The term Cold War describes the American and its western allies had with Russia and the socialist states in the late 1940s to 1990s. The Cold War era was characterized by ideological differences between capitalist nations with social state. These hostilities led to the arm race, as America and its capitalist allies enhanced their military capabilities in a bid to deter attacks from the Soviet Union. The cold era was, therefore, a period of hostility, armament competition and unprecedented military rivalry between the West and the East. During the era, the terms West and East were used to respectively designate the capitalist and socialist political ideologies. The capitalist agenda was mainly set out by the Truman’s doctrine. This policy was set in 1947 by the then USA president Harry Truman who sought to assist Turkey and Greece in terms of their military capacity and economic development. The assistance was mainly aimed at deterring the two nations from embracing the socialist agenda.
The Truman doctrine set the first sets that the USA followed to counter Russian influence in global affairs. It was seen as the main way that would open democracy to the world and a powerful weapon against the USSR. Through economical support and military assistance to developing countries, the USA and the USSR competed to influence the political ideologies of the various countries. The USA saw communism as a threat against democracy; to end this threat, it armed its allies to deter war with Russia. NATO was formed as means of ensuring safety by the USA and its allies. The NATO pact primarily ensured military support among the member countries, should USSR and its communist allies attack any of the NATO members. The Truman doctrine can, therefore, be described as the basis of American Cold War policies, which were adopted by its Europe allies and applied in other parts of the world to deter the Russia influence in world politics.
United States and the Soviet Union closed up their allies in Cold War, immediately a year after the World War II. The Truman Doctrine strengthened the policy used by Americans during the Cold War in Europe and worldwide. This was by handling Washington’s interests over communism domino effect. By this, the media displayed sensitive presentation of the Doctrine, and as a result, mobilized American power to restore and alleviate unstable region without the help of the military. The doctrine became a metaphor for emergency assistance to keep the country out from the influence of the communism.
Communism is known as a system of the social union that operates by holding properties and ascribing them as state property. On the other hand, capitalism is an economic system whereby production and distribution are privately owned, and growth is based on individual efforts. The state accepted the peaceful coexistence theory which was formulated and used by the Soviet Union during the Cold War. The Marxism-Leninism proved the credibility of the theory and through the influence of the Soviets, socialist system was adopted.
There was the policy of contrast in the belief that the contradiction between capitalism and communism could never exist in peace together. The application of this belief by the Soviet Union was in relation between the US, and countries affiliated to NATO, together with the Warsaw Pact countries. Interpretations of the debate of peaceful coexistence differed. There was an argument by the People’s Republic of China in the 60s and 70s that the feeling of confrontation had been maintained by the capitalist countries. This was the original opposition to the peaceful coexistence that was fundamental to Marxist revisionism. Their resolutions, which could lead to the establishment of trade associations in 1972, led China to the adoption of the theory of relation with the developing nations.
It was in the early 80s that saw China starting to show the characteristics of socialism as it extended its peaceful coexistence through the inclusion of all nations. Some leaders, such as Enver Hoxha, turned China agenda away due to concerns of the growing relations with the western nations, and this party now keeps denouncing the peaceful coexistence of capitalism and communism. The peaceful coexistence was self-stretching to every country with social movements that were tied to the Soviet Union’s understanding of communism becoming the modus operandi. The motivation was a handful of those particularly developed nations in surrendering the objective of solidarity amassing, and formation of gyration of communist rebels, which they could use in the participation of electoral politics.
The USSR and United States could live together in peace according to the theory of peaceful coexistence of the Soviets. This is despite their religious and political differences. There was a lot of support for peace in the world, especially from the council formed in 1949, known as World peace council. The council was financed by the Soviet Union so as to organize peace movements that would change the world. Peace movement as a phrase has gained a lot of acceptance from all sectors of the world. This ranges from religious and military among others. This is evidenced when the pope uses the phrase on his Christmas Day speech.
Cold War that was experienced in the early 90s was a result of anxiety between the West and their communist counter parts. The West was led BY United Nations, while East was led by Soviet Union. The short period of time after they were involved in war against Nazi Germany made them the global super powers. The two sides had a lot of differences, both in economic and political sectors. While the Soviet Union formed an alliance with the European countries, the United Nations went for the Western countries. The Soviet Union refused to get involved with the Eastern allies.
