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The Development Of The Cold War In Europe After 1945

2131 words - 9 pages

The Development of the Cold War in Europe after 1945

After World War Two, there was an increasing interest in the idea of a
United Europe. Soviet Russia and Western European Capitalist states
had no common interests despite the wartime alliance, which was no
longer valid. There was growing hostility between the United States
and Soviet Russia that developed in to a Cold War. This essay will
suggest that the development of the Cold War in Europe was a result of
differences in political ideologies and a lack of compromise and
agreement. It will discuss the ideals of Western Europe and that of
Soviet Russia; the United States in support of liberty and freedom,
and Communist Russia, who had shown a dislike towards Capitalism. It
will also consider the years before 1945 in an attempt to suggest
possible reasons for the mutual distrust of those involved. It will
propose that the outbreak of the Cold War was a consequence of
conflicting opinions of great world powers, none of which are solely
responsible for the Cold War.

After World War Two, the Allies had to face the problem concerning
leadership and control within Germany. There was growing support for
the idea of an, 'integrated Europe' before the end of the war.
Conflicting views held by those involved resulted in negotiation and
compromise being of utmost importance.[1] The United States and
Britain were not in favour of the political ideology of Communist
Russia, Stalin believing that Capitalism was one of the contributing
factors for the outbreak of the war. America had emerged as one of the
most powerful victors of the war and believed peace would come as the
result of worldwide democracy or, at the very least, democracy
throughout Europe. There was dislike of totalitarian leaderships and
the hostilities escalated towards non-capitalist states after the
defeat of Nazism. This was a view that was also held by British Prime
Minister, Winston Churchill who referred to the Russian doctrine as
'Russian barbarianism', as early as 1942. Despite Britain having
reduced its status as a world power, many other nations were dependent
of their involvement to maintain peace and security.[2]

Despite the wartime alliance, there was hostility between Russia and
the United States since 1917 when Britain and the United States
attempted to wipe out Bolshevism.[3] The only common factor between
the two was the aim of defeating Nazism. Propaganda throughout the war
years reinforced the opposing opinion of Communism and oppressive
forms of government. In January 1945, Russia requested economic
support from the United States for the purposes of reconstruction that
was unofficially declined and after the war, all support received by
Russia, stopped.[4] This was another sign of the growing tensions
between Western and Eastern states. The growing...

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