Origins of the Cold War

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  • Created by: emma998
  • Created on: 11-04-14 14:31

Yalta conference, February 1945

  • Before WW2 ended
  • Conference involving big 3 - Stalin, Roosevelt and Churchill
  • The conference was to decide what would hapen to Germany and its allies when Germany surrendered and what they would do to German empire and territory
  • Stalin agreed to enter war against Japan
  • Germany would be divided into 4 zones - British, US, Soviet and French
  • Berlin (in Soviet zone) would also be divided into same 4 zones
  • United Nations organisation
  • Agreed that as countries were liberated from German occupation, there would be free and fair elections to choose the government they wanted
  • Agreed to hunt down and punish war criminals who were responsible for Nazi genocide
  • Agreed that Eastern Europe could be seen as a Soviet sphere of influence (suffered terribly in war, claimed needed buffer zone)
  • Disagreed about Poland - Stalin wanted border of USSR to move into Poland, both Churchill and Roosevelt unhappy about this but agreed on the condition that they wouldn't interfere with Greece - remain capitalist
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Changes between Yalta and Potsdam

Stalin's army was now controlling most of Eastern Europe:

  • Stalin had liberated countries in Eastern Europe but did not withdraw troops, left them
  • So by July, Stalin's troops were effectively controlling the Baltic states, Poland, Finland, Hugary, Czechoslovakia, Bulgaria and Romania
  • UK and USA protested but Stalin claimed necessary to prevent future attacks

USA had new president:

  • Rossevelt died in April, Vice-president Harry Truman took over 
  • Extremley anti-communist and very suspicious of Stalin and Soviet sphere of influence

New UK prime minister:

  • Clement Atlee replaced Churchill - New + less experienced, had less of a say in matters

USA successfully developed and tested Atomic bomb

  • 16 July test for A-bomb carried out 
  • By 6 August dropped them on Hiroshima and Nagasaki to end war in Japan
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Potsdam conference, July-August 1945

  • Began 17th July 1945
  • Now common enemy removed, cracks on surface appeared between the two superpowers and there were arguments over several things
  • Disagreed over Germany - Stalin wanted to cripple Germany, Truman didn't want to make same mistakes as ToV
  • Disagreed over reparations - USSR lost over 20,000,000 men and Soviet union had been left devestated and demanded $10billion in compensation. Truman did not want to make same mistakes as ToV and create a bitter, resentful and unstable Germany
  • Disagreed over Soviet policy in Eastern Europe - At Yalta Stalin had been allowed pro-Soviet governments in East Europe but at Potsdam Truman was extremley angry that Stalin's troops were effectively controlling each country. He believed the sphere of influence was a step towards taking over the whole of Europe
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Soviet sphere of influence

  • By July, 1945 Stalin's troops were effectively in control of most of Eastern Europe
  • He took over these countries using the Red army, fair elections and mixes of both
  • Red army - East Germany, Bulgaria
  • Elections and communist violence - Poland, Czechoslovakia, Hungary
  • Elections - Romania, Yugoslavia
  • Comecon - money and trade within the sphere of influence, loyalty to Stalin
  • Cominform - information and instructions of Stalin, method to check all countries loyal to Stalin

Churchill describe border between communist eastern Europe and Capatlist West as an "iron curtain"

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Truman doctrine, 1947 and Marshall aid, 1948

Truman Doctrine, 1947

  • Greece (civil war) and Turkey (influence by Stalin) were both at risk of falling to communism
  • Truman gave $400million to each
  • Also gave equipment and military advice

Marshall Aid, 1948

  • General George marshall went to Europe to asses economic state of all European capitalist countries
  • Owed $11.5billion to USA
  • Extreme shoratges of goods, many countries still rationing bread
  • Originally Truman asked congress for $10billion to help European capitalsit countries rebuild themselves and prevent communism from spreading
  • Congress refused
  • When Czechoslovakia fell to communism - (pro-American leader found dead, communist take over) congress accepted $17billion over 4 year period
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Tri-zonia, a new currency and a divided Germany

