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

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When Franklin Roosevelt, Winston Churchill, and Joseph 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 on Hiroshima. Six Months in 1945 brilliantly captures this momentous historical turning point while illuminating the aims and personalities of larger-than-life political giants.

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Review:

Guest Review: Author Rick Atkinson on Six Months in 1945

Rick Atkinson, recipient of the 2010 Pritzker Military Library Literature Award for Lifetime Achievement in Military Writing, is the bestselling author of The Day of Battle, An Army at Dawn, The Long Gray Line, and In the Company of Soldiers. The final volume of his Liberation Trilogy, covering the last year of the European war, from Normandy to Berlin, will be published in 2013. Atkinson was a staff writer and senior editor at The Washington Post for twenty years, and his many awards include Pulitzer Prizes for journalism and history. He lives in Washington, D.C.

By February 1945, when Franklin D. Roosevelt, Winston S. Churchill, and Joseph Stalin met at the Crimean resort of Yalta, the Grand Alliance had become the most successful military coalition in modern history. The Big Three, with help from lesser allies among what Roosevelt called the united nations, had nearly obliterated the fascist Axis. The German Reich had but three months left to live, the Japanese regime barely twice that. In the three years since the Allies had formally made common cause, they had won great victories on three continents and the high seas, liberating the Mediterranean, most of Europe, and much of Asia from Axis oppression, and all but ending, righteously, a catastrophe that would cost sixty million dead worldwide.

Six months after the triumphant gathering at Yalta, the war-winning alliance had largely come unglued. Collaboration against the existential threat of fascist totalitarianism was supplanted by mutual suspicion and recrimination. Blood allies had become geopolitical rivals, if not blood enemies. The long, sanguinary war would become a long, fraught, dangerous peace.

Michael Dobbs tells this story with panache, lucidity, and exceptional scholarship. Six Months in 1945 ably sketches the big arrows on the map, showing how the concluding chapters of World War II became the opening chapters of the Cold War, shaping the world we inhabit today. Characters long dead return to life, not just the obvious architects of Allied victory, but vivid, vital, less well-known figures whom Dobbs deftly rescues from obscurity. From Yalta to Potsdam, the tale is told with authority and clarity, drawing on memoirs, archives, and a wealth of other sources, including many in Russian.

The bevy of books on the end of the war and its immediate aftermath, large and impressive though it may be, is enriched by Six Months in 1945.

About the Author:

Now a U.S. citizen, Michael Dobbs was born and educated in Britain, with fellowships at Princeton and Harvard. He spent much of his career as a reporter for The Washington Post, for which he covered the collapse of communism. His previous books include One Minute to Midnight, and Down with Big Brother: The Fall of the Soviet Empire, a finalist for the 1997 PEN award for nonfiction.

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9780307456670: Six Months in 1945: FDR, Stalin, Churchill, and Truman--from World War to Cold War

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ISBN 10:  0307456676 ISBN 13:  9780307456670
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Book Description Cornerstone, United Kingdom, 2013. Paperback. Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. From the bestselling author of One Minute to Midnight, this is the riveting story of the last six months of World War II, when the hopeful Allied situation inspired by the Yalta Conference descended into the open conflict that would lead to the Cold War. When FDR, Winston Churchill and Josef Stalin gathered outside the Crimean city of Yalta in February 1945, they had Hitler s armies on the run, and victory was just a matter of time. Their mission was to forge the decisions that would shape the postwar world, and above all to divide up Europe between Soviet and Western influence. These men had been fighting side by side for nearly four years but the cracks in their alliance were emerging; even before the Second World War ended, another conflict was beginning. Six Months captures this turning point of the twentieth century, re-creating the steady breakdown in relations between powers. While the Berlin airlift and the Iron Curtain would not arrive for three years, by August 1945 the West and the Soviet Union were firmly on the path to a Cold War. Michael Dobbs brilliantly renders the personalities and geopolitics that drove this descent, illuminating the aims and frustrations of the key leaders. This is a vivid story of power, personalities, and national interests competing at a crucial moment in history. Seller Inventory # AAZ9780099574873

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Book Description Cornerstone, United Kingdom, 2013. Paperback. Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. From the bestselling author of One Minute to Midnight, this is the riveting story of the last six months of World War II, when the hopeful Allied situation inspired by the Yalta Conference descended into the open conflict that would lead to the Cold War. When FDR, Winston Churchill and Josef Stalin gathered outside the Crimean city of Yalta in February 1945, they had Hitler s armies on the run, and victory was just a matter of time. Their mission was to forge the decisions that would shape the postwar world, and above all to divide up Europe between Soviet and Western influence. These men had been fighting side by side for nearly four years but the cracks in their alliance were emerging; even before the Second World War ended, another conflict was beginning. Six Months captures this turning point of the twentieth century, re-creating the steady breakdown in relations between powers. While the Berlin airlift and the Iron Curtain would not arrive for three years, by August 1945 the West and the Soviet Union were firmly on the path to a Cold War. Michael Dobbs brilliantly renders the personalities and geopolitics that drove this descent, illuminating the aims and frustrations of the key leaders. This is a vivid story of power, personalities, and national interests competing at a crucial moment in history. Seller Inventory # AAZ9780099574873

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Book Description Arrow. Condition: New. 2013. Paperback. When FDR, Winston Churchill and Josef Stalin gathered outside the Crimean city of Yalta in February 1945, they had Hitler's armies on the run, and victory was just a matter of time. Their mission was to forge the decisions that would shape the postwar world, and above all to divide up Europe between Soviet and Western influence. Num Pages: 448 pages. BIC Classification: 3JJH; HBLW; HBTW; JPS. Category: (G) General (US: Trade). Dimension: 201 x 135 x 29. Weight in Grams: 350. . . . . . Books ship from the US and Ireland. Seller Inventory # V9780099574873

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