Inter War years


Tehran Conference


In Iran the Big three met to discuss how to defeat Germany

First atomic bomb


USA drops it on Hiroshima and Nagasaki

Yalta Conference

February 1945

Allied leaders met in Ukraine to plan Europe after Germany was defeated

Hitler defeated

May 1945

Potsdam Conference

July 1945

Second Conference but 3 major changes since Yalta



USA and British combined their zone of Berlin

Truman Doctrine

March 1947

USA would send money, equipment and advice to any country in Americas view that was threatened by a Communist takeover


October 1947

Stalin set up the Communist Information Bureau to co-ordinate work of the Communist Parties of East Europe. It regularly brought leaders of Communist parties to Moscow to be briefed by Stalin and his ministers, allowing Stalin to keep a close eye on the Independent-minded leaders and replace them with people completely loyal to him.



French join their zone to US and British Berlin zone

New currency in West Berlin


New currency began to repair Germany

Marshall Aid

March 1948

After George Marshall was sent to Europe to assess the economic state he returned saying it would need $17 billion to rebuild prosperity. After Czechoslovakia fell to Communism congress finally accepted Marshall Aid making $17 billion availiable to Europe over four years

USSR blockades Berlin

June 1948

After Trizonia was created Stalin felt ganged up on, especially after a new currency was introduced in west berlin. So he blocked all supply lines in the hope of making west berlin entirely reliable on USSR

Airlift in Berlin

June 1948 - May 1949

For ten months the Allies airlifted supplies to West Berlin. When the first planes set off and flew over the Soviet zone everyone feared it would result in them being shot down which would mean war but they weren't. Food, clothing, oil and building materials were brought in. Stalin reopened communications in May realising that the blockade would not make the Western Allies give up Berlin.


April 1949

The North Atlantic Treaty Organistation was set up as Western Leaders signed an agreement to work together

Trizonia becomes the Federal Republic of Germany

May 1949

USSR zone becomes Geramn Democratic Republic

October 1949

Stalin dies


Nikita Khruschev emerges


Warsaw Pact


Khrushchev still wanted a buffer zone against attack from the West. Warsaw pact was a military alliance similar to NATO. Members would defend each other if one was attacked. It included all Communist countries of eastern Europe, except Yugoslavia.



At Communist Party International Khrushchev attacks Stalin. Announcing him a wicked tyrant. He starts releasing more political prisoners, closed down Cominform and dismissed Stalin's foreign minister, Molotov.

Rakosi loses power


After Khrushchev's destalinisation speech a group within the Communist party in Hungary opposed Rakosi. He appealed to Moscow for help but Moscow would not back him for 'health reasons' ordering his retirement.

Imre Nagy


IN control of Hungary after Erno Gero

Erno Gero


He was no more acceptable to the Hungarian people. A huge student demonstration in October made the USSR allow a new government to be formed under the well respected Imre Nagy.

Soviets attack the Hungarians

November 1956

Thousands of troops and tanks moved into Budapest as a result of Imre Nagy trying to leave the Warsaw pact. 3000 Hungarians killed and 7-8000 Russians killed. 200,000 Hungarians fled to Austria and Imre Nagy imprisoned.

Imre Nagy dies


Imprisoned and executed. Replaced by Janos Kadar

Khrushchev visits the USA


Challenges Americans to goods, technology and ideas competition

Khrushchev and JFK meet at Vienna summit meeting


He thought low of Kennedy and challenged him over Berlin requiring him to remove US troops from the city. Kennedy refused

USA break off diplomatic relations with Cuba

Jan 1961

The Soviet Union was giving economic aid and arms.

Bay of Pigs

April 1961

Instead of a direct invasion President Kennedy supplied arms, equipment and transport for 1,400 anti-Castro exiles to invade Cuba and overthrow him. In April 1961exiles landed at the Bay of Pigs, met by 20,000 Cuban troops armed with tanks and modern weapons. Castro killed them all within days.

East German soldiers erect a barbed wire barrier along border

August 1961

Preventing movement across Berlin soon replaced by concrete wall. Separating Germans in Berlin, all access was blocked off apart from one place checkpoint Charlie. Border guards had instructions to kill anyone who passed.

US diplomats frequently cross the wall

October 1961

To test what would happen

Soviet tanks pull up at checkpoint charlie

October 27 1961

Refuse any further access to the east. All day they face eachother until the tanks pulled back slowly.

Soviet Union supplies missiles

September 1962

Soviet Union sent thousands of Soviet missiles, patrol boats, tanks, radar vans, missile erectors, jet bombers, jet fighters and 5,000 Soviet technicians to help maintain weapons.

Kennedy warns USSR

11th September 1962

He would prevent Cuba having any nuclear missiles

American plane flies over Cuba

14 October 1962

Detailed photos showing nuclear missile sights

Kennedy orders a blockade

24 October 1962

Soviet ships turn around

Khrushchev agrees to dismantle arms

28 October 1962