Major Effects Of The Cold War

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I. Introduction

Throughout the 20th century, the world has seen a number of major revolutions worldwide as well as unbearable wars filled with bloodshed such as the two world wars, the Chinese and Spanish civil wars as well as the Russian Revolution. However, a war that extended throughout the majority of the 20th century would be the Cold War that lasted for 46 years from 1945 up until 1991 (The George Washington University). Many would not consider the Cold War to be war in the traditional sense due to the fact that direct confrontation between the two nations that were majorly involved; the USA and the USSR, was absent; hence its name. The word “cold” symbolizes its inability to officially “blow-up” as some would say; thus, remaining an era of intense tension between the two world powers (citation).

The USSR, also known as the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, was a socialist state established in 1922 following the Russian Revolution
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Both nations viewed the production of nuclear arms as a deterrent that would stop the ideologically opposing world power from attacking. In addition, and at many instances, the piling of nuclear arsenal aimed to provide superiority, resulting in increased spending and many would argue that it was the main reason the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991 while others claim that its role was minor as it was the flawed communist system or Mikhail Gorbachev’s sudden attempt to introduce change and reform the Communist system that were to be blamed (citation). This has caused a worldwide debate regarding the effects and significance of the nuclear arms race, leading to the coining of this investigation’s research question; to what extent did the nuclear arms race of the Cold War lead to the collapse of the Soviet Union under Mikhail Gorbachev in
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