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

In what ways did relations between the USA and the USSR change between 1948 and 1962?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

In what ways did relations between the USA and the USSR change between 1948 and 1962? In 1948 the relationship between the USA and the USSR worsened after the communist take over in Czechoslovakia and the Berlin Blockade began the disagreements between the USA and the USSR over how to deal with Germany and Berlin, brought the worsening relationship to a crisis. This was as three out of the four zones of Germany had joined together to create one Western zone and then they created a new currency for this grouped zone. Stalin reacted to this by imposing the Berlin Blockade. Stalin hoped that the cutting off of all road, rail and canal traffic into the Western sectors of Berlin, the Western zone would be unable to attack, but Stalin also hoped that this could enable a wider spread of communism. However, by mid 1949, he had failed in his attempt to force the West out of Berlin. Stalin was now forced into reopening the land routes out of Berlin, which meant that the West had won. In the same year, the West set up NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organisation), which was a defensive alliance. This showed how poor the relationship between the USA and the USSR had become by 1949 because the West feared an attack from the Soviet Union. ...read more.

Middle

The USSR now accused the West of encouraging the rebellion in Hungary, which made the USSR more suspicious of the West. By 1961, before the Vienna meeting between President Kennedy and Khruschev, their relationship seemed to be at an all time high, but after the 'icy encounter' at the Vienna meeting, their relationship dramatically worsened to the lowest point it had been, at the building of the Berlin Wall. In June 1961, Khruschev tried to persuade the new American Presidint, Kennedy, to agree to withdraw from West Berlin, Kennedy refused. At this time, West Berlin contained the largest number of spying agencies ever assembled in one area and all 110 miles from the enemy's territory. The trigger for the building of the wall was that between 1949 and 1961, over 2 1/2 million people had escaped from East Germany to the West. By August a barbed-wire barrier appeared along the frontier between East and West Berlin, which was quickly replaced by a large concrete wall. This, ironically, created greater understanding, as it stopped the loss of skilled workers; it saved East Germany from economic ruin. This then lessened the likelihood of desperate measures by the USSR to uphold the GDR, which the West would have to resist. ...read more.

Conclusion

The American U2 planes detected these missile sites and the government decided on the blockade of Cuba, by not allowing Soviet ships with offensive weapons to reach the Cuban shores. After eight days, the threat of the world on the brink of destruction through a nuclear war between the USA and the USSR slowly came to an end. This Cuban missile crisis showed the Soviets that the USA would stand firm, if they felt that US security was threatened. It showed the USA that the USSR could compromise. Also, the realisation of how close the USA and the USSR had come to nuclear war, lead to the installation of a telephone 'hot-line', directly linking the Whitehouse in Washington to the Kremlin in Moscow. After this, relations between East and West improved. Neither side wanted nuclear war and the crisis encouraged both sides to talk about limiting the growth of Nuclear weapons. The Test Ban Treaty of 1963 was a result of one of these talks. In conclusion, the relations between the USA and the USSR changed dramatically, for better and for worse, over the course between 1948 and 1962. In 1948, their relationship began to deteriorate. However by the end of 1962 and 1963 the Cuban missile crisis frightened them into changing things to improve on their relationship so that the threat of total devastation through nuclear war could never occur again. Holley Willison UVY ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE International relations 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 GCSE International relations 1945-1991 essays

  1. How Far Was Gorbachev Responsible For The End Of Soviet Union?

    This is evident in some policies brought about by Gorbachev, such as the anti-alcohol campaign that wasted needed money and the continuing arms supplies to his "clients" (ZA P66). Perhaps the most prominent example of Gorbachev causing economic weakness was the law "On the State Enterprise" which lead to rampant inflation (MG+tEoSP P51).

  2. The relationship between the USA and USSR dramatically changed between the years 1943-56.

    Before the conference America and Russia were on friendly terms however by the end of it they had started to go downhill and this would only get worse as I analyse more factors. After the Potsdam conference in 1946 it had become increasingly clear that Europe had been divided between

  1. Why did relations between the Soviet Union and the USA change in the years ...

    The aim of SDI was to create a 'defence shield' that would protect the USA from a full nuclear missile attack by the Soviet Union or other hostile nuclear powers. This would end reliance on offence-dominated deterrence ('Mutually Assured Destruction')

  2. Explain why the USA and the Soviet Union did not trust eachother after the ...

    There were both concerned by the state of the German economy as people were starving throughout the whole of Germany. The three western zones decided they would team up to form what was called 'Trizonia'. Trizonia decide that they would introduce their own currency called the deutsch mark.

  1. Cold War Short Essays - Questions and Answers.

    One reason why Berlin was a flashpoint was because of the construction of the Berlin Wall. Khrushchev feared that West Berlin was being used as abase to spy on the East. Also, millions of people were leaving East Berlin for the West ? many of these people were highly skilled workers.

  2. Cold War Summary, quotes and revision notes.

    changed significantly --> in 1949 USSR exploded its first atomic bomb, just 4 years after US had gained this advance. * The Korean War & America's new commitment to containing the spread of communism --> brought relaisation that US would nee to maintain large conventional forces.

  1. Why did relations between the USA and the Soviet Union worsen between 1948-56?

    and the Communist Eastern coalition began almost as soon as the end of World War II. The SOVIET UNION oversaw the installation of pro-Soviet governments in many of the areas it had taken from the Nazis during the war. In response, the USA and its Eastern allies sought ways to prevent further expansion of Communist influence on the European continent.

  2. Explain how the USA, USSR and China became involved in the Korean War 1950 ...

    The USA launched heavy bombing raids on North Korea, destroying Pyongyang and causing high civilian casualties. This continued until an armistice was signed in 1953. Both sides suffered substantial losses as well as gains. The USA implemented the Truman Doctrine, showing how serious it was about containing communism.

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