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The Threat Of Nuclear War Since The Cold War

3002 words - 12 pages

The Threat of Nuclear War Since the Cold War

I partly agree and disagree with the above statement. Nuclear war was
at the height of taking place in the cold war and whilst it has
subsided a little since the end it has not yet completely gone.
Nuclear threat is different now then it was in the Twentieth Century,
to prove my views I will talk about the cold war with reference to
nuclear threat and what that means today.

At the end of the Second World War, the world was in devastation,
Germany has finally been defeated and a new superpower emerged: United
States of America. To examine the threats of nuclear war in the cold
war I must first look at the causes of the cold war, this would help
me analytically later on. Real rivalry was building was building up in
the aftermath of WWII between the US and the Soviet Union. But these
two countries were a world apart; the US was a democracy whilst the
USSR was ruled by communism - two very different creeds. Russians had
hardly any freedom while Americans enjoyed freedom in virtually all
aspects of life. Another important difference between these two
countries which played an important role in the cold war was the
economy. The US was a capitalist country and therefore much richer
whilst the USSR had a communist economy where all control belonged to
the government. The Russians feared the Americans and the Americans
feared the Russians - huge contrasts. All this fear definitely pushed
both countries to produce nuclear weapons and was an important factor
in actually starting nuclear threat.

The Soviets felt they needed secure borders, so they decide to put all
of Eastern Europe (with the exception of Yugoslavia) under their
control and therefore added twenty million people to the USSR. They
placed communist governments in all these countries and this made what
would be later known as the ‘Iron Curtain’. This act raised even more
hostile fears within the US against communism in Europe - it made them
feel resentment. The US feared the spread of communism and the
Russians feared US atomic bombs. The nuclear bombs dropped on
Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945 showed the world that hug-scale death
and destruction was now possible, the Russians - naturally - were
afraid of such an attack. All these fears from both sides was a huge
factor that helped bring about the arms race; Soviet fear of atomic
weapons made them build their own atomic bomb in 1949 when they
successfully exploded one. By 1948, a new American policy had emerged
known as the Truman Doctrine. This was basically about freedom and
against the spread of communism and a new US strategy also emerged -
containment. Instead of Americans criticising Communism, they would
not allow any other countries to turn Communist, by whatever means.
Truman thought people turned to Communism because...

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