End of WWI and Early Cold War - Ms. Burke's History Site Tensions With USSR Before WWII Tensions With

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  • End of WWI and Early Cold War

  • Why So Scary, Communism? It posed a direct threat to democracy and capitalism

    Struggle between US and USSR was political but battle between good and evil

    Democracy Communism

    A system of government by elected representatives

    Advocating class war and leading to a society in which all property is publicly owned

    Capitalism Command/Planned Economy

    Private citizens control all economic activity

    State controls economy

    Each person works and is paid according to their abilities and needs

  • Tensions With USSR Before WWII Tensions With USSR During WWII

    ● 1917: Russian Revolution, Russia exits WWI (Treaty of Brest-Litovsk)

    ● 1922: Russia becomes the Soviet Union/USSR

    ● 1933: United States formally recognizes the USSR

    ● Stalin’s purges and communist ideology are questionable to US

    ● Was an ally of Hitler (Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact or Soviet Non-Aggression Pact) before betrayed in invasion of USSR

    ● Stalin, facing the brunt of the fighting on the Eastern front, wanted America and Britain to open a second front earlier than they did

    ● America and Britain wanted to delay until they were fully prepared for D-Day

  • Peace Accords and Cold War Origins (pg. 2) Yalta Conference

    ● USSR has the power because Soviet armies occupied much of Eastern Europe ○ US losing to in Pacific so USSR agree to declare war on

    Japan after Germany’s defeat ● Big 4 would occupy a divided Germany ● Heavy German reparations ● USSR take Eastern portions of Poland, rest of Poland would get

    “free” elections ○ All new governments in Soviet occupied Europe would get

    “free” elections

    Soviet Control of Eastern Europe: Gained direct and indirect power through installing communist and other leftist governments friendly to Soviets

  • Split Between East and West (pg. 2) Stalin’s Awareness of USSR’s Weakness

    ● Number of Soviet dead (including civilians) over 20 million, Soviet territory west of Moscow destroyed ● Behind America technologically since had atomic bomb ● Stalin pretending Soviets acting from strength not weakness

    Broken Promises and Ideological Gap

    ● Fix elections in Eastern Europe → Ex: Poland 1945-1946 ● Believed capitalism not Hitler that caused war

    Growing Spheres of Influence

    ● Turned military occupation into network of satellite regimes in E. Europe 1945-1949 ○ Ex: Imposed Communist rule immediately in Bulgaria and Romania

    ● On both sides spheres of influence growing ○ Former Axis Powers of Italy, Japan, and Germany move towards US side ○ Soviet Union get E Europe by means Warsaw Pact

  • West Versus East (pg. 3) ● Iron Curtain: Metaphorical description of

    USSR’s bloc of Eastern European nations under Soviet sphere of influence ○ Term created by Churchill in a 1946

    speech ● Truman Doctrine: America’s policy to contain

    communism to those countries already under Soviet control ○ Manifest itself as economic and military

    aid to block communism ○ Ex: $400 million in military aid for

    Greece and Turkey ○ Ex: 1947’s Marshall Plan

  • Marshall Plan (pg. 3) Marshall Plan (1948): funds from the United States financed an extensive reconstruction of industry and infrastructure

    Stimulated an extended period of growth in Western and Central Europe called the economic miracle which was rapid economic growth largely based on consumerism in post WWII Western Europe

    Council for Mutual Economic Assistance (COMECON): Soviet version of Marshall Plan, meant to rebuild East Bloc countries under Soviet influence

  • Division Germany (pg. 3) Potsdam Agreement (July 1945): Germany divided into four temporary occupation zones

    ○ Truman takes over for FDR → bad relationship between him and Stalin ○ Stalin demands land in Turkey, Japan, Libya ○ Did not follow through on free elections in Poland

  • Berlin Airlift 1948 dispute over control of Berlin Stalin creates Berlin Blockade, cutting off Western access to both East and West Berlin because he claims all of Berlin for USSR

    ● U.S. responds with Berlin Airlift ○ US drops food and supplies to Berlin

    which was located far inside Soviet-controlled East Germany

    ○ Airlift lasts 10 months


  • What Was (pg. 4):

    Containment: contain communism by keeping it from spreading to other countries, basis of Truman Doctrine

    NATO Warsaw Pact

    North Atlantic Treaty Organization

    Peacetime anti-Soviet military alliance of Western countries (“keep Russians out, Americans in, and Germans down”)

    Soviet-backed military alliance of East Bloc Communist countries in Europe