The Russian Revolution (1917) Russia had been ruled by an absolute monarchy, or autocrat



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Key Concepts H4 – Second Semester 10th Grade

  1. The Russian Revolution (1917)

    1. Russia had been ruled by an absolute monarchy, or autocrat, for centuries. The Russian ruler was called the Tszr [Czar]

    2. Russia had been held back in the 19th century due to its history and cultural connection with the Mongols.

      1. No industrialization, feudalism still practiced late in the 19th century.

      2. Russia lost a series of imperial wars.

        1. Crimean War – Ottomans vs. Russian Empire [Ottomans win with British help]

        2. Russo-Japanese War (1904) – Russian Empire vs. Japan [Japanese win]

    3. 1905 – After Russia’s loss to the Japanese, many Russians begin to protest due to a lack of change.

      1. Czar’s army fires on the protestors [Bloody Sunday]

      2. Fearing too much change and revolution, Czar Nicholas II agrees to some reforms but later takes them back.

    4. During World War I, Russia enters on the side of the Triple Entente, but is unprepared.

      1. Many complain of a lack of food and training.

      2. Vladimir Lenin calls for an end to Czarist rule with his famous slogan “Peace, Land and Bread,” wants to enact the first example of a communist dictatorship.

    5. 1917 – Bolsheviks [Russian Communist] led by Lenin seize control of Russia.

      1. Czar and family killed

      2. Russia drops out of World War I

      3. Russia enters into a Civil War, which ends in 1921

    6. Russia becomes the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics

      1. 1921 – Lenin begins to institute a Command Economy, government control of production, in the Soviet Union

        1. New Economic Policy: nationalization, or government control of large industries, with small private ownership.

      2. 1924 – Lenin dies and a power struggle begins between Leon Trotsky and Joseph Stalin.

        1. Stalin wins the struggle and begins his reign of brutal dictatorship and terror tactics.

      3. Soviet Union under Stalin avoids the Great Depression because of Stalin’s economic policies.

        1. The Five Year Plans – Stalin’s goal was to industrialize the Soviet Union.

          1. Focused on Industrial Production instead of Agricultural Production.

          2. Forms Collective farms, farms where the government owns the land and workers must meet quotas.

            1. Collectives anger the Ukrainians farmers who begin to protest.

              1. Stalin beings The Great Purge against the Ukrainians farmers in the 1930s. [Example of genocide]

  2. Between The Wars/The Rise of Fascism

    1. World War I had major lasting effects on the European continent

      1. Treaty of Versailles ends World War I, but punishes Germany for its role in the war. The Treaty of Versailles is a major reason for the rise of Adolf Hitler in Germany because many felt betrayed by the Treaty. A new government was formed called The Weimar Republic that was not trusted by the German people.

      2. League of Nations set up to deal with conflicts to peace; however, there was no way to stop aggression.

      3. Nationalist movements gain strength after World War I, especially in the territory of the former Austro-Hungarian Empire and Ottoman Empire [Armenian Genocide occurs in Turkey as Armenians demand self rule from the Turks]

        1. Goal of many nationalist, such as Kemal Ataturk, was to industrialize and westernize their countries to avoid a European take over.

        2. Many Jews of Europe begin to call for the formation of a Jewish homeland in Palestine, Zionism.

        3. Mohandas Gandhi begins to demand self rule from the British, especially after the British fired on Indian protestors in the Amristar Massacre in 1919.

          1. After massacre, Gandhi begins to call for non-violent protest, passive resistance, against unjust imperial laws.

        4. In China, Sun Yat-sen [Sun Yixian] wants to remove foreign influence after the collapse of the Qing Dynasty. Collapse of the Qing Dynasty leads to a conflict between rival groups for control [Kuomintang vs. Communist].

          1. Between World War I and World War II, Mao Zedong, the leader of the Chinese communist, gains tremendous support from the Chinese peasants due to lack of progress in China.

            1. 1949, Chinese Civil War will end and Mao will become the leader of the new Peoples Republic of China

        5. After World War I, woman gain the right to vote in many Western Democracies.

    2. After World War I, economic problems emerged in Europe leading up to The Great Depression of the 1930s.

      1. Major causes of The Great Depression: 1. Overproduction, 2. Unemployment, 3. buying on Credit, 4. US Stock Market Crash.

