To What Extent Can Usa and Ussr Be Blamed for the Start of the Cold War?

Topics: Cold War, World War II, Iron Curtain Pages: 2 (802 words) Published: March 20, 2012

To What extent can USA and USSR be blamed for the start of the Cold War? After World War II, a new world order was created as USSR and USA emerged as the two superpowers. There were already existing tensions between these two before the war and the wartime alliance was more out of the need to destroy the common enemy, Germany, rather than out of mutual agreements between these two. It has been argued that the cold war was caused mostly by the USSR because of their Marxism- Leninism ideology and their leader Stalin. To a large extent according to the Orthodox historians, Marxism- Leninism was responsible for the Cold War as it was an expansionist, aggressive ideology. They expanded under the aim to ‘liberate masses’ from capitalism. This greatly threatened the USA politically as this ‘liberation’ meant a communist takeover in the ‘liberated’ country. Also, the Orthodox historians argue that Stalin showed numerous signs of his unwillingness to co-operate in his dealings with Eastern Europe. Though Stalin had promised at Yalta to initiate free and fair elections in the Eastern-European states, he went against his word and created communist governments in all the states that were supposed to be freed. In Poland, for example, when the Peasant Party refused to join the ‘Democratic Front’ as demanded by the communists, the leader and other party officials were subjected to harassment and forced to flee. These aggressive acts by the communists made the Cold War inevitable. Arthur Schlesinger argued, ‘Leninism and Marxism made it impossible for the USSR and USA to co-operate.’ Gewiss also wrote in his book, ‘Rethinking the Cold War’ that Stalin and the USSR had to be blamed for the Cold War. However, it is also very difficult to attribute the Cold War to the USSR. The Revisionist historians also have placed the blame for the Cold War on USA. The USA did not realize how devastated USSR was from World War II. About 20 million people had been killed, 1,700 cities were...
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