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WC107, Midterm Study Guide

by: ATrickey

WC107, Midterm Study Guide WC107

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This is a study guide for the midterm exam. It covers the first half of the class. Good luck :)
Central European Nations
Study Guide
history, europe
50 ?




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This 13 page Study Guide was uploaded by ATrickey on Tuesday August 30, 2016. The Study Guide belongs to WC107 at DeSales University taught by in Fall 2013. Since its upload, it has received 3 views.


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Date Created: 08/30/16
• Hungary- in the Danubian Basin •Soviet Policy- during/after WWII • 1949- communists take complete control • CIG (central intelligence group) members are looking at soviet activities here; they describe this policy as ‘uncertain’(acting differently in Hungary then in other conquered areas •evidence for this ‘uncertain policy’: • 1. set up a Provisional (temporary) Government until the war was over •put old elites in charge (not standard operating procedure for the communists) • 2. asks allies (US) to open a second front through central Europe (towards Hungary) • 3. when soviets moved in, they stripped the land of everything (not ideal if they were going to stay) •literally, taking buildings a part and shipping them back to the Soviet Union (to help reconstruct the land touched by the war) •strategic death- bring in an army, ‘chew it up’, and ‘spit it out’ • 4. no massive purges to purge- to purify • •the communists normally attempted to purify any elements of a country (that they conquered) that would later threaten them • 5. first elections after the war (Nov, 1945) •the communists loose in the free and fair elections, and they accept it • they normally rig the election and intimidate the opposition •answer: • Stalin (leader of Soviet Union) did not want to antagonize the west •they had enough after the Nazis mass murder and his own • this changed Russian society • no position to now take on the west •an opposition is more likely to come across Germany and Poland, therefore, Hungary was not in an area of threat (all about location) • 1947- Cold War • 1949- communists have complete control of their society consolidating power over central Europe • •capitalism- the biggest threat against the Soviet communists • see as the source of all problems •the worst of the purges • 1953 Stalin dies •slight struggle for new power; Nikita Khrushchev comes into power • pursues the Anti-Stalin Campaign; have a ‘friendlier communism’; lighten up oppression • Hungary gets new leadership; era of reform (requests make soviets a little nervous) •1. want all Red Army forces out of the country (1955-’56) •2. People’s Republic of Hungary want out of the Warsaw Pact Warsaw pact- combat aggressive west Germany’s NATO • •3. going to open up the political system and allow F3C elections • will still be communist, but allow the people to have a voice • in order to combine with Austria, who is neutral and demilitarized •soviets say no (to all 3 things), causes the 1956 Hungarian Revolution • the army invades with Warsaw Pact forces • several thousand people die • massive purges • late ‘50s- change in leadership in Hungary, Janos Kadar reformer communist • •social contract- leader gives decent standard of living (house, food, job, education) in return for no trouble from the people • people have no choice • Kadar sees this as inefficient •’60-‘70s- sets up the New Economic Mechanism policy (NEM) • tries to reestablish the social contract • injects free market principles into the Hungarian economy •farmers get some land back • agriculture gets private property •small business owners get their businesses back • not state owned anymore •1/3 of the economy is based on free market principles • higher degree of efficiency • standard of living becomes one of the best •late ‘70s, economy starts to fall • decreased standard of living Behind the Iron Curtain • •economic decline; environmental degradation • 1. decline in health; life expectancy drops •doctors not qualified •decreased standard of living • 2. decline in infrastructure •roads, bridges, electric grids, sewage, water supply •dilapidated houses, buildings falling apart, pot holes in roads, no gardening tools (no lawn mowers, sheep came in to eat the grass) • increase in alcohol/drug addiction and abuse (approx. ‘80s) •vodka •opium from Afghanistan increased suicide rates • • increase divorce rates, decrease birth rates •family ideology breaking down •abortion was an accepted form of birth