High School History Recap

#13 Reevaluating World War II: Stalin's War with Prof Sean McMeekin

April 04, 2022 William H Palk, Colin du Plessis and Prof Sean McMeekin Season 4 Episode 13
High School History Recap
#13 Reevaluating World War II: Stalin's War with Prof Sean McMeekin
Show Notes

Join us for a conversation with Prof Sean McMeekin on his new book Stalin's War: A New History of World War II. This is a very timely discussion in light of the unfolding war in Ukraine.

Some of the points of discussion:

  • How is Stalin’s War different from the conventional Hitler-centric account of World War II?
  • How is it possible to even write a new history of World War II 77 years after the fact?
  • Is the way we teach World War II unbalanced?
  • How likely was the Hitler-Stalin pact?
  • What are the main differences between fascism and communism?
  • How much of a surprise was it when Germany invaded the Soviet Union?
  • How much of the Nazi defeat can be attributed to Stalin’s planning?
  • What are the gaps in the conventional Hitler-centric account of the lead-up to the outbreak of World War II?
  • Are there similarities between the invasion of Poland before World War II and the recent Russian invasion of Ukraine?
  • What about Japan’s role in the outbreak of World War II?
  • What are the circumstances around “Poland’s betrayal” at Tehran?
  • What did Stalin want to get out of World War II?
  • Is Stalin a model for Putin?
  • Is Putin trying to establish the Soviet Union?
  • Why didn’t NATO seize to exist when the Soviet Union collapsed?

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