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Cold War Essay

3564 words - 14 pages

The Cold War
7. Why did the USA and USSR become rivals in the period 1945 to 1949?
East-West ideological gap; decisions made at Yalta and Potsdam, and their importance; attitudes of Stalin and Truman; Soviet expansion into Central and Eastern Europe; Iron Curtain; Truman Doctrine; Marshall Plan. Berlin 1945-48; Berlin blockade and airlift.
1) WHY DID THE USA AND THE USSR BECOME RIVALS IN THE PERIOD 1945-1949?
• Why did the USA/West and the USSR become rivals in 1945? • What were the major events of the period 1945-49? • What was a Superpower? • What were the main causes of Superpower rivalry between the USSR
and the USA in 1945? • Was this a period of expansion or containment? • Was the Marshall Plan an example of American generosity or a sinister
attempt to control Europe? • Was Stalin right to refuse American aid? • Why could the USSR not offer similar packages of aid? • When did the Cold War begin? • Who was to blame for the Cold War? • Did America and the Western Allies provoke the Berlin blockade? • In what ways did the Berlin blockade worsen the war? • Why did each side blame the other for the Cold War?

2
New Words
Allies: countries working together.
Communists: believe that industry should be state-owned.
Soviet Union: the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics - the USSR -- i.e. communist Russia.
Dictator: a ruler who has total power.
Stalin
Capitalists: believe that property and industry should be privately owned.
Democracy: where the people can elect their own government.
Truman
Churchill
Tasks 1. Write a paragraph to
explain the meaning of the term 'Cold War'.
From Hot War to Cold War During the Second World War, Britain and the USA were allies of the Soviet Union, fighting together against Germany. After the war, they became enemies.
After Hiroshima, and particularly after 1949 when Russia developed the atomic bomb, politicians realised that another 'hot war' would kill all humankind - war would be MAD (mutually assured destruction).
So they stopped short of war - the 'cold war'. They didn't declare war. But they did everything to oppose each other short of war.
It was called the 'cold war'. It lasted until 1989.

3
Causes of the Cold War
1 Beliefs • The Soviet Union was a Communist country, ruled
by a dictator, who cared little about human rights. • The USA was a capitalist democracy which
valued freedom.
2 Aims • Stalin wanted huge reparations from Germany, and a
'buffer' of friendly states to protect the USSR from being invaded again.
• Britain and the USA wanted to protect democracy, and help Germany to recover. They were worried that large areas of eastern Europe were falling under Soviet control.
3 Resentment about History • The Soviet Union could not forget that in 1918
Britain and the USA had tried to destroy the Russian Revolution. Stalin also thought that they had not given him enough help in the Second World War.
• Britain and the...

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