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History America (COLD WAR)


FEB: Yalta Conference MAY: Hitler defeated JULY: Potsdam Conference USA drops st 1 Atomic bomb (testing) AUG: 2 Abomb dropped by US on Nagasaki and Hiroshima

MARCH: The Truman Doctrine is announced Congress rejects Marshall Aid ($17bil) USA gives MA to Brits (Greece crisis) OCT: Stalin sets up Comiform

China becomes communist APRIL: NATO set up MAY: Berlin blockade lifted Comecon created by Stalin USSR test st their 1 A-bomb Eisenhower becomes President of the US Berlin Wall built overnight Cuban Revolution and Fidel Castro becomes leader of Cuba JFK becomes President April : The Bay of Pigs

Krushchev becomes leader of the USSR

Nuclear test ban treaty signed by USSSR and USA






1950 1951 1952 1953 1954 1955 Greek royalists in charge (a weak government) down to American aid and British troops

1956 1957




1961 1962


Britain, America and France combine their zones to form Trizonia

MARCH: Marshall Aid introduced (accepted by congress) this is because of the Czech Crisis March - Jan Masaryk found dead Trizonia currency stabilized JUNE: USSR blockades Berlin

Eisenhower authorises the CIA to investigate ways to overthrow Castro

OCTOBER CRISIS th th -16 to the 28 The darkest days The Cuban Blockade on the th 24 of October th On the 28 the USSR took to the missile out of Cuba

The Cold War

Wartime Alliance
During the Second World War the allies had to work together to defeat Hitler The main allies were Britain, America, the USSR, and France However the USA still was distrustful of the USSR because of their communist ideology Also the relations between the USSR and Britain Country/ Men Lost Country/ were harmed in the 1930s by the policy of Army Army Appeasement Stalin thought that Britain seemed Soviets 25 million French happy to sit back and watch Hitler grow in power and attack the USSR British 500,000 Americans During the war, Churchill was full of respect for the

Men Lost 200,000 50,000

Russian army saying that they tore the heart out of the German army The Soviet army did really help win the war this is shown by the losses they felt

Clashes of Ideology
USSR (Communists since 1917)
Government A one party state only the communist party is allowed. The country is run by elected councils called Soviets. But all members of the Soviets are Communists (so really only one party). Strict limits on human and civil rights e.g. limits on free speech, travel, religion etc. People who try and break the limits could face imprisonment. The USSR used widespread terror and secret police to make sure people did what they wanted and didnt break the limits. Average living standards lower than in the West. Wealth is more evenly distributed, so not as much of a gap between rich and poor. The state owns everything and it is a government run economy so everything publically owned. Profits are used for the public good. Pravda owned by the state (Pravda was the only newspaper you could buy) all the media (books, newspapers, radio and films) are strictly censored

UK and USA
Democratic state. Meaning many parties are allowed to stand in elections and the people vote for who they want to be leader. The leader of the party that is voted becomes the head of the government. Fewer limits on human and civil rights than in the USSR, and some rights guaranteed by law. However until the 1960s many rights for denied to black Americans.

Human Rights



Average living standard higher than in the East. Wealth distributed unevenly, so there is much more of a gap between rich and poor (quite a lot of poor). A free-market economy so most businesses are privately owned profits go to the company. The media owned by private companies and individuals. They are rarely censored.


The Yalta Conference

In February 1945 it was clear that Germany was losing (although Hitler wasnt defeated until May 1945) The allied leaders met at Yalta in Ukraine to plan what would happen to Europe after Germany was defeated The Big Three (Stalin, Roosevelt and Churchill) agreed on some crucial matters: o Stalin agreed to enter the war against Japan o They agreed that Germany would be divided into 4 zones American, British, Soviet and French o They agreed to free all countries occupied by Germany and agreed to let them become independent o They agreed that Eastern Europe would become a soviet sphere of influence (this is because the USSR had lost so many forces during the 2nd world war that they didnt want another war against Eastern Europe also they wanted a bumper so that the USSR was protected and they would have to go through Eastern Europe to get to them) o Development of the United Nations to replace the failed League of Nations They also disagreed on some things: o Stalin wanted the USSR border to move westwards into Poland Roosevelt and Churchill werent too happy and disagreed however in the end they let Stalin do this They realised that Berlin was in the Soviet zone, and as Berlin was the capital of Germany and the main trading and economic area, they agreed to split Berlin up into 4 zones

