The Formation of NATO, 1949

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The Formation of NATO, 1949


  • Western European states needed the support of the USA to be able to fight against the Soviet Union and uphold the policy of containment.
  • Th Berlin Airlift had confirmed the US's commitment to Western Europe and NATO would cement it.
  • Main aim was to prevent the spread of communism.


  • The USA was now committed to the defence of Western Europe.
  • Stalin believed that NATO was aimed against the Soviet Union.
  • Within six years, the Soviet Union set up the Warsaw Pact.
  • Europe was now divided in a state of permanent hostility between the superpowers.

Overall summary

The formation of NATO presented a high level of commitment from the USA and worsened relations between the Soviet Union and the USA as it seemed to be an act against the Soviet Union. 


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