'm interested in what kind of radios were privately owned and kept in people's apartments. What ...
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How was Russian AFV production affected by the relocation of factories during WWII, after the German invasion of 1941?

How was Russian AFV production affected by the relocation of factories during WWII, post the German invasion of 1941? They went on to out-produce the Germans by around 3-1 in tanks from 1942 onwards. ...
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Political opposition groups in the Russian revolution?

Ok, so I do understand that there were the Bolsheviks and the Mensheviks. In school we learned that Soviets consisted of the peasantry, the industrial workers, and the soldiers. But later on, the ...
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Why was the Soviet Union unable to stop the violence in Nagorno-Karabakh? [closed]

In 1988, a war began between Armenia and Azerbaijan over Nagorno-Karabakh, a majority Armenian area within Azerbaijan's borders. The Soviet Union sent in troops to keep the peace, but it didn't work. ...
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Why did USSR lay down undersea communications cable between Petropavlovsk and Vladivostok?

Why not just use a land cable that goes around the Sea of Okhotsk? A land cable is safer, and tapping it is harder. I screen cap Google Maps. I know the undersea cable is more direct, but did it ...
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Is there documentary evidence that Stalin intended/prepared to fight Germany after the Nazi-Soviet pact?

It's often said the peace was only both sides buying time. There's ample evidence Hitler always intended to break the pact. Did Stalin? Suvorov's thesis that Stalin was preparing for an offensive ...
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Why was Stalin surprised by the German attack in June 1941?

Although he was warned by many, including Churchill, of the forthcoming German attack on 22 June, Stalin did not believe those warnings and was surprised when the attack started. I believe the ...
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Did the Germans consider an amphibious landing for Fall Blau?

In the operation Fall Blau (Case Blue) the German Wehrmacht advanced towards the Don river, and then sent Army Group A into the Caucasus region to take the oil fields in the region. They managed to ...
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How much of the Jonestown money actually got given to the USSR?

So, I was reading the Wikipedia page on the Jonestown massacre, and I noticed that several members of the People's Temple (including their leadership) willed all of their money to the Communist Party ...
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Can the German success on the Eastern front be largely explained by superior air power?

My understanding is that the Russians were mostly superior on the ground to the Germans (except for armor, in the early stages of the war), and the main German advantage was in the air. The ...
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How far should I go back in Russian History in order to understand Communist Russia? [closed]

I'm writing a story and need information on the Russian communist rule because I'm writing a book about a government much like that of communist Russia, specifically focused on a police state ...
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Why did the USSR stop in the Winter War against Finland in 1940?

To me, this is one of the biggest history mysteries. By the end of February 1940, the USSR breached the Mannerheim line, and the Finnish troops were exhausted and short of ammunition. I have little ...
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Could the Soviet Union have continued fighting World War II without Caucasus oil?

In 1942, Germany's Fall Blau was initially aimed at capturing or interdicting shipments of oil from the Caucasus to the rest of the Soviet Union. Even though armies were diverted to Stalingrad and ...
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Why were Soviets so extremely effective snipers in WW2?

I found a top 10 sniper list from 2nd world war which contains 9 soviet soldiers, and only 1 Finnish soldier. Namely: Stepan Vasilievich Petrenko Vasilij Ivanovich Golosov Fyodor Trofimovich ...
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How did Kolmogorov help protect Moscow in WW2?

I have been reading this blog post which mentions that: during World War II Kolmogorov applied his mathematical gifts to artillery problems, helping to protect Moscow from German bombardment. So,...
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Was the N.E.P. of Russia successful in terms of economics?

The Soviet's New Economic Plan was indeed a successful plan in establishing a comparatively strong postwar economy for the Soviet Union, but there were many imperfections: food prices fluctuated ...
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How true is the statement “Soviet troops got into Berlin riding American trucks, walking in American boots and using American trains”?

In other words, how significant was American lend-lease in helping the Soviet front? Would the Soviets be suffering a lot more had lend-lease not happen, or was it not as significant as people make ...
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What was the role of the Soviet Navy during WWII?

Most books about WWII speak of the naval battles of Allied and Axis powers during the war, but none about the Soviet Navy. The Soviets had an active fleet at the time - why did it not engage the ...
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In the Soviet Union, why was the Cheka renamed so many times?

The Cheka was the secret police of the USSR. Wikipedia maintains a list of the Cheka and its subsequent renamings: 1917: Cheka 1922: GPU 1923: OGPU 1934: NKVD 1941: NKGB 1941: NKVD (again) 1943: NKGB ...
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How obvious was lend-lease equipment to the average Soviet soldier?

As the question says, was the average USSR soldier aware that the equipment isssued to them had come from the United States? Jeeps and aircraft are well known to have been sent to the USSR - would the ...
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What kind of heating did Moscow have in the early Soviet Union (1917 - 1930)?

I would like to know what kind of residential heating was prevalent in Moscow in the time period around 1917 - 1930. What kind of fuel was used? Did they have district heating back then? Otherwise ...
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Was the population of Moscow wildly overstated during the Cold War?

The science fiction author Robert Heinlein was a socialist in his youth, but became a strident anticommunist during the Cold War. In 1960, he and his wife Virginia went as tourists to the USSR, and he ...
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Was Kaliningrad offered to the Lithuanian SSR; was this offer rejected; and if so, why?

