Transport in the Soviet Union
Transport in the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics was an important part of the nation's economy. The economic centralisation of the late 1920s and 1930s led to the development of infrastructure at a massive scale and rapid pace. Before the Soviet Union's collapse in 1991, there were a wide variety of modes of transport by land and air. However, because of government policies before and after the Era of Stagnation, investments in transport were low. By the late 1970s and early 1980s Soviet economists were calling for the construction of more roads to alleviate some of the strain from the railways and to improve the state budget; the Civil aviation industry, represented by Aeroflot, was the largest in the world, but inefficiencies plagued it until the USSR's collapse. The road network remained underdeveloped, dirt roads were common outside major cities. At the same time, the attendance of the few roads they had were ill-equipped to handle this growing problem. By the late-1980s, after the death of Leonid Brezhnev, his successors tried, without success, to solve these problems.
At the same time, the automobile industry was growing at a faster rate than the construction of new roads. By the mid-1970s, only 0.8 percent of the Soviet population owned a car. Despite improvements, several aspects of the transport sector were still riddled with problems due to outdated infrastructure, lack of investment and bad decision-making by the central authorities; the demand for transport infrastructure and services was rising, but the Soviet authorities proved to be unable to meet the growing demand of the people. The underdeveloped Soviet road network, in a chain reaction, led to a growing demand for public transport; the nation's merchant fleet was one of the largest in the world. The Ministry of Civil Aviation was, according to the Air Code of the USSR, responsible for all air transport enterprises and airlines established by it. Soviet civil air transport was the largest by total destinations and vehicles during most of its post-war existence. In the USSR, Aeroflot had a monopoly on all air transport.
This ranged from civil transport and cargo to transporting political prisoners to the gulags, more. The Soviet Union covered over one sixth of the entire earth's landmass, in the early 1920s its government decided to invest in the aviation industry, they concluded that expanding it in the Soviet Union would not only make travel more efficient and faster, it would help build and develop the farmland, enormously spread out nation that it was. At this time, most travel required taking trains. Many of the northern and eastern territories in the Soviet Union were inaccessible during much of the year; the uninhabitable weather made travel and construction nearly impossible. The absence of "surface transportation facilities" meant that little equipment was available to use for road construction—making the process more daunting; the Soviet government concluded that building a series of airports scattered throughout the more isolated parts of the country would be far more economically efficient than to build thousands of miles of road and railways.
The Soviet Government decided, that air travel would be the best means of transportation for people and cargo. First, a fleet was necessary. After combining a number of existing fleets, the Soviet government founded the national airline and air service of the Soviet Union, renaming the "USSR Civil Air Fleet" Aeroflot. Aeroflot, at its formation in March 1932, had three main purposes, they were: to operate and maintain an air transportation system, to provide different types of services and to promote educational, recreational and other such activities for the public. Aeroflot, which translates to or air fleet consisted of an amalgam of existing air transportation fleets in the Soviet Union in the 1920s. By creating Aeroflot, the Soviet government was, much like many industries in the young Soviet Union at the time and centralizing fleets like the "Red Air Fleet." To the general public, the aviation industry did not represent modernization. During Joseph Stalin's Second Five-Year Plan, the Communist Party Congress devised the development and further expansion of the aviation industry, soon making air transport one of the primary means of transportation in the Soviet Union.
Their strategy involved creating a network of cities and towns to deliver people, whether they were politicians, military officials, prisoners or travelers, most mail and freight. Stalin recognized that with a strong civil aviation sector he could supply necessary equipment and materials to prisoners in the Gulag, increasing their efficiency and production output. By 1933, Soviet aviation delegations and engineers, some for as long as six months at a time, were regular visitors at the United States' most prominent aircraft developers, such as Boeing, Pratt & Whitney and Curtiss-Wright; these engineers would play a key role in the origins of Ilyushin. For much of the Soviet Union's existence, air travel served to deliver freight. In the 1930s, freight made up 85 percent of Aerof
Rail transport in Belarus
Rail transport in Belarus is owned by the national rail company BŽD / BČ. The railway network consists of 5,512 km, its gauge is 1,520 mm and 874 km are electrified; the first line crossing the country was the Saint Petersburg – Warsaw Railway, which started operating in late 1862. This included railway station in Hrodna. During mid 1860's railway line was built from Daugavpils to Polatsk and further to Vitebsk. Line Warsaw-Brest, opened in 1866, completed to Moscow in 1871. Belarus is crossed, from Brest to Orsha through Minsk, by an international rail line connecting Berlin and Warsaw to Moscow. Other important lines are the Orsha-Vitebsk, the Minsk-Vilnius and others; some international trains serving Belarus are the Pribaltika Riga-Odessa, the Minsk-Irkutsk and the Sibirjak Berlin-Novosibirsk. The national network is not served by high-speed trains. Minsk is the only city with the Minsk Metro; the network consists of two lines: Moskovskaya. The only cities with tramway systems are Minsk, Vitebsk and Novopolotsk.