  • After the destruction of war, the German zones were in economic chaos
  • Stalin feared a recovering Germany but it was clear to the allies that Germany would not be able to feed its people if not allowed to rebuild industries
  • In 1948 Britain, France and USA combined thier zones to form one zone without even consulting Stalin
  • Soon after they reformed the currency and within months there were signs that Germany was recovering
  • They did the same with Berlin
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Berlin Blockade and airlift, June 1948 - May 1949

  • As a result of the Truman Doctrine and Marshall aid and the combining of the Western zones of Germany, Stalin felt he needed to act and stamp his authority on Berlin and seize the capitol which was deep inside the Soviet zone
  • In June 1948 Stalin cut off all supply routes from West Germany into Berlin - canal, railways and major roads
  • West Berlin with a population of 2million was cut off from western help
  • Stalin believed this would the force the western allies out of Berlin and make Berlin entirely dependent on USSR
  • Truman and the rest of the USA saw this as a test
  • If they gave in to Stalin on Berlin, West Germany could be next
  • Truman wanted to show he was serious about the policy of containment
  • The only way into Berlin from the Western zone was by air
  • For the next 11 months the USA decided to airlift supplies into West Berlin
  • Everything from food and clothing to oil and building materials were airlifted into Berlin
  • Plane landed every 3 minutes
  • By May 1949 Stalin called off blockade and re-opened transport links
  • It was seen as a major victory for the Western allies
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Formation of NATO, April 1949

  • During the Berlin blockade, war between USA and USSR seemed like a real possibility
  • At height of crisis, Western powers came together to form a new organisation called NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organisation)
  • Truman felt the need to create an agreement so that if war did break out, he would have the help of Western Europe
  • Main terms - article 3: Individual and collective capacity to resist armed attack

article 5: Armed attack agianst one/more countries considered attack against all 

  • Main motive for Turman was that NATO would allow USA to place troops in secure bases in NATO countries since he knew that Stalin's troops were well positioned to invade Western Europe
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Nuclear arms race, 1949 - 1954

  • After USA detonated first A-bomb on Japanese cities, Stalin realised he needed to catch up with USA
  • He made atomic research his top priority and massive amounts of money went into research and development
  • August 1949 - USSR detonates first A-bomb - concern for US (predicted not until 1953)
  • 1951 - US strategic command SAC develops policy of constant readiness. SAC            commander identifies 6,000 targets in USSR to be hit in event of war
  • November 1952 - USA detonates first Hydrogen bomb - 1000x more powerful 
  • August 1953 - USSR detonates first H-bomb
  • March 1954 - USA develops H-bomb small enough to be dropped from bomber
  • September 1954 - USSR drops test H-Bomb from bomber

Bomber gap - USA threatened and President Eisenhower ordered more B52 bombers to close gap, 40% of defence spending on air force

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Korean War, 1950 - 1953

  • 1949 China became communist
  • Stalin using cominform help communists win power in Malaya, Indonesia, Burma,Korea
  • Korea ruled by Japan until 1945 - USSR liberated North, USA liberated South
  • Divided at 38th parallel
  • Bitter hostility between the leaders of both sides and in 1950 North invaded the South
  • North Korean troops overwhelmed the South Korean troops
  • By September 1950 all except small corner of South-East Korea under communist control
  • USSR boycotting UN at the time - USA blocked China entering UN after turned communist
  • USA get all countries in UN to agree to go to war against North Korea, containment
  • Most of UN forces were US - 18 states contributed
  • Commander General McArthur
  • UN + SK push North Korea back past 38th parallel all way up to Yalu River, in weeks
  • China tells UN they will invade if they push further
  • General McArthur ignores this, aims get rid of communism in whole of China as well
  • 200,000 Chinese troops(people's volunteers)join war,tanks+planes supply by USSR
  • UN pushed back into SK, McArthur wanted to continue war + use nuclear weapons
  • