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Hist 124 - the Cold War

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Jenny Fernandez

History 124

July 19, 2011

The Cold War

The Cold War was a war between the United States and the USSR (Russia). After WW2, the US and USSR became the two most dominant countries. Not only were they very powerful but also had very distinctive ideas on how their country would be ruled. The difference in government created an issue and ultimately resulted in the Cold War, which began around 1945.

Tension between the US and USSR increased towards the end WW2. It began with the disagreement of which government would control Europe. The two countries were governed very differently and both wanted to take control of Europe (Brands, 759). The USSR was a communist country. They believed in dictatorship and their people had little freedom of expression. They didn't believe in people's right to vote or assign government leadership. The US on the other hand was a democratic ruled government. They believed people should be voted in to leadership roles. They believed in freedom of speech and didn't agree with the censorship of the communist government. These two different government beliefs are what led the US and USSR into the Cold War.

The Truman Doctrine and the Marshall plan created tension between the two governments. The primary goal of the Truman Doctrine was to stop the spreading of communism. The idea was to help Greece fight the communist rebel and avoid Greece from becoming a communist country. The Marshall plan funded aid to European countries in order to prevent them from being taken over by the USSR (Brands 761). The decision of the US doing this made the USSR heated.

The USSR response to US' decision to help other country was Berlin Blockade. The USSR cut off all rail and highway traffic heading to Berlin. The plan was to block US, UK and French zones of Berlin (Brands 762). The blockage caused issues but flopped because the US was still able to reach Berlin through aircrafts.

The war in Korea was another time where USSR and US fought. After WW2 Korea was dived into two. The North side of Korea was ruled by communist and the South was ruled by an "American- sponsored ruler" (Brands 768). During the Cold War, the North side of Korea invaded South Korea. The invasion created another conflict between the US and USSR.

The US had a weapon that was very threatening, the atomic bomb. In WW2, the US used the atomic bomb and created massive destruction. After WW2 the Baruch plan was presented. The plan was made to control the use and spread of this deadly weapon. Even though the plan was originally proposed to control and prevent the use of the deadly weapon, the US and USSR could come to an agreement on how to make it happen. Because they couldn't come to an understanding, the plan failed.

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