control • increased corruption •mafia was growing • environmental hazards •pollution •chemical factories, ‘chernobyl’ •cancer rates skyrocketed •there were some goods barter- trade goods • • communities watched out for each other • late 1980s- Gorbachev 1985 •Glasnost and Perestroika • Hungary will not reject these •1988 Grosz comes into power • an economist, high hopes for change • reforms; system too corrupt • he was politically inept; not good at dealing with the communists •indecisive • he does legalize the opposition •so long as they don’t rebel, they can meet and speak freely (& exist) •the social contract is failing, people want to protest, so he did this to avoid the strikes and demonstrations (no direct challenges to authority) •thinks he’s releasing the pressure of angry people • numbers of the opposition dramatically increase groups that form: • •FIDESZ- Federation of Young Democrats • youth movement (university students) •Democratic Forum • members of the Intelligentsia • professors, writers, artists, play-writes • finds himself in a precarious situation •1. society is rising against him (societal pressures) • pressures to reform • society wants more •2. split communist party that is at war with each other (governmental pressures) no stable structure • • he needs to crack down on the split • needs to declare martial law •3. Moscow was not coming to help •a revolution occurs • 1989- the Revolution •1. late winter; Gorbachev says the affairs of central Europe are no longer in the spheres of soviet interest (what happens in Hungary, stays in their own affairs) •2. summer; Hungary hosts Round Table Negotiations • no contract parliament; each opposition sends a representative trying to end the oppression • • August- strikes are legalized; everybody begins to strike •economy basically shut down •3. fall (September)- government allows 15-20,000 East Germans to leave the country • these people had come to the foreign embassies, but couldn’t get back • Iron Curtain has fallen •barb wire walls were being clipped down •4. October- conference • I. change name from Hungarian Socialist Workers Party to Hungarian Socialist Party •change name of country from Peoples Republic of Hungary to the Republic of Hungary •symbolizes the transition to democracy • reformists win; new party leaders actually leads the dual transition • communism is now over... II. F3C elections • • Parliamentary Electoral History (determining the big D) •begins in the spring of 1990- first F3C elections at the national levels •winner of election- Democratic Forum (becomes a political party) • plurality- greatest percentage of the vote • form first free democratic government of the post cold war era • all other parties accept the loss • stays in power for 4 years • take the gradual approach to reforms •slowly privatize •still demonstrations, but not as bad •1994- Hungarian Socialist Party wins voted into power- economy was hurting and the country needed a leader • with governing experience • played by democratic rules • successful •1998- FIDESZ wins • get majority of parliament •2002- HSP wins again •2006- HSP yet again •2010 (most recent election)- FIDESZ is back •Evolution of democracy (Democratic Consolidation) • two turnover test all parties democratic? yes • •20 years? yes • low public support for anti-government support? pro democratic-yes • high public support for democracy? yes • elite commitment? yes, no corruption scandals • political party stability? yes, HSP comes into power multiple times • YES to the Big D • the ONLY country in central Europe that actually has an election every 4 years (as stated in the constitution) •last 2 years- under FIDESZ leadership... • democracy in Hungary has had serious problems • current regime is up to nasty, anti-democratic ideas •big D is being questioned • Structure of the government •Executive- a President and a Prime Minister (serve 2 terms) • president is elected by Parliament; 4 year terms; weak presidency • prime minister is head of government; usually leader of political party Legislature- National Assembly • • uni-cameral (1 chamber) •386 seats •5% threshold level • Judiciary- spring court • Czechoslovakia • Concepts • The Velvet Revolution- (Nov & Dec 1989) a peaceful, soft transition of power • over in 6 weeks; the more oppressive a regime, the quicker the transition is The Velvet Divorce- a peaceful separation of the country (Jan 1, 1993); • splits into Czech Republic and Slovakia • a creation of the Treaty of Versailles (pieces of the Austrian-Hungarian Empire) • 1st Republic of Czechoslovakia 1919 • only country who stays a democracy during the