52

It was more of a back-and-forth. You can build a narrative of one side out-pacing the other if you cherry-pick firsts, but their capabilities were very close. The timeline of first achievements is interleaved. Firsts grab headlines and demonstrate national priorities, but they don't show capability well. The other side would often accomplish something ...


49

This question gets really complicated really fast. After the breakup, each of the former Soviet republics established its own set of laws, and then these laws were rewritten multiple times. The region also includes half a dozen unrecognized states (Transnistria, Artsakh, Abkhazia, Ossetia, DPR, and LPR) each of them having its own very original definition of ...


42

Yes. Ample supply. At least for print and radio. Newspapers and magazines Not really 'broadcast medium', but mentioned in the question: Many versions printed directly under the auspices of a communist party, and openly sold as such. Example the Peking Review. — West-German National football (soccer) team player Paul Breitner, Maoist at the time, reading the ...


40

Yes, there were insurgencies, wars and inter-ethnic conflicts. Not often. First of all, the Yakut revolt which was part of the Russian civil war, lasted till June 16, 1923. The USSR was established on December 29, 1922. So, the Russian civil war continued in the USSR. Second, consider the Basmachi movement, which lasted till 1934 but in the 1930s was mostly ...


39

The reason is that there are two different concepts that are named "communism". One is the final stage in the Marxist(-Leninist?) development model (after archaic/primitive classless societies, slave-holder societies, feudal societies, capitalistic societies and socialist societies) It is marked by (again!) a classless society, a total worker's ...


33

The policies very much varied with time. Even more they differed between scientific institutions in USSR. First of all, there was always scientific exchange through publications. Until the middle of 1930s Soviets could publish papers in Soviet journals in foreign languages. Later this was prohibited and publication abroad strongly discouraged. But since ...


27

No, there weren't any civil wars in the Soviet Union. For a few reasons: While the USSR consisted of hundreds of ethnic groups, the Soviet ethos put a damping cloth on ethnic conflict. People were Soviets and therefore in some sense also equals. Not unlike how the US is held together by American patriotism. The USSR dissolved before political Islam became a ...


23

It is good to know that by Lenin's stance USSR was not in fact a socialist state. Their aim was socialism and eventually communism (in modern parlance people think of socialism and communism, usually communism is just though of a subcategory of socialist views. In fact Marx himself used communism and socialism interchangeably as an economic mode), but at ...


18

I think the premise of the question - that the US ought to have a technological superiority over the USSR, as it did in other areas - is quite sensible here, so I will address the Soviet side of the story. for some context, Soviet Russia happened to have it own vast talent in STEM (as witnessed e. g. by Nobel prizes to Tamm-Frank-Cherenkov and Landau), and ...


16

There were several rail lines east of Volga First, let's look at the map of soviet rail lines in 1941 with accompanying legend As we can see, there are two rail lines, both of them single track and normal gauge. One goes from Astrakhan and split towards Stalingrad and towards Saratov. This one is likely used to supply Stalingrad front. Other is more to the ...


16

Answering Allure's sub-question: Any idea why these wars and insurgencies were less common during Soviet times as opposed to post-Soviet times? It seems there was nothing from the 1950s to late 1990s too The period of 1950-1990 was the "cold war", and was characterised by a high level of militarisation. The security and integrity of the state and ...


16

Various reasons, from demographics to communist system First we need to start with the period before WW1. Russian Empire was mostly rural and agricultural. According to census from 1897, 77.5% of population were peasants, and this does not include Cossacks who were also rural population but with different status. This corresponds well with the low literacy ...


15

Considering the statement "post-Soviet states grant citizenship primarily on the basis of blood, and not birthplace": the two shouldn't be seen in contradiction in this case. Jus sanguinis means transmittance of citizenship between generations. But as republican citizenship lost its importance after 1978 (see below) the place of birth or residence ...


15

The observable evolution seems to be Latin → French → German → Russian → English The Russian source is Latin with perhaps a detour via usage in German organsational forms. The precursor to the Socialist party SPD in Germany has a documented use of this word Präsidium for its organisation going back to at least 1865. The communist agenda and organisational ...


14

Yes, most citizens had spared some documents, or they could order a transcript from the state archives. It may be surprising, but most of the documentation survived during the war, and it was also kept in order during the Soviet rule. Some people who were born in Abrene district, now in Russia, had to request the Russian archives for a copy of their record, ...


