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Wed, 04 Sep 2013 03:52:59 EDT by admin, 56674 views
Montclair State University, NJ
History paper by Pastor, Peter (all papers)
The Transfer of Hungarian Subcarpathia to the Ukrainian SSR of the Soviet Union in 1945
Better known as Ruthenia, this region, Kárpátalja (Subcarpathia) in Hungarian, had been part of the Hungarian kingdom since its foundation in 1000 until 1919. As a result of the defeat and collapse of the Austro-Hungarian Empire in 1918, the revolutionary Hungarian government gave Kárpátlalja autonomy and named it Ruszka Kraina. The Allied victors, however, awarded Ruthenia to Czechoslovakia at the Paris Peace Conference in 1919. The loss of Ruthenia, along with the other territories that were taken from Hungary by the peacemakers, was accepted under duress by Hungary when its representatives signed the Peace Treaty of Trianon on June 4, 1920. The Hungarian government’s revisionism, which called for the reconstitution of historic Hungary, included the return of Ruthenia. The opportunity to recover Ruthenia from Czecho-Slovakia with German help came in 1938 and 1939. At that time the possibility of acquiring the same territory came to the consideration of Soviet foreign policy makers as well, most importantly, to Stalin. The Soviet dictator, however, waited for the right conditions to take over the contested land. The lukewarm, then hostile, foreign policy of Hungary towards the Soviet Union during this period, which culminated in Hungary’s entrance into the war against the USSR on Germany’s side, sealed the fate of Ruthenia. Upon Hungary’s defeat Ruthenia became a de facto part of the Soviet Union late in 1944 and de jure in 1945.
Brief Professional Bio:
Peter Pastor is professor of history at Montclair State University, Montclair, NJ. He received his BA from the City College of CUNY and his PhD from New York University. He is the author, editor, or coeditor of seven books. His most recent co-edited volume is Essays on World War I (2012). He is also the author of more than forty articles focusing on Hungarian-Russian relations, or on twentieth century Hungarian history. He is also the president of the Center for Hungarian Studies and Publications, Inc., a non-profit corporation specializing on publishing the works of Hungarian historians in English. He is a frequent visitor to Hungary and is on the faculty of the Doctoral Program in History of Eszterházy Károly College in Eger, Hungary, as an invited foreign instructor. In 2003 he received the Commander’s Cross of the Hungarian Republic (a Magyar Köztársasági Érdemrend Középkeresztje) for exceptional contributions to the furthering of Hungarian-American cultural ties.