U.S. - Soviet relations

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The Historical Background of Cold War. The Historical Context. Causes and Interpretations. The Cold War Chronology. The War Years. The Truman Doctrine. The Marshall Plan. The Role of Cold War in American History and Diplomacy.

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Краткое сожержание материала:

Graduation Paper

on theme:

U.S. - Soviet relations.

Contents.

Introduction. 3

Chapter 1: The Historical Background of Cold War. 5

1.1 The Historical Context. 5

1.2 Causes and Interpretations. 10

Chapter 2: The Cold War Chronology. 17

2.1 The War Years. 17

2.2 The Truman Doctrine. 25

2.3 The Marshall Plan. 34

Chapter 3: The Role of Cold War in American History and Diplomacy. 37

3.1 Declaration of the Cold War. 37

3.2 Сold War Issues. 40

Conclusion. 49

Glossary. 50

The reference list. 51

Introduction.

This graduation paper is about U.S. - Soviet relations in Cold War period. Our purpose is to find out the causes of this war, positions of the countries which took part in it. We also will discuss the main Cold War's events.

The Cold War was characterized by mutual distrust, suspicion and misunderstanding by both the United States and Soviet Union, and their allies. At times, these conditions increased the likelihood of the third world war. The United States accused the USSR of seeking to expand Communism throughout the world. The Soviets, meanwhile, charged the United States with practicing imperialism and with attempting to stop revolutionary activity in other countries. Each block's vision of the world contributed to East-West tension. The United States wanted a world of independent nations based on democratic principles. The Soviet Union, however, tried control areas it considered vital to its national interest, including much of Eastern Europe.

Through the Cold War did not begin until the end of World War II, in 1945, U.S.-Soviet relations had been strained since 1917. In that year, a revolution in Russia established a Communist dictatorship there. During the 1920's and 1930's, the Soviets called for world revolution and the destruction of capitalism, the economic system of United States. The United States did not grant diplomatic recognition to the Soviet Union until 1933.

In 1941, during World War II, Germany attacked the Soviet Union. The Soviet Union then joined the Western Allies in fighting Germany. For a time early in 1945, it seemed possible that a lasting friendship might develop between the United States and Soviet Union based on their wartime cooperation. However, major differences continued to exist between the two, particularly with regard to Eastern Europe. As a result of these differences, the United States adopted a "get tough" policy toward the Soviet Union after the war ended. The Soviets responded by accusing the United States and the other capitalist allies of the West of seeking to encircle the Soviet Union so they could eventually overthrow its Communist form of government.

The subject of Cold War interests American historicans and journalists as well as Russian ones. In particular, famous journalist Henryh Borovik fraces this topic in his book. He analyzes the events of Cold War from the point of view of modern Russian man. With appearing of democracy and freedom of speech we could free ourselves from past stereotype in perception of Cold War's events as well as America as a whole, we also learnt something new about American people's real life and personality. A new developing stage of relations with the United States has begun with the collapse of the Soviet Union on independent states. And in order to direct these relations in the right way it is necessary to study events of Cold War very carefully and try to avoid past mistakes. Therefore this subject is so much popular in our days.

This graduation paper consist of three chapters. The first chapter maintain the historical documents which comment the origins of the Cold War.

The second chapter maintain information about the most popular Cold War's events.

The third chapter analyze the role of Cold War in World policy and diplomacy. The chapter also adduce the Cold War issues. Chapter 1: The Historical Background of Cold War.

1.1 The Historical Context.

The animosity of postwar Soviet-American relations drew on a deep reservoir of mutual distrust. Soviet suspicion of the United States went back to America's hostile reaction to the Bolshevik revolution itself. At the end of World War I, President Woodrow Wilson had sent more than ten thousand American soldiers as part of an expeditionary allied force to overthrow the new Soviet regime by force. When that venture failed, the United States nevertheless withheld its recognition of the Soviet government. Back in the United States, meanwhile, the fear of Marxist radicalism reached an hysterical pitch with the Red Scare of 1919-20. Attorney General A. Mitchell Palmer ordered government agents to arrest 3,000 purported members of the Communist party, and then attempted to deport them. American attitudes toward the seemed encapsulated in the comments of one minister who called for the removal of communists in "ships of stone with sails of lead, with the wrath of God for a breeze and with hell for their first port."

American attitudes toward the Soviet Union, in turn, reflected profound concern about Soviet violation of human rights, democratic procedures, and international rules of civility. With brutal force, Soviet leaders had imposed from above a revolution of agricultural collectivi-zation and industrialization. Millions had died as a consequence of forced removal from their lands. Anyone who protested was killed or sent to one of the hundreds of prison camps which, in Alexander Solzhenitsyn's words, stretched across the Soviet Union like a giant archipelago. What kind of people were these, one relative of a prisoner asked, "who first decreed and then carried out this mass destruction of their own kind?" Furthermore, Soviet foreign policy seemed committed to the spread of revolution to other countries, with international coordination of subversive activities placed in the hands of the Comintern. It was difficult to imagine two more different societies.

For a brief period after the United States granted diplomatic recognition to the Soviet Union in 1933, a new spirit of cooperation prevailed. But by the end of the 1930s suspicion and alienation had once again become dominant. From a Soviet perspective, the United States seemed unwilling to join collectively to oppose the Japanese and German menace. On two occasions, the United States had refused to act in concert against Nazi Germany. When Britain and France agreed at Munich to appease Adolph Hitler, the Soviets gave up on any possibility of allied action against Germany and talked of a capitalist effort to encircle and destroy the Soviet regime.

Yet from a Western perspective, there seemed little basis for distinguishing between Soviet tyranny and Nazi totalitarianism. Between 1936 and 1938 Stalin engaged in his own holocaust, sending up to 6 million Soviet citizens to their deaths in massive purge trials. Stalin "saw enemies everywhere," his daughter later recalled, and with a vengeance frightening in its irrationality, sought to destroy them. It was an "orgy of terror," one historian said. Diplomats saw high officials tapped on the shoulder in public places, removed from circulation, and then executed. Foreigners were subject to constant surveillance. It was as if, George Kennan noted, outsiders were representatives of "the devil, evil and dangerous, and to be shunned."

On the basis of such experience, many Westerners concluded that Hitler and Stalin were two of a kind, each reflecting a blood-thirsty obsession with power no matter what the cost to human decency. "Nations, like individuals," Kennan said in 1938, "are largely the products of their environment." As Kennan perceived it, the Soviet personality was neurotic, conspiratorial, and untrustworthy. Such impressions were only reinforced when Stalin suddenly announced a nonaggression treaty with Hitler in August 1939, and later that year invaded the small, neutral state of Finland. It seemed that Stalin and Hitler deserved each other. Hence, the reluctance of some to change their attitudes toward the Soviet Union when suddenly, in June 1941, Germany invaded Russia and Stalin became "Uncle Joe."

Compounding the problem of historical distrust was the different way in which the two nations viewed foreign policy. Ever since John Winthrop had spoken of Boston in 1630 as "a city upon a hill" that would serve as a beacon for the world, Americans had tended to see themselves as a chosen people with a distinctive mission to impart their faith and values to the rest of humankind. Although all countries attempt to put the best face possible on their military and diplomatic actions, Americans have seemed more committed than most to describing their involvement in the world as pure and altruistic. Hence, even ventures like the Mexican War of 1846 - 48 - clearly provoked by the United States in an effort to secure hu...