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Potsdam Conference

The Potsdam conference was held in Potsdam, Germany (near Berlin) from July 17 to August 2, 1945. Participants were the victorious allies of World War II who were to decide how to administer Germany, which had unconditionally surrendered several months earlier.

Participants were:

The primary results of this conference was the Potsdam Agreement which called for the division of Germany and Austria in four occupation zones (agreed on earlier at the Yalta Conference), division of Berlin and Vienna in four zones, and the establishment of the Odra-Nysa line as the provisional border between Germany and Poland. In addition, the Allies issued the Potsdam Declaration which outlined the terms of surrender for Japan.

The western allies, and especially Churchill, were suspicious of Stalin's motives, who had already installed communist governments in the eastern European countries under his influence; the Potsdam conference turned out to be the last conference among the allies.

During the conference, Truman told Stalin about his "powerful new weapon"; Stalin of course knew already about the atomic bomb through his spies in the Manhattan project. Toward the end of the conference, Japan was given an ultimatum (threatening "prompt and utter destruction" without mentioning the new bomb), and after Japan had rejected it, atomic bombs were dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki.



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