      2. 1920’s countries had to rebuild their economies and pay off war debt. Germany was the hardest hit by this debt.

        1. To deal with its war payments, the German Kaiser and later the Weimar Republic, printed money to pay off its debt. This led to hyperinflation in the Weimar Republic.

      3. After the War, there was a lack of jobs for returning vets, which led to high unemployment.

      4. 1929, American economy collapses and the Great Depression began. It spread worldwide and was a major reason for the rise of fascism.

      5. The Great Depression challenged people’s faith in Democracy. Many felt that Democratic governments had caused the Depression and were unable to fix it.

    3. 1920’s and into the 1930’s, Fascist governments begin their rise to power. Fascism is rule of a people by a dictator who has total control. Fascism believes in extreme nationalism and blind nationalism. Fascism believes in building up an empire to achieve national pride. Under a fascist government, you would have no rights and all information is censored.

      1. After World War I, fascist governments come to power in Italy, Germany, Spain, and Japan.

        1. Why? People were desperate and couldn’t trust their governments. When people are desperate, they tend to turn to dictators who promise to restore stability [like Napoleon after the French Revolution]

        2. In Italy, Benito Mussolini gains power through force. Begins to restore stability to Italy, but begins an aggressive expansionist policy.

        3. In Germany, Adolf Hitler comes to power. First, he tries to take over through force, later he is chosen to rule Germany as chancellor. Hitler promised stability to the Germans and to restore German national pride.

          1. Germans were brained washes with propaganda, there was a lack of civil liberties, there was anti-Semitism, and complete economic control.

        4. In Japan, Hideki Tojo, leader of the military gains power because the Japanese felt betrayed by their Democratic government, which had caused The Great Depression and lost many of the Japanese traditional values.

    4. Even though fascist nations were very aggressive in their demands, the western democratic governments were too weak to respond to the demands of the fascist powers.

      1. 1938, Britain attempts to appease Germany’s demands by giving German the right to control all ethnic Germans in the Sudetenland of Czechoslovakia. Appeasement fails when Germany invades Poland in September of 1939.

  3. World War II (1939-45)

    1. In the 1930’s, Fascist countries drop out of the League of Nations, a sign they are preparing for war.

    2. 1936, Rome-Berlin-Tokyo Axis formed. Three fascist countries agree to stop Soviet expansion and not to attack each other.

      1. 1939, Hitler forms a pact, agreement, with Stalin to invade and divide up Poland [Nazi-Soviet Non-aggression Pact] Hitler winds up taking all of Poland.

    3. 1939, Appeasement fails with Germany’s invasion of Poland.

      1. Axis Powers: 1. Germany, 2. Italy, 3. Japan

      2. Allied Powers: 1. Britain, 2. France, 3. Soviet Union, 4. 1941, U.S.

    4. Using the military tactic of Blitzkrieg, rapid warfare, Hitler is able to conquer most of continental Europe in 6 months. By 1940, Britain and The Soviet Union are the only two allies left standing.

    5. Major turning-points:

      1. Battle of Britain – Britain holds its ground against Nazi air attack.

      2. Battle of Stalingrad – making the same mistake as Napoleon, Hitler invades the Soviet Union unprepared for the cold Russian climate. Stalin and the Soviet army are able to push Hitler out of the Soviet Union.

      3. 1943 – Allied forces come through Africa and begin their invasion of Italy.

      4. 1944 – D Day Allied invasion of France

        1. Begins to push Axis powers back

      5. December 7, 1941; Japanese attack Pearl Harbor, HI – U.S. enters into the war on the side of the allies.

        1. Use of the strategy of island hopping to defeat the Japanese empire.

      6. Hitler defeated in May of 1945, Japanese surrender in August of 1945 after the dropping of two atomic bombs.

    6. During World War II, Hitler used the Jewish people as a scapegoat for Germany’s problems. Begins the genocide of The Holocaust.

      1. Hitler had claimed that Germans were superior to all other races and that all Aryans [Germans] needed living space.

      2. The Holocaust is an example of a well-thought out and genocide. Hitler started this policy by identifying who was Jewish. Second, after Jews had been identified, they were sent to a separate location, or Ghetto to live. The end result, or “final solution” was extermination.