- yes - break-of-gauge 1,520 mm /1,435 mm - yes - yes - yes - yes Transport in Belarus List of town tramway systems in Belarus Children's Railroad of Minsk Rail transport in the Soviet Union BŽD official website Railway network map of Belarus
Foreign relations of Belarus
The Byelorussian SSR was one of only two Soviet republics to be separate members of the United Nations. Both republics and the Soviet Union joined the UN when the organization was founded in 1945. After the dissolution of the Soviet Union, at which time Belarus gained its independence, Belarus became a member of the Commonwealth of Independent States, the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, NATO's Partnership for Peace, the North Atlantic Cooperation Council, the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank; the adoption by Supreme Council of the BSSR of the declaration of State Sovereignty of Belarus in 1990 was a turning point on the development of the state. It has been in a supranational union with Russia since 2 April 1996, although this has had little practical effect; the introduction of free trade between Russia and Belarus in mid-1995 led to a spectacular growth in bilateral trade, only temporarily reversed in the wake of the financial crisis of 1998. President Alexander Lukashenko sought to develop a closer relationship with Russia.
The framework for the Union of Russia and Belarus was set out in the Treaty On the Formation of a Community of Russia and Belarus, the Treaty on Russia-Belarus Union, the Union Charter, the Treaty of the Formation of a Union State. The integration treaties contained commitments to monetary union, equal rights, single citizenship, a common defence and foreign policy. Following the recognition of Belarus as an independent state in December 1991 by the European Community, EC/EU-Belarus relations experienced a steady progress; the signature of the Partnership and Cooperation Agreement in 1995 signaled a commitment to political and trade cooperation. Some assistance was provided to Belarus within the framework of the TACIS programme and through various aid programs and loans. However, progress in EU-Belarus relations stalled in 1996 after serious setbacks to the development of democracy, the Drazdy conflict; the EU did not recognize the 1996 constitution. The Council of the European Union decided against Belarus in 1997: The PCA was not concluded, nor was its trade-related part.
Acknowledging the lack of progress in relation to bilateral relations and the internal situation following the position adopted in 1997, the EU adopted a step-by-step approach in 1999, whereby sanctions would be lifted upon fulfillment of the four benchmarks set by the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe. In 2000, some moderately positive developments toward the implementation of recommendations made by the OSCE AMG were observed but were not sufficient in the realm of access to fair and free elections; the United States has encouraged Belarus to conclude and adhere to agreements with the International Monetary Fund on the program of macroeconomic stabilization and related reform measures, as well as to undertake increased privatization and to create a favorable climate for business and investment. Although there has been some American direct private investment in Belarus, its development has been slow given the uncertain pace of reform. An Overseas Private Investment Corporation agreement was signed in June 1992 but has been suspended since 1995 because Belarus did not fulfill its obligations under the agreement.
Belarus is eligible for Export-Import Bank short-term financing insurance for U. S. investments, but because of the adverse business climate, no projects have been initiated. The IMF granted standby credit in September 1995, but Belarus has fallen off the program and did not receive the second tranche of funding, scheduled for regular intervals throughout 1996; the United States - along with the European Union - has restricted the travel of President Alexander Lukashenko and members of his inner circle, as well as imposing economic sanctions. The structure of Belarus trade reflects the low competitiveness and output decline of manufacturing industry in the country over the past decade, leading to the predominance of primary production, work-intensive goods as exports. Belarusian exports to the EU consist of agricultural and textile products, while imports from the EU are machinery. Belarus is a beneficiary of the EU's Generalised System of Preferences; the European Commission decided in 2003 to initiate an investigation into violations of freedom of association in Belarus as the first step towards a possible temporary withdrawal of the GSP from Belarus.
