Cold War

Topics: Cold War, Soviet Union, World War II Pages: 11 (3923 words) Published: June 4, 2013
HISTORY PROJECT
Introduction
After the Second World War, the U.S.A. and Russia emerged as the two superpowers. During the war, there was a mutual understanding between the two nations, which however began to evaporate soon after the war. Difference in ideologies and mutual distrust between the two nations led to the beginning of cold war. Both tried to spread their influence and divided the world into two hostile groups. The western European countries came under the influence of America while the eastern European countries came under the sway of communist Russia. This was a state of extreme unfriendliness, although no actual war was fought. During this period, both the superpowers formed various military alliances such as NATO, SEATO, CENTO, Warsaw Pact and the Baghdad Pact. This also led to a mad race of armaments by both the blocs. It led to the existence of two universal ideologies in conflict, and two different self-images, the United Stated championing a world made safe for democracy. Its opponent, the Soviet Union advocated world Communism

Origins of the term
At the end of World War II, English author and journalist George Orwell used cold war, as a general term, in his essay "You and the Atomic Bomb", published October 19, 1945, in the British newspaper Tribune. Contemplating a world living in the shadow of the threat of nuclear warfare, Orwell wrote: "For forty or fifty years past, Mr. H. G. Wells and others have been warning us that man is in danger of destroying himself with his own weapons, leaving the ants or some other gregarious species to take over. Anyone who has seen the ruined cities of Germany will find this notion at least thinkable. Nevertheless, looking at the world as a whole, the drift for many decades has been not towards anarchy but towards the imposition of slavery. We may be heading not for general breakdown but for an epoch as horribly stable as the slave empires of antiquity. James Burnham's theory has been much discussed, but few people have yet considered its ideological implications—that is, the kind of world-view, the kind of beliefs, and the social structure that would probably prevail in a state which was at once unconquerable and in a permanent state of "cold war" with its neighbours." In The Observer of March 10, 1946, Orwell wrote that "after the Moscow conference last December, Russia began to make a 'cold war' on Britain and the British Empire." The first use of the term to describe the post–World War II geopolitical tensions between the USSR and its satellites and the United States and its western European allies is attributed to Bernard Baruch, an American financier and presidential advisor. In South Carolina, on April 16, 1947, he delivered a speech saying, "Let us not be deceived: we are today in the midst of a cold war." Newspaper reporter-columnist Walter Lippmann gave the term wide currency, with the book The Cold War; when asked in 1947 about the source of the term, he referred it to a French term from the 1930s, la guerre froide.

Causes
The cause of the Cold War is debatable. Because the Cold War doubles as a conflict between two countries (the USA and the USSR) and between two ideologies (Capitalism and Communism) several different causes can be suggested. Russian Revolution

Because Capitalism and Communism are usually seen as antithetical, it can be argued that the Cold War began when Communism began, in 1917 with the Russian Revolution. Or, if not quite in 1917, then in early 1920s, when Lenin and his Bolsheviks consolidated their power in Russia and tried to spread Communism to the West, to Europe on the blade of their swords—although they were rather quickly unsuccessful, being defeated by the Poles in the Polish-Soviet War (1919-1921). In World War I, the US, Britain, and Russia had been allies for a few months from April 1917 until the Bolsheviks seized power in Russia in November. In 1918, the Bolsheviks negotiated a separate peace with the Central...
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