chapter  14
Central and Eastern Europe
Pages 4

Near the end of the 1939-45 war, at a conference at Yalta in the Crimea, the Soviet Union agreed with the United States and Britain that the nations liberated from the Nazi German empire (13) should be enabled to create ‘democratic institutions of their own choice’. However, it flouted the Yalta agreement. In the six countries that its army occupied, it imposed ‘satellite’ communist regimes (Czechoslovakia had a brief respite, but only until 1948). Elections were rigged; many democratic leaders were killed, many jailed; noncommunist parties were purged and became docile ‘fellow-travellers’. The Soviet army did not occupy Yugoslavia or Albania, but local communists installed similar regimes (15).