Slides in this set
The US President Roosevelt died in 1945. He was replaced by Truman who
was strongly anti-Communist and, as the war came to an end, the relationship
between America and Russia fell apart.
But this was not the only cause of trouble. Historians believed that the
wartime alliance between the Soviet Union and America was also wrecked by
the huge differences between the two countries in:
Politics - America was capitalist, Russia was communist.
Lifestyle - America had freedom and a two-party democracy; Russia had secret
police and a one-party state.
Aims - America wanted Germany to recover as a trading partner; Russia
wanted to weaken Germany and create a buffer zone of friendly states around
The collapse of the wartime alliance led to a Cold War between the two
Comparing America and the USSR
1. The richest country in the world. 1. The biggest country in the world.
2. A democracy with free elections, led by an elected 2. A one-party state led by a dictator. There were elections,
president. but you could only vote for the Communist Party.
3. Freedom of speech and belief. 3. State control: censorship, secret police, terror and purges.
4. Capitalism - private ownership and the right to make 4. Communism - state ownership of the means of
money. production, and the belief that wealth should be shared.
5. Led by Truman, who believed that Communism was evil. 5. Led by Stalin, who believed that capitalism was evil.
6. Had the atomic bomb - but was scared of Russia's 6. Had the biggest army in the world - but was angry that
conventional army. Truman had not warned that he was going to drop the
7. Feared the spread of communism throughout the 7. Was angry because America and Britain had invaded
world. Russia in 1918-19 to try to destroy communism.
8. Angry about the Nazi-Soviet Pact that was a major factor 8. Believed that America and Britain had delayed opening the
in starting the Second World War. second front (attacking France) to let Germany and Russia
destroy each other on the eastern front.
9. Wanted reconstruction - to make Germany a prosperous 9. Wanted to wreck Germany, take huge reparations for the
democracy and a trading partner. damage done during the war, and set up a buffer of friendly
states around Russia to prevent another invasion in the
Yalta February 1945
Germany was not yet defeated, so, although there
were tensions about Poland, the big three - Stalin,
Roosevelt and Churchill - managed to agree to split
Germany into four zones of occupation, and to
allow free elections in Eastern European countries.
Russia was invited to join the United Nations, and
Russia promised to join the war against Japan when
Germany was defeated.…read more
Potsdam July 1945
Germany had been defeated, Roosevelt had died
and Churchill had lost the 1945 election - so there
were open disagreements. Truman came away angry
about the size of reparations and the fact that a
communist government was being set up in Poland.
Truman did not tell Stalin that he had the atomic