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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When was Joseph Alsop article 'Another Hitler-Time?' published in the Washington Post?

When was Joseph Alsop article 'Another Hitler-Time?' first published in the Washington Post? The Washington Post archives doesn't seem to contain this article. This article contains, the supposed, ...
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Did Gosplan use Sears Roebuck and similar catalogues to "fix prices"?

Does anything corroborate the claim, made by Ray Evans in the March 2002 proceedings of the H.R. Nicholls Society (dedicated to deregulating the Australian labour market), that when the American ...
seanakabry's user avatar
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Ranking Eastern Europe Communist regimes by severity of repression [closed]

I was wondering that the severity of repression, censorship, economic stagnation must have varied greatly across the Eastern bloc countries between 1945-1990. It may even have varied over the years in ...
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When in 1980s did travel to and from USSR became possible?

Soviet borders were closed for traveling from USSR for most Soviet people until late 1980s. I don't recall, however, the year/month when the borders opened. After 1986 and before 1991, but that's all ...
Michael's user avatar
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Is there an example of a Soviet or Russian prison camp where both guards and prisoners perished?

NOTE: As to previous research, I simply did a google search, "soviet prison camp where both guards and prisoners perished" and I got nothing besides general information about deaths in camps....
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Did Soviet people decorate their own homes with outdoor Christmas lights?

As far back as the 1960s, it has been common in North America for people to decorate their homes with strands of outdoor lights during the winter holiday season. In the neighbourhood where I live, at ...
Psychonaut's user avatar
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In the Soviet Union, what was the average cookware available in the home?

What was the average cookware available in someone's home (apartment) in the Soviet Union? The period I'm most interested in is the post-war up to the Brezhnev Stagnation, so this is roughly 1945 - ...
DrZ214's user avatar
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Did the US stop using the U-2 spy plane for USSR after the shoot-down event in 1960?

The shoot-down of Powers is a famous event in the history of modern military. Did US stop using U-2 afterwards on USSR? It is known that this event stimulated the US spy satellite program.
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Were there any female soldiers in the Soviet army who partook in the mass rapes in Eastern Germany?

Were there female Soviet soldiers that partook in the mass rapes in Eastern Germany? The only source I found on any reaction of female soldiers on the mass rapes was in a testimony of a veteran: ...
Apoliticalboy's user avatar
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Is Wikipedia's identification of Lebed an error?

Speaking of the Alexander Yakovlev's conflict with the hardcore communists, the Wikipedia article says: In the early 1980s, Yakovlev returned to the Soviet Union, and became a prominent supporter of ...
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(Why) did the PRC not [ever] recognize the incorporation of the Baltic states into the USSR?

I'm aware that the relationship between the PRC and the USSR was rocky at times, but it seems a little odd the PRC never recognized the three Baltic states as part of the USSR, that is according to ...
the gods from engineering's user avatar
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Did Comecon [even] fail to standardize container sizes?

This is from a 1983 NYT article: Other obstacles to the bloc's growth include a wider railway gauge in the Soviet Union than that in most other countries of Eastern Europe, the absence of modern ...
the gods from engineering's user avatar
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Did Stalin describe Beria as his Himmler?

The Wikipedia article on Lavrentiy Beria states: At the Yalta Conference, Stalin introduced Beria to U.S. President Franklin Roosevelt as “my Himmler”. However, the only reference given there is an ...
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How were Soviet-Afghanistan War casualties distributed between the Soviet Republics? Were they disproportionately non-Russian?

It's frequently asserted that the impact of the Soviet-Afghanistan War disproportionately fell on Soviet Republics outside Russia, as non-Russians were overrepresented in the Red Army. The resultant ...
SovAfgWar's user avatar
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Did Western governments object to repression of western communists during Stalinism? [closed]

I am interested in the repression of western communists (traveling to or residing in the USSR) during the Stalin era. How extensive was it? What were the justifications from the Soviet point of view? ...
Roger V.'s user avatar
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Did the USSR attempt to broker peace negotiations between Japan and USA?

I ran across a remark in the German Wikipedia, in the article about the Tokyo War tribunals. They discuss the points 35 and 36 of the charges (waging war against the USSR) : Von besonderem Interesse ...
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To what extent did Russian bourgeoisie and capitalism continued to exist through the Soviet rule in the USSR? [closed]

During the Communist rule in Russia, the industry and land were mostly nationalized, and many of the previous landowners or industrialist were either exiled or physically exterminated. However, the ...
Roger V.'s user avatar
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Why did the Patrice Lumumba University eject Carlos the Jackal?

