Cold War revision cards


Need for a reform

-People faced serious hardship in 1900

-People worked in workhouses for long hours in brutal conditions for food and lodging 

-putting an end to self respect

-Serious unemployment in certain industries led to benefits'dole'

-Old people had no savings or family to help them they suffered badly and even worse no government pensions

-Housing in bad conditions in bad areas

-Many could afford doctors or medicine 

-Many had to go to work at an early age and therefore missed out on communication

-Large numbers were malnuorished and therefore couldnt afford food 

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Reports exclaimed 2/3 British people were poor

Seebhom Rowntree had a factory in york

-28%of people in york were so poor they could afford basics like food 

-"poverty a study of town life"was published in 1901

Charles booth published "life and labour of people in London" in 1903

-showing 30%in london were living in severe poverty 

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Public opinion on helping the poor changed

-Well respected writers like George Bernard shaw described how poor people were living within their books 

-Conveying the Government should pass laws on helping the welfare system and basic commodities 

-People in Public health and medicine said the Government should get more involved in health issues 

-Socialists argued wealth should be equally spread

-Labour party arued there should be more finacial help

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After 1906 liberals social reforms

-In 1906 liberal party won a lanslide general election victory over the conservatives

-29 labour party mps were elected into house of commons

-Minority reports and pressure from general public encouraged the liberals to create laws to help with poverty 

-Winston Churchill and David loyd george were the Mps who worked hardest to drive the bills 

as they wanted to help poor but also make a name for themselves

-The liberals didnt plan to help everyone just those with the worst problems 

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Liberal reforms

1906-school meals act allowed free school meals

1906-The workemens compensation act

1907 free medical inspections for children

1908-childrens charter illegal to purchase cigarettes or go to a pub under the age of 16

1908-old age pensioners act for people over 70 years old on low incomes

1909-trade board act set up minimum wage

1909-labour exchanges act-job centres 

1911-national insurance act part one helped with health insurance 

part two set up unemployment benefits for a few trades 

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Liberal reforms effects

Loyd George wanted to raise taxes in order to pay for the reforms 

-He proposed a tax increase in 1909 budget 

-The budget was designed to tax the rich more heavily than the poor 

-Became known as the peoples budget

-Income tax would go up by 5 pence to 6 pence in the pound

-inheritence tax would increase 

-Tax on tobacco and spirits would increase 

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Liberal reforms left problems unsolved

-Hardly any of the new schemes were designed to help with the whole population

-National insurance act part one didnt cover the workers family and part two only covered a few industries

-There were still workhouses and therefore didnt replace the old poor laws

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Changed attitudes to helping the poor

-First time national taxes had been used to help the poor 

-Took on responsibility for protecting citizens from extreme hardship

-Introduced all across the country not just local affairs

-Large numbers were covered by the schemes like national insurance act part one covered 10million workers

-massive opposition to some schemes but social reforms had become reality

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The beginnings of the cold war

-By 1945 millions of sick and hungry and homeless refugees throughout europe and the rest of the world 

-The disruption made it difficult at the end of the war to be sure of the numbers killed and wounded

-USSRlost millions of its people within the war with Germany 

Stalin was determined to make the USSR secrure in the future 

-China also suffered from millions of casualties 

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Conflicting ideologies

Communism and capitalism

-During the war the communist superpower the USSR had united with the capitalist superpower

the USA to defeat facism

-However communism and capitalism were very different ideologies and ecenomic systems strongly opposed to one  another

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-A democratic system the president and congress of the usa were chosen in free democratic elections

-Capitalist economy-Business and property privately owned

-The usa wascthe worlds wealthiest countrybut under capatilism always great contrasts some rich some poor

-Americans believed in freedom of individual and in government by consent 

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A communist state under stalins dictatorship 

-people could vote in elections for the supreme soviet but only vote members of the communist party they had no real power

-In the communist system peoples lives were closely controlled

-it had a planned economy -had all industry planned what every factory should produce 

-Stnadard of living in USSR was lower than USA but unemployment was low

-USSR had been previously attacked many times 

-USSR could be safe if the countries and its borders were controlled by comunist governments

-The USA would help set up hostile countries on his borders

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The Yalta conference February 1945

Agreed on dividing Germany and austria

-Germany to pay $20million reperations to allies        Stalin

-Eastern europe have free elections

-United nations established                                          Churchill

-Setting up of borders of poland

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July 1945 Potsdam conference

