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1 GLENWOOD HIGH SCHOOL HISTORY DEPARTMENT TERM GRADE 9 WEEK START CONTENT MARKS COMPLETE 1 & 2 07/04/14 Increasing tension between the Allies after WW II: USSR (communism) vs USA (capitalism) 18/04/14 End of WW II in the Pacific: Atomic Bombs and the beginning of the Nuclear Age: When, where, why and how did WW II come to an end? Why did the USA drop the bombs? Was it justified? 3 & 4 21/04/14 Definition of Superpowers and Cold War Areas of conflict and competition between the Superpowers in the Cold War: Arms race Space Race CARTOON TEST [15] 02/05/14 5 & 6 05/05/14 Division of Gernmany and the building of the Berlin Wall /05/14 PARAGRAPH TEST [10] End of the Cold War 1989: The fall of the Berlin Wall 1989 The fall of the Soviet Union & 8 19/05/14 EXAMS [50] 30/05/14 9 & 10 02/06/14 Exam Review 13/06/ /06/14 Mark Check 27/06/14 1

2 The Cold War and the Nuclear Age Increasing tension between the Allies after the end of WW II in Europe During World War II the Union of Socialist Soviet Republics (USSR) and the United States of America (USA) were allies. The two countries had little in common, but they were united in their opposition to Nazism and this kept them together in their alliance. After Germany had been defeated, the reason for the alliance was no longer there. Both of them wanted more power and influence in the world. But they had very different views about how countries should be governed and how economies should be run. The USA was democratic and followed a capitalist system; whilst the USSR used a communist system. At the outbreak of World War II, the USA was the world s only superpower, but by the end of the war, USSR emerged as a second superpower, ready to challenge the USA. They were called superpowers because they were the leading industrial countries and they had the strongest military forces in the world. Tensions increased between the two when: USA developed a new weapon (atomic bomb) during the war, but kept it a secret from the USSR, even though they were wartime allies. USA thought that USSR wanted to spread communism all over Europe and USSR thought that the USA wanted to dominate Europe. During WWII new technology made weapons bigger, faster and more deadly. The use of bombs changed the nature of warfare, and introduced a new age of fear throughout the world: The Nuclear Age. End of WW II in the Pacific: Atomic bombs and the beginning of the Nuclear age Although the war in Europe ended in May 1945, the war in the Pacific between the USA and Japan continued. Japan relied on her strong navy to protect her. The Japanese seemed unstoppable until they were defeated at Midway. Japanese naval power was broken, but they refused to surrender. Instead they volunteered to become Kamikaze pilots. By July 1945, the Americans decided to use the new type of bomb which they had developed. This was far greater than the power of any bomb used previously. It was decided to target Japanese cities that had not yet been under serious attack, to show the full destruction of which the bombs were capable. The cities of Kyoto and Hiroshima were at the head of the list. Kyoto was an ancient city, full of history, and so it was decided to target Hiroshima instead. Hiroshima was an industrial city with a population of On 6 August 1945, a B-29 bomber plane named the Enola Gay took off for Japan. On board was the first atomic bomb to be used in combat. The bomb was named Little Boy. At 8.16 a.m. the bomb was detonated above the Aioi Bridge in the centre of Hiroshima. The bomb was off target, and hit a hospital in the city. Moments after the explosion all that was left of the hospital were a few concrete pillars. Thousands of people within a 500 meter radius were killed instantly. People up to two kilometers away were burned by the searing heat that followed the explosion. The shock wave flattened houses up to 24 kilometers away. The destruction was terrible. There was little the Japanese government could do to help. 2

