Soviet Foreign Policy

Soviet Foreign Policy, 1929-1939

In 1933 the United States recognized the USSR. As the years 1932 to 1934 brought major changes to Europe's political landscape - dictatorships / presidential rule by decree replacing democratic rule in most countries of central and eastern Europe, and the communist, as well as the social democratic parties there being outlawed, he gave out a new directive in the COMINTERN : communist parties should not only cooperate with social democratic, socialist or syndicalist parties, but form alliances of the left. Such POPULAR FRONT alliances won the elections in France and Spain in 1936. The Popular Front government in France caused the British Foreign office, for a moment, to contemplate a British-German-Italian alliance against the combination of Russia and France - the French popular front government was very short-lived, the plan never realized.
In Spain the victory of the Popular Front at the election quickly was followed by an army rebellion, supported by conservatives and the church, and the country found itself in a civil war (1936-1939).
With Mussolini's Italy and Hitler's Germany openly demanding the revision of the borders drawn by the Paris Peace Treaties of 1919/1920, Stalin suggested to the west a SYSTEM OF COLLECTIVE SECURITY (1937). The offer was rejected; instead when the future of Czechoslovakia was negotiated in Munich in 1938, Stalin found himself excluded.
As Britain seemed unwilling to negotiate with the USSR, the latter took up a German proposal and signed the NON-AGRESSION PACT on August 23rd 1939, in a secret memorandum attached the two signing governments partitioned among them the states of eastern central Europe established after World War I.

Collective Security, by G. Rempel, on Soviet foreign policy 1933-1939
Hans Bonde, Sport og international politik. Dansk Gymnastik i Stalinismens Gennembrudsfase, Historisk Tidsskrift 16/4 : 2 1995 pp.343-366, posted bt, in Danish
DOCUMENTS Documents on German-Soviet Relations, Nov. 1937-Feb. 1938, from Avalon Project at Yale Law School
Convention between Lithuania and the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics for the Definition of Aggression. Signed at London, July 5th, 1933, from LETTONIE - RUSSIE, Traites et documents de base

This page is part of World History at KMLA
First posted in 2000, last revised on November 8th 2004

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