The Cold war was a sustained state of military and political tension between powers of two dominating powers from opposite sides of the globe. One from the Western Bloc, or Capitalist Bloc, dominated by the United States (U.S) and the other from the Eastern Block, or Communist Bloc, powered by the Soviet Union (U.S.S.R). Obviously both very different, the opposing ideas of the superpowers supported the spread of their respective and economic systems and strengthened their military powers. As a result, the two sides developed new weapon systems, stockpiled nuclear weapons, and competed in space exploration. But what actually caused these tensions between the two? How come their differences in ideology made it impossible to cooperate?
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Put in effect in June 1947, the Marshall Plan was to stop the Soviet Union from influencing any of the weakened powers in the west. During that time, the United States had sent billions of dollars in aid to European democracies in order for them to rebuild after the war. Stalin did not understand and saw Truman’s actions as insensitive to the Russians who had many deaths and war damages.
As a result, Stalin refused to aid in the Marshall Plan. He also defied these plans with setting up Pro-Communist governments in Poland and other countries all over Eastern countries making the “Iron Curtain” separating the East and West in Europe. This lack of rebuilding from the Communists side showed even after the reunification of the Iron Curtain. The economy in Germany took a massive hit, since it had to repay for all the damages done that the Communists never paid.
In 1948, the Truman Doctrine was introduced for all the states going through a struggle for freedom against their oppressors. President Truman said, "I believe it must be the policy of the United States to support free peoples who are resisting attempted subjugation by armed minorities or by outside pressures." The Truman Doctrine presented a policy of Containment; Communism would be limited only to
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Democratic localism was also enforced to keep the government at bay, allowing people to make their own economic decisions. Capitalism was renewed due to growth. Americans were enjoying various freedoms in politics, religion and travel. Nixon stated in one of his speeches that the United States had “come closest to the idea of prosperity for all in a classless society (166).”
In 1947, the Cold War had started, named after how both of the disputing sides did not fight but only threatened each other with new technologies. The U.S and Soviet Union disagreements on political systems and also questioned war reparation, show how they cause the Cold War with their mistrust and technological issues.
1. How NSC-68 influenced America’s response to Communist North Korea’s invasion of South Korea in June 1950 and to Communist expansion in Southeast Asia in the 1960s. The NSC-68 called for military assistance programs that would meet the requirements of our allies. Since South Korea was an ally, we assisted them in repelling the invasion of another communist nation. This help for South Korea meant that a communist nation would be weakened and therefore possibly cripple a potential ally for the Soviet Union. Also, South Korea would then respond to a call for aid if the Soviet Union ever attacked
Turkey, another country that had been dependent on British aid was also being pressured by the Soviets into granting them base and transit rights through the Turkish Straights. Worried about the growth the spread of communism and the growing influence of the Soviets; President Truman appealed to a joint session of congress to authorize $400-million in emergency aid to the Greek and Turkish Governments and the dispatch of American civilian and military personnel to those countries. In his Speech; Truman said “I believe it must be the policy of the United States to support free peoples who are resisting attempted subjugation by armed minorities or by outside pressures”. This would be known as the Truman Doctrine and it would be the foundation of the post-war American foreign policy throughout the Cold War. The Policy of Containment also sprung from the Truman Doctrine. This new foreign policy stood in stark contrast to the isolationist foreign policy that the United States had held in the past. Instead of avoiding international affairs and conflicts around the world the United States would become more proactive in the affairs of the world to promote its interest and to combat the influence Soviet
The Soviet ambassador to the United States was Novikov at the time. Novikov suggested that the United States wanted to form a Western European alliance directly against the Soviet Union. He felt that the Truman Doctrine was the first step towards this goal, but it had been too harsh to attract any European support. Then he said that the Marshall Plan represented a more appealing tactic to involve the Western Europeans in the creation of an anti-Soviet alliance. However apparently the United States was not just pressuring Western Europe, but Eastern Europe as well. This partially, made the Soviet Union very angry. Maybe if the Marshall Plan had been limited to just Western Europe, maybe it would have been less threatening to the Soviet
The plan would create and make stronger allies, it would also rebuild war-torn countries from World War Two. The Marshall Plan is a part of the Truman administration. It distributed over thirteen billion dollars to Western Europe in three years. Western Europe needed to be rebuilt so that it was
In 1961 President John F Kennedy put together a doctrine, which altered from President Eisenhower’s one. It was to “Respond flexibly to communist expansion, especially guerrilla warfare.” (Roskin & Berry, 2010, p. 58) It was a time when the Cold War was at its height and nuclear weapons a mass threat and source of power. This doctrine was aimed at using alternative means before opening into combat. This, in light of the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962, it succeeded in doing.
