Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Vladivostok: Did You Know?

Did you know that the United States once invaded Russia? The circumstances are interesting: when the Bolsheviks took over control of the country and it became clear that they would sue Germany to get out of the war, several allied nations feared that the Russians would give over their weapons – what was left of them – to the enemy. They launched pre-emptive and limited invasions. President Wilson sent troops to offer a stabilizing presence in a volatile region of Siberia. The United States took the city of Vladivostok and held it, while a smaller force positioned itself near Archangelsk. Troops from France, Britain and Japan also sent “expeditionary forces” to spots in the civil war-torn country, but the Americans resisted pressure to engage the Bolsheviks. Still, memories tend to be long, especially for someone who thinks himself a victim; if we remember the actions our government has taken in the past, it might help us understand why people in the present might not completely trust us.

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