Skip to content

Prof. Boerner's Explorations

Thoughts and Essays that explore the world of Technology, Computers, Photography, History and Family.


Tag: Joseph Stalin

Edited by Gerald Boerner


Introductory Comments:

JerryPhoto_thumb2_thumb_thumbWe have seen some major events on March 6th over the past two hundred years. In 1836, this day witnessed the storming of the Alamo by Santa Ana’s forces; the 163 Texian defenders were overwhelmed by the Mexican army and most defenders lost their lives. But the Battle of san Jacinto a short time later would see the Texians win their independence and establish the Republic of Texas. The rallying cry for that latter battle was “Remember the Alamo!” The state of Texas would later make the Spanish Mission in San Antonio a historic site.


Also on this day we received two life and death decisions from our court system. The first, in 1857, the U.S. Supreme Court found that the slave, Dred Scott, did not have grounds to gain freedom for himself or his family. This led to his continued enslavement and fed the fires of the abolitionists. More recently, in 1951, Ethel and Julius Rosenberg would face the court in their trial as spies for the Soviet Union. They were accused of passing nuclear secrets to the Soviet Union during World War II. They would be convicted and executed in 1953.

A milestone in broadcasting was passed in 1981 when Walter Cronkite, the dean of evening news anchors. On this night, Cronkite who had been the anchor of The CBS Evening News for nineteen years would retire his anchor spot. Dan Rather would take over the evening anchor desk. Cronkite was remembered for his ending of each broadcast with the iconic words, “And that’s the way it is: Friday, March 6, 1981.”

We now will proceed to examine some of the events that are associated with day in history... GLB

These Introductory Comments are copyrighted:
Copyright©2012 — Gerald Boerner — All Rights Reserved

[ 906 Words ]


Quotations Related to Slavery:

[ ]


“Slavery exists. It is black in the South, and white in the North.”
— Andrew Johnson

“Since the days of slavery, if you were a good singer or dancer, it was your job to perform for the master after dinner.”
— Spike Lee

“Slavery can only be abolished by raising the character of the people who compose the nation; and that can be done only by showing them a higher one.”
— Maria W. Chapman

“Should slavery be abolished there, (and it is an event, which, from these circumstances, we may reasonably expect to be produced in time) let it be remembered, that the Quakers will have had the merit of its abolition.”
— Thomas Clarkson

“Pervading nationalism imposes its dominion on man today in many different forms and with an aggressiveness that spares no one. The challenge that is already with us is the temptation to accept as true freedom what in reality is only a new form of slavery.”
— Pope John Paul II

“The North understand it better – they have told us for twenty years that their object was to pen up slavery within its present limits – surround it with a border of free States, and like the scorpion surrounded with fire, they will make it sting itself to death.”
— Robert Toombs

continue reading…

Edited by Gerald Boerner



JerryPhotoStanding along side of Washington, Jefferson, Lincoln, and Teddy Roosevelt as great presidents, Franklin D. Roosevelt stands along side them in the list of great Presidents. FDR faced several critical challenges to his leadership. He faced a country in the midst of the Great Depression, a time when the banks had failed, unemployment was extremely high, and the farmers in the great plains were faced with the dust bowl.

Beyond these problems, he was guiding the ship of state through dangerous waters. Hitler was preparing for war in Europe, the Japanese were flexing their military muscles in the Pacific, and the Congress was dedicated to an isolationist policy. FDR was in a position to prepare for war in the background; he did this through the Lend-Lease Program and preparing our defenses. He successfully accomplished this without going on the offensive. The U.K. was provided support without actually becoming involved in the battles!


When the Japanese attacked our Naval forces at Pearl Harbor, he was ready to turn out industrial strength into a production machine for war materiel. During the early 1940s, de conferenced repeatedly with other allied leaders, including Churchill and Stalin. While successfully accomplishing these tasks, his health suffered. His paralysis and heart conditions became more important, necessitating frequent visits to the health spas at Warm Springs, Georgia. It was there on this day (April 12th) in 1945 that FDR suffered a major stroke that ended his brilliant career.

So, let’s jump on in this exploration of FDR’s death after thirteen years as President…  GLB

These Introductory Comments are copyrighted:
Copyright©2011 — Gerald Boerner — All Rights Reserved

[ 3862 Words ]


Quotations Related to AFFAIRS:


“Affairs that depend on many rarely succeed.”
— Francesco Guicciardini

“All a man’s affairs become diseased when he wishes to cure evils by evils.”
— Sophocles

“In the affairs of this world, men are saved not by faith, but by the want of it.”
— Benjamin Franklin

continue reading…

Edited by Gerald Boerner



JerryPhotoWinston Churchill was skeptical of Joseph Stalin’s motives as an Ally during World War II. This became especially evident during the “Big Three” conferences at Tehran, Yalta and Potsdam. While the western Allies (England, France and the United States) looked forward to establishing democratic governments in the eastern European states. On the other hand, Joseph Stalin sought to re-establish the Soviet sphere if influence previously enjoyed under the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact of 1939.

When Germany surrendered in 1945, the Soviets moved to make their occupied lands in eastern Europe into permanent communist states. Thus the Warsaw Pact was born. When the Marshall Plan offered financial assistance to states setting up democratic governments, Stalin prevented any of the Warsaw Pact countries from accepting this aid. The “Iron Curtain” had fallen!

BE033127 TMH 02/10/2011

Churchill delivered his "Sinews of Peace" speech at Westminster College in Fulton, Missouri on this day in 1946. In this speech he declared tat an “Iron Curtain” had fallen in Europe to isolate the eastern European lands from democracy. This started the “Cold War” that continued through 1989 when the Berlin Wall fell.