According to Michael Ray, Carlos the Jackal, byname of Ilich Ramírez Sánchez, (born October 12, 1949, Caracas, Venezuela), Venezuelan militant who orchestrated some of the highest-profile terrorist ...
Rodrigo de Azevedo's user avatar
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How much did the production of the Tsar Bomba cost to the Soviets?

The Tsar Bomba, also known as the "King of Bombs," was the most powerful nuclear weapon ever detonated. Developed and tested by the Soviet Union during the height of the Cold War, this ...
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Was the KGB, at least after 1975, actually an effective institution? [closed]

There were several major events that the KGB either failed to predict or misjudged, e.g., it underestimated the Solidarity movement in Poland failed to predict the fall of the Berlin Wall did not ...
Uk rain troll's user avatar
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When did McFaul & Sechin first meet?

According to David Remnick, In 1991, McFaul was in St. Petersburg, trying to organize a seminar on local government. He found himself doing business with a man from the mayor’s office named Igor ...
Rodrigo de Azevedo's user avatar
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3 answers
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Who said, "Freedom to do what?"

I read a quote recently, it was either Lenin or Stalin, one of their aides said, "Now, comrade, we will have freedom!" and Lenin (or Stalin) replied, "Freedom to do what?" The ...
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Identification of Stalingrad memorabilia medallions

Some time in the 1970s, an academic from Riga, Latvia, visited my grandfather (a physicist) in the UK and gave these Stalingrad "medals" (for want of a better word) to his sons. 50 years on, ...
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How did US, and the Western world's people react when USSR suddenly became an ally during WWII?

Before the USSR's participation in WWII with the West, it had a non-aggression pact with Germany, invaded Poland, and is basically the super-villain of the Red Scare. But suddenly, after USSR became ...
Faito Dayo's user avatar
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2 answers
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Did Nazi propaganda about the USSR change after the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact?

I'm well-aware that Soviet propaganda completely changed its orientation after the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact, starting a much more positive portrayal of the Nazis in many aspects up until the German ...
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Was Lassalism persecuted in the USSR during the Stalin period?

Background Ferdinand Lassalle was the founder of the General German Workers Association (ADAV), which is considered as the first organized labor movement (at least in Germany) and would later evolve ...
Roger V.'s user avatar
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What's the proxy war that the USSR spent most resources on?

Off the top of my head it might be Afghanistan, but I'm not totally sure despite direct troop participation. They also sent substantial aid to Vietnam, North Korea, and various Arab countries fighting ...
the gods from engineering's user avatar
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What led to the abandonment of the word "canton" for RSFSR subdivisions?

The RSFSR had "cantons" as subdivisions of some of its constituent Republics in the 1920s. What led to the abandonment of this term, later on? (I'm guessing the word (which is probably a ...
the gods from engineering's user avatar
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Are there other examples of sustainable propaganda besides USSR: several generations, several leaders

From my understanding of the history of USSR, it was successful enough to dominate in the ideology about events of 1910s-1920s on its territory. In particular, the official party doctrine, the books, ...
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Where can I find statistics on Soviet education of foreign students and in foreign countries?

I'm looking for statistics on soviet education of the foreign students and in foreign countries. In particular, I am trying to find numbers on: How many foreigners were educated in Soviet Union (e.g. ...
Mikhail Zhokhov's user avatar
6 votes
1 answer
331 views

Did Soviet propaganda assert that the Jews lived badly/poorly in Israel?

To my knowledge, there was a lot of anti-Israel propaganda that emphasized Israeli militarism. Suppression of the Arab locals. Israel being a puppet of the US. Israel being friendly with the former ...
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Why would this word have been an unsuitable name in Communist Poland? Is it because it's a racial slur?

In Marek Hłasko's The Graveyard (set in communist-occupied Poland) there is a scene where, in a political party meeting one of the party members (Nowak) is forced to change the name of his dog. This ...
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Is "Lenin’s Testament" authentic?

Context In 1922, the Communist Party was firmly in control of the USSR (or at least the Russia part of it), and Vladimir Lenin was the undisputed leader of the Party. Lenin was seriously ill and had ...
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Why did Women's Day never really catch on in the US, even though it started there?

The roots of International Women's Day (March 8th) go all the way back to New York City in 1909 and the Socialist Party of America. However, from what I have learned the International Women's Day is ...
Qiulang 邱朗's user avatar
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2 answers
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What are the grenades and artillery cited in this testimony?

