Timeline leading to the final agreement October 9, 1944 – First meeting of Churchill/Stalin in Kremlin – establish post-war spheres of influence January 21, 1945 – Harry Hopkins (USA) flies to London w. doubts about Yalta February 2 – Churchill plus British and American chiefs of staff meet in Malta to prepare for Yalta Conference February 4, 1945 – First Plenary mtg w. Churchill, Roosevelt, and Stalin February 6, 1945 – Second Plenary mtg February 9, 1945 – Third Plenary mtg – AGREEMENT
If you wish to comment on the YALTA agrement and the subsequent effects it had on Europe and Romania specifically, write and the comments will be posted. To: email@example.com
Recommended reference sources: 1) Pierre de Senarclens, Yalta, New Brunswick, Transaction Books, 1988.
2) Pierre de Senarclens, From Yalta to the Iron Curtain. The Great Powers and the Origins of the Cold War, Washington, Berg, 1995.
EVENTS AS RECOLLECTED BY SIR WINSTON CHURCHILL in Triumph & Tragedy, Houghton Mifflin, Boston, 1953.
Pages 226 to 228
We alighted at Moscow on the afternoon of October 9… At ten o’clock that night we held our first important meeting at the Kremlin. There were only Stalin, Molotov, Eden, and I… The moment was apt for business, so I said, “Let us settle about our affairs in the Balkans. Your armies are in Rumania and Bulgaria. We have interests, missions and agents there. Don’t let us get at cross-purposes in small ways. So far as Britain and Russia are concerned, how would it do for you to have ninety per cent predominance in Rumania, for us to have ninety per cent of the say in Greece, and go fifty-fifty about Yugoslavia?” While this was being translated I wrote out on a half-sheet of paper:
———- 90 %
— The others —– 10 %
— Great Britain— 90 % (in accord with U.S.A.)
— Russia ———- 10 %
Yugoslavia ——— 50-50 %
Hungary ———– 50-50 %
— Russia ———- 75 %
— The others —– 25 %
I pushed this across to Stalin, who had by then heard the translation. There was a slight pause. Then he took his blue pencil and made a large tick upon it, and passed it back to us. It was settled in no more time than it takes to set down…
After this there was a long silence. The pencilled paper lay in the center of the table. At length I said, ” Might it not be thought rather cynical if it seemed we had disposed of these issues, so fateful to millions of people, in such an offhand manner? Let us burn the paper.” “No, you keep it,” said Stalin.
On the subject of Romania pages 233-234 he wrote to colleagues in London
It is seen that quite naturally Soviet Russia has vital interests in the countries bordering on the Black Sea, by one of whom, Rumania, she has been most wantonly attacked with twenty-six divisions… Great Britain feels it right to show particular respect to Russian views about these two countries, and to the Soviet desire to take the lead in a practical way in guiding them in the name of the common cause.
At Yalta pages 353-364 At this first meeting [Feb 5] Mr. Roosevelt had made a momentous statement. He said that the United States would take all reasonable steps to preserve peace, but not at the expense of keeping a large army in Europe… The American occupation would therefore be limited to two years… The remaining details were settled very quickly [Feb 8].
ANECTODE FROM 1950Dimitri D. Dimancescu, the Honorary Consul’s father, was a Romanian diplomat (more) with many years spent in England where he had met Winston Churchill. In 1950, Churchill traveled to Marrakech, Morocco, to write the fifth volume of his memoirs. The Dimancescu family, living in exile there at the time, were invited for social events with the Churchills including a dinner at the famed Hotel Mamounia where he resided.The event is recalled in Dimancescu’s memoirs:
At eight thirty sharp, the Old Man came in. One could not help feeling his presence immediately. All eyes turned toward him. With a quick glance he made a tour of the room trying to see who was there with one look. He came to us with his hand stretched out and said: “I am so glad you could come.” Then without further introduction, he added in almost the same breath: “I Tried so hard to save your country from the clutch of the communists. I am sorry that I could not do more for Romania, but I saved Greece at a terrible price. Thirty thousand men had to be killed.”
My wife and I could not say a single word, completely stunned by Churchill’s apology. At that moment we could not see what compelled him to offer it to us. He must have worked it in his mind before coming down to dinner. “It was a great tragedy for the Romanian people,” I said to him, ” that you failed in your efforts, Sir.” “I know,” he replied and then went on to greet other guests.
At dinner my wife sat on Churchill’s right and I begged her not to incur the wrath of the host by bringing up a controversial subject. Later she would ask him about the Russians starting a new war. “If the Russians would move further into the heart of Europe,” he answered, “they would be blasted out of the continent and pushed beyond the Urals. The Americans would push the Russians back to Asia where they came from.” “But, Mr. Churchill,” interjected my wife, “pushing the Russians out of Europe and into Asia would mean bringing together 200 hundred million Russians with over 400 hundred million Chinese. Wouldn’t this huge block of humanity be a great danger to all of us in the years to come?” “The Chinese?” almost shouted Churchill looking at my wife quizzically. “Can the Chinese fly? Can they swim? Can they make the one thousand and one things which a nation, a great nation, needs to wage a war on a global scale?” And, hitting the table with his fist, he answered his own question with a loud “No, Madam.” Alarmed by this outburst, I turned to Mrs. Churchill’s aunt, Mrs. Henley, and asked whether my wife was upsetting Mr. Churchill. “On the contrary,” she said, “most obviously he is enjoying his conversation with Madame Dimancescu.”
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