3 Many reasons have been given for the decision to drop atomic bombs on Japan. To this day historians still argue over whether it was justified or not. The most commonly accepted reason for dropping the bombs is that it would result in fewer deaths, both military and civilian, than if the war carried on. In Western countries most people believed that the bombing had been necessary to bring about the end of the war. Japan issued a public criticism on the bombing, branding the USA the destroyer of mankind, but still Japan refused to surrender. America did not give Japan much time to reconsider its decision. On 9 August 1945, a second mission was flown in. Another B-29 bomber plane, carrying a plutonium bomb, headed for the town of Nagasaki. Nagasaki was on a hilly landscape unlike Hiroshima, but the effect was still dramatic. It is estimated that people died in this second bombing. What was the Cold War? The arrival of the Nuclear Age created a problem for the world s superpowers. In the past, when countries competed for power and influence, they did it through war. War determined which country was stronger, and which would dominate the world. Nuclear power changed this. As both the superpowers had access to the atomic bomb, and because the bomb was so devastating, a new form of competition had to be found. After the dropping of the atomic bomb, it was clear that it was too dangerous and destructive to go to war directly with each other in a hot war in which they used nuclear weapons. So they fought each other in what became known as the Cold War from It was called the Cold War because the superpowers never fought against each other on a battlefield. In essence it was a war of ideologies and beliefs: The Capitalist West (USA) vs. The Communist Bloc (USSR) The development of the Cold War Each of the superpowers believed that their political and economic system was the best. Their philosophies were very different. As nuclear weapons prevented the superpowers from testing their supremacy with war, they had to use their ideologies instead. The 3

4 only way to prove supremacy was to have as many countries as possible follow your ideology and accept your way of life. There was no point in appealing to the strong established countries of the world, as they were already operating with systems of their own. New areas of influence would have to be found. The newly emerging independent countries of Africa and Asia provided a perfect solution. As colonialism collapsed, many colonies were given independence. Very few of these countries had any experience in government. They were desperate for help. It was in these countries that the Cold War was fought. Both the USSR and the USA offered aid to these countries in the form of training, money, manpower and military equipment. They hoped that the new country would accept their ideology and side with them. The superpower that could spread its ideology to the most new countries would be the winner. Many newly independent countries used this competition to their advantage. They accepted aid from both sides, often changing political ideologies as it suited them. As a result the USSR and the USA became involved in many conflicts as these young countries struggled for independence and stability. The USSR and the USA were involved in many wars around the planet. They never actually got into direct conflict with each other. Nuclear power was not used, so the situation between them remained a Cold War. Competition and Conflict between the superpowers The superpowers competed and conflicted with each other in: The arms race The space race The division of Germany The building of the Berlin Wall The ARMS RACE began with the dropping of the atomic bomb on Hiroshima. The USSR felt threatened because it had not completed its own atomic bomb at this stage. The USSR began to speed up its nuclear development immediately. The USSR managed to complete its bomb by This knowledge alarmed the USA, which began to increase nuclear development. The arms race had begun. Although both countries realized that the use of their weapons would threaten them both, they continued to develop bigger and larger bombs in the desire to prove dominance. The fact that both sides possessed bombs made them feel insecure. This increased the competition between the USA and USSR. By 1952 the USA had developed a hydrogen bomb 100 times more powerful than the atomic bomb. By 1953 the USSR had achieved the same. Both countries built up a 4

