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This title in other editions

Six Months in 1945: FDR, Stalin, Churchill, and Truman--From World War to Cold War

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Six Months in 1945: FDR, Stalin, Churchill, and Truman--From World War to Cold War Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

From the author of the best-selling One Minute to Midnight, a riveting account of the pivotal six-month period spanning the end of World War II, the dawn of the nuclear age, and the beginning of the Cold War.

When Roosevelt, Stalin, and Churchill met in Yalta in February 1945, Hitler’s armies were on the run and victory was imminent.  The Big Three wanted to draft a blueprint for a lasting peace—but instead set the stage for a forty-four-year division of Europe into Soviet and western spheres of influence. After fighting side by side for nearly four years, their political alliance was rapidly fracturing. By the time the leaders met again in Potsdam in July 1945, Russians and Americans were squabbling over the future of Germany and Churchill was warning about an “iron curtain” being drawn down over the Continent.

These six months witnessed some of the most dramatic moments of the twentieth century: the cataclysmic battle for Berlin, the death of Franklin Roosevelt, the discovery of the Nazi concentration camps, Churchill’s electoral defeat, and the dropping of atomic bombs on Japan. While their armies linked up in the heart of Europe, the political leaders maneuvered for leverage: Stalin using his nation’s wartime sacrifices to claim spoils, Churchill doing his best to halt Britain’s waning influence, FDR trying to charm Stalin, Truman determined to stand up to an increasingly assertive Soviet superpower.

Six Months in 1945 brilliantly captures this momentous historical turning point, chronicling the geopolitical twists behind the descent of the iron curtain, while illuminating the aims and personalities of larger-than-life political giants. It is a vividly rendered story of individual and national interests in fierce competition at a seminal moment in history.

Review:

"According to popular mythology, from February to August 1945 allied armies rolled to victory in WWII, but then ineffectual Western leaders caved in to Stalin, resulting in the cold war. Veteran journalist Dobbs (One Minute to Midnight) takes a more nuanced view and asserts that neither Russian nor Western leaders understood one another's inner workings. In mapping a course for Europe, both Roosevelt, at Yalta in February 1945, and Truman, at Potsdam in July of that year, failed to sway Stalin from his desire to impose a Soviet sphere of influence on Eastern Europe. Critics labeled this a betrayal of democratic ideals, but the Red Army was on the spot, and no one supported a war to eject them. Skeptical of the great man theory of history, Dobbs thinks that the cold war was probably inevitable, and merely delayed by the presence of a mutual enemy. He says also that Stalin was not, like Hitler, purely autocratic, and operated within the Soviet Union's own systemic constraints. His goal was to prepare for a new war with the West within the next 20 years, but Eastern Europe proved a persistent drain and the U.S.S.R.'s clunky command economy could not hope to satisfy its citizens. Dobbs offers an astute narrative of the six months that changed the world. 8 maps. Agent: Raphael Sagalyn, Sagalyn Literary." Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Synopsis:

From the author of the best-selling One Minute to Midnight, a riveting account of the pivotal six month period spanning the end of World War II, the dawn of the atomic age, and the beginning of the Cold War.

When Roosevelt, Churchill, and Stalin met in Yalta in February 1945, Hitler's armies were on the run, and victory was imminent.  The Big Three wanted to draft a blueprint for a lasting peace—but instead they set the stage for a forty-four year division of Europe into Soviet and Western  spheres of influence. After fighting side by side for nearly four years, their political alliance was beginning to fracture. Although the most dramatic Cold War confrontations such as the Berlin airlift were still to come, a new struggle for global hegemony had got underway by August 1945 when Truman used the atomic bomb against Hiroshima.  Six Months in 1945 brilliantly captures this momentous historical turning point, chronicling the geopolitical twists behind the fall of the Iron Curtain, while illuminating the aims and personalities of larger-than-life political giants. It is a vividly rendered story of individual and national interests in fierce competition at a seminal moment in history.

Synopsis:

From the author of the best-selling One Minute to Midnight, a riveting account of the final six months of World War II, during which the promise of Yalta gave way to the open conflict that led inexorably to the Cold War.

When Roosevelt, Churchill, and Stalin met in Yalta in February 1945, Hitler's armies were on the run, and victory was imminent. The task of the three leaders was to forge the decisions that would shape the postwar world—and to divide Europe between Soviet and Western influence. They had fought side by side for nearly four years but their alliance was beginning to fracture, and though the Berlin airlift and the Iron Curtain were three years in the future, by August 1945 it was clear that cold war was inevitable. Six Months in 1945 captures this turning point of the twentieth century, tracing the steady breakdown in relations between the three powers, brilliantly describing the personalities and geopolitics that fueled this descent, and illuminating the aims and frustrations of all three key leaders. It is a vividly rendered story of individual and national interests in fierce competition at a seminal moment in history.

