Truman and Stalin Eats and West Rivalry Essay
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Shamil Aly IB History HL Period E 26th January 2011 Re-do Test Essay (Question 2) During the Second World War, Truman and Stalin were allies because the US and the USSR were the two most powerful countries that took part in the war. Their will do defeat Germany is what kept their alliance stable and they became much more powerful after combining their powers. After the Second World War the east and the west were having bad relations which caused a separation of the two areas, Stalin controlled the east while Truman controlled the western areas.
The events that occurred during this separation led up to the start of the Cold War.
This event was post revisionist; this means that both Stalin and Truman were to blame for start of the Cold War. The reason why they became enemies was because they both wanted to prove to be more powerful and that just made things worse. Both Stalin and Truman had similar and different actions and thoughts while they were in power and their alliance ended which caused them to become eager on making every attempt possible on attacking each other. Before the Cold War both Stalin and Truman were quite defensive. They didn’t plan on any attack to another country but instead focused mostly on protecting their land and themselves in general.
This was before the development of the atomic weapons which then changed this and made them feel more confident with their military. They both also had alliances with other countries and this made them feel more secure. The USSR had a stable alliance with China and West Germany which had just been founded. On the other hand the US had an alliance with two European countries being the UK and France. I believe that the fact that they played a defensive role was a good choice because if a war started then many countries would get involved. Later on East Germany was founded and became allies with the US.
This means that Germany was split into East and West because they had different allies. Truman and Stalin decide to make a move and overtake Korea, what actually ended up happening was that Korea got split into North and South. Truman was in power of North Korea while Stalin was in power of South Korea. This agitated Truman and Stalin to start a war between each other because they both wanted to keep power in Korea. Then the Marshall Plan containment was made, it stated that the US would support the European countries economically by making loans so that they could rebuild their economy from the damage caused by the Second World War.
The Comecon was the Council for Mutual Economic Assistance which was founded by the Soviet Union. It was similar to the ERP and the Comecon stated that Economical support would given to the European countries in order for them to rebuild. Stalin and Truman both had ideological and realpolitik thoughts about the world and didn’t just have one way of thinking. They both refused to stay neutral and they wanted to gain as much power as they could. The atomic age began in 1945 and it started with the US which was led by Stalin. The atomic weapons were developed in private by the Manhattan Project.
The Project continued at around the end of the Second World War until July 1945 in which a successful bomb was produced. Stalin was Communist while Truman was Capitalist. Truman tried to end the spread of Communism and he used the atomic monopoly as a threat to the Communists since the US was the only country with atomic weapons. The time in which the atomic weapons became successful was basically the start of the Cold War. US lead the monopoly but scientists figured that it was just a matter of time before Stalin/the USSR developed atomic weapons too.
During this time period in which the atomic weaponry wasn’t developed in the USSR made the US feel very powerful. The Truman Doctrine was then brought up by Truman himself. It basically stated that the US would support any government which was being threatened, the Truman Doctrine didn’t mention anything about communism but Truman said that he would let any country get taken over by the USSR which was communist. Stalin had broken promises at Yalta and so Truman decided to get him back by trying to remove troops from Eastern Europe and holding up free elections from the countries that were part of Eastern Europe.
Stalin wanted to turn Greece to become communist and so Truman saw this as a good opportunity to start a war against the communists. Truman decided that the best option would be to move all the communists to Russia. Berlin was a Capitalist island in East Germany which was led by Truman. He changed the currency of West Berlin and wanted to make Germany more independent. Truman made a blockade in Berlin and no rivers would lead to Berlin. Truman supplied food to Berlin with the use of aircrafts as a mode of transport.
The West lost around 100 million US Dollars using the aircraft method of transport, around 79 deaths occurred and overall it was very expensive. Stalin gave up on Berlin and decided to leave it as a Capitalist island. Stalin then claimed victory of East Berlin and East Germany. West Germany became independent, the Berlin Blockade made Stalin and Truman realize that if they kept wanting more power then the war would never end. This caused the creation of NATO. After Roosevelt died the East and West created bad relations with each other because Truman didn’t get along with Stalin while Roosevelt and Stalin had made peace between each other.
Also the UK was being led by a new president which was inexperienced and couldn’t create peace between Stalin and Truman unlike the vice president who could do so. The Cold War started because both Stalin and Truman were eager to gain as much power possible and this created a rivalry between them, the development of the atomic bomb just added to the reasons of why the Cold War should have started. Both Truman and Stalin contributed to the breakdown of the East and West relations.