16.1 reading notes.docx - 16 1 Dictators Threaten World...

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16. 1- Dictators Threaten World Peace Nationalism Threatens Europe and Asia - peace brought not prosperity but revolution caused by economic unrest - also brought rise of leaders driven by dreams of national greatness and territorial expansion Failures of the WW1 Peace Settlement - not President Woodrow Wilson’s wishes, the Treaty of Versailles that ended WW1 did not create a just and secure peace - Germans saw nothing fair in treaty that blamed them for starting the war, or find much security in a settlement that took their country of territories that was long seen as German - Soviets resented carving away parts of Russia to create an independent Poland and the nations of Finland, Estonia, Lithuania, and Latvia - peace settlement didn’t make the world safe for democracy - at the end of the war, new democratic gov’ts emerged in many European nations, like Germany, Austria, Italy, Czechoslovakia, Bulgaria, Romania, Greece - most of these nations lacked democratic traditions, and their newly elected leaders needed to show that democracy could economically improve ppl’s lives - But, Versailles treaty did nothing to help nations of Europe rebuild. Instead, many new democracies were expected to pay off huge war debts while trying to deal with widespread hunger, homelessness, and unemployment - many new democracies collapsed bc they couldn’t cope with the problems, then dictators seized power - some of the dictators were happy to collect taxes and keep order. Few though had greater ambitions Joseph Stalin Transforms the Soviet Union - in Russia, hopes for democracy gave way to civil war, resulting in est. of a Communist State (Soviet Union) in 1922 - when V.I. Lenin (first leader of Soviet Union died in 1924) Stalin took control of the country - name meant “man of steel”. Once decided on his goal, he was determined to accomplish it. In contrast to Lenin, who had seen the Russian Revolution as only part of a worldwide uprising of the working class, Stalin focused on creating a model Communist state in Soviet Union - so began agricultural and industrial restructuring that trampled the rights of and brought great suffering to his ppl - 1927 he launched massive drive to transform Soviet Union into truly socialist country, meant stamping out private enterprise esp. private farming - ordered collectivization of Soviet agriculture (organization of production under collective, or state, control). Forced Russia’s peasants to give up their small plots of land so that they could be combined into large- state owned farms. Expected to work on the collective farms as wage earners - then turned to second goal: transformation of Soviet Union from a backward rural nation into a great industrial power - 1928 issued his first “five-year” plan, a campaign to build massive state-owned factories, steel mills, and power plants. A second 5-year plan in 1933 (completed in 4 years) and a third in 1937 - 1939 Soviet Union had become the world’s third largest industrial power, surpassed in overall production by only US and Germany - human costs of transformation was large. Stalin turned the Soviet Union into a vast police state - state in
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