urope – what was happening where East met West? Encyclopaedia Britannica's editors oversee subject areas in which they have extensive knowledge, whether from years of experience gained by working on that content or via study for an advanced degree.... Winston Churchill, Harry Truman, and Joseph Stalin during the Potsdam Conference. at their test site in the New Mexico desert. Despite agreeing at Yalta that free elections would be held in Eastern Europe after the defeat of Nazi Germany, there was little evidence at Potsdam that Stalin intended to allow them. The next meeting of the Big Three took place in July 1945 at Potsdam, just outside Berlin. So, Truman went ahead with matters as advised by his advisors. The Potsdam Conference’s Declaration on Germany stated, “It is the intention of the Allies that the German people be given the opportunity to prepare for the eventual reconstruction of their life on a democratic and peaceful basis.” The four occupation zones of Germany conceived at the Yalta Conference were set up, each to be administered by the commander-in-chief of the Soviet, British, U.S., or French army of occupation. The main aim of the conference was to implement the agreement reached during the Yalta Conference. It was during this conference that major differences between the Soviet and other western nations emerged. The next meeting of the Big Three took place in July 1945 at Potsdam, just outside Berlin. Sign in, choose your GCSE subjects and see content that's tailored for you. Be on the lookout for your Britannica newsletter to get trusted stories delivered right to your inbox. Truman and his group adhered to a hard line when it came to dealing with the Soviet Union. Truman remained adamant that choosing to bomb Hiroshima and Nagasaki in August 1945 had ultimately saved hundreds of thousands of lives on both sides. On July 26 an ultimatum was issued from the conference to Japan demanding unconditional surrender and threatening heavier air attacks otherwise. Just as the 1960s started swinging and a new US President entered the White House, the Cold War entered its most critical phase, when the world would be pushed to the brink of nuclear war. An Allied Control Council made up of representatives of the four Allies was to deal with matters affecting Germany and Austria as a whole. While the meeting at Yalta had been reasonably friendly, the Potsdam Conference was fraught with disagreements, which were the result of some significant changes that had taken place since the Yalta Conference. Look at the picture and the new set of leaders present. The Potsdam Conference (German: Potsdamer Konferenz) was held in Potsdam, Germany, from July 17 to August 2, 1945. This remained a source of disagreement, with the Western Allies worried that they were repeating the mistakes of the Treaty of Versailles after World War One. Truman remarked that he was, and that the only language Stalin understood was. The main points of the three Conferences are summarised in the table below: To remember the things that were discussed at each conference, use the mnemonic PEER. (In some older documents, it is also referred to as the Berlin Conference of the Three Heads of Government of the USSR, the USA, and the UK.) Little real progress was made at Potsdam beyond an agreement to put into action the commitments made at Yalta. Question: Why did the Potsdam Conference further increase tensions? Also, the US and the Russians grew suspicious of one another. Updates? The last inter-Allied conference of World War II, code-named “Terminal,” was held at the suburb of Potsdam, outside ruined Berlin, from July 17 to August 2, 1945. The main aim of the conference was to implement the agreement reached during the Yalta Conference. Little was accomplished, and there would not be another meeting between Soviet and American heads of state for…, …was to be consummated at Potsdam, the last meeting among the Big Three. This was Trumans first Big Three meeting. When first told about the success of the experiment, Truman is said to have remarked: if it works... I’ll sure have a hammer on those boys. Each Allied power was to seize reparations from its own occupation zones, although the Soviet Union was permitted 10–15 percent of the industrial equipment in the western zones of Germany in exchange for agricultural and other natural products from its zone. The Potsdam Conference, 1945. The governments of Romania, Hungary, and Bulgaria were already controlled by communists, and Stalin was adamant in refusing to let the Allies interfere in eastern Europe. Although Stalin already knew details about the Manhattan Project through his spy networks, he was able to complain at this treatment and the fact that there were secrets between supposed Allies. This further deteriorated the relationship between the two nations. During the early 1940s, Truman had led committees on fraud and corruption within the military and had emerged a respected political figure. Remember – you will still need to learn what was decided (or wasn’t decided!). In fact the, was in control of Poland and the USSR was in the process of setting up a. Truman had automatically succeeded to the Presidency as he was Vice President when Franklin D Roosevelt died on 12 April 1945, just weeks before the end of World War Two. Truman had served in France during the last five months of World War One and had been a successful officer. The Potsdam Conference held between 17th July and 2nd August 1945 was attended by the heads of state of the UK, the US, France and the USSR. While Roosevelt had been willing to work with Stalin, largely because he needed the, to join the war against Japan, Truman made little secret of his dislike for, and for Stalin personally. Churchill (replaced midway by Attlee), Truman and Stalin, Military decisions took precedence over anything else, Stalin to have a ‘sphere of influence’ over Eastern Europe but all countries freed from Nazi occupation would be allowed free elections to choose their own governments, There was no sign of Stalin allowing free elections in Eastern Europe and a communist government was being set up in Poland. Hence, the Russians were taken unawares when the US dropped two atomic bombs on Japan. Europe – what was happening where East met West? Just before the Conference began, on 16 July 1945, the USA had successfully exploded an atomic bomb at their test site in the New Mexico desert. However, with Roosevelt's demise, the office was taken over by Harry S. Truman. More.. Why Did Tension Between Soviet And The West Increased After The Potsdam Conference ? Earlier, all the other conferences held between these nations were attended by President Roosevelt. The chief concerns of the Big Three, their foreign ministers, and their staffs were the immediate administration of defeated Germany, the demarcation of the boundaries of Poland, the occupation of Austria, the definition of the Soviet Union’s role in eastern Europe, the determination of reparations, and the further prosecution of the war against Japan. The US President, Franklin D Roosevelt, had died and been replaced by his Vice-President, Harry S Truman. Announcing our NEW encyclopedia for Kids! The first detonation of a nuclear weapon conducted as part of the Manhattan Project. The Germans had laid down the arm on 7th and 8th May 1945 and conference was held in July. Truman remarked that he was tired of babying the Soviets and that the only language Stalin understood was how many army divisions do you have? There was already no love lost between the Soviet and the other Allies; and the Potsdam Conference brought this to a peak. This necessitated moving millions of Germans in those areas to Germany. The Soviet Union was represented by Joseph Stalin, Britain by Winston Churchill, and the United States by President Harry S. Truman. Omissions? While in Potsdam, Truman told Stalin about the United States’ “new weapon” (the atomic bomb) that it intended to use against Japan.

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