Stalins Aims Stalin wanted a soviet sphere of influence in Eastern Europe so in all the countries that shared a border with the USSR He wanted to move his border westwards into Poland Stalin, most importantly, wanted to crush Germany What was going on in the minds of the leaders at the Conference? Stalin o He was worried that Churchill would betray the USSR and trick them o He believed that Churchill might steal from him o Stalin thought that Roosevelt was better than Churchill but still thought that he might steal from the USSR o Stalin said that Churchill was a farsighted and dangerous statesman Churchill o He thought that the USSR had become dangerous to the free world o Churchill wanted to prevent the spread of communism o This is why he wanted a French zone in Germany this would add a 3rd zone against the Soviet zone and prevent too much USSR influence in Germany o He wanted to rebuild Germany and get it back on its feet Roosevelt o Wanted to rebuild Germany as a trading nation o He wanted to impose the will of the United States and the British Empire in the USSR meaning he wanted a total war with them The Sphere of influence At Yalta the Big Three agree that Stalin should have the sphere of influence For Stalin this means pro-soviet governments in Eastern Europe this is very important to Stalin o Stalin rigs the voting systems in Eastern Europe and makes sure that Pro communist leaders are elected o Yugoslavia was the only Eastern European country that didnt turn communist

The Potsdam Conference

In May 1945 Germany surrendered and Hitler committed suicide The allied forces had won A second conference was then arranged for July 1945 it was going to be held in the Berlin suburb of Potsdam However many changes had taken place since the Yalta conference in February o Stalins armies were occupying most of Eastern Europe They had liberated all the countries in Eastern Europe but instead of leaving them, Soviet troops stayed there Stalins troops controlled the Baltic states Refugees were fleeing the countries in fear of a communist take over In Poland he set up a communist government against the wishes of most of the Poles Britain and USA protested, however Stalin defended his actions by saying that it was for defensive reasons o America had a new President In April 1945, Roosevelt died and was replaced by Vice- President Harry Truman Truman was much more anti-communist and very suspicious of Stalin Truman saw the Soviet takeover of Eastern Europe as preparations for taking over the rest of Europe o The allies had tested an atomic bomb

In July 1945 the Americans successfully tested an atomic bomb at a desert site in the USA. At the start of the Potsdam conference Truman informed Stalin about it Halfway through the conference Churchill was defeated in Britain and a new Prime Minister, Clement Attlee, was put in place. In the absence of Churchill, the conference was dominated by the rivalry and suspicion of Truman and Stalin Agreements at Potsdam New borders for Poland The Division of Germany and Berlin was agreed to take place They agreed to the legal trials at Nurenberg for Nazi war criminals Disagreements at Potsdam What to do about Germany o Stalin wanted to cripple Germany o Truman didnt want to repeat the mistake of the Treaty of Versailles Damages o Stalin had lost around 25million people and the Soviets had been devastated Stalin wanted compensation from Germany o Truman however, again did not want to repeat the same mistake that was made in the First World War and again disagreed Soviet policies in Eastern Europe o At Yalta the allies had agreed that Stalin could have his sphere of influence, however Truman thought it had gone too far o Stalin defended himself by saying that If the Slav people are united, no one will dare move a finger against them o Truman adopted a get tough attitude to the USSR

The Iron Curtain

The Potsdam conference ended without agreement on many issues Over the next nine months Stalin achieved the domination of Eastern Europe Stalin thought that Truman and Attlee were going to be weak leaders, as they were new to their jobs and would let Stalin do what he wanted He brought them rapid industrialisation and Eastern Europe became very secretive Churchill described it as an Iron Curtain between the border between the Soviet Controlled countries and the west