In December 2004, the EU adopted a position aimed at imposing travel restrictions on officials from Belarus responsible for the fraudulent parliamentary elections and referendum on 17 October 2004, for human rights violations during subsequent peaceful political demonstrations in Minsk. The European Parliament released a statement in March 2005 in which it denounced the Belarusian government as a dictatorship; the European parliamentarians were concerned about the suppression of independent media outlets in the country and the fraudulent referendum. A resolution of the European Parliament declared that the personal bank accounts of President Lukashenko and other high-ranking Belarusian officials should be tracked and frozen. In 2005, Amnesty International reported a pattern of deliberate obstruction and intimidation of human rights defenders in Belarus. Reporters Without Borders accused the Belarusian authorities of hounding and arresting journalists from the country's Polish minority. Lukashenko has closed the country's main Polish newspaper, printing a bogus
The Daugava or Western Dvina is a river rising in the Valdai Hills, flowing through Russia and Latvia and into the Gulf of Riga. The total length of the river is 1,020 km; the total catchment area of the river is 33,150 km2 of which are within Belarus. According to the Max Vasmer's Etymological Dictionary, the toponym Dvina cannot stem from a Uralic language, it comes from Indo-European word which used to mean river or stream; the river began experiencing environmental deterioration in the era of Soviet collective agriculture and a wave of hydroelectric power projects. Andreapol, Zapadnaya Dvina and Velizh. Ruba, Beshankovichy, Polotsk with Boris stones strewn in the vicinity, Dzisna and Druya. Krāslava, Daugavpils, Līvāni, Jēkabpils, Pļaviņas, Jaunjelgava, Lielvārde, Ogre, Ikšķile and Riga. Humans have settled at the mouth of the Daugava and around the other shores of the Gulf of Riga for millennia participating in a hunter-gatherer economy and utilizing the waters of the Daugava estuary as fishing and gathering areas for aquatic biota.
Beginning around the sixth century AD, Viking explorers crossed the Baltic Sea and entered the Daugava River, navigating upriver into the Baltic interior. In medieval times the Daugava was an important area of trading and navigation - part of the trade route from the Varangians to the Greeks - for transport of furs from the north and of Byzantine silver from the south; the Riga area, inhabited by the Finnic-speaking Livs, became a key element of settlement and defence of the mouth of the Daugava at least as early as the Middle Ages, as evidenced by the now destroyed fort at Torņakalns on the west bank of the Daugava at present day Riga. Since the Late Middle Ages the western part of the Daugava basin has come under the rule of various peoples and states. Upstream of the Latvian town of Jekabpils the pH has a characteristic value of about 7.8. The high nitrate and phosphate load of the Daugava is instrumental to the buildup of extensive phytoplankton biomass in the Baltic Sea. In Belarus, water pollution of the Daugava is considered moderately severe, with the chief sources being treated wastewater, fish-farming and agricultural chemical runoff.
Richard C. Frucht. Latvia. Eastern Europe. ABC-CLIO. P. 115. Retrieved 2009-08-01. Francis W. Carter and David Turnock. 2002. Environmental problems of East Central Europe. 442 pages Google eBook Daugava River photos at flickr
Belarusian People's Republic
The Belarusian People's Republic referred to as the White Ruthenian Democratic Republic was a failed attempt to create a Belarusian state on the territory controlled by the German Imperial Army during World War I. The BNR existed from 1918 to 1919; the BNR was declared on March 9, 1918, in Minsk by the members of the Executive Committee of the First All-Belarusian Congress, two weeks on March 25, 1918, it proclaimed independance. In 1919, it co-existed with an alternative Communist government of Belarus, moving its seat of government to Vilnius and Hrodna, but ceased to exist due to the capture of the whole Belarusian territory by Polish and Bolshevik forces during the Polish–Soviet War, its government in exile, the Rada of the Belarusian People's Republic is the oldest still functioning. The Belarusian People's Republic was declared on the territory of modern-day Belarus three weeks after the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk was signed on March 3, 1918 between the new Bolshevik government of Soviet Russia and the Central Powers in the border city of Brest-Litovsk.
After the 1917 February Revolution in Russia, active discussions started in Belarus about either gaining autonomy within the new Russian Republic or declaring independence. Representatives of most Belarusian regions and of different political powers, including the Belarusian Socialist Assembly, the Christian democratic movement and the General Jewish Labour Bund, formed a Belarusian National Council in late 1917; the Council started working on establishing Belarusian governmental institutions. Both the Bolsheviks and Germans interfered in its activity. However, the Germans saw an independent Belarus as part of the implementation of their plan for buffer states within Mitteleuropa; the Bolsheviks had negotiations with the Belarusian Democratic Republic regarding an eventual recognition, but decided instead to establish a pro-Soviet government of Belarus - the Soviet Socialist Republic of Belarus. Parallel with negotiations that started between the Germans and Bolsheviks, the Belarusian Council started demanding recognition of autonomous status for Belarus, with continuing internal discussions on whether it should become an autonomous region within Russia or declare national independence.