In the year 1955, the Soviet Union formed a Warsaw Pact. On the other hand, the United Nations had formed a military alliance containing the communists in the year 1949. While some countries opted not to join any of the alliances, most of them were for the ideas brought by the two super powers. The reason as to why the war was named the Cold War is because there was no military action behind it. This is because the two sides in the war possessed nuclear weapons. It meant, therefore, that the use of the nuclear weapons would guarantee their common destruction.
Cycles of relative tranquility would be succeeded by high tension that would have ended in a war. The ones with the greatest tension were the Korean War, the Cuban Missile crisis, the soviet war in Afghanistan and the Berlin Blockade. The differences expressed through military coalitions were extreme aid to states, appeal to neutral citizens, espionage and propaganda, technological competitions among other ways. There is disagreement amongst historians regarding the period at which the Cold War started. Majority of historians trace its origins to the period that followed immediately after the Second World War. In some cases, others argue that it began immediately after the First World War ended. However, tautness characteristic between the Russia, other countries of Europe and the U.S dates back to the middle of the 19th century.
The 1917, Bolshevik Revolution in Russia, Soviet Russia found itself isolated from international diplomacy. A leader by the name Vladimir Lenin said that the Soviet Union was surrounded by a violent capitalistic encirclement, and he saw diplomacy as a tool to keep soviet enemies separated, starting with the formation of the Soviet Comintern, which called for revolutionary upheavals abroad. Succeeding leader Joseph Stalin, mentioned that the Soviet Union must see the “the present capitalist environment replaced by a socialist cuddle”. Stalin had viewed international politics to be a Janus-face world from where the Soviet Union would draw states gravitating to socialism and capitalist countries would draw states inclining to capitalism, as the universe was in the time of momentary stabilization of capitalism, following its final collapse.
A series of events before the Second World War depicted the mutual distrust between the western powers and the Soviet Union. For instance, there was western support of the anti-Bolshevik movement called White movement during the Russian civil war. During the year 1926, there was Soviet funding of British general workers strike that compelled Britain to break ties with the Soviet Union. The 1927 declaration by Stalin of a peaceful coexistence drew back to past conspiratorial allegations. During the 1928 Shakhty trial of a government coup d’état, organized by the French and the British, showed mistrust which perpetrated the cold war.
In June of the year 1941, the Allies took advantage of a new front and offered support to the bloc of Soviet Union. The British became a signatory of an official confederation and the United States formed a casual accord. During the war, the United States was responsible in providing both parties (Britain and Soviets) through its Lend-Lease plan. Nevertheless, the Russian leader remained remarkably doubtful and was convinced that the Americans and the British teamed up to ensure that Soviets had the force of confronting the Nazi Germany. From Stalin’s view, the western associates intentionally delayed opening another anti-German front so that to engage themselves finally as a mould of the peace accord. Therefore, the Soviet’s perception of the western bloc brought a strong undertide of unrest and antagonism in the allied powers.
Each side also held dissimilar ideas regarding how the map of Europe should appear and on how border could be demarcated after the war. The Western Bloc wanted a form of security, under which democratic authorities were created as far as possible, allowing countries to resolve peacefully any disagreements through international organizations. However, this resulted in many attacks and several deaths and destructions, the Soviet Union aimed to beef up security through dominating countries that were close to it.
The end of the Cold War was started by Gorbachev’s system of governance and ended with the fall of the U.S.S.R. Because of the end of the Cold War in the 1980s, the economies of nations behind the Iron Curtain were in trouble. People in the East of Germany could see the success and wealth of their Western neighbors had amassed. Additionally, in Russia there were lengthy queues to purchase food. The people had to receive coupons from the government to buy socks. These problems in Russia were caused by the multibillion dollars spent by both the U.S and the U.S.S.R on the nuclear arms and conventional armies.There was increased desire for liberty of citizens staying behind the Iron Curtain policy.
Russians responded to their plight by electing Gorbachev as their president in the year of 1985. As the new leader, Gorbachev resolved to enlighten the forcible subjugation on freedoms that the previous government had adopted to make citizens stay in line. However, it was extremely hard for the new leaders to control the needs of their people and those behind the Iron Curtain. Concisely, the Cold War brought many negative aspects that included totalitarian governments, nuclear arms race and proxy wars, which negatively affected people’s lives.