Beggining of tensions between US and USSR 

-Eastern border of poland set up to River Neisse

-Carried of divisions of Germany with Austria and their respective capitals

-Defined terms for Japanese surrender

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August 1945 and 1946

-August 1945=US drops bomb on Hiroshima and Nagasaki

-1946=Churchills iron curtain speech on a call for firmer action against communism and a 

-Call for alliance between US and Berlin

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Truman Doctrine 1947

Truman Doctrine Us would send military and ecenomic aid to anti-communist forces as a form of containment 

-Would play a worl leading role

-Aim to stop the spread of communism

-Provided military and ecenomic aid to Turkey and Greece


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Marshall plan/aid 1947

-Truman believed poverty and hardship had provided a breeding ground for communism

-Wanted to make Europe prosperous again

-Commited large sums of financial aid to Europe in recovering from the war

-Concerns that the failiure of European ecenomies may result in recesion in the US

-In practice went to only western Europe

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Cominform 1947

Stalin set up the cominform as an alliance of communist countries probably as a response to marshall aid 

-Helped stalin keep a tight hold on communism allies because it restricted their sontact with the west

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1948 Berlin Blockade begins

-Eastern Germany denied marshall aid 

-All road and rail and canal links with west Berlin were severed

-West responded withBerlin Airlift (food and fuel supplies)

-Stalin couldnt stop the introduction of a new currency

-Couldnt stop merging of the wester zones into one zone

-Berlin was deep in the soviet controlled zone

-Many feared this could provoke war

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Causes of the Berlin Blockade

-Britain and the USA  wanted Germany to recover but they couldnt afford to keep supporting Germany

-French were unsure on wether to help Germany recover ecenomically or wether to keep it weak

-USSR didnt want to rebuild Germany and Stalin became suspicious about American and British intentions 

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Effects the Berlin Blockade

-May 1949 the British French and US zones became the federal republic of Germany

-October 1949 the soviet occupied Zone in Germany became the German democratic republic 

-NATO formed and created an enlargment on Brussels treaty 1948

-Alliance of USA Canada and most of western europe 

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Khrushchev and the west

  1. He raised political influence of the soviet union 
  2. demanded the right to solve problems with the soviet unions sphere of interest eg hungarian revoloution
  3. He challenged the west when he felt the soviet union was being threatened
  4. He tried to demonstrate the technological and nucleur superioirity of the soviet union 
  5. He challenged the dominance of the USA in the olympic games 
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Cuba and the USSR

Cuba was only 160km from the coast of Florida, giving it great strategic importance in the Cold War.

Before 1959 Cuba was a poor country controlled largely by American business. Cuba had been ruled by the dictator Batista since 1934, but his cruel reign ended in 1959 by guerrillas led by Fidel Castro.

Castro nationalised all foreign-owned land, property and oil refineries. In January 1960 he made an alliance with the USSR, who promised to buy Cuba’s sugar (the USA bough Cuba’s sugar cane in Batista’s rule). The Americans did not like this arrangement. In October 1960 they stopped all trade with Cuba they now had an enemy on their doorstep. 

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Bay of pigs

Kennedy was persuaded by the CIA that Castro could be overthrown by supporters of Batista. So these rebels, backed by the Americans, landed at the Bay of Pigs (Cuba’s south coast) in April 1961. The attack was a total disaster! The rebels received no local Cuban support and were defeated in a few days. Kennedy was embarrassed and realised he had been wrongly advised. 

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Results of the Cuban missile crisis

  1. It gave the world a shock: for a fortnight the superpowers had been on the brink of a nuclear conflict.

  2. Kennedy: publicly he claimed victory. He had stood up to the Soviets and forced them to back down.

    His prestige in the West increased.

  3. Khrushchev: he was the real winner. He had secured the safety of communist Cuba and got rid of

    American missiles in Turkey.

  4. Helped to stabilise East-West relations: in June 1963 a ‘hot line’ was set up between Moscow and

    Washington so that the leaders could discuss matters directly and avoid other crises.

  5. Moves to control the arms race: Test Ban Treaty of 1963

  6. European allies were shocked at how little they were consulted during the emergency. It seemed that

    their opinions weren’t as important as the Americans: de Gaulle (French PM) pulled France out of

    NATO and encouraged others to do the same.

  7. Chinese weren’t impressed by Khrushchev as he had looked cowardly: encouraged the Chinese to

    follow an independent line of their own in world politics. 

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