        1. As World War II ends, the allied forces began to liberate the extermination camps and the Holocaust came to an end.

    7. In China, the Japanese commit genocide against the Chinese. This was called the Rape of Nanjing. The Japanese felt that they were superior to the Chinese.

    8. After World War II ends, The Nuremburg Trials occur to charge Nazi officials with war crimes [crimes against humanity]. Tojo is put on trial in Japan after the war during occupation for war crimes as well. He is the only fascist leader to be executed.

    9. To try and prevent a future war, a new peace organization is set up called The United Nations.

      1. The structure of the United Nations set it up for future problems. In order for anything to occur, five members had to agree to any action. These five members were 1. The United States, 2. France, 3. Britain, 4. China, 5. The Soviet Union.

        1. After World War II, with the common enemy of fascism gone, the alliance between the Soviet Union and the United States broke down and The Cold War begins as both competed to be the world superpower.

  4. The Cold War (1945-91) [Communism vs. Democracy]

    1. As World War II was coming to an end, the allied powers met at a series of wartime conferences. At these conferences, it was clear that cooperation between the Soviet Union and US would be difficult.

      1. Both were in competition for who would have more power and influence in the world. Both were afraid of the other gaining too much power and influence because this would challenge their own lifestyle. [Communism vs. Democracy]

        1. Yalta Conference – US/Soviet Union/Britain meet to discuss what to do with a defeated Germany. The decision is to divide Germany into four occupied zones, including the capital city of Berlin

        2. Potsdam Conference – US/Soviet Union/Britain goal of the US is to democratize Europe. US president Truman and Stalin couldn’t cooperate.

      2. German occupation showed the clear division between The Soviet Union and The US. Stalin wanted to establish a buffer zone to prevent future invasion. Truman wanted to spread democracy to make the world a safer place.

      3. With instability in Europe developing after World War II, President Truman gave a speech to congress where he declared communism must be contained, Truman Doctrine.

        1. In Turkey and Greece, there was the threat of a communist takeover. Truman, who felt communism should not spread outside of where it already was gave economic aid to Greece and Turkey as long as they did not become communist, Marshall Plan

        2. In the city of Berlin, which was in the Soviet Zone of occupation but divided among the allies, tension developed as many tried to flee East Berlin to enter freedom in West Berlin.

          1. Stalin decided to close off the roads to the city of West Berlin, Berlin Blockade. This led to the Berlin Airlift. Result, Berlin remained divided, eventually Khrushchev builds The Berlin Wall, which became the visible symbol of the division between communism and democracy [Wall comes down in 1989 as communism begins to collapse]

      4. In the late 1940’s and 1950’s the countries of Eastern Europe [Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Poland], which were under Soviet control tried to rebel to gain their freedom. Stalin, and later Khrushchev sent in the Soviet troops to surpress these revolts.

      5. By 1950, an Iron Curtain had divided the European continent into two halves. The western half was pro-democratic, the eastern half was pro-communist.

    2. Japanese are occupied entirely by The United States after World War II. The United States sets up a new government in Japan based on their own. Japan was turned into a major economic power. Today, they are the third most powerful economy in the world.

    3. China – after the victory of Mao in the Chinese Civil War, a communist dictatorship using a command economy is set up [much like in the Soviet Union]

      1. Mao begins his policy of nationalization of Chinese industries to increase industrialization

        1. The Great Leap Forward – Similar to the Five Year Plan of Stalin. Focused on industrial production instead of agriculture production. Policy fails. Collective farms failed to produce crops for a growing population

        2. Cultural Revolution 1966 – Mao response to the populations challenge to the failure of the Great Leap Forward. Re-education of population to believe in communism.

          1. Anyone who claimed communism was wrong was sent to camps.

          2. Red-guards, student army indoctrinated to believe communism was correct, set up to enforce the laws of the Cultural Revolution

      2. 1970s Mao dies and Deng Xiaoping becomes the new leader of China. He changes Mao’s policies and makes China’s economy more open to western ideas with The Four Modernization; 1. Agriculture, 2. Industrialization, 3. Science and Technology, 4. Defense

        1. Today, China is the second most powerful economy in the world due Deng’s policies

          1. Problem: Chinese students begin to demand political freedoms in addition to economic freedoms. Result: Tiananmen Square Massacre 1989.

