Segment descriptions

Modern European History Series:
Rise of Fascism, Part 2

                   Description: Stalingrad 1

      Rise of Fascism, Part 2
      sampler  327    (45 lecture)

Why is Stalingrad the turning point in the Allied decision to launch a second front, the Normandy invasion, long requested by Russia which is fighting
80% of the German army, and for reasons other than military?
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Rise of Fascism (continued). 

World War II starts.  Germany moves against Poland September 1, 1939 and most of the continent falls under the German blitzkrieg in the spring of 1940.  England stands alone, London endures an air blitz, but there is no invasion.  June, 1941 an all-out Nazi invasion of Russia pushes deep inside the country weakened by Stalin's earlier purge of his best generals.  Churchill, a staunch anti-communist, supports Russia as a practicality.  Japan joins the Axis powers and America is at war after the December 7th, 1941 attack by the Japanese on Pearl Harbor. 




The Second Front.  Russia is fighting 80% of the German army.  Why Russia's calls for a second front to relieve its desperate situation, in 1942 and again in 1943 are refused by Churchill.  Why Allied invasions of North Africa and Italy do not shorten the war. 




The Turning Point.  The Russian victory at Stalingrad is a turning point in the Allied view that winning the war is now possible, and the Normandy invasion is launched on June 6, 1944.  Why Nazi planes and vehicles are found grounded.  The last crisis of the Battle of the Bulge in 1944-45 and the final push to end the war in Europe in May 1945. 



Russia invades Manchuria.  Russia's justification to declare war on Japan and invade Manchuria 2 days prior to the U.S. dropping of the atom bomb on Japan.  Another strategic reason for the U.S. using the bomb against Japan not related to ending the war with Japan.


Origins of the Cold War




Russia's Post-War Relations With the U.S.  Stalin appears to choose the middle position of insisting on friendly borders for itself, not the soft position of needing U.S. help after the war, and not the hard position of no cooperation with the U.S. because world communism must go forward.  This view is supported by what it does with Manchuria after it strips it of its industry, and its guidance to well-organized communist parties in Greece, Italy, and France, and its guidance to the Chinese Communists during its civil war fight.  Russia's resistance to the possibility of fascist factions gaining control in a free election in Poland is consistent with its insisting on friendly borders. 




The Post-War U.S. Relations With Russia.  The U.S. fears falling back to a depression with the end of a war economy.  The fear of war with Russia maintains a war economy.  Senator McCarthy and the "red scare" with the resulting mass hysteria starts with the Truman Administration.  Later, Republicans blame Democrats for losing China, Russia getting the atom bomb, and the Korean War.  The Cold War has a significant impact on recovery in Europe and the post-war direction of its countries.