How did the United States and the Soviet Union become Cold War adversaries?

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1 Chapter 38 Essential Question How did the United States and the Soviet Union become Cold War adversaries? 38.1 The red star and the hammer and sickle were symbols of the Soviet Union. The star stood for the Communist Party. The hammer and sickle represented Soviet workers. The hammer was for industrial workers and the sickle was for agricultural workers. These symbols were featured on the Soviet flag and on propaganda designed to win support for Soviet communism. Cold War o A grim struggle for world power between the United States and the Soviet Union Forming an Uneasy Peace In 1945, Churchill, Roosevelt, and Stalin met at Yalta, a resort on the Black Sea. There they discussed plans for postwar Europe. It was Roosevelt s last meeting with his World War II allies, as he died shortly afterwards. A Wartime Alliance Begins to Erode During the war, the U.S. and the USSR formed an alliance based on mutual interest. Although they had differences, the two nations set these aside to focus on the shared goal of defeating Germany. The differences resurfaced, however, as the war ended and the Allies began to plan for the postwar era. In February 1945, FDR, Joseph Stalin and Winston Churchill met in the Soviet city of Yalta for the Yalta Conference. o They decided to divide Germany into four occupation zones, each controlled by a different Allied country. o They also declared their support for self-government and free elections in Eastern Europe In July 1945, the Allied leaders met again in Potsdam, near Berlin, Germany. At the Potsdam Conference, the Allies finalized their postwar plans for Germany, including the division of Berlin into occupation zones. 1

2 The mood at Potsdam was tense. o Truman learned that the U.S. had tested its first atomic bomb. He hinted to Stalin that the U.S. had a powerful new weapon, but he did not name it. This fueled Stalin s distrust of the U.S. Truman also felt wary of Stalin. The Soviet army still occupied much of Eastern Europe, and Truman was suspicious of Soviet intentions. o The Soviet leader had promised to allow free elections in Eastern Europe but had not yet fulfilled that promise. In fact, in Poland the Soviets had helped rig elections to ensure a communist win.. Truman Visions of Postwar Europe He wanted to allow Eastern European nations to determine their own form of government. Truman believed that given free choice, they would pick democracy. Stalin Visions of Postwar Europe Security concerns drove many of Stalin s decisions. o Germany had attacked the Soviet Union in two world wars, using Poland as its invasion route. Stalin wanted to create a buffer zone of friendly communist states to protect the USSR. Viewing control of Eastern Europe as critical to his nation s security, he claimed the region as a Soviet sphere of influence. U.S. and the USSR Count Up the Costs of War Availability of Goods in the USSR, , as Compared to Clothing 61% 10% 10% 11% 18% Shoes 65% 8% 7% 10% 15% Cloth 73% 14% 14% 19% 29% The USSR suffered enormous casualties. o As many as 20 million Soviet citizens died in the war, including at least 7 million soldiers. o Many were killed or died of disease in German labor camps. The U.S. suffered far less from the war. o Approximately 290,000 U.S. soldiers died, but civilian casualties were limited to those killed or wounded at Pearl Harbor. o Other than that attack, no fighting took place on U.S. 2

3 o Others starved when Nazi invasion forces stripped the Soviet countryside of crops, farm animals, and equipment and torched farms and villages. o The Nazis leveled several Soviet cities, including Stalingrad and Kiev. The Soviet Union hoped for aid to rebuild after the war. soil. o No cities were bombed, and no farms or factories were destroyed. The U.S. economy boomed during the war. o By 1945, the U.S. was producing more than half of the world s total industrial output. o The U.S. spent at least $320 billion financing the war. After the war the Soviet Union asked the U.S. for a loan, but Truman, angered by Stalin s broken promises and disregard of the Yalta agreements, decided on a get tough policy toward the Soviets. o Truman stopped all lendlease shipments to the Soviet Union. Differing Ideologies Shape the U.S. and the USSR The differences between the U.S. and the Soviet Union resulted from more than just wartime experiences. They also represented sharp differences in ideology, or the set of beliefs that form the basis of a political and economic system. USSR economics Communist regard capitalism as an unjust system that produces great social inequalities Denies the proletariat, or working class, a fair share of society s wealth The state owns and runs most businesses U.S. A belief in capitalist economics Business owners decide what to produce and consumers decide what to buy. Most property, factories, and equipment are privately owned. 3

