Iron Curtain descended on Europe 75 years ago

On February 4, 1945, began the Conference of the Allied leaders in Yalta, the then USSR, which decided the fate of Europe after WWII.

Poland was WWII victim, not perpetrator: MEPs

see more

The three leaders of the anti-Nazi German coalition met on the Crimean peninsula, controlled at that time be the Soviet Union: the Prime Minister of the UK Winston Churchill, the President of the US, Franklin D. Roosevelt, and the leader of the USSR, Joseph Stalin.

The decisions made there by those leaders created the post-war division of Europe into influence zones. Poland and other central-eastern Europe countries, such as Hungary and Czechoslovakia, were placed under the supervision of the Soviet Union, what sometime later was described by Mr Churchill as division by “the Iron Curtain.”

In the first years after WWII, it resulted in the terror implemented in these countries by communist authorities backed by Moscow. Thousands of people were persecuted, arrested, tortured and many of them murdered as “collaborators (with Nazi Germany),” “foreign spies” or “reactionists.”

The form of government called “the people’s democracy” imposed there was in fact a dictatorship of communist parties.

The Polish government-in-exile and underground organisations in occupied Poland protested against the decisions of Yalta conference but there was nothing they could really do about it.

The order of Europe settled in Yalta broke down at the break of the 1980s and 1990s when the communist system began to collapse.