interwar years (until Nazis) • was a Big D • Chain of Events (all contribute to the Velvet Divorce; fundamental causes) • The Communist Legacy • 1st Element: ‘F’Federalism- a political system where power is distributed between a central government and subdivisional governments which both exercise direct authority over their citizens • not normally standard procedure for communists (they like unitary systems) • given this political autonomy for their sacrifices during WWII in 1944-’45 for the Red Army • tension between Czechs and Slovaks • communists see this, and set up a system to divide and conquer • set up national counsels (sub-governments in each) • they wouldn’t unify and revolt against communists, but they keep butting heads against each other • bi-cameral (upper chamber): 50-50 seats along ethnic lines, but there’s more Czechs (no equal representation) • 2nd Element: ‘IG’Depressed Interest Group Formation- no civil society • so oppressive • no private land, no freedom; all a nationalist state • due to Novotny • a Stalinist (a brutal dictator) Stalinism: 7 elements • • 1. absolute obedience to soviet directives (to what Stalin is telling you to do) •2. administrative supervision by soviet personnel (Stalin sends his men to Czechoslovakia because he doesn’t trust their loyalty to him) •3. police terror, uncontrolled even by the local communist party (daily executions; kidnapping and sent to jail, never seen again; civil liberties and human rights did not exist) •4. economic deprivation while pursuing unrealistic industrialization and agricultural collectivization (when communists move in, they move from a capitalist system to a command economy; move people off the land and into the factories- urbanization) • set up quotas that were almost impossible to meet, causing products to be of less quality; productivity drops • collectivized- took land from individuals • scale of economy- the bigger you are, the more efficient you’ll be (but no incentive to work) • soviet economic sphere of influence •5. colonial-like foreign trade dependents on the soviet union (each colony has a specific product to make; each nation must be dependent on the soviet union) • Czechoslovakia make weaponry •6. isolation from the non-communist world (‘protect’ citizens from capitalism; no trade outside the iron curtain; no one leaves) •7. the cult of Stalin/personality (Stalin-worship) • Alexander Dubcek- a slovak, a royal communist; trained in Moscow; head of national counsel in Slovakia • pursued reforms in slovakia, “a friendlier communism”- sets an example for the czechs; Novotny is pressured but Moscow doesn’t want to purge him • economic deprivation sets in; social contract begins to break down (if you work for me, I will give you food and a decent standard of living) • 1968 (in power for approx. 20 years)- Dubcek is spreading his ideas and reforms, Novotny sees this as a threat; Novotny brings out the military for a coup against the reformers (not against himself) Brezshnev (leader of the soviets) has Novotny purged • • Dubcek becomes the new leader of Czechoslovakia • reform plan: Socialism with a Human Face • injects free market economy, allows for government criticism •Brezshnev doesn’t care, but Germany, Poland, and Hungary don’t like these reforms • giving these nations’citizens ‘ideas’ • finally starts to make calls... but Dubcek crosses the line.. •wants to open up the political system; plurality into the system, open and free elections (6 months into his rule) • Brezshnev says no; tanks roll in •the Prague Spring- crushed by Warsaw Pact Forces (Brezshnev doctrine); massive purge follows; Dubcek also purged • Gustav Husak comes into power, 1968 •a neoSalinist; just as oppressive as Novotny •in power for 20 years •complete demoralization of the czechoslovak people • Charter 77 (1977)- about 2000 intelligentsia (protectors of the culture) members signed this charter (a bit of hope) •secret police were going to come after them •spokesperson for the charter: Vaclac Havel •want protection for human rights • Helsinki Accords- (Finland) 1975, (Europe, US, and Canada came to this) •human rights of citizens; Czechoslovakia signs this •1. west recognized East Germany as a sovereign state •2. west recognizes central Europe as within the Soviet sphere of influence • US viewed them as captive nations; did not recognize soviet spheres • give a legal (international law) document • legality for human rights; use against the regime •many members will be purged; Havel is thrown in prison • Jakes in put into power after Gustav •still communism, no reforms • Velvet Revolution, Nov 17-Dec 1989 •Poland