Soviet Expansion into Eastern Europe

Stalin didnt want to be attacked by Eastern Europe With the communist governments now set up in Eastern Europe Stalin starts to tighten his control The secret police imprisoned anyone who opposed the communist rule or might later In 1947, Stalin set up Cominform to co-ordinate the work of the communists parties o Stalin brought the communist leaders regularly to Moscow to be briefed by Stalin and his ministers o This allowed Stalin to keep a close eye on them The only country to remain independent in the East was Yugoslavia, under President Tito this is because they freed themselves from Germany without Soviet help they were communist, but more open to the West didnt fall under Stalins control

Tension between allies

In 1948 the tension between the US and the USSR had reached such a high point that they started to increase the stock of their weapons in preparation for war A propaganda war developed

Why did this escalate so high into a cold war? o The USA and the USSR had emerged from the second world war as the superpowers o Before the Second World War and Roosevelt, America had adopted the policy of isolationism they may not have liked communism but they werent getting involved. However after Roosevelt and the second world war they realised that they needed and should be involved in world affairs The Reaction of the US The Allies (USA and UK) felt that the sphere of influence had gone too far They believed that you could have both a leader who was democratic and friendly to the USSR Truman could only see this take over as Stalin spreading communism By 1948 only Greece and Czechoslovakia had resisted communist takeover Greece When the Germans retreated 1944 there remained two rival groups that wanted to rule the country o The Monarchists wanted the return of the King of Greece o The Communists they wanted Greece to be a soviet republic Churchill sent British troops to restore order but in actual fact they were on the side of the Monarchists and the king was returned to power In 1946 the USSR protested to the UN that the British troops were a threat to peace in Greece The UN did nothing and the communists tried to take over Greece A civil war developed The British could not afford war and in 1947 announced they were withdrawing their troops Truman and the Americans did not want Greece to become communist so funded some British troops so that they could stay They also tried to prop up the Kings Government By 1950 the royalists were in charge they were very weak Czechoslovakia Were ruled by a coalition government until Soviet takeover the government included Communists They however wanted policies independent of Moscows However the Communists came down hard in 1948 and the anti Soviet leaders were purged o This purge also included the suicide of one pro-American minister, Jan Masaryk, who was found dead beneath a window (probably killed but staged a suicide) The Truman Doctrine After sending money to the British to help he Greeks, America formed the Truman Doctrine Under the Truman Doctrine the USA was prepared to send money, equipment and advice to countries that felt threatened by Communism (Known as Marshall Aid) Trumans aim was to stop the spread of communism policy of containment The Marshall Plan Truman though that Communism took over when there was poverty and hardship He asked General Marshall to assess the economic status of Europe it came back as terrible o Europe owed a lot of money to America and there was a lot of poverty after two expensive wars o There was a shortage of all goods - most countries rationing bread o Churchill describes Britain as a rubble heap, a breeding ground of hate Marshall thought that around $17 billion would be needed to rebuild the economy of Europe Truman presented this plan to Congress who refused to pass it However when the Czech crisis happened and Jan Masaryk was killed they accepted it and made it available over a period of 4 years

Marshall Aid Political Aims o Truman believed communism was born out of poverty and hardship o If he aided countries to help them out of poverty then communism wouldnt spread o By countries accepting this aid they also became heavily reliant on America Economic Aims of Marshall Aid o American wanted to create a new market for American goods in countries that accepted Marshall Aid this would help their own economy o By countries accepting Marshall Aid they became reliant on American dollars and would have to, in the end, pay America back