This is a follow up to this other question Why was Kaliningrad placed under the Russian SFSR rather than the Lithuanian SSR? Semaphore's answer states: ... a similar offer was made to give ...
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Did Moscow have natural gas in the early era of the Soviet Union (1917 - 1930)?

Did apartments in Moscow have natural gas in the years 1917 to 1930? If so, were they supplied by utility pipelines underground? I am curious because underground utility pipes are expensive to build ...
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During the Second World War, did the Germans expect that Japan would declare war on Russia?

As I understand it, Germany did not make war with America on the condition that Japan joined the war against Russia. Was this because they thought that Japan would attack Russia anyway? If so, what ...
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Why didn't Imperial Japan attack the Soviet Union during World War 2?

Japan and the Soviet Union shared a common border in Manchuria and the German invasion of the Soviet Union weakened the Soviets greatly. In view of the advantages to Japan in seeing the Soviet Union ...
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Why was the Soviet Naval Infantry disbanded in 1947?

According to Peter Antill: The naval Infantry performed a number of important landings in both World Wars including raids against the Turks around the Black Sea and the capture of Sakhalin Island ...
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What was the internal Soviet reaction to the moon landing?

The Soviet Union was a famously restrictive place when it came to news and ideological spin, and obviously their attitude toward the United States was less than supportive and warm. The Space Race ...
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Was Russia the only country in WWII that succeeded in expansionist war aims?

Germany, Italy, Russia, and Japan all initiated combat against peaceful countries for the clear purpose of territorial expansion. Of these only Russia ended the war with more territory than it started ...
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What did Russia do about Caucasus oil after the collapse of the Soviet Union?

During World War II, something like 72% of the Soviet Union's oil came from Baku, Azerbaijan, in the Caucasus. More like 86% if you count Grozny (Chechnya), and other Caucasus territories, leaving ...
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What is this illustration portraying?

While doing my presentation I have come across this illustration titles "Downfall of the Soviet Union". I am, however, unable to determine, who are the people on this illustration and what is it ...
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Did NATO promise Gorbachev not to accept membership applications from former Warsaw Pact nations?

There have been several claims that there was an agreement between NATO and USSR at the end of the Cold War. This agreement supposedly required NATO to reject any membership applications from the ...
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Did the Allies ever seriously contemplate a “Northern Intervention” in Russia during World War II?

Late in World War I, Britain and America conducted a Northern Intervention around the Russian ports of Murmansk and Archangel to try to prevent the occupation of northern Russia by either the Germans ...
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Was the battle of Stalingrad “unique” in the annals of history?

I'm referring to the fact that BOTH sides ordered their troops to fight for the city "to the last man and last round." (Hitler). The Soviet Union's General Vasili Chuikov echoed this by saying "We ...
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What kind of ID Number, if any, did the Soviets institute for all their citizens?

In the United States, every citizen has a social security number for income purposes. It's a 9-digit number. This began in 1935, though I was surprised to learn from wikipedia that until 1986, most ...
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Were Soviets invited to the Marshall Islands to observe the first hydrogen bomb detonations?

In 1952, did the US invite, or consider inviting, Russian scientist to observe the detonation of the first hydrogen bomb? These were above-ground tests far away from Russian in the Marshall Islands, ...
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Was the 1939 Red Army more disciplined / better behaved than the 1943-1945 Red Army?

The Soviet Union Red Army had two westbound offensives into Central Europe (approximately the territory that is currently Belarus, Kaliningrad, Poland) as part of World War II: The Soviet invasion of ...
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Did Stalin kill all Soviet officers involved in the Winter War?

Did Stalin kill all of the Soviet officers involved in the Winter War, when it ended? A documentary called "Warlords: Hitler vs Stalin" made this claim, but Wikipedia doesn't seem to mention this. ...
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Could Battle of Stalingrad be won by Germany if they haven't lost so many aircraft in Battle of Britain? [closed]

So I come up with a question, maybe an irrational or a dumb one, but what effect would the Luftwaffe have had on the Battle of Stalingrad if they had had the ~ 2000 aircraft (lost in Battle of Britain)...
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What was the German perspective on Stalingrad?

I'm quite interested in Stalingrad and have started reading a bit regarding the battle itself and have seen that weather had played quite a significant factor in halting the German advance. (Reading ...
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When did Soviet authorities first plan/conceive of migrating their industry if war broke out?

This comes from a related question. It seems Germany never conceived of the possibility that Russia might migrate its heavy industry to safe locations beyond the Urals. So now I want to know if Soviet ...
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Did the Soviet ever attempt “innocent passage” thru American waters?

In 1986 and 1988, the US Navy sent warships into Soviet Crimean Sea territorial waters as exercises of innocent passage (which essentially means that you can sail through an unfriendly nation's waters ...
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Did the Red Army and German Army clash in Poland in 1939?

I found a youtube lecture by Stephen Kotkin. He is a professor of history, wrote 2 books on Stalin with a 3rd on the way, and has access to certain Russian archives. That's all I know about him, ...
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Was there car insurance in the USSR?

I can't imagine how it works in a planned economy. Does the government replace your car if you crash it? Was there no sort of insurance?
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Why didn't all non-Russian states become independent during the collapse of the Soviet Union?

There are so many sub-divisions in the country who are not Russian in their language and ethnicity, Tuva, Dagestan, Chechnya etc. When states like the Baltics, Ukraine, and Central Asia were gaining ...

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