had already begun the transition; Hungary began in October; Germany (Nov 10), the Berlin wall fell •protests and demonstrations by the college students and the workers • Regime unleashes brutal oppression on these people by the police the people react to this police brutality • • Nov 23- in downtown Prague, the square is packed; Jakes’police chief said “we don’t have enough bullets” (military is not helping) •the mass communist leadership resigns... • Dec. 29, ’89- Czechoslovakia parliament elects Havel as the first president • regime is so oppressive, transition happens in 6 weeks • begins the Second Republic • abrupt transition • consequences • Consequences of Abruptness (CA) • 1. Parliamentary Activism (PA)- no round table negotiations (because of the depressed interest groups); parliamentarians move in (focal point for rules of revolution) • 2. Republic Centric Party System (RCPS)- regional or ethnic party • Charter 77 changes its name to Civic Forum- Czech opposition group (in Prague) • Klaus leads • Public Against Violence (PAV)- Slovak opposition group • leader- Vladamier Meciar • changes its name to the Movement for a Democratic Slovakia (HZDS) • Federalism kept the two at odds with each other; transition happened too fast for the two parties to join forces against communism Immediate causes of the Velvet Divorce • • 1. Political- 3 persons: Klaus (the Prime Minister), Havel, and Meciar; Havel leaves the two to work things out • Meciar fears that Czechs will dominate the system, and treat the Slovaks a second class citizens • Klaus- we won’t threaten you, will give autonomy; keeps giving the Slovaks more power • Meciar (power hungry)- keeps asking for more • finally Klaus stops giving Meciar what he wants • Meciar and his counsel come up with a scheme for more power • gets the Slovak National Counsel to declare independence (unofficial) • thinks it’ll be a threat against Klaus, and Klaus will give him the power to keep from splitting the country • Klaus- gives them independence... (summer-fall of 1992) • Nov of ’92- the national government passes a decree, calling for the division of the government polled citizens- overwhelmingly did not want the division • • never asked the citizens; just dictated out of parliament • even though this is supposed to be democratic, after the years of oppression • Jan 1, 1993- line is shown on the map, and Czechoslovakia disappears • 2. Economic- Czechs had a diversified economy whereas Slovakia was primarily agricultural • when the Red Army moves in, there is a huge industrial shift (Slovakia particularly) • most of the industry, in Slovakia, deals with military (Soviet Military industrialize complex) • when the Cold War ends, there is no need for these weapons; factories start shutting down • massive unemployment and high inflation in Slovakia in the ‘90s • Czechs follow the Polish model (shock- fast transition) • Slovaks follow the Hungarian model (gradualism) • 3. Cultural- most diverse region in the world • Slovaks- Catholic, own language/customs/habits • Meciar plays off of this • Czechs- urban and educated • Czech Republic • 1. Electoral History (on Blackboard) June 1990- within 6 months, first F3C elections • • Civic Forum wins plurality, forms a coalition government • KSCM- the communist party (still consistently win 10% of the vote) • June 1992- next election; write a constitution and therefore need new elections • Civic Forum splits, the Civic Democratic Party (ODS) is formed (Havel and Klaus are members) and wins (center-right party) • Klaus is the party leader in Parliament • Nov 1992- signs the document that by Jan 1st, the country splits • (1/1/93) no new election even though its a new country • they know they’d be out if they held elections, because they never asked the people if they wanted the Velvet Divorce (this is not democratic, and people are pissed) • they wait another 4 years • 1996- the Czech Republic parliamentary electoral history technically starts now • the ODS wins again (not by much)- by this time, the economy was booming (they got over the worst) • not holding elections in ’93 worked for the ODS • the ODS were competent and a stable government • not much later, a scandal breaks out • illegal funding, misappropriation of federal funds • its so bad, that it takes them down (cabinet collapses) • June 1998- the Czech Social Democratic Party wins (CSSD) (center left party) • has roots back to the Austro-Hungarian Party (1880s) • there are 4 political parties at this time (and a 5% threshold level): • 1. ODS- center right • 2. CSSD- center left 3. KSCM- extreme left • • 4. ____- extreme right • can’t get