Yalta Conference Facts

Yalta Conference Facts
The Yalta Conference was hosted by Joseph Stalin and the Soviet Union in the Soviet city of Yalta from February 4 to 11, 1945. The three major Allied leaders were in attendance - American President Franklin Roosevelt, British Prime Minister Winston Churchill, and Soviet Premier Joseph Stalin - to ultimately decide the fate of post-war Europe. Some of the basic feature were worked out at Yalta, such as the partition and occupation of Germany, but details had to be worked out in later conferences and agreements. The Yalta Conference picked up some of the unresolved issues of the Tehran Conference of 1943, but left other issues to be discussed at the Potsdam Conference in 1945.
Interesting Yalta Conference Facts:
Due to its location in the Crimean region, the Yalta Conference is sometimes referred to as the "Crimean Conference."
The Yalta Conference was the last major conference President Roosevelt attended. He on April 12, 1945, about three months before the Potsdam Conference.
By the time of the conference, the Allies were knocking on Germany's doorstep from both sides.
Although Roosevelt was technically the host of the conference, Stalin feared flying and claimed his doctors told him he should not travel far so the conference was held within rail and boat distance of Moscow.
Stalin knew he was in a position of great negotiating power. The Western leaders needed the Soviets to keep pursing the war against Germany, otherwise it could continue for some time.
Roosevelt requested that the Soviet Union join the United Nations, but Stalin only agreed to do so if it had veto power on the Security Council.
France was not invited to Yalta or Potsdam, which greatly infuriated French leader and future President Charles De Gaulle.
One of the major agreements made at Yalta was to divide Germany in military zones by the three countries and France. The division of Germany and Europe was one of the primary causes of the Cold War.
Forced labor of German citizens was one of the most controversial points of the Yalta agreement. Germans were forced to work for the Allies as part of their war reparations. Not only were German POWs forced to work for the Allies, but also thousands of women.
The Soviet forced labor camps were little more than concentration camps for ethnic Germans. The camps had very high mortality rates.
The idea of trying Nazi and other fascist war criminals was decided at Yalta.
Stalin agreed to declare war on Japan, but only did so as the United States was dropping the atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
Stalin actually apologized for signing the Nazi-Soviet Pact and partitioning Poland in 1939.
Roosevelt supposedly believed that Stalin was sincere about Poland and believed that he would allow free elections in Poland and eastern Europe. Still, Stalin was adamant that the Soviets keep the portion of Poland they annexed in 1939.
Within two months of the conference, Stalin set to work arresting potential political opponents in Poland. A rigged election was held in Poland in 1947 that established a communist government.

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