The Berlin Blockade

Germany was a problem for the allies all their zones were in economic chaos o Stalin wanted to keep it this way and cripple Germany o America and the UK wanted to rebuild Germany and its industries France, America and Britain combines their zones in 1946 to form Trizonia West Germany In 1948 they reformed the currency to ensure stability and within months there were signs of Germanys recovery In June 1948 the Berlin Blockade begins Why Did Stalin Blockade Berlin? Stalin wasnt happy that the Western powers joined to form Trizonia and that the USA was making them reliant on their currency Berlin was deep into the Soviet zone it was the capital and where the jobs and bulk of the GDP was made Stalin wanted to cripple Germany not rebuild it- blocking Berlin would make it hard for the western powers to try and rebuild and regenerate it The only way to get to Berlin for the Western powers was through railways, canals and vital roads The population in West Berlin wouldnt be able to get to the western help they would have to become fully reliant on the USSR What were the reasons that Stalin gave for the blockade? Stalin alleged that they suspended traffic due to technical difficulties He also said they suspended barge traffic on similar grounds The Soviets also disrupted power plants going to the western sector they gave the excuse that there was a shortage of coal How did the Western powers react to the Blockade? The Airlife If US tanks tried to ram the road blocks or railways blocks with tanks then it would be seen as an act of war However Truman was not prepared to give up he saw it as if they gave in to this issue then Stalin might try and take the Western zones of Germany as well He wanted Berlin to be a symbol of freedom behind the iron curtain The only way to Berlin now was by air The allies decided to airlift supplies to West Berlin and at first everyone was afraid that the soviets would shoot them down (an act of war) but they didnt For 10 months the allies flew in supplies like food, clothing, oil and building materials although there was enormous shortages, and a lot of Germans left Berlin, by 1949 the blockade was lifted as it had shown that the allies would not give up Stalin reopened communication Two states were created West Germany (The Federal Republic), East Germany (The German Democratic Republic)

NATO - 1949
After the Berlin Blockade, a war between the USA and the USSR seemed a real possibility At the height of the crisis the Western powers met in Washington and set up NATO an agreement to work together to prevent conflict NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organisation) What did Stalin think about NATO? The creation of NATO seemed a threatening act to Stalin It seemed as if the western powers were ganging up on him It also appeared as if the Western Powers were preparing for war or trying to push him out of power Stalin created the Warsaw Pact he joined the Eastern Block to counteract NATO

The Cuban Missile Crisis

Background Knowledge
Stalin died in 1953 Khrushchev took over was critical of Stalin and seemed less harsh the Thaw Khrushchev was in favour of peaceful co- existence met with Eisenhower in 1955 at the Geneva summit In 1959 became the first leader to visit the USA Within Russia he freed political prisoners and reduced censorship In 1955 he allowed Austria to become an independent state

Hungry Brutal Stalinist regime under Rakosi October 1956, people rose up in Hungary and hunted down the hated Secret Police Khrushchev allowed Nagy, a liberal, to become leader Nagy wanted independence, like Austria, and in November 1956, he withdrew from the Warsaw Pact ending communism there He promised to hold free elections Khrushchev then invaded and 20,000 Hungarians were killed Nagy was arrested and shot Kadar became the new puppet leader and the West didnt intervene with Hungarys problem Showed the West the Khrushchev was still threatening The 3 main leaders involved: Khrushchev (Soviet) Governed Russia from 1953 1964 John F. Kennedy (American) Governed America from 1961-1963 Castro (Cuban) Governed Cuba from 1959-2008 The Arms Race The arms race was the race between the USSR and the USA to stockpile weapons, missiles and nuclear arms. The competition of who had the best and most weapons. In the 1950s, when Khrushchev took over, the USSR took the lead in new missile technology Khrushchev convinced his colleagues that missiles were the key to Russias security in the future In 1957 they developed the ICBM missile which allowed them to launch a missile into space and bring it down on a specific target in America The Missile Gap The myth that the USSR had more arms than America and that they were ahead of them in the arms race Eisenhower (the president before JFK) knew the myth wasnt true but it allowed him to get more funding to make more weapons also if he made it known then it could compromise his Russian agents who were telling him

Khrushchev also knew it wasnt true but wanted his country to think it was to make him seem much more popular By 1959 America had developed its own ICBM missiles and soon had far more than the Soviets In addition to the ICBM missiles they also had developed missiles called Polaris they could be fired from submarines and were virtually undetectable America also had missiles stationed in Europe and Turkey which could reach the USSR within minutes By the early 1960s America was by far leading the arms race The Military and Industrial relationship Producing weapons keeps people in jobs and in the industry Military needs to ask for the weapons to be made industry will make them The Government would give the military generals huge budgets to make the weapons keeping them rich and in jobs

