What Led to the Cold War?
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The paper argues that the Cold War with the Soviet Union was based on a high level of mistrust between the USA and the Soviet Union. The paper discusses the nature of the Soviet State and its aim of spreading world communism, and American President Harry Truman's personal dislike and distrust of Joseph Stalin, and then describes the series of misinterpretations that resulted in misunderstandings, fear, paranoia, and projection. This includes Truman's meeting with Stalin, the Kennan telegram, Soviet atomic espionage, the "Iron Curtain," political and social events in Eastern Europe, the Cuban Missile Crisis, and the exporting of communism into the developing world. The paper concludes that while American foreign policy may seem a bit paranoid and reactionary, with the information available at the time, the response was likely not only reasonable, but prudent.
From the Paper:"On one side, the Cold War was seen as a reaction to American aggression after World War II. America had not been invaded, and had an economy that was growing stronger and indeed was one of the only major powers whose homeland was untouched by the ravages of World War II (with the exception of Pearl Harbor). Compare this to the Soviet Union, with 30+ million dead, 25 million homeless, almost 1 million acres of productive agricultural land destroyed, and the infrastructure of the transportation system in shambles, and most major cities and industry ravaged. After the fall of Germany, the Soviets may have been on the winning side, but their economy was in shambles and they were in a position in which their entire internal structure was at risk - and facing an ever powerful United States who, in one fell swoop, became the only nation on earth to harness the power of atomic weaponry (Linz).
"The United States was, in fact, well aware of the vulnerability of the Soviets. A 1945 Report predicted that the Soviet Union was 5-20 years behind the United States in regrouping and repair of its own infrastructure and economy."
Sample of Sources Used:
- "Cold War Culture: The Nuclear Fear of the 1950s and 1960s." (2009). CBC DigitalArchives. Cited in: http://archives.cbc.ca/war_conflict/cold_war/topics/274/
- "The United States Enters the Korean Conflict." (2009). The National Archives. Cited in: http://www.archives.gov/education/lessons/korean-conflict/
- Aid, M. (2009, June 19). The Secret Sentry Decoded. Retrieved from The National Security Archive: http://www.gwu.edu/~nsarchiv/NSAEBB/NSAEBB278/index.htm
- Altman, A. (2010). America's Worst Vice Presidents. Retrieved from Time.Com: http://www.time.com/time/specials/packages/article/0,28804,1834600_1834604_1834608,00.html
- Bajanov, E. (2000). "The Origins of the Korean War." Alternative Insights. Cited in:http://www.alternativeinsight.com/Korean_War.html
Cite this Analytical Essay:
What Led to the Cold War? (2013, May 28) Retrieved February 26, 2020, from https://www.academon.com/analytical-essay/what-led-to-the-cold-war-153393/
"What Led to the Cold War?" 28 May 2013. Web. 26 February. 2020. <https://www.academon.com/analytical-essay/what-led-to-the-cold-war-153393/>