Joseph Stalin: Reply to Churchill, 1946

Main Points:

1. The Soviet Union suffered casualties from the German invasion several times greater than the US and UK put together. These caualties included men lost during the invasion, in battle, and then in the slave labor camps. Stalin feels this expense of the Soviet people that was essential to the eradication of Hitler’s regime, and the subsequent freedom thereby returned to Europe, has been overlooked.

2. Communism is growing as a natural result of the negative effects of fascism and the dependability that communism offered. Communists proved themselves as “fighters against fascist regimes” and concerned with the freedom of the people.

3. Accuses Churchill of believing the “common people” are easily manipulated and therefore takes a condescending stance towards them. Stalin states that the opposite is true and that the common people have opinions and views on politics of their own, that they are able to “stand up for themselves”. He points out that this ability was demonstrated when they (the “common people”) voted Churchill and his party out and voted for the Labor party instead. They preferred “Left democratic parties” to conforming with fascism and the extremists who cooperated with it.

Questions:

1. How does this document expose the enduring strain between the wartime Allies and cultivate tensions leading to the Cold War?

2. How come the Allies did not see it imperative to maintain good relations with the Soviet Union after the severe costs of WW2?

Observation:

I found Stalin’s tone in this document significant. He talks in a condescending, reticent, and provoking manner. It seems as if he is attempting to incite the other European nations to initiate war against Russia. He compares Churchill’s words to Hitler’s in terms of “racial theory”, saying that Churchill only speaks to English-speaking nations. This accusation separates the English speaking nations from the non-English speaking nations, but holds Churchill responsible.

One thought on “Joseph Stalin: Reply to Churchill, 1946

  1. In response of the second question, I think the difference in political ideologies between England and the Soviet Union were too opposing, thus it was impossible to maintain positive relations.

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