Origins of the Cold War

1 January 2018

Hence, I would deem the start of the Cold War as the point in time when the United States (US) stepped out of its policy of isolation and took up the policy of containment, thus effectively marking the start of a bitter ‘bi-polar’ ideological struggle between the West, led by the US, and the East, led by the USSR, which never quite led to open or ‘hot’ hostilities between the principals. Using the parameters that I have set, the Truman Doctrine would be, in my opinion, the most significant event that marked the start of the Cold War.Though it can be argued that Seaman’s Long Telegram advocated American resistance to what the West perceived as Soviet expansionism and was, therefore, fundamental in the establishment of the Truman Doctrine and that Churchill ‘iron curtain’ speech made it clear that the Cold War was already in existence. It can also be argued that it was the Marshall Plan that had truly shown the motives of the US, which was to contain the spread of communism, and thus radically worsened the already sour ties between the LOS and the USSR.Also, perhaps some may say that Cadenza ‘Two Camps’ speech was the main event that marked the start of the Cold War as it had caused much disruptions and hence, added to the atmosphere of tension. However it is due to the Truman Doctrine that created a snowball effect that caused the implementation of the Marshall Plan and Cadenza ‘Two Camps’ speech was the Soviet’s response to the Truman Doctrine.

Also Seaman’s Long Telegram and Churchill Iron Curtain speech were more like prequels to the start of the Cold War than the main causes.Hence, it is to a large extent that the Truman Doctrine had marked the start of the Cold War. It is in my argument that the Truman Doctrine was the main event that best raked the start of the Cold War, particularly on the political-ideological front. The Truman Doctrine– which stated that “it must be the policy of the united States to support free peoples who are resisting attempted subjugation by armed minorities and outside pressures”-?was really devised to contain the spread of communism.At first, Stalin had still hoped for cooperation with the West as seen in how he remained neutral in the Greek civil war. However, as the US pressed on with their idea of “global defense of the free world against communism”, the Soviets retaliated with a similar logic of their own-?the Cadenza s ‘Two Camps’ speech. Hence, this was a turning point in History as the US turned away from its policy of isolationism to containment and thus, forced the USSR to retaliate, hence causing the imminent divide of Europe.

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However, it can be argued that the Sadness ‘Two Camps speech had been a result of both the Truman Doctrine and the Marshall plan, therefore, the Truman Doctrine was essentially just a political- ideological document which expressed US intent against the USSR. Nonetheless, it was crucial in the fact that, because of this, the US had unpremeditated committed herself to the military obligations of foreign countries in peacetime and henceforth started the bitter ‘bi-polar’ ideological struggle between the West, led by the US, and the East, led by the USSR.The Marshall Plan was one of the key events that had led to the start of the Cold War on the economic front. The Marshall Plan-?which was said to be a “calculated risk to stop World War 3 before it starts”-?was actually a plan to aid Western Europe to prevent attraction to the idea of communism and henceforth fall into the hands of the USSR. Although the Marshall plan had excluded neither USSR nor the Eastern Europe, there were conditions applied such that the USSR could not/would not apply for aid.This had led to the economic division of Europe; where on one side there was the Western Europe receiving aid from US and on the other side USSR and Eastern Europe refusing the aid. However, this plan would not even have been possible had US not stepped out of its policy of isolationism, hence it is more apt to say that it was the Truman Doctrine that had made all these possible.

Nevertheless, the Marshall Plan had saw the economic division of Europe and once was one key event that helped led to the start of the Cold War.Cadenza’s ‘Two Camps’ speech can also be argued as one Of the key events that led to the start of the Cold War on the part of the USSR. Sadness ‘Two Camps’ speech-?which claimed that the world had been divided into two camps; an anti-imperialist and democratic camp led by the ISRC and an imperialist and anti-democratic camp headed by the US-?marked the point in time when Stalin no longer believed that cooperation was possible and also clearly indicating the political-ideological division of Europe. Is had led to the abandonment of the policy of cooperation with the West and the seizing of power and creation of societies modeled on the Soviet system where possible. However, it was not to say that this was the main event that had led to the start of the Cold War as it was essentially due to the Truman Doctrine and the Marshall Plan. Nonetheless, Sadness ‘Two Camps’ speech had marked the point in time when Stalin no longer believed that cooperation was possible and an outright declaration that they are not going to hold back any longer.Seaman’s Long Telegram was one of the key events that marked the start of the Cold War on the political front, though not as a direct cause but more of a prequel.

Keenan claimed that it was no use for America to grant the Soviets any concessions or compromises since the Soviets were ‘bent on total destruction of rivals’, and that ‘Western nations must band together in a more cohesive bloc’, and this would be led by the US. This had prompted Truman to define the Soviets as the enemy and to develop a clearer and tougher policy (I. E. The Truman Doctrine) towards them and hence reinforced suspicion and struts into American and Public opinion.Also, due to this, it had more or less advocated American resistance to what the West perceived as Soviet Truman Doctrine and thus also Sadness ‘Two Camps’ speech, which was when the USSR felt that cooperation with the wartime allies no longer possible. However, it would be unfair to say that Seaman’s Long Telegram was one of the key events that marked the start of the Cold War and leave it at that, especially when we consider the fact that Stalin was still keen on maintaining peacetime cooperation as can be seen from the fact that he myself did not respond to the Long Telegram, instead choosing to remain silent.Hence, it could not be said that the start of the Cold War was ignited by Seaman’s Long Telegram.

Nonetheless, it did play a key role in paving the way for the start of the Cold War and hence, I would consider it an important prequel to the Cold War itself. Churchill Iron Curtain speech can also be seen as an event that had marked the start of the Cold War on the political front, however, in my argument; it would also not be an event that best marks the start of the Cold War.Churchill Iron Curtain speech, in which he had called for an American-British alliance to meet the ‘communist menace’, had encouraged hostility towards the USSR. He said that an “iron curtain” had descended across Europe and the Soviets were building an empire in Eastern Europe behind this curtain. Hence, he called for an American-British alliance to prevent this Soviet expansion. This had created paranoia and hardened the US public opinion against the USSR, especially with one particular phrase of the speech: “..

. Then indeed catastrophe may overwhelm us all.Thus, this in turn translates into the hardening of the Use’s policies towards the USSR and therefore, lead to the start of the Cold War. This is because the hardening of the Use’s policies against the USSR meant that the US had put into action its policy of containment. Thus, it is still more appropriate to say that it was the Truman Doctrine that best marks the start of the Cold War as it is the event that had started the Use’s policy of containment. Hence, it is not the event that best marks the Start Of the Cold War and so, even though many may argue that it s; my stand still stays the same.

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