Cecelia Hightower's Reviews > Yalta: The Price of Peace

Yalta by Serhii Plokhy
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's review
Feb 13, 2012

it was amazing
bookshelves: bill

Finished reading "Yalta - The Price of Peace" written by S. M. Plokey. As the allies were closing in on Berlin bringing the European World War II to closure the leaders of the three biggest countries met in the town of Yalta, which has been resort town on the Black Sea for centuries. The three leaders were F. D. Roosevelt, President of the U.S.A.; W. L. S. Churchill, Prime Minister of Great Britain; and J. Stalin, Marshall & Dictator of the U.S.S.R.

The agenda for this meeting was to determine how the countries of Europe would be realigned and how control of the individual countries would be allocated to this "Big Three". Borders were realigned and people relocated to suit the perceived needs or desires of these three leaders. The ramification of the decisions made at this meeting is still having an impact on the world and it is not all for the good.

This book was written using declassified documents and from dairies & letters from people that attended and assisted in the negotiations providing insight to a lot of the behind the scenes activities and side dealings.

To me, some of the side issues is what I found most interesting. The negotiations regarding when and where the meeting was to be held and the reasons for the different positions. What had to be done to bring three separate castles, that had been destroyed by the Germans, up to workable accommodations. This is included installing wiring, plumbing, cooking facilities, & meeting facilities all in six weeks, which was done using 1,500 men and women working around the clock. What was done by the host country (the USSR) to prevent support people for the two guest leaders attending the meeting from interacting with the local population. And, the silly things done by the host country to impress the people coming to the meeting, what I call doing the "one up-manship" thing.

All in all a great read, if one has an interest in the behind the scenes action of any major meeting between leaders of nations. A lot of history but not just a dry presentation of facts and figures.

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