But, let’s start our exploration now…  GLB

These Introductory Comments are copyrighted:
Copyright©2011 — Gerald Boerner — All Rights Reserved

[ 4118 Words ]


Quotations Related to CURTAIN:


“Conscience is the window of our spirit, evil is the curtain.”
— Douglas Horton

“From Stettin in the Baltic to Trieste in the Adriatic, an iron curtain has descended across the Continent.”
— Winston Churchill

“From behind the Iron Curtain, there are signs that tyranny is in trouble and reminders that its structure is as brittle as its surface is hard.”
— Dwight D. Eisenhower

continue reading…

Edited by Gerald Boerner



JerryPhotoRamping up to the Allies victory on the Nazis in Europe found the British Prime minister (Winston Churchill), the Soviet General Secretary (Joseph Stalin), and the American President (Franklin D. Roosevelt & Harry Truman), the Big Three, meeting three times. The first of these meeting, The Tehran Conference, was held in 1944 and was focused on the invasion of Europe, Project Overlord. The second meeting was held in Yalta in 1945 and was focused on defining the structure of eastern Europe, especially Poland, after the defeat of Nazi Germany. The third meeting was held in Potsdam later in 1945 to discuss the war in the Pacific; the announcement of the successful test of the atomic bomb was made at this meeting. These conferences were very similar to the meetings of the French and British heads of state to divide up the spoils of war after World War I!


So what did the Yalta Conference accomplish? The main focus of this conference was to determine the post-war partitioning of Germany and eastern Europe. This was especially important to Churchill when applied to Poland since it was the invasion of Poland by Germany in 1939 that initiated World War II. Furthermore, Churchill was doubtful of the intents of Stalin; Roosevelt wanted to appease Stalin. In the end, Churchill and Roosevelt essentially ceded eastern Europe in exchange for Stalin’s support for rebuilding western Europe after the war. By default, this provided for the creation of the Soviet Bloc behind the “Iron Curtain” and led to the Cold War that lasted until the fall of communism with the Berlin Wall in 1989.

The western Allies also had a goal of holding democratic election throughout eastern Europe. This would provide self determination to those lands under either German or Soviet occupation. This goal ran counter to the goal of Stalin to create a buffer between Germany and the Soviet Union. In the end, those countries under within the Soviet Block would have elections, but not democratic elections.

So, let’s get on with our exploration of the Yalta Conference…  GLB

These Introductory Comments are copyrighted:
Copyright©2011 — Gerald Boerner — All Rights Reserved

[ 4096 Words ]


Quotations Related to YALTA:


“The truth is found when men are free to pursue it.”
— Franklin D. Roosevelt

“The virtues are lost in self-interest as rivers are lost in the sea.”
— Franklin D. Roosevelt

“There are many ways of going forward, but only one way of standing still.”
— Franklin D. Roosevelt

continue reading…

Edited by Gerald Boerner



JerryPhotoWe recently examined the life and trials of Nelson Mandela. A similar pattern of experiences filled the life of today’s feature, Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn. Both experienced long-term imprisonment for their political beliefs. Both lived under régimes that applied oppressive measures against dissonants. They survived to emerge from these experiences to lead a nation (Mandela) and internationally-known author (Solzhenitsyn). And, they both were awarded Nobel Prizes for their efforts.

Solzhenitsyn was born just after the Russian Revolution of 1917, but lived the first half of his life under brutal rule of Joseph Stalin. His writings were unwelcomed by Stalin’s régime and he was placed in one if the gulags, essentially concentration camps. While serving his time, Solzhenitsyn listened to and committed to memory the stories from his fellow inmates. These were fashioned into The Gulag Archipelago. For this, he was awarded the 1970 Nobel Prize in Literature.

So, let’s get this exploration on the road…  GLB

These Introductory Comments are copyrighted:
Copyright©2010 — Gerald Boerner — All Rights Reserved

[ 4001 Words ]


Quotations Related to SOLZHENITSYN


“In our country the lie has become not just a moral category but a pillar of the State.”
— Solzhenitsyn

“Justice is conscience, not a personal conscience but the conscience of the whole of humanity.”
— Solzhenitsyn

“For us in Russia, communism is a dead dog, while, for many people in the West, it is still a living lion.”
— Solzhenitsyn

continue reading…

Edited by Gerald Boerner



JerryPhotoOne of the big differences between the Allied Powers (United States, United Kingdom, & Soviet Union) and the Axis Powers (Nazi Germany, Italy, & Japan) was in the control of war strategies. The Allied forces were under the control of the civilian government whereas the Axis forces had erased that difference. For the Allies, that led to a series of conferences for the leaders of tie Big Three. At these meetings, guidelines for the direction of the war effort were debated; each country’s individual goals were often in conflict.

This conflict arose especially related to the second front. Stalin wanted the other two allies to create a second front by invading continental Europe through France. These two allies withheld this action until sufficient resources (troops, materials, & supply lines) were available. At the Tehran Conference, a date in the spring of 1944 was committed to by the Big Three.

The intent of this post is to give an overview, not a comprehensive treatment of this topic. So, let’s get started…  GLB

These Introductory Comments are copyrighted:
Copyright©2010 — Gerald Boerner — All Rights Reserved

[ 4174 Words ]


Quotations Related to CONFERENCES

“News conferences are the only chance the American public has to see Ronald Reagan use his mind.”
— Sam Donaldson

“Conferences at the top level are always courteous. Name-calling is left to the foreign ministers.”
— W. Averell Harriman

“May the spirit of devotion to duty which inspires us always dominate this Committee’s conferences!”
— Gustav Krupp

continue reading…