Eastern Europe

Eastern Europe is the eastern part of Europe. For a long time, the definition has been the countries that were subject to the Warsaw Pact, but with the collapse of the Soviet Union and the enlargement of the EU, the border has moved further east. Today, Russia, Poland, Belarus, Ukraine and Moldova will typically be characterized as Eastern European countries.

The eastern border of Eastern Europe is at the Ural Mountains, and the southern border is at the Caucasus. According to Countryaah, Eastern Europe consists of the following countries:



Belarus, officially the Republic of Belarus, is a country in Eastern Europe. The country was formerly part of the Soviet Union.

Neighboring countries are Russia in the east and northeast, Latvia in the north, Lithuania in the northwest, Poland in the west and Ukraine in the south. The landscape is characterized by about 3,000 rivers and 4,000 lakes, forests and fields as well as in some places swamp areas, while in the north you will find hills up to 345 meters above sea level.

Prehistoric finds include both Homo erectus and Neanderthal.


5000-2000 BCE – The ribbon ceramic culturedominated.

1000 BCE – The Cimmerians and other cattle breeders roamed the area.

500 BCE – The Slavs took up residence in the area, with Scythian pressure on the outskirts of their territory.

4-600 EVT – Various Asian “barbarians” invaded the region, including the Hunsand Avars, but did not threaten the Slavic presence.

1941 – The first mass deportations from Kowno, Lodz, Minsk and Riga begin on October 13.

1942 – On November 6, the Germans kill 12,000 Jews from the Minsk ghetto.

1944 – Operation Bagration was the code name for the Soviet offensive in Belarus during World War II, which forced German forces out of Belarus and eastern Poland. The operation took place between 22 June and 19 August 1944.

1994 – Belarus is led by President Alexander Lukashenko. He rules the country with a heavy hand, and international organizations accuse the regime of a number of human rights violations. This has led to Belarus being largely isolated at international level and the country is, among other things, excluded from the Council of Europe.


Poland, officially the Republic of Poland is a country in Central Europe and borders Germany to the west, the Czech Republic and Slovakia to the south, Ukraine and Belarus to the east, and the Baltic Sea to the north, Lithuania and Russia (in the form of the Kaliningrad enclave ) to the east. Poland shares maritime borders with Denmark and Sweden. With an area of ​​312,679 km², Poland is the 69th largest country in the world and the 9th largest in Europe. Poland’s population is 38.5 million and makes it the 33rd most populous country in the world.


1918 – November 11. Poland regained its independence after the First World War.

1926 – General Pilsudski conducts a military coup, turning the country into a dictatorship.

1939 – September 1. During World War II, Poland was occupied by Greater Germany, aided by Soviet troops on 17 September following the Ribbentrop-Molotov Pact (Signed by Germany and the Soviet Union on 23 August).

1940 – June. Kazimierz Piechowski, born in 1919 in the city of Rajkowy in Poland, was captured by the Germans after the collapse of Poland and came with one of the first prisoner transports to the Auschwitz concentration camp. Here he lived through a hell on earth that more than sixty years later still plagues him. But exactly two years after arriving at Auschwitz, he and three others completed one of the most spectacular prisoner escapes in the camp’s history, wearing full SS uniforms. and armed to the teeth drove out of the main gate of an SS car. After the escape, he fought in the Polish resistance movement, and it cost him a sentence of ten years in prison with the new communist rulers in Poland. He trained as an engineer and worked at the shipyard in Gdansk, before finally fulfilling a lifelong dream of seeing the world at the age of 70. Piechowski and his wife Iga have become globetrotters in old age.

1941 – Polish territory was occupied by the Soviet Union and Germany until 1941, when Germany invaded the Soviet Union and the Germans conquered all of Polish territory from the Soviets. Hitler’s regime cracked down extra hard on the Polish civilian population. The Germans murdered over six million Polish citizens, more than half of whom were Jews. In addition, material destruction: among other things, Warsaw was razed to the ground. Many of the German extermination and labor camps to which the victims of Nazism were transported were built on Polish soil during the German occupation. The Soviets also oppressed the Polish population, resulting in the massacre of Polish officers in The Katyn massacre is an example. The Soviets sent hundreds of thousands of Poles to labor camps, for example in Siberia and Kazakhstan.

1945 – January 27. The Auschwitz concentration camp in occupied Poland is liberated by Soviet troops. Over a million people have been killed in the camp since 1942.

1955 – May 14 The Warsaw Pact was signed in Warsaw by Albania, Bulgaria, Poland, Romania, the Soviet Union, the GDR, Czechoslovakia and Hungary. The formal background for the creation of the Warsaw Pact was the closer military cooperation between the United States and Western Europe, which took place with the Federal Republic of Germany’s accession to NATO on 9 May 1955. Another reason was the Austrian State Agreement of 15 May 1954, which provided the basis for Soviet troops in Hungary and Romania fell away. The Pact was officially dissolved at a meeting in Prague on July 1, 1991.

1989 – After years of political struggle, Poland abolishes communist rule, and the country becomes informally known as the ” Third Polish Republic “.

The aftermath of World War II is clear! The Polish government may demand as much as $ 20 billion in compensation from Germany for art treasures destroyed during World War II. The conflict between Poland and Germany over compensation for art taxes has been going on since 1991. The case is complicated by the fact that Germany also demands cultural-historically valuable objects back from Poland – among other things. original script by Bach and Mozart, which was hidden in Poland so as not to be destroyed during the Allied bombing raids. ( All About History 11/2007 )

Eastern Europe