About the Author

MICHAEL DOBBS was born in Belfast, Ireland, and was educated at the University of York, with fellowships at Princeton and Harvard. He spent much of his career as a reporter for The Washington Post, where he was a foreign correspondent covering the collapse of communism. His Down with Big Brother: The Fall of the Soviet Empire was a finalist for the 1997 PEN Award for nonfiction. He lives in Bethesda, Maryland.

Product Details

ISBN:
9780307271655
Author:
Dobbs, Michael
Publisher:
Knopf Publishing Group
Subject:
Modern - 20th Century
Subject:
World History-European History General
Publication Date:
20121031
Binding:
HARDCOVER
Language:
English
Illustrations:
16 PAGES OF PHOTOS; 5 MAPS
Pages:
448
Dimensions:
9.5 x 6.51 x 1.51 in 1.8 lb

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Related Subjects

Featured Titles » History and Social Science
History and Social Science » Military » World War II » General
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History and Social Science » World History » 1650 to Present
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Six Months in 1945: FDR, Stalin, Churchill, and Truman--From World War to Cold War Used Hardcover
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Product details 448 pages Knopf Publishing Group - English 9780307271655 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "According to popular mythology, from February to August 1945 allied armies rolled to victory in WWII, but then ineffectual Western leaders caved in to Stalin, resulting in the cold war. Veteran journalist Dobbs (One Minute to Midnight) takes a more nuanced view and asserts that neither Russian nor Western leaders understood one another's inner workings. In mapping a course for Europe, both Roosevelt, at Yalta in February 1945, and Truman, at Potsdam in July of that year, failed to sway Stalin from his desire to impose a Soviet sphere of influence on Eastern Europe. Critics labeled this a betrayal of democratic ideals, but the Red Army was on the spot, and no one supported a war to eject them. Skeptical of the great man theory of history, Dobbs thinks that the cold war was probably inevitable, and merely delayed by the presence of a mutual enemy. He says also that Stalin was not, like Hitler, purely autocratic, and operated within the Soviet Union's own systemic constraints. His goal was to prepare for a new war with the West within the next 20 years, but Eastern Europe proved a persistent drain and the U.S.S.R.'s clunky command economy could not hope to satisfy its citizens. Dobbs offers an astute narrative of the six months that changed the world. 8 maps. Agent: Raphael Sagalyn, Sagalyn Literary." Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
"Synopsis" by , From the author of the best-selling One Minute to Midnight, a riveting account of the pivotal six month period spanning the end of World War II, the dawn of the atomic age, and the beginning of the Cold War.

When Roosevelt, Churchill, and Stalin met in Yalta in February 1945, Hitler's armies were on the run, and victory was imminent.  The Big Three wanted to draft a blueprint for a lasting peace—but instead they set the stage for a forty-four year division of Europe into Soviet and Western  spheres of influence. After fighting side by side for nearly four years, their political alliance was beginning to fracture. Although the most dramatic Cold War confrontations such as the Berlin airlift were still to come, a new struggle for global hegemony had got underway by August 1945 when Truman used the atomic bomb against Hiroshima.  Six Months in 1945 brilliantly captures this momentous historical turning point, chronicling the geopolitical twists behind the fall of the Iron Curtain, while illuminating the aims and personalities of larger-than-life political giants. It is a vividly rendered story of individual and national interests in fierce competition at a seminal moment in history.

"Synopsis" by , From the author of the best-selling One Minute to Midnight, a riveting account of the final six months of World War II, during which the promise of Yalta gave way to the open conflict that led inexorably to the Cold War.

When Roosevelt, Churchill, and Stalin met in Yalta in February 1945, Hitler's armies were on the run, and victory was imminent. The task of the three leaders was to forge the decisions that would shape the postwar world—and to divide Europe between Soviet and Western influence. They had fought side by side for nearly four years but their alliance was beginning to fracture, and though the Berlin airlift and the Iron Curtain were three years in the future, by August 1945 it was clear that cold war was inevitable. Six Months in 1945 captures this turning point of the twentieth century, tracing the steady breakdown in relations between the three powers, brilliantly describing the personalities and geopolitics that fueled this descent, and illuminating the aims and frustrations of all three key leaders. It is a vividly rendered story of individual and national interests in fierce competition at a seminal moment in history.

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