Revision Diary

Yalta and Potsdam


Decisions made at Yalta and Potsdam, and their importance



Make sure you know about the background and decisions made at Yalta and Potsdam.


Particularly, make sure that you know about the results/significance of BOTH Yalta and Potsdam.




Yalta and Potsdam


At Yalta, the Big Three (Stalin, Roosevelt, Churchill) had still not defeated Hitler, so they needed to stick together.   So they agreed:

•   to divide Germany

•   to set up 'democracies' in eastern Europe and

•   to have reparations ... but they did not work out any of the details.

At Potsdam, Hitler had been defeated, so the Big Three (now Stalin, Truman and Atlee) did not NEED to stay friends any more.   Also Truman had replaced Roosevelt, and he hated Communism.

So they fell out when they tried to sort out the details of what to do.



Yalta (Feb 1945)

Potsdam (July 1945)

Protocols (Agreements)

to divide Germany into four ‘zones’, run by Britain, France, the USA and the USSR

to set up the four ‘zones of occupation’ in Germany.

to set up a Polish made up of both Communists and non-Communists

Stalin had arrested large numbers of non-Communist Polish leaders

to set up a commission to look into reparations

Russia was allowed to take reparations from the Soviet Zone, and also 10% of the industrial equipment of the western zones.



Results of Yalta

  1. Many historians believe that Yalta was when the Cold War began.

  2. Germany remained divided until 1990.

  3. Tension was growing at the conference, especially between Churchill and Stalin.

  4. Yalta gave Stalin control over eastern Europe - President George Bush described this as 'one of the greatest wrongs in history'.



Results of Potsdam

  1. Potsdam just repeated the decisions of Yalta

  2. The tensions of Yalta came out into open disagreement - it can be said that the Cold War actually broke out Potsdam.

  3. Truman and Churchill HATED the reparations agreement.

  4. The British were FURIOUS about Poland - this led Churchill soon after to give his 'Iron Curtain' speech at Fulton.

  5. Stalin was FURIOUS that Truman did not tell him about the atomic bomb.



Finally, be aware of what Yalta and Potsdam did to Germany.

Can you see where BERLIN is?


Revision Focus

This is a Paper 1 topic, so concentrate on learning:

1.   WHAT happened

2.   EFFECTS/ Importance



Mini book on Yalta and Potsdam deals with the general context



Online revision sheet