    4. Korea, which was under Japanese control in World War II, was divided at that 38th parallel after World War II ended. North of the 38th parallel, a communist government was set up supported by The Soviet Union, and later China. South of the 38th parallel, a republic was set up under the watch of the United States.

      1. 1950 – North Korean communists invade South Korea beginning the Korean War. The United States and The United Nations intervened on the side of South Korea and were able to push the North Korean communists back to China. China then became threatened and helped the North Koreans.

        1. 1953 – All fighting stopped and Korea remained divided.

        2. Two countries are still officially at war today

    5. Not every country took a side during the Cold War.

      1. Some countries choose to be “non-aligned,” not choosing a side. Some examples of these countries are India and Egypt.

    6. In Vietnam, an anti-colonial struggle against the French began after World War II let by Ho Chi Min, a nationalist leader.

      1. 1954, the French leave Vietnam and the country became divided. North Vietnam was led by Ho Chi Min and became communist, South Vietnam was a dictatorship that was supported by the US.

      2. 1960’s Vietnam War – North Vietnam vs. South Vietnam. A disaster for the United States.

        1. Vietnam War caused instability in neighboring countries. In Cambodia, the leadership of Pol Pot and the Khmer Rouge committed genocide against all those who went against him. This was called the Cambodian Genocide. The Genocide ends with the Vietnamese invasion of Cambodia.

    7. 1950’s Cuba was led by a pro-American dictator. Many Cubans were upset about American influence in their country and the lack of progress.

      1. Fidel Castro, a rebel leader, promised Cubans a change. In 1959, Castro led a Communist revolution against Batista [pro-American dictator].

        1. The United States was not comfortable having a communist country 90 miles off the cost. In 1961, US trained Cuban exiles attempt to invade Cuba and re-claim the island. Bay of Pigs Invasion.

          1. Bay of Pigs showed Castro that he couldn’t trust the United States.

            1. Castro asked Khrushchev [The Soviet Leader] for assistance

            2. Nuclear weapons were placed on Cuban to protect against the US.

              1. Peak of the Cold War, weapons are eventually removed.

    8. The Cuban Missile Crisis of the 1960’s show the US and the Soviet Union that they needed to co-exist together in the world without creating a nuclear holocaust. This policy was called détente

      1. Before, two countries were building up nuclear weapons to prevent the other from using them, called nuclear proliferation.

      2. In the 1970s – the US and USSR sign a series of agreements to reduce the number of nuclear weapons. S.A.L.T. Treaties [Strategic Arms Limitation Treaty]

    9. Late 1970s – Soviet invasion of Afghanistan strains US/Soviet relations once again.

    10. 1980’s new leader comes to power in the Soviet Union [Mikhail Gorbachev].

    11. US president Ronald Regan begins his “star wars” program, the Soviet Union could not keep up with the spending of the United States, which was one of the reasons for their collapse.

      1. Sets up two polices to begin to open up the Soviet Union to new ideas.

        1. Glasnost – openness to new ideas

        2. Perestroika – economic reforms, allowed private business

          1. Elections eventually occur in the Soviet Union and in 1991, The Soviet Union Collapses.

            1. New Countries are formed

            2. Eastern Europe is finally liberated

              1. In former territories of the Soviet Union and communist countries, ethnic tensions develop [former Yugoslavia, Chechnya]

  5. The End of Imperialism

    1. After World War II, many former British and French colonies demand their independence.

      1. Challenged Britain for being hypocritical for fighting against being controlled by Hitler in World War II but still controlling their colonies.

    2. India gains independence in 1947, but is split into three separate countries due to religious conflict.

      1. India – Hindu Majority

      2. Pakistan – Muslim Majority

      3. Bangladesh – Muslim Majority

        1. India is the largest democracy in the world based on population, based on the British model.

        2. Even though the Caste System was banned in India, in villages, traditional cultures are still practiced.

    3. In Africa, independence movements develop against British and French Rule. Britain gives up many of its colonies without a fight, which France fought to hold on to its colonies.

