How did the Cold War develop in the years 1949-55?

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  • Created by: Qiao-Chu
  • Created on: 24-03-13 16:48

Formation of NATO

Berlin Blockade alerted Americans to set up common defense strategy - North Atlantic Treaty Organisation, April 1949.

Military pact where countries will defend each other against acts of aggression. Army with common command - 12 members in 1949 including USA, Britain and France.

Meant American can build air bases in Western Europe with planes equipped with nuclear bombs.

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Nuclear Arms Race

Hiroshima and Nagasaki atom bombs atarted nuclear arms race, became major theme of Cold War.

The more weapons you had, the more powerful you were. Neither USA or USSR wanted to e left behind on nuclear development, otherwise at disadvantage.

Competition for arms was very expensive as they tried to produce deadlier and more effective weapons.

Until 1949, USA in the lead. Hydrogen bomb, Americans 1952. Soviets hydrogen bomb 1953.

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Korean War 1

End of WW2, Korea freed from Japanese rule. North Korea occupied by Soviets, South Korea by Americans. Agreed for free elections and united Korea. Americans supported this because 2/3 population lived in South, so North outvoted.

1948, free elections impossible so two independent states set up divided by 38th Parallel. South Korea anti-communist Syngman Rhee, capital Seoul. North Korea pro-communist Kim Il Sung, capital Pyongyang. Soviet and American troops left in 1949 but kept supporting.

Communist China under Mao Zedong 1949 meant North Korea bordered another communist country. Koreans not happy with division. Stalin encouraged North Koreans and supplied with tanks and planes, China urged North Koreans to attack. Communists claimed it was to protect themselves and crossed 38th Parallel.

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Korean War 2

1950 North Koreans attacked South, captured Seoul. Occupied all of South apart from Southeast Pusan pocket. Truman believed Korean War was strategy from Stalin for World Communism - Domino Effect. Had to put into action policy of containment.

Americans referred invasion to UN Security Council and moved troops in Japan to Korea before UN decision. Security Council appealed to North Korea to withdraw, but ignored. North Korea declared as aggressor, member states called on to help South. USSR would have used veto but was boycotting because communist China not allowed as UN member.

UN army from 16 contribution nations sent to Korea, led by American General Douglas MacArthur. American marines surprised North Koreans by landing at Inchon and cutting supplies - North Koreans forced to retreat. Truman then went beyond containment. With UN backing, invaded North Korea, captured Pyongyang and occupied 2/3 country. Reached Yalu River - border of China.

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Korean War 3

China concerned about American advances so helped North Koreans. 250000 Chinese troops entered Korea, too many for Americans, January 1951 drove Americans back to Seoul. MacArthur wanted atom bomb attack on China but Truman felt unnecessary hot war. Truman dismissed MacArthur and went back to policy of containment.

June 1951 Americans pushed back to border. Peace talks began in 1953 and decided border still at 38th Parallel.

Costly war for Koreans: country devastated, 4 million dead, 5 million homeless.

American lost 50000, UN troops 17000. Chinese 900000.

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Importance of Korean War

Cold War extended to Far East. China established as communist and emergence as world power.

Truman prepared to stick to Doctrine and policy of containment.

Superpowers did not want hot war. Soviets were not directly involved, only supplied weapons, and Truman did not support MacArthur.

UN resisted an act of aggression unlike League of Nations. But condemned as capitalist tool because under USA leadership.

Korea still divided, appears to be permanent.

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Death of Stalin 1953 changed Soviet foreign policy. Both East and West wanted tension to relax due to weapons.

Americans open to negotiation because Stalin viewed as main cause of Cold War. New cooperation from USSR ending Korean War.

1955 Austrian State treaty signed ending occupation in Austria, restoring independence.

Khrushchev keen to make new start, must make peace with West, even if different ideals and policies.

1956 'peaceful co-existance', visited Britain and USA.

Summit Conference 1955 Geneva, attended by leaders of America, Britain, China, France and USSR. Little agreed but turning point.

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Warsaw Pact

1966 West Germany joined NATO, revived Soviet concerns over Germany, led to formation of Warsaw Pact.

Military alliance for mutual defence, USSR, Poland, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria, East Germany and Albania. Idea of collective security of nations.

All forces of pact placed under Soviet commander-in-chief leadership and permitted Soviet troops stationed in these countries.

Part of USSR's method of controlling countries, stopping satellite states leaving.

Warsaw Pact dominated by USSR, seen as response to NATO. Despite thaw, Khrushchev keen to ensure USSR and satellite state safety.

Visited Yugoslavia and resumed friendly relations with President Tito. Division of Europe marked by rival alliances. If war, all countries involved.

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