• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

In the Immediate post war years of 1945-1953, who was to blame for the Cold War?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Mackenzie Moll 11-23-03 In the Immediate post war years of 1945-1953, who was to blame for the Cold War? The hostile relationship that built up during the immediate post war years between the US and Russia caused the Cold War. This escalating tension that arose by 1947 was built by the US' antagonistic attitude in policies and plans that forced the Russians to choose between their country's security and a relationship with the US. America's concern of maintaining their own safety blinded them to the idea of negotiation and the Russian perspective. In the immediate post war period the US praised Russia because of their enormous contribution to the War effort. They saw Russians as their equals. However, no sooner had this praise started, it then ended abruptly. This hostility between the US and Russia became apparent at the Potsdam Conference. Here disagreements about rebuilding Germany, and USSR's control in Eastern Europe, led to such disputes that an Iron Curtain descended in 1945 separating and cutting off communication from the USSR and the US completely. ...read more.

Middle

The US wanted to contain communism and expansion in Russia in order to insure their own power. They knew that Russia (as proved before in the previous paragraph) would not start a war and so then used the two countries clashing ideologies of capitalism vs. Communism/Stalinism to justify their intense dislike and actions taken against any Russian security or power. This rationale also gave the US reason to insure that the idea of peace with Russia was impossible. The US only cared about their safety and was further ready to sacrifice Russia's security to fulfill their own. The Marshall plan and the containment policy were clear US challenges to Soviet ambitions throughout the world, and an attempt to enforce Western influence and culture. Both policies aim was to obtain allies in the Middle East (Containment policy) or Western Europe (Marshall Plan), by aiding and loaning gross amounts of money to stop the "domino affect" of communism. This put Russia in a problematic position since countries in Russian control wanted to take part in the Marshall plan. ...read more.

Conclusion

allowed them to systematically spread their power and Western culture and in the Soviet's eyes, directly threaten their homeland security and pressed their fear of capitalism. This again happened in the Korean War and the Berlin airlift as the US interfered in Russian conflict to stop communism and deny Russia of its wishes. In conclusion although historians have a hard time blaming the start of the Cold War solely on one country, because both did provoke one another; in the end, it was America's aggressive behavior combined with their inability to compromise resulted in the Cold War. It is also important to note that the Cold War was not caused by just one thing but rather a build up of US policies and plans created to provoke and heighten tension with Russia. American is to blame by virtue of the fact that "with great power comes great responsibility." The US misused and exploited its' power, to impede on Russia's buffer zone, and the aggression that was displayed by the Soviet Union was a response to America's attempts to contain and isolate the USSR. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level International History, 1945-1991 section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level International History, 1945-1991 essays

  1. Who was responsible for the start of the Cold war?

    granted to sixteen European countries the America n people saw it as a shrewd investment that would ward off the threat that Communism posed to them. In part the 'Truman doctrine' had also been a form of response by the American's to Stalin's speech to the Russian parliament in Moscow in February.

  2. Who was to blame for the cold war?

    The west agreed that Eastern Europe would be a soviet sphere of influence but they never expected such a complete communist domination. They thought it would be both democratic and friendly to the USSR. Stalin saw his policy in Eastern Europe as making himself secure, but Truman only saw spread of communism.

  1. This graduation paper is about U.S. - Soviet relations in Cold War period. Our ...

    how to resolve the dilemmas of making peace, occupying conquered territory, and defining postwar responsibilities. Inevitably, each issue became inextricably bound to the others, posing problems of statecraft and good faith that perhaps went beyond the capacity of any mortal to solve.

  2. Why did the Cold War start

    In his speech, Truman said, "the seeds of totalitarian regimes are nurtured by misery and want. They spread and grow in the evil sol of poverty and strife. They reach their full growth when the hope of the people for a better life has died."6 This speech expressed the American

  1. The Cold War was a big rivalry that developed after World War II.

    The USSR saw the formation of NATO as a threat, and felt the need for an alliance of their own. In 1955 the USSR and other communist countries signed the Warsaw Pact, an agreement which established a military alliance in Eastern Europe.

  2. Assess the strategic strengths and weaknesses of America's 'containment of communism' policy since 1945.

    It is down already. The two pins in the second row are Burma and Indochina. If they go, the three pins in the next row; Siam, Malaya, and Indonesia are pretty sure to topple in their turn. And if all the rest of Asia goes, the resulting psychological, political and

  1. Who is to blame for the Cold War?

    The USSR, Britain and USA as an attempt to sort out the world instead increased tension and with too much tension, a Cold War can develop. The case in the Potsdam conference, which was held after Germany surrendered, was far worse than Yalta.

  2. How True is it to say that the period 1953-1962 saw a relaxation of ...

    The note meant that if the USA refused to recognise the DDR, the USSR would no longer control rights of movement, forcing the USA to have direct relations with the DDR. This would obviously render the Western policy of refusing to view the DDR as a sovereign power impractical.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work