    4. In South Africa, which gained independence in 1910, the white minority was oppressing the black majority. This policy of separation of the races was called Apartheid.

      1. Nelson Mandela led the call for an end to apartheid in South Africa in the 1960s, but was thrown in jail.

      2. Early 1990s, F.W. DeKlerk ends apartheid after protest and outcry from the world community, blacks gain the right to vote. Mandela released from prison and elected as president

    5. During imperialism, the Europeans divided Africa based on resources not considering ethnic and religious differences.

      1. Led to many genocides in countries after the colonial powers were gone

        1. Rwandan Genocide 1994 – Hutu majority killed Tutsi minority.

          1. Hutus were oppressed for years under Belgian rule. Belgians gave Tutsi’s all the privileges. When Belgians leave, Hutus begin to kill Tutsis

        2. Darfur – Current example of genocide in the country of Sudan. Muslim majority killing the African minority.

    6. After World War I, many regions in the Middle East under the control of the former Ottoman Empire become mandates, colonies managed by an outside country, of the British and French.

      1. 1917, British issue the Balfour Declaration, desire to create a state for the Jews of Europe in the state of Palestine.

      2. After World War II and the Holocaust, The United Nations establishes the State of Israel in the territory of Palestine

        1. Begins a series of Arab-Israeli Conflicts. Nationalism for the land is strong among both groups.

    7. In oil rich Iran, like Cuba, many Iranians are upset over the Shah's leadership and American influence in their culture.

      1. 1960's and 1970's Ayatollah Khomeini calls for the removal of the Shah from power, elimination of American influence in Iran, and the formation of an Islamic Republic [theocracy] with laws based on the Quran.

      2. 1979, Iranian Revolution occurs when the Shah leaves Iran seeking medical attention.

        1. Khomeini begins the "Islamization" of Iran by making laws based on the Quran [Women lose rights, American books and music banned, no western ideas allowed].

        2. 1980-88 Iran-Iraq War; newly formed government of Iran goes to war with Sadam Hussein in Iraq over a border dispute. [US supported Hussein in this conflict]

      3. Relationship between the US and Iran has been strained ever since.

      4. Today, Iran is in the process of developing nuclear weapons.

    8. In Latin America, since the end of Spanish colonial rule in the 19th century, many creoles became the dictators of their nations. [Ex, Diaz in Mexico, Juan Peron in Argentina, Pinochet in Chile]

      1. Recently, some nations of Latin America have begun the transition towards democracy [Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Mexico]

        1. Brazil is becoming one of the major emerging markets in Latin America and has a strong economy.

        2. In Some nations, dictators are still in power, but use generous social welfare policies to keep their populations from demanding change. [Ex. Chavez in Venezuela]

  6. Current Affairs

    1. Since the collapse of communism, the United States has become the only superpower in the world.

    2. Led to a new conflict, countries that are developed or industrialized vs. countries that are underdeveloped. [traditional values vs. modernization]

      1. Many are upset about the influence of western culture mixing with their own culture.

        1. Some turn to extreme methods to eliminate western values from their countries or regions, such as terrorism.

    3. In the 20th century, groups have united together when they share a common interest.

      1. Late 1990's, European countries realize that trade barriers between countries was preventing them from growing.

        1. Formation of the European Union, a political and economic union of some European countries. Use of The Euro, single European currency.

    4. In the oil producing nations of the world, leaders have come together to form the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries or OPEC.

      1. Control the supply of oil production to influence the price and demand for oil

    5. Industrialization has caused many environmental issues that we are beginning to correct

      1. Burning of fossil fuels has led to a greenhouse effect and global warming

      2. The Green Revolution in developing nations has led to deforestation

      3. Nuclear energy has to be disposed of properly or else it can cause environmental damage and cancer [ex. Chernobyl disaster and Fukishima-Diachi Nuclear Plant in Japan]

    6. Overpopulation has caused many nations to develop new policies towards food production.

      1. Some countries, like China, have places restrictions on the amount of children families can have.

      2. Lack of jobs, lack of food, and lack of economic opportunities in countries have caused migration of people from one country to another. [Ex, Irish Potato Famine in the 19th century, Pakistani immigrants migrating to Saudi Arabia to find jobs]


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