SAT II World History : Leaders and Thinkers of the USSR

Study concepts, example questions & explanations for SAT II World History

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Example Questions

Example Question #1 : Leaders And Thinkers Of The Ussr

Which of these figures was neither a ruler of the Soviet Union nor head of the Communist party?

Possible Answers:

Vladimir Lenin

Josef Stalin

Konstantin Chernenko

Yuri Andropov

Leon Trotsky

Correct answer:

Leon Trotsky

Explanation:

All of these men served as heads of the Communist party and/or Soviet government except for Leon Trotsky. Trotsky came to power in the same wave of revolution that ushered in Vladimir Lenin as leader of the country. However, Trotsky opposed the rise of Josef Stalin, and once Stalin assumed control of the country, Trotsky was exiled and a decade later, executed on Stalin's orders.

Example Question #13 : Russian Revolution And The Cold War

The democratization of the Soviet Union was promoted by __________.

Possible Answers:

Josef Stalin

Vladimir Putin

Vladimir Lenin

Nikita Kruschev

Mikhail Gorbachev

Correct answer:

Mikhail Gorbachev

Explanation:

In the 1980s, the Soviet Union was suffering from a series of agricultural and industrial failures, and its economy was in a shambolic state. In an attempt to allieviate some of the ills of society and provide a more open state, the Communist party leader Mikhail Gorbachev promoted a series of reforms called "glasnost" and "perestroika." They were designed to open up individual freedoms and promote democracy in the country.

Example Question #2 : Leaders And Thinkers Of The Ussr

Who was the leader of the Soviet Union during the Cuban Missile Crisis?

Possible Answers:

Vladimir Lenin

Mikhail Gorbachev

Josef Stalin

Leonid Brezhnev

Nikita Kruschev

Correct answer:

Nikita Kruschev

Explanation:

The Cuban Missile Crisis took place in 1963. The President of the United States at the time was John F. Kennedy and the leader of the Soviet Union was Nikita Kruschev. The crisis began when the Soviet Union installed missiles in Cuba very close to American territory. For a short time, the world was very close to nuclear warfare between the two countries until Kruschev and the Russians agreed to remove their missiles from Cuba if the United States removed its missiles from Turkey.

Example Question #61 : Europe

Yuri Gagarin is most famous for __________.

Possible Answers:

being the leader the Red Army during the Second World War. 

being the first human in outer space

splitting the atom

assassinating Josef Stalin

assassinating Leon Trotsky

Correct answer:

being the first human in outer space

Explanation:

Yuri Gagarin was a Soviet cosmonaut and the first human to go to outer space. During the 1950s and 1960s, a major part of the Cold War between America and the Soviet Union was the Space Race. The Soviets were the first to orbit the Earth (with Sputnik) and the first to put a man in space, Yuri Gagarin in 1961; however, the United States was the first to put a man on the moon in 1969.

Example Question #5 : Leaders And Thinkers Of The Ussr

Who represented the Soviet Union at the Yalta and Potsdam Conferences? 

Possible Answers:

Josef Stalin

Vladimir Lenin

Winston Churchill

Nikita Kruschev

Leonid Brezhnev

Correct answer:

Josef Stalin

Explanation:

The Yalta and Potsdam Conferences took place during and immediately after the Second World War, respectively. The three major Allied powers—Britain, the United States, and the USSR—met to discuss terms and the postwar world order. The Soviet Union was represented by Josef Stalin, who ruled the country at the time.

Example Question #16 : Russian Revolution And The Cold War

The campaign of political repression in the Soviet Union, known as "the Great Purge," is associated with __________.

Possible Answers:

Vladimir Lenin

Josef Stalin

Pol Pot

Mikhail Gorbachev

Leon Trotsky

Correct answer:

Josef Stalin

Explanation:

The Great Purge took place from the mid-1930s until 1940. It was an enforced program of political repression and was an attempt to consolidate power and control under Josef Stalin. Stalin ordered the Red Army purged of any subversive (or suspected subversive) elements, as well as the bullying and execution of millions of peasants.

Example Question #62 : Europe

Which Russian leader is responsible for “The Five Year Plan”?

Possible Answers:

Medvedev 

Khrushchev 

Putin 

Stalin 

Trotsky 

Correct answer:

Stalin 

Explanation:

The notion of a Five Year Plan is part of the Communist approach to controlled economies. During the history of the Soviet Union, the function of most five year plans was to either increase food production or to greatly improve industry and manufacturing. The first Five Year Plan was suggested by Stalin in the 1920s when he was still the General Secretary under Lenin. When Stalin assumed complete control of the party, he envisioned a system of collective farming across the nation and set up a Five Year Plan to engender this. It failed, somewhat spectacularly, and lead to grossly widespread famine and malnutrition.

Example Question #63 : Europe

Vladimir Lenin promoted _____________.

Possible Answers:

the need to maintain private ownership of farms 

a revolution led from above by trained revolutionaries 

All of the answers are correct.

a strict adherence to Marx's vision of how nations transitioned from capitalism to socialism to communism

None of the answers are correct.

Correct answer:

a revolution led from above by trained revolutionaries 

Explanation:

In demanding an immediate transition to socialism for Russia, Lenin disagreed with Marx's views. Lenin also promoted the collectivization of farms, although at a more gradual rate than some of his peers. 

Lenin advocated revolution from above, by trained revolutionaries.

Example Question #64 : Europe

Which Soviet leader implemented the New Economic Policy, which allowed a mixed economy of state-controlled industry and private enterprises?

Possible Answers:

Josef Stalin

Nikita Khrushchev

Vladimir Lenin

None of these choices

Mikhail Gorbachev

Correct answer:

Vladimir Lenin

Explanation:

Vladimir Lenin implemented the New Economic Policy in 1921, to help stimulate the Soviet economy following the Russian Civil War. Josef Stalin abolished this policy when he took power in 1928, favoring much more rigid state control of the economy. Nikita Khrushchev kept much of this rigid state control in place. Mikhail Gorbachev launched economic reforms to liberalize the Soviet economy in the 1980s, but these reforms were not known as the New Economic Policy.

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