In the testimony of a Soviet officer of the raid on Tatsinskaya cited by Wikipedia, the Soviet officer speaks of two elements faced by Soviet tanks: Enemy artillery Germans "launching grenades [...
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Why was the Budjak annexed to Ukraine in 1940?

In 1940, the USSR pressured Romania to surrender its eastern-most province of Bessarabia. The majority of it was given to the newly formed Moldavian SSR, but the Budjak was made part of Ukraine ...
SPavel's user avatar
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Are there some concrete examples of the pre-1962 Soviet complaints in re CORONA spy satellites?

According to Pat Norris' book Spies in the Sky (p. 111) until the first successful Zenit flight in summer 1962 the Soviets complained bitterly to America about the CORONA flights. However he does ...
the gods from engineering's user avatar
21 votes
8 answers
9k views

Why did the Soviets not shoot down US spy satellites during the Cold War?

The USSR was not happy with unauthorised overflights, shooting down everything it could, from spy balloons to U-2s. Also, despite repeated US proposals, something like the Open Skies treaty was only ...
the gods from engineering's user avatar
4 votes
2 answers
399 views

What was the true extent of German losses at Prokhorovka?

Recently I came accross what seemed to be a new thesis about the battle of Prokhorovka. I read the book Kursk of the German author and historian Roman Töppel, who explains alongside other "new ...
totalMongot's user avatar
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4 votes
1 answer
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Why did the Red Army change uniforms in 1943?

In 1943, the Workers' and Peasants' Red Army (Rabóče-krestʹjánskaja Krásnaja ármija, RKKA) of the Soviet Union decided to adopt shoulder boards instead of collar tabs for rank identification. This is ...
MKN's user avatar
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Why did Pakistan get involved in Soviet-Afghan war from 1979 to 1989?

Soviet-Afghan War Afghan-Pakistan Relations >> Contemporary Era I was reading this Wikipedia article and couldn't understand why Pakistan got itself involved in Soviet-Afghan War from 1979 to ...
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1 answer
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What are the reasons for the failure of Soviet Union at agriculture? [closed]

The failure at agriculture is known to everybody. The Soviet Union became one of the main importer of grain whereas till sixties was one the main exporters. Does anyone know more on this or can ...
Larsa se eidaklaxtarsa's user avatar
1 vote
2 answers
93 views

Were there any recorded accidents in the USSR (after 1945) involving gas pipelines?

Are there any recorded accidents in the USSR (after 1945) involving gas pipelines? Was there any suspicion that some of them might have been an act of sabotage? I am not asking about a particular gas ...
Jonathan's user avatar
6 votes
1 answer
210 views

How did the Soviet press talk about the opposing forces (mujahideens) during the Soviet-Afghan war?

I've watched and read a fair bit of material on the Soviet war in Afghanistan, but this [in my humble experience] is a topic that's not touched upon much if at all in Western coverage of that war. For ...
the gods from engineering's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
156 views

Which Soviet resolution rejected "laughter for laughter's sake"?

George Counts (1949): During the past two and one-half years the Central Committee has issued a series of "ideological resolutions" ... These resolutions not only reject "art for art's ...
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3 votes
1 answer
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Where can I read the 1966 letters opposing Stalin's rehabilitation?

On 14 February 1966, 25 notable Soviet scientists and cultural figures sent a letter to CPSU General Secretary Leonid Brezhnev urging against the rehabilitation of Joseph Stalin. Another similar ...
Psychonaut's user avatar
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What is the origin of the claim of the 27 million Soviets dead in WWII? [closed]

All throughout the existence of the USSR, there was always the claim that the number of USSR citizens who died in WWII was 20 million. Lately, I am seeing a persistent claim that that number was 27 ...
wrod's user avatar
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Were the Soviet soldiers in Afghanistan officially volunteers?

I always thought they were conscripts, who were ordered to go there, but recently saw a mention that they all were volunteers. So, I wonder whether they signed any paper of consent before being sent ...
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What heavy industrial work, if any, was done in USSR 1923-1927?

In the USSR, the first five-year Plan began in 1928. The Revolution and Civil War ended in 1922 Oct (the "main phase" according to wikipedia). That's, coincidentally, a five-year gap. So I ...
DrZ214's user avatar
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6 votes
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What was the extent of Kohl's government opposition to the independence of Ukraine?

There's a (paywalled) piece in Der Spiegel summarized as In 1991, the Helmut Kohl government wanted to prevent the eastward expansion of NATO and the independence of Ukraine - this is shown by ...
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