4 government and decides what goods will be produced. Such a system is also known as a centrally planned economy. In this type of system, small farms are often joined together in collectives, which the state and the farmers own together. This economic arrangement is known as collectivism. Communism revolves around single-party rule of politics and government control of the economy A belief in democratic government 38.3 Adjusting to a Postwar World After the war, Truman ordered atomic tests on Bikini Atoll, a remote island in the Pacific Ocean. The island s inhabitants became casualties of the Cold War. Forced to leave in March 1946, they were never able to return because of the radiation caused by the bomb. By 1946, the balance of power in the world was shifting. o To global wars and the destruction of economic infrastructure had greatly weakened formerly strong countries such as Britain, France, and Germany. o The U.S. and the Soviet Union now stood alone as leading powers in the world. Their size, economic strength, and military prowess enabled them to dominate global affairs. They became known as superpowers nations that influence or control less powerful states. Most nations chose or were forced to align with one superpower or the other. The world was dividing into two power blocs. 4

5 Tensions Rise Between Two Superpowers In February 1946, Stalin gave a speech attacking capitalism. o He declared that peace was impossible as long as capitalism existed. o He said that capitalist nations would always compete with one another for raw materials and markets for their products and that such conflict would always be settled by armed force. War, he said, was inevitable under the present capitalist conditions of world economic development. George Kennan, a U.S. diplomat at the American Embassy in Moscow, studied Stalin s speech and sent a long reply to the U.S. secretary of state. o Kennan described the Soviets as being committed fanatically to the belief that the U.S. system and way of life must be destroyed if Soviet power is to be secured. o To prevent this outcome, he said, the Soviet Union must be contained within its present borders. After Kennan returned to the U.S., Kennan expanded on this notion in an article for a foreign policy journal. In that article, he wrote, It is clear that any U.S. policy toward the Soviet Union must be that of a long-term, patient but firm and vigilant containment of Russian expansive tendencies. Kennan later pointed out that he viewed the policy of containment, the restriction of Soviet expansion, as a political strategy, not a military one. o He felt that in time, containment would lead to either communism s collapse or its transformation into a milder, less hostile system. New Nuclear Technologies Raise the Stakes for Both Sides After the war, Truman ordered atomic tests on Bikini Atoll, a remote island in the Pacific Ocean. The Island s inhabitants became casualties of the Cold War. Forced to leave in March 1946, they were never able to return because of the radiation caused by the bomb. In the new age of the atomic bomb, the possible effects of a superpower conflict became even more frightening. The threat of a nuclear attack compelled both countries to show restraint in their use of force, but it also fueled the race to develop nuclear weapons. In the summer of 1946, American scientists continued to test and improve its nuclear capability. o American scientists conducted tests of two atomic bombs at Bikini Atoll in the Marshall Islands of the Pacific Ocean. o Scientists studied the impact of atomic bombs on naval vessels, using a fleet of more than 90 battleships and aircraft carriers as targets. o For three years, the U.S. was the only country with an atomic bomb. At the United Nations, the United Nations, the U.S. offered a plan to limit the development of atomic weapons. The Soviet Union, working on its own 5

6 atomic bomb, rejected U.S. efforts to retain a monopoly on atomic energy Confronting the Communist Threat How Did the Iron Curtain Isolate Eastern Europe? The Iron Curtain was both a physical and an ideological barrier. The physical barrier consisted of fences that stopped the movement of people across borders. The ideological barrier was less visible, but equally real. Communist leaders worked hard to block the flow of foreign ideas into their countries. Border fences made unauthorized travel into and out of Iron Curtain countries difficult and dangerous. In the divided capital of Berlin, the Iron Curtain was a wall that sealed free West Berlin off from communist East Berlin The United States created Radio Free Europe to transmit news and information across the Iron Curtain. RFE signals were often jammed, or blocked, by communist countries. In 1946, civil war broke out in Greece between communist rebels and the Greek government. The U.S. backed the government in an effort to halt the spread of communism. Greek commandos played a crucial role in the fighting. With U.S. aid, the Greek government eventually triumphed. Truman Advocates the Containment of Communism The Truman Doctrine committed the U.S. to a foreign policy based on Kennan's strategy of containment. o Truman hoped to stop the spread of communism, limiting the system to countries in which it already existed. o Under this policy was the assumption that the Soviet Union sought world domination. o The U.S. believed it had to fight this effort, with aid as needed and with force if necessary. In 1947, Congress passed the National Security Act. This law created two new agencies, the National Security Council and the Central Intelligence Agency Rebuilding European Economies 6

7 The U.S. Provides Aid Through the Marshall Plan Aid to European Countries Under the Marshall Plan, Country Amount of Aid (in millions of U.S. dollars) Austria $678 Belgium and Luxembourg $559 Denmark $273 France $2,714 Greece $707 Iceland $29 Ireland $29 Italy $1,509 Netherlands $1,084 Norway $255 Portugal $51 Sweden $107 Turkey $225 United Kingdom $3,190 West Germany $1,391 During the four years of the Marshall Plan, the U.S. provided over $12 billion in aid to 16 European countries. This amount was less than Congress had authorized, but the funds still gave an enormous boost to Western European economies. 7

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