In its First Constituent Charter, passed on February 21, 1918, the Belarusian Council declared itself the only legitimate power in the territory of Belarus. On March 9, following the signing of the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk between the Germans and Bolsheviks, the Belarusian Council issued a Second Charter where it declared the establishment of the Belarusian People's Republic; the Belarusian Council became the provisional government of Belarus and was renamed the Council of the Belarusian People's Republic. On March 25, 1918, the All-Belarusian Congress proclaimed the independence of Belarusian National Republic; the Government of the BNR left Minsk in December 1918 for the Lithuanian Republic, in spring 1919 went into exile. In its Third Constituent Charter, the following territories were claimed for BNR: Mogilev Governorate, as well as Belarusian parts of Minsk Governorate, Grodno Governorate, Vilna Governorate, Vitebsk Governorate, Smolensk Governorate, parts of bordering governorates populated by Belarusians, rejecting the split of the Belarusian lands between Germany and Russia.
The areas were claimed because of a Belarusian majority or large minority, although there were numbers of Lithuanians and people speaking mixed varieties of Belarusian and Polish, as well as many Jews in towns and cities. Some of the Jews spoke Russian as their native tongue. There were attempts to create regular armed forces of the newly established Belarusian republic. Belarusian military units started to form within the disorganized Russian army in 1917. According to the historian Oleg Latyszonek, about 11,000 people volunteers, served in the army of the Belarusian RepublicGeneral Stanisław Bułak-Bałachowicz supported the Government of BNR and positioned his army as a Belarusian national army acting as the first President of the Belarusian Provisional Government shortly after the downfall of the BNR before again handing power to the people. For his resistance against Bolshevik forces, members of Belarusian minority in Poland regard him as their national hero; the major military action of the Belarusian People's Republic army was the Slutsk defence action in late 1920.
The Council of the BNR, based at that time in Lithuania, sent officers to help organize armed anti-Bolshevik resistance in the town of Slutsk. The Belarusian army managed to resist a month against the greater strength of the Red Army. During its short existence, the government of Belarus established close ties with the Ukrainian People's Republic, organized food supplies to Belarus from Ukraine and thereby prevented hunger in the country. Diplomatic representations of Belarus had been created in Germany, Estonia and other countries to lobby for Belarusian interests or to support Belarusian soldiers and refugees who landed in different parts of the former Russian Empire. Beginning in 1918, Anton Łuckievič, the Prime Minister of Belarus, met w
The Pripyat River or Prypiat River is a river in Eastern Europe 761 km long. It flows east through Ukraine and Ukraine again, draining into the Dnieper; the Pripyat passes through the exclusion zone established around the site of the Chernobyl nuclear disaster. The city of Prypiat, Ukraine was evacuated after the Chernobyl disaster. Pripyat has a catchment area of 50,900 km2 of which are in Belarus. 495 km of the whole river length lies within Belarus. Pripyat begins on the Volyn Hill, between the villages of Budnik and Horn Smolars of Lyubomlsky District. After 204 km downstream, it crosses the border of Belarus, where it flies 500 km along the lowland of the Poles in a weakly valued valley; the last 50 kilometers Pripyat flows again in Ukraine and flows several kilometers south of Chernobyl into the Kiev reservoir. The length of the river is 775 kilometers; the area of the pool is 114.3 thousand km² The Pripyat valley in the upper reaches is weak, in the lower reaches it is clearer. The cave is developed all along.
The width of the floodplain in the upper course of 2-4 km and more, in some years, is flooded for several months. In the lower reaches the width of the floodplain reaches 10-15 km; the channel in the upper canalized. The width of the river in the upper reaches is up to 40 m, on the average - 50-70 m, in the lower reaches 100 - predominantly 250 m, with the entrance to the Kiev reservoir - 4-5 km; the bottom is sandy-spruce. The slope of the river is 0.08 m / km Max Vasmer in his etymological dictionary notes that the historical name of the river mentioned in the earliest East Slavic document, Primary Chronicle is Pripet and cites the opinion of other linguists that the name meant "tributary", comparing with Greek and Latin roots. He rejects some opinions which were improperly based on the stem -пять, rather than original -петь, it might derive from the local word pripech used for a river with sandy banks. Pripyat Marshes Pripyat Chernobyl disaster Chernobyl Exclusion Zone Ye. N. Meshechko, A. A. Gorbatsky Belarusian Polesye: Tourist Transeuropean Water Mains, Four Quarters, T.
A. Khvagina POLESYE from the Bug to the Ubort, Minsk Vysheysha shkola, ISBN 985-06-1153-7. Pripyat is an article from the Great Soviet Encyclopedia. Pripyat // Dictionary of Contemporary Geographical Names / Rus. geogr. oh Moscow center. Ed. acad. V. M. Kotlyakova. Institute of Geography, Russian Academy of Sciences. - Yekaterinburg: U-Factorium, 2006. Joint River Management Program. Final Report: River Pripyat Basin Media related to Pripyat River at Wikimedia Commons Pripyat: Radioactive pollution, 2003