enough seats and can’t form a coalition (but have the plurality of the seats); runs a minority government • opposition agreement; an understanding that the CSSD and the ODS will work together to run Parliament • 2002- the CSSD wins again; creates a majority government (get the majority of the seats) • no more opposition agreement • 2006- the ODS wins • 2010- the ODS wins again (most recent election) forms a coalition government • • the Big D? • no two-turnover test; need one more election (next year) to get close to the 20 year period; and there was corruption (so even though they started their history in 1996, corruption occurred right away) • no elite commitment just yet because of corruption; but they have received votes again • yes to a democratic constitution • yes to party stability • concern: KSCM is a communist party; but they never won or were in a coalition; they also are playing by the democratic rules • medium D • government- president that speaks on behalf of the state; 5 year terms x2, selected by Parliament, not the people • Executive • very weak presidency- Havel is the first president; after his first term for 6 months, Parliament cannot decide on a new president; Havel runs two terms • Prime Minister is head of government (CEO of the country) • Legislature- bicameral • was unicameral (1990) when Czechoslovakia split from the communists (this concentrates power; will become corrupt) • 1993- they figure this out; too much power in one area • 1996- adds a Senate (becomes bicameral) • Chamber of Deputies (lower house)- 200 members, 4 year terms of office, proportional representation, 5% threshold level • Senate- 81 members (smallest central gov of all of Europe; only true imitation of America), 1/3 come up for election at any one time, 6 year terms of office (actually has power unlike in Poland) • Judiciary- supreme court appointed by the president and have elect term office • also have a constitutional court • Slovakia • leader of HZDS- Meciar • Kovac- president, member of HZDS • Meciar... • cuts opposition parties out of committee shifts, cut their campaign financing and access to media (uses democratic means for undemocratic ends) • guilty of nepotism • sets up a “spoils system”- purges people who are not his friends, but gives positions to his friends • pursues the transition towards democracy very slowly; wants to hold all of the power • secret police (SIS) is controlled and the military is taken over and commander of chief is taken out of power of Kovac; Kovac’s son is kidnapped • president initially picked by parliament; made a constitutional change where the people can vote on the president • supposed to have new elections, but don’t; powers fall to the prime minister • Meciar’s policy is known as “the personalization of rule” • makes himself the law • Electoral History • velvet divorces happens, Meciar comes home, but no new elections are held • many of his old leaders defect; defections get so bad, parliament dissolves itself (vote of no confidence) • 1994- first elections due to the fall of the government • winner- Meciar and the HZDS • this emboldens him • 1998- Kovac was suppose to come up for an election, but Meciar denies this (technically, several months without a president; but Meciar declares all the powers as his) • watershed election (major shift)- Meciar wins plurality but do not win the majority • no political parties will deal with him; small opposition parties form a coalition- the Slovak Democratic Coalition (SDK); Meciar is still in parliament, but is out of the presidency • he accepts this loss because: 1. the western european countries threaten him with isolation and international pressure as well as 2. no public support for him • SDK- move towards democratic consolidation; NATO comes in to help • 1999- presidential election by the people; Meciar runs but does not win • but HZDS still has some support (43%) • 2002- HDZS wins plurality, but SDK reestablishes itself and takes control • 2006- a new party joins, Direction Social Democracy (center left) 2010- coalition of conservative political parties, the Slovak Democratic • and Christian Union (SDKU) (center right) • 2012- most recent, Direction Social Democracy wins again • Democratic Consolidation? • only started in 1998 • don’t just yet have a solid commitment by elite parties • it has its challenges, not there just yet.. • government structure • unicameral • Prime Minister by majority in Parliament • 150 members in this Parliament • 5% threshold • supreme court (“constitutional court”) • Meciar causes cultural tensions


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