The Cuban Revolution

The Batista Regime Cuba is 160km from Florida America was allies with Cuba under Batista they owned most of the businesses and had a huge naval base there e.g. Guantanamo Bay was a huge military base They also provided Batista with money and weapons Batista was opposed to communism and extremely corrupt Fidel Castro and the Revolution (CASTRO came to power in 1959) There was a lot of opposition to Batista In 1959, after 3 years of Revolution and Guerrilla warfare, Fidel Castro becomes leader of Cuba Castro was extremely popular and quickly killed many political opponents who might oppose him He was very charismatic Americas response to Castro At first they decided to recognise Castro as the new leader of Cuba After a short period of time the relations between the two countries get worse o Thousands of Cubans flee to the US from Castro and form powerful pressure of the US government to do something and act against Castro o Castro took over America owned businesses in Cuba and distributed them amongst his peasant farmer supporters In 1960 Eisenhower authorised the CIA to look over ways of overthrowing Castro he tried to disrupt their economy by: o Damaging Sugar plantations o Getting American companies working in Cuba to refuse to cooperate with Cuban businesses which used materials imported from the USSR o The American Media also published a stream of criticism about Castro How did Castro respond? Castro assured American living in Cuba that they were safe and allowed the US to keep their naval base By the summer of 1960 he allied Cuba with Russia and had signed a trade agreement with Russia They received around $100 million in economic aid from the USSR Castro also began receiving arms from the Soviet Union and American spies knew about this The Bay of Pigs Kennedy (who became president in 1961) broke off all international relation with Cuba in 1961 making Castro worried that they were going to invade

Kennedy wanted to overthrow Castro, but rather than direct invasion, he decided it would be best to supply arms, equipment and transport for over 1,400 anti-Castro Cuban exiles They were sent to invade Cuba and overthrow Castro In April 1961 the exiles landed at the Bay of Pigs and were met with 20,00 Cuban troops who were armed with tanks and modern weapons Castro captured or killed them all within days This was a huge failure for Kennedy Khrushchev Puts Missiles in Cuba Cuba was the only communist state in the West and Khrushchev wanted to keep it that way great propaganda Khrushchev felt that it would strengthen his own position in his own country to get missiles that close to America would be seen as a success o Americas superiority in the Nuclear Arms Race, undermined Khrushchev and his position in government Khrushchev needed to restore the balance and to catch up in the arms race - America had many more longer ranged missiles, and missiles based in Turkey (and in the rest of Europe), close to the USSR o Khrushchev wanted to get close to America as Kennedy had placed missiles close to Russia The October Crisis (and the Cuban Blockade) 16th to the 28th of October 1962 16th ExComm is formed (Executive Committee of the National Security Council) they helped Kennedy make serious decisions about what to do in the Cuban Crisis 20th Decision from Kennedy to blockade Cuba 24th Blockade started blocked Russian ships from getting to Cuba 25th Soviet ships turn around and leave (due to Blockade) 26th First letter from Khrushchev it stated that if JFK would lift the blockade, he would remove the missiles. Kennedy then removed the blockade. 27th Second Letter from Khrushchev and USA plane shot down 28th Khrushchev dismantles the missile bases in Cuba and leaves Cuba Kennedy wins! Kennedy announces the lifting of the naval quarantine, on the bases that the USSR will withdraw their missiles from Cuba within 30 days. Kennedy covers his weakness (backing down) by announcing that he will continue his fight to save Cuba from communism. Kennedy Described the 24th to 27th of October 1962, as the darkest days of his life Caused him great personal stress fear of the unknown, attacking the USSR and having to carry out his empty threats Neither country wanted war but the pressure to maintain the strength of their position was huge Kennedy believed no one, or both, had won as they successfully avoided nuclear war Khrushchev Cuba remained communist this success made him believe he was the winner of the cold war Khrushchev had managed to get a country in the West to stay communist Castro Believed he won as he kept control of his country and still looked powerful The Cuban Missile Crisis showed the countries that brinksmanship could lead to nuclear war and, in 1963, both America and the USSR signed a Nuclear test ban treaty.