The victory put the USSR in the category of conducting powers of the post-war world. The prestige and value of the Soviet Union on the international scene immeasurably increased. Thus, if in 1941 26 countries maintained diplomatic relations with it, in 1945 - it was already 52 states.However, there were no appreciable changes in internal policy of the country. The primary goal in post-war years was the rapid restoration of the destroyed national economy, shifting it to peace rails.
Consolidation of personal authority of Stalin
Transition to peace construction demanded reorganization of state bodies. In September 1945 the extreme body of the party and state government - the State Committee of Defense was abolished. Its functions were again distributed to the Soviet of National Commissioners, the TSK of the VCP (b) and the Supreme Soviet of the USSR. But the process of transformation of the over centralized authoritative administrative system, existing in the USSR in the prewar and especially in the war years, had formal character. Still all the authority was concentrated in I.V.Stalin's hands, relying on the powerful repressive machinery. Having taken the epaulets of the Generalissimo from his confidants' hands, Stalin was the non-bounded dictator.
In post-war years the mode of personal authority of Stalin reached the apogee. " The Brief course of history of the VCP (b) and ' I.V.Stalin's brief biography " in compiling of which he himself took part, turned to a set of indisputable truths, which all citizens of the country had to study, without calling in question. In these "works" Stalin was imputed all merits of the actual and imaginary achievements of the country and the party, which was aiming at construction of socialism. In 1946-1950 editions of Stalin's works twice exceeded editions of V.I.Lenin's works and were the most mass. Stalin's each statement turned to dogma, and the slightest doubt in its infallibility was severely punished.
Characteristic display of authoritativeness of the mode existing in the country was the activity of constitutional authorities and government.Under the Constitution of 1936 the supreme all-union legislative body the Supreme Soviet of the USSR was founded, the first elections to which were held in December 1937. The term of authorities of deputies of the first convocation expired in autumn of 1941. In connection with the beginning of war elections were postponed, and deputies of the Supreme Soviet of the second convocation were elected only in March, 1946.The Supreme Soviet of the USSR consisted of the two equal in rights chambers: the Soviet of the Union and the Soviet of Nationalities.
In existing internal political conditions the Supreme Soviet of the USSR only formalized the decisions taken by the supreme party government as decrees. At sessions of the Supreme Soviet of 1946-1954 deputies unanimously approved budgets of the country and reports on their implementation, and also unanimously ratified decrees of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet.One of the functions of the Presidium was the control of work of accountable bodies: the Council of Ministers, the Supreme Court, and the General public prosecutor.
As well as the Supreme Soviet of the USSR, the Presidium only formalized the decisions taken by the party leadership as decrees and other certificates. No question could be put for discussion without I.V.Stalin's order. Gradually the work of the supreme legislative body of the country lost even the semblance of observance of the constitutional norms: the sessions of the Supreme Soviet were convoked less often, than twice a year, and the quantity of sessions of its Presidium, which was taking place 3-4 times a year in the first post-war years, was reduced in 1950 - up to two, and in 1951 and 1952 - to one.
Actual lawlessness, obvious fall of the role and value of the Soviet bodies were observed at the level of local Soviets of deputies of the working. Already during the war party bodies frequently substituted their activity, terms of elections and the order of realization of sessions, the reporting of Soviets were broken; the questions demanding joint consideration at sessions, were solved by the executive and administrative bodies - the executive committees of Soviets, their departments and the managements supervising branches of national economy and culture.
Changes in activity of Soviets in the post-war period concerned conditions of their work and the tasks put before them, but they still were not bodies of democracy. Sessions of Soviets passed with breach of target dates, discussion of problems had formal character, and expressing critical remarks of deputies about work of the enterprises or establishments remained without consequences. Deputies reported to voters only during the next re-elections, thus, the declared basic principle of the work of Soviets - publicity and the accountability - was broken. Results of elections were always predetermined beforehand.
According to the law of March, 15, 1946 the supreme executive - administrative body - the SNK of the USSR and Narkomats were transformed into the Soviet of Ministers of the USSR and the ministry. The chairman of the Soviet of Ministers of the USSR in 1946-1953 still was I.V.Stalin, and then till 1955 - G.M.Malenkov. The open display of the party management of the government machinery activity were joint decisions of the TSK of the party and the Soviet of Ministers of the USSR, which were accepted on the most important questions and as the overwhelming majority of ministers were the members or candidates to members of the TSK, there was no disagreements between the government and the TSK of the party.