by Alexander Dallin
Introduction by Larry L. Watts
Originally prepared as a Rand Corporation report, this book is a comprehensive study of the Romanian administration in Odessa and Transnistria. Based on American, German, and Soviet sources, this study sheds light on an important, but neglected aspect of World War II in the Soviet Union. It draws a sharp contrast between occupation policies in Odessa and Transnistria, which was under Romanian administration, and those of the Nazi-occupied areas of the Soviet Union. It is essential reading for anyone interested in the occupation of Soviet territory during World War II and its consequences.
The author, Alexander Dallin, provides a detailed study of the Romanian administration in Transnistria, illustrating important aspects of the development of this Soviet territory after the removal of the Communist system. As he states in his preface “The relative success of the Romanians (in contrast to German held areas of the USSR) supports the thesis that the specific nature of the occupation policy and behavior mattered a good deal in determining the response of the subject population.” He adds that “the Transnistrian experiment rapidly gained popular confidence through higher living standards and an atmosphere of greater relaxation. The absence of terror and forced labor, and greater opportunities for self-expression, both economic and cultural, go far to explain the overwhelming popular preference for Romanian over German rule.” The book includes an introduction by Larry L. Watts, a well-known American specialist in the history of Romania during the Second World War, discussing Alexander Dallin’s important contribution to Romanian historiography.
A noted expert in Soviet history, Alexander Dallin is a former president of the American Association for the Advancement of Slavic Studies. He is professor emeritus of international history and political science at Stanford University in California, where he was director of the Center for Russian and East European Studies. The author of a number of books and articles on Soviet affairs and international relations, he is currently senior fellow at the Institute for International Studies and director of the New Democracy Fellowship Program at Stanford. His other books include German Rule in Russia, 1941-1945.