From 1945-1960, the Soviet Union was more successful in achieving its goal of spreading communism than the United states was at achieving its goal of containing it. Russia directly spread communism to China, the northern half of Korea, and all of Eastern Europe. In addition, it forced heavy expenses on the U. S. through the Berlin blockade, beat the U. S. in achieving orbital flight, embarrassed president Eisenhower with the U-2 incident, and caused wide-spread panic in the U. S. government itself.
The U. S. eanwhile secured democracy in countries in which it was relatively easy to do so, and was unable to properly defend Korea or China. Russia’s sponsorship of the communist rebellion in China led to the easy and complete victory over one of the largest countries in the world. This was a complete victory, with Chiang Kai-Shek, the opposition leader, completely pushed out of China and into Taiwan. The U. S. did not manage to contain communism whatsoever, and its assistance to Chiang Kai-Shek did not help his victory. The Korean war is yet another example of the U. S. being unable to contain communism, even with its own troops.
Although the U. S. pushed the border all the up to China, Chinese troops were able to push them down until the armistice settled upon the 38th parallel as the division between North and South Korea. Finally, the Soviet Union gained communist leaders in nearly all of Eastern Europe, as well as gaining control of East Germany. This clearly shows that the goal of the Soviet Union – spreading communism – was achieved. The U. S. was only able to contain Communism in Western Europe. Western Europe had been the origin of Democratic government, and U. S. involvement in the election of Democratic leaders was small.
Money was pumped into the countries via the Truman and Marshall plans, and that merely ensured victories which were probably going to turn Democratic even without intervention. Other than the literal spread of Communism, the Soviet Union also achieved propaganda victories by launching Sputnik and in the U-2 incident. The launch of SPutnik was a complete surprise to the U. S. , and greatly surpassed the current technical abilities of the U. S. at the time. Its beeping was a constant and easily found reminder to not just the American people, but people all over the world, that Communism could succeed in creating great nd successful projects.
During the U-2 incident, the Soviet Union managed to embarrass President Eisenhower by making him look like a liar. He had signed an agreement that there were to be no more U. S. surveillance planes over Russia, but the one that he left was shot down by the Russians. The survival of the pilot caused even more embarrassment for EIsenhower by forcing him to get Gary Powers back. This painted Eisenhower to the world as a liar, and as untrustworthy. These two events were huge propaganda victories for the Soviet Union.
In addition, the weakness of the U. S. overnment was exposed through the Red Scare. H. U. A. C. blew past the constitution making it practically worthless, and therefore showcased the fragile balance of power that a Democratic government must maintain in order to function properly. In conclusion, the Soviet Union’s victories in China, Korea and Eastern Europe combined with the propaganda successes that were the launch of Sputnik, the U-2 incident and the Red Scare, show that the Soviet Union clearly achieved their goals. This achievement therefore demonstrate the clear winner in this successful country in this section of the Cold War.