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

To What Extent was the Cold War in Asia a Bipolar Conflict?

Extracts from this document...


Blakeley Nixon INTR299: Introduction to the International Relations of South East Asia To What Extent was the Cold War in Asia a Bipolar Conflict The Cold War of the mid to late twentieth century was in every aspect an international phenomenon. Born out of the ruin of the Second World War (6,pp83) the Cold War has been analysed through many different disciplines of study from History to Media and Cultural studies and of course International relations. Understood by many (but not all) as a conflict between two opposing ideologies, Capitalism and Communism, the hostilities spread from Europe and the US to encompass the entire world. Asia was one of the more important fronts in the Cold War and more than any other region saw the so called Cold War turn hot in conflicts like those in Korea to Vietnam. The point of this essay is to analyse the extent to which the cold war in Asia was a bipolar conflict. As a basis to the analysis the focus of this essay will largely been on the actions of communist China because of its importance in the region and the alignment it has had with both the major cold war powers. ...read more.


The complexities of the conflict are not the focus of this essay but in an argument for and against bipolarity the Korean War must be considered. South Korea had gradually become a central feature of Truman's "Containment" policy, an international policy that attempted to territorially surround the Communist bloc that had by this point consumed the bulk of Eurasia (5, pp48). The Soviets and Chinese supported (encouraged) North Korean invasion of South Korea began in June 1950 under the orders of a government that believed the invasion could be completed in three days avoiding American intervention. However, due to the current political situation in the US Truman, afraid of being seen as being soft on communism after his failure to support Chang's nationalist on Formosa (Taiwan)(3, pp192), ordered American troops to enter the battle from Japan by the end of the month (5, pp49). The UN Security Council, boycotted by the USSR, the only communist country with a veto, because of the refusal of the UN to recognise the PRC, commenced its first deployment of troops since its creation. Despite the immediate American and eventual UN involvement, North Korean troops managed to invade as far south as what became to be known as the Pusan perimeter. ...read more.


China's continued claim over Taiwan and its actions during the Tiananmen Square massacre suggest that China developed a greater level of independence and sovereignty suggesting that it had finally emerged as the third power in Asia's Cold War front. To conclude this essay it must be first said that to properly analyse the events in Asia's cold would take far more than a 2000 word essay. To answer the question "to what extent was the cold war in Asia bipolar" this essay focused on China. Analysing China's involvement in the cold war suggests that the conflict was in its early stages bipolar. The domination of the USSR over most states in the communist bloc and a similar situation with the US and the west is evidence of this. However as the conflict exploded in Korea the complexities of the Asian region gradually began to degrade the bipolar form as China emerged on to the scene as a challenge to the dominance of both the US and USSR in the region. In a concluding analysis it can be said that internationally the Cold War may have very well been a bipolar conflict, but on a regional level, Asia's cold war was a far more complex system. ...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. This graduation paper is about U.S. - Soviet relations in Cold War period. Our ...

    Now, Roosevelt set out to reverse those perceptions. He understood the dire consequences of Nazi ambitions for world hegemony. Yet to pose the issue strictly as one of self-interest offered little chance of success given the depth of America's revulsion toward internationalism.

  2. How far was the USSR responsible for the outbreak of the Cold War?

    The Marshall Plan itself was an example of the "security dilemma" that both the USA and the USSR faced. In the West, the Plan was perceived as an attempt to uphold political freedom while in the East it was seen as an aggressive policy.

  1. Superpower Relations 1945-90

    Religious freedoms were denied. * Consumer goods were limited and often of poor quality. Sales of foreign goods were restricted. Foreign travel was difficult and currency sales were strictly controlled in an effort to obtain foreign exchange. Were there any benefits to living in the East?

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

    taking photographs for four years. When the summit conference began on May 15, Khrushchev demanded that Eisenhower apologize for the U-2 incident. Eisenhower refused, and Khrushchev angrily 6 canceled his invitation for the president to visit the U.S.S.R. John F. Kennedy became president of the United States in January 1961.

  1. Korean propaganda during the Second World War and the Korean War had a different ...

    As the war progressed, and near the end, the Japanese were weaker militarily, but were not willing to give up to defeat. The majority of Koreans, (which were lower/middle class) and their views on the war, and their thoughts of its progress were becoming more and more evident to the Japanese.

  2. A Study of Air Supremacy in the Korean War.

    to $10 billion by 1952, but the time lag from the production to getting the planes to Korea meant scaled back operations until they reach full fighting strength. Although the manufacturers were able to meet the demand for aircraft and munitions they had to overcome the effects of the drawn down after World War II.

  1. To what extent was the Korean War a product of the cold war tensions?

    From early 1949 skirmishes had taken place along the 38th parallel (the division line between north and south), 400 soldiers had been killed in May 1949 alone. This fighting was sparked by troops from both sides of the border and it was clear that no permanent border could be established.

  2. North Korea and South Korea after the Korean war.

    In the future there is hope that the Sun Shine policy will thaw the Cold War Nation and abandon the ideology of Juche. The common Korean believes unification is on the horizon and nothing will stop the will of the people.

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