Cold War and Containment Essay

Custom Student Mr. Teacher ENG 1001-04 18 December 2016

Cold War and Containment

Dated from 1947-1991 the Cold War was an intense economic, political, ideological, and military tension between the powers of the Western world, led by the United States against the powers of the Eastern world led by the Soviet Union. Because of Mutual Assured Destruction (MAD) these two countries never came head to head like previous wars, however they would fight each other in proxy wars. This sustained a high level of hostility throughout the war and one point if not the highest point of the conflict was the Cuban Missile Crisis.

The Soviet Union placed nuclear weapons in Cuba which would be only 90 miles from the US; this would have been devastating to the United States with only Seattle outside the blast radius. The two Ideologies that were at conflict during the cold war were the United States Capitalism vs. the Soviet Union Communism. United States believed in a system where there is more than one political party, limited government interference in people’s lives and also the factors of production and freedom of speech.

On the other hand the Soviet Union had the complete opposite with only one political party, Classless society, government controlled most aspects of people’s lives and all factors of production and there was no freedom of speech. Containment was strategies used by the United States to counter the spread of Communism. It was used to counter a series of moves by the Soviet Union after it tries to enlarge its communist influence in Europe and Asia. One way the United States implemented this strategy of containment was the Marshal Plan.

Named after the then secretary of state George Marshal was a program of monetary support to help in the rebuilding of the European economy. The plan was in operation for four years from 1948 with an approximate spending of $13 billion. Another way they implemented the containment was the Truman Doctrine. This was put forward by the then US President Harry Truman. The doctrine, which had both economic and military elements, pledged support for countries attempting to hold back Soviet-style revolutionary Communism.

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