The United States responded to the “Hawks”, President Harry S. Trueman still wanted and continued to keep communism “bottled up”. In result the Marshall Plan was created (Doc. 2). World War Two had left Europe in pieces, and the United States wanted to gain support from them. The plan was to help Europe rebuild. Between 1948 and 1952, the United States provided more than twelve billion dollars in aid. The United States helped reduce the spread of communism in Western Europe. The Trueman Doctrine basically “bribed” Greece and Turkey to think again about communist expansionism. The United States provided them with four hundred million dollars in military and economic aid. The Berlin Airlift also stopped west Berlin from falling into the Soviets arms. The United States and Britain provided helicopters and planes to drop food, fuel, and other supplies to about two million Berliners everyday. Little children would call these planes “chocolate bombers”.
The Marshall Plan was created with more of an intention to directly help the countries in Europe with problems that developed from and after World War II. It provided food, fuel, and money totaling to about $13 billion across four years while creating positive relationships with countries in Europe to fight against communism. Not only did the European countries benefit, but the United States also benefitted because of an increase in trade. Together, the Marshall Plan and the Policy of Containment worked together to prevent the domino effect from developing in
The traditional, orthodox interpretation places the responsibility of the Cold War on Stalin’s personality and on communist ideology. It claims that as long as Stalin and the authoritarian government were in power, a cold war was unavoidable. It argues that Stalin violated agreements that he had made at Yalta, imposed Soviet policy on Eastern European countries aiming at political domination and conspired to advocate communism throughout the world. As a result, United States officials were forced to respond to Soviet aggression with foreign policies such as the Truman Doctrine and the Marshall Plan. Yet revisionists argue that there was “no proof of Stalin promoting communism outside Russia” and that Stalin’s decisions were first and foremost, pro-Soviet and not of communist intentions. Up until 1947, it is evident through Marshall Plan as well as statements and interviews made by Stalin that he was still thinking of cooperation with the United States, Britain and France. Despite post-war conflicts and instability of Soviet-American relations, the USSR’s initial embrace of the Marshall Plan at its announcement expressed
The Cold War was a response to the perceived threat by the United States that Communism would interfere with national security and economic stakes in the world. It was a perceived threat by communist countries that the United States would take to the world. During the Cold War, the United States, Russia, and other countries made efforts to avoid another world war, while warring in proxy in other lands. The devastation caused by the hydrogen bombs exploded in Hiroshima and Nagasaki and the next technological advancements became only deterrents to the public. Governments had their own agenda which would result in worsening the strain between nations. The United States hid behind a curtain of nationalism resulting in increased
The foreign policy of the United States during the Cold War fully supported the growth of democratic nations. The USSR, however, wanted countries to become communist like them. These opposing views led to tension between the two nations. As a result, in 1947, President Truman issued the Truman Doctrine which stated that the United States would supply aid to any country as long as they pledged to be democratic. The Marshall plan was enacted in 1948 and it was similar to the Truman Doctrine except it provided financial aid to these countries. In the late 1940s and early 1950s, the United States used its foreign policy to help countries resist communist influence.
“The Cold War began when the World War II alliance between the United States, Soviet Union, and Great Britain fell apart in the face of misunderstandings, mistrust, and at times, deliberate actions.”
The Origins of the Cold War The Cold War period from 1945 to 1985 was a result of distrust and misunderstanding between the USSR and the United States of America. This distrust never actually resulted any fighting between the two superpowers but they came very close to fighting on several occasions. The Cold War was a result of many different events and factors including the Bolshevik Revolution of 1917, the Potsdam Conference of 1945, the differences between communism and capitalism, the 'Iron curtain' speech and Marshall Aid.