Tag Archives: USSR

On This Day…1983

On This Day... 8 March 1983

On this day in 1983 the world came a step closer to the cold war turning hot when Ronald Reagan, then US President, referred to the Soviet Union as ‘…the evil empire.

In a speech given by President Reagan at the National Association of Evangelicals in Orlando, Florida on 8 March 1983 the term evil empire was first used by him in reference to the USSR.

 Reagan’s speech contained the following passage:


…in your discussions of the nuclear freeze proposals, I urge you to beware the temptation of pride, the temptation of blithely declaring yourselves above it all and label both sides equally at fault, to ignore the facts of history and the aggressive impulses of an evil empire, to simply call the arms race a giant misunderstanding and thereby remove yourself from the struggle between right and wrong and good and evil… 

On This Day…1967

On This Day... 6 March 1967

On this day in 1967 Stalin’s daughter Svetlana Alliluyeva defects to the united States of America on the 14th anniversary of Stalin’s successor Georgy Malenkov taking over from Stalin as premier of the Soviet Union and First Secretary of the Communist Party.

Stalin’s daughter’s defection to the US served as a massive publicity coup for the US in the midst of the cold war.  It was still more pointed as it occurred on the anniversary of her father being succeeded as Premier of the USSR by Georgy Malenkov. It also occurred, coincidentally, on the anniversary of the commencement of the Rosenberg espionage trial which commenced on 6 March 1951.  The Rosenbergs were ultimately convicted and executed for selling atomic weapons secrets to the USSR. 

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