13

Of course it was widely known. In Lenin's case, in 1924 they even renamed his native city Ulyanovsk. For instance, the History of the All-Union Communist Party (Bolsheviks): Short Course, which was published since 1938 and until Stalin's death in millions of copies, for instance, contains a passage referring to Lenin as "Ulyanov." As for Stalin, ...


13

It depends a lot on timing, but I can make some general comments. (I got my PhD in theoretical chemistry in 1976, so I've been following this to some extent since the late 60s.) First, there is a huge, sharp, big distinction between military research and everything else. Most military stuff is classified and both sides tried their best to keep that from ...


13

No Delay to BARBAROSSA -- But Significant Implications Firstly, as a teaser, it is worth pointing out that Hitler himself did quite explicitly blame Mussolini's failures in Africa and the Balkans for undermining his invasion of the USSR, in his famous recorded conversation with Marshal Mannerheim of Finland in May 1942. He made mention of the permanent loss ...


12

No Zhukov's biography I read ever mentioned humor or wit of any kind. The personal trait they consistently emphasize if ruthlessness. E.g., Зенькович "Маршалы и генсеки" Карпов "Маршал Жуков: Опала" Исаев "Мифы и правда о Маршале Жукове" PS. His role in the war is also quite exaggerated but this is a different story...


12

Sorry for bad English. I am Russian and live in Russia. The USSR consisted of 1/7 of the Earth and included a huge number of peoples of both Europe and Asia. Despite this, there were no serious conflicts during the Soviet regime. It's all about total control over society and anti-religious policy. The USSR was an atheistic state, where a struggle was waged ...


11

In 1922, the Soviet economy was suffering from high inflation and the government introduced a new gold-backed currency called Chervonets which was equivalent of the old Russian imperial gold coin of 10 roubles. Initially, chervonets was exchanged for 11,400 roubles. As the roubles and chervonets were both in circulation, every day, the State Bank published ...


11

Let me add to the previous answer some Soviet media outlets. Soviet Union, a journal published in 18 languages. It had a supplement called "Sports in the USSR". Moscow news - a newspaper published in English, and several other languages. (In 1970s this was the only periodical in English available to most Soviet citizens, so students read it to ...


11

Admiral Kuznetsov's finest hour June 1941 was a hectic month in Moscow. More and more reports from agents, spies, military attachés, aerial and other reconnaissance, were confirming the fact that Germany prepares for an attack on the USSR in the coming days. Much was written about Stalin's indecisiveness in those days, as he was getting more and more aware ...


11

Your question is based on a misconception, which is that there was any sort of "space race" before the Soviets launched Sputnik. The US had some fairly low budget research programs, such as Project Vanguard: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Project_Vanguard Unlike the Soviet programs, they were regarded as purely scientific*, and so did not use ICBMs ...


10

It is very difficult or impossible to compare. By some standards almost all Soviet citizens were poor. By other standards they were OK. There is no adequate conversion rate of the Soviet rouble. Prices in roubles were not true market prices: most of them were arbitrarily established by the state. Many things were cheap but not easily available. Let me ...


10

I am from a former soviet country, and it is important that these ideas were somewhat new and there are some inconsistencies in the terminologies until later when they were defined more properly. Many took the word social and commune and tried to make a government definition run by social/communes. - Even Karl Marks used the words interchangeably. So the ...


10

They did, but the amounts of stuff they were able to deliver was not enough. Firstly: air superiority. Soviets didn't have that in the first part of the war. But they tried to supply nonetheless, at night for example. Secondly: sufficient number of suitable transport planes as well as transport containers to supply the troops. They lacked specialized ...


10

It didn't influence Operation Barbarossa significantly. What stopped the German advance? The tenacious defence of the Red Army. When the Germans kicked in the door, the house didn't come down crashing as they expected. Among other factors, the Rasputisa, or the muddy season. That is actually not one, but two seasons: The autumn rains, when roads become ...


9

Indirectly Historically, Sweden ended trade with Germany in November 1944. That is a bit late in the war, and Allies pressured them to do something much earlier, but there was always a threat of German army stationed in Norway and Sweden was practically isolated in Scandinavian peninsula. Add to that significant part of population that were anti-Communist ...


9

General Division of Responsibilities The division of responsibilities was roughly similar to that at the national level: the decisions were made at the party committee (and both Soviet chairman and executive committee chairman were members thereof, together with the police and KGB bosses) under the guidance of the secretary, and the Soviet chairman was ...


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