5 frightening stockpile of nuclear weapons. People lived in fear of nuclear war. Many protest organizations campaigned against the development of new weapons, but the race continued. In the 1950s both countries built intercontinental ballistic missiles. These missiles could carry nuclear warheads to targets thousands of kilometers away. Each country placed weapons and missiles in countries all over Europe. The missiles were aimed at the major cities of their enemy. By 1960, both sides head enough weapons to destroy the Earth several times over. The main purpose behind this buildup was to make sure the other country did not start a war. Each country hoped that these weapons would never be used, because the result of such a conflict would have been mutual destruction. The SPACE RACE was equally competitive. It was another arena in which the competition between these two powers developed. As with nuclear development, each country wished to outdo the other to show that it was more developed and advanced. In 1957 the Soviets launched the world s first satellite into space called Sputnik This was an amazing propaganda triumph for the USSR. They claimed that their scientists were ahead of those of the USA. In 1962 American John Glenn orbited the Earth. In 1963 Valentina Tereshkova gave the USSR another triumph when she became the first woman in space. The main competition was to see who could be the first to land someone on the moon. This race was won by the USA when Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin walked on the moon on 21 July As the USA and USSR had been allies in World War II, they each had an interest in how Germany would be treated after the war. However, their attitudes were very different. America did not want to punish Germany too heavily in case it led to future conflict, as had happened after World War I. The USSR wanted to use German resources to rebuild their own country when the war was over. This disagreement led to GERMANY BEING DIVIDED INTO FOUR ZONES, each controlled by one of the winning powers Britain, France, the USA and the USSR. Within a few years Britain, France and America had united their zones and as a result two Germanys existed: West Germany, which was democratic and capitalist, and East Germany, which was controlled by the communist USSR. The city of Berlin was also divided. Although Berlin lay inside East Germany, half of the city belonged to West Germany. West Germany, supported by the West, recovered from the war faster than East Germany did. This was very obvious in the city of Berlin. Many East Berliners resented the improvements that were happening in the West. This resentment was a threat to communism that made Stalin decide to remove the evidence of Western capitalism from Berlin. Stalin hoped to force the West to give up West Berlin so that he could control the whole city. When the West refused to co-operate, he placed a total road and rail blockade around the city. This led to the famous Berlin Airlift. From June 1948 to May 1949, the West flew all the supplies required by West Berlin into the city. During this time there were flights into West Berlin. Eventually Stalin was forced to lift the blockade and the West appeared to have a victory. This victory, however, marked the real start of the Cold War. Co-operation between the two sides was replaced by competition. As each side strove for dominance, the world once again began to separate into two heavily armed camps. Berlin remained a focal area of Cold War competition for many years. The contrast between East and West became greater. Thousands of unhappy East Germans fled to the West. Most of these escapes took place in Berlin. This flow of defectors was not good for communism. In 1961 Khrushchev decided that it had to stop. When the Western powers again refused to hand over West Berlin, Khrushchev closed the border between the two countries. On 15 August 1961 the building of the BERLIN WALL began. The wall surrounded West Berlin and sealed it off from access by East Germans for the next 28 years and became a symbol of the Cold War. 5

6 The collapse of communism During the Cold War attempts were made to improve relations between East and West. However, there was so much mistrust between the two sides that little progress was made. The first positive breakthrough came in 1972 when the two sides signed a document limiting the number of nuclear missiles being produced. In 1975, both the USA and the USSR signed the Helsinki Accord on European Security and the upholding of Human Rights. Further agreements limiting arms production were signed in However, later that year the USSR invaded Afghanistan, and relations broke down once again. A genuine improvement in relations took place in the 1980s only after both countries had had a change in leadership. Mikhail Gorbachev and Ronald Reagan were the major players in bringing the conflict to an end. Gorbachev adopted new, liberal policies in the USSR. He wanted to re-shape the Soviet economy to allow more profit-making by individuals, and to reduce government control. For the first time since the 1920s, criticism of government policy was allowed. His policies horrified traditional communists, but gave great hope to many Soviet citizens. As these liberal policies were introduced, the people of Eastern Europe realized they no longer had anything to fear from the USSR. Between May 1989 and March 1990 communist governments all over Eastern Europe were overthrown. New democratic governments were set up in Hungary, Czechoslovakia, Romania, Bulgaria and Poland. The Cold War had begun in Germany and it would end there too. In 1989 the Berlin Wall, symbol of the conflict between East and West, was pulled down. One year later East and West Germany were re-united. In December 1989, Gorbachev and the new American president, George Bush, announced to the world that the Cold War was over. In 1990 Gorbachev received the Nobel Peace Prize in recognition of his efforts. The ending of the Cold War had farreaching effects on the USSR. In 1991 there was an attempted coup against Gorbachev, and on 24 August 1991 he resigned as the leader of the Soviet Communist Party. Five days later the party was disbanded. In December 1991 the Soviet Union itself was disbanded. Communism, as the world had known it for almost half a century, was over. 6

7 . COLD WAR CARTOONS 7

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