Preventing Communism in Europe

Jun 2012
231
From a diplomatic and/or military standpoint, what could the West have done better to prevent Soviet occupation and the establishment of Communist regimes in Eastern Europe? Was Czechoslovakia the most "saveable" of those countries?

I would argue the United States did well otherwise:

The Marshall Plan was a critical for Greece, Turkey, France, and Italy.

Stalin, in collaboration with local Communists, most definitely tried to establish a Communist state in Austria, or at least in their zone. William Bader's Austria Between East and West is a useful source.

I recently became aware of the threat to Denmark. This video is about the Doenitz rump regime but mentions why Churchill wanted to keep that administration going to thwart the Soviets:

 

JoanOfArc007

Ad Honorem
Dec 2015
3,794
USA
The World War II era saw an alliance between the Soviets Americans and British. One has to always keep in mind that World War II was a massive event in world history. So the British Soviets and American post World War II had the difficult task of working out deals. The real villain in this discussion is Adolf Hitler
 

Chlodio

Forum Staff
Aug 2016
4,461
Dispargum
Stalin ignored the emerging doctrine of national self-determination, but short of going to war with the Soviets, there's nothing the Western Allies could have done to stop him. The West could have supported various anti-Communist resistance movements in Eastern Europe, but that would have invited Soviet retaliation - perhaps even more aggressive efforts to spread Communism in the West. Instead, the West adopted the theory of Containment - leave Communism alone where it already existed and only resist the spread of Communism in places that were currently non-Communist. The Soviets partially reciprocated in that they eventually ceased efforts to spread Communism in Western Europe and confined their efforts to spread Communism to the Third World.
 
Aug 2018
274
America
Stalin ignored the emerging doctrine of national self-determination
All the nations occupied by the Soviets gained independence and even established native governments rather than ones of Russian origin. Stalin would have ignored national self-determination if he would have annexed them all. He didn't even annex the portion of Poland he occupied in 1939.
 

Chlodio

Forum Staff
Aug 2016
4,461
Dispargum
All the nations occupied by the Soviets gained independence and even established native governments rather than ones of Russian origin. Stalin would have ignored national self-determination if he would have annexed them all. He didn't even annex the portion of Poland he occupied in 1939.
Are you saying that Poland, East Germany, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria, Yugoslavia, and Albania all freely chose to become Communist nations?
 
Aug 2018
274
America
Are you saying that Poland, East Germany, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria, Yugoslavia, and Albania all freely chose to become Communist nations?
I'm saying they remained independent - even to the point they appointed their own native politicians rather than Russians lording them - which is the basic definition of self-determination.
 
Sep 2019
182
Slovenia
Well indeed Marshall plan did a quite good job. Othervise USSR annexed six east European states or parts of them and forced them under communism already in the time of Molotov-Ribbentrop agreement. What would be neccessary to do even during WW2 is:

Increase the USA help to KMT in China, low the military help to USSR, western alliance invasion on Balkans as Churchill wanted, that would likely spark revolts in Bulgaria, Romania, Hungary ( as it was in Italy in 1943 ) and those countries would change governaments and join western alliance. Strong anti communist alliance should form in Europe already before the end of war to stop Soviet penetration of Europe.
 
Sep 2019
182
Slovenia
@Escritor what do you mean? If an NKVD or KGB dummy went just a little from the Moscow line he was overthrown by force as it happened many times. Like in Czechoslovakia in 1968, before in Bulgaria, Hungary and so on.
 
  • Like
Reactions: macon

stevev

Ad Honorem
Apr 2017
3,519
Las Vegas, NV USA
I'm saying they remained independent - even to the point they appointed their own native politicians rather than Russians lording them - which is the basic definition of self-determination.
If the Warsaw Pact states were independent, why did the Soviet Union intervene militarily in Hungary and Czeckoslovakia when they wanted to act "independently"?
 
  • Like
Reactions: macon
Aug 2018
274
America
@Escritor what do you mean? If an NKVD or KGB dummy went just a little from the Moscow line he was overthrown by force as it happened many times. Like in Czechoslovakia in 1968, before in Bulgaria, Hungary and so on.
First example is 20 years later as you yourself say. The Hungarian counterrevolution was more than just going "a little from the Moscow line". Don't know about Bulgaria, and the fact that you have to say "so and so on" shows how weak your claim is since you can't seemingly put other examples.

Increase the USA help to KMT in China
Like I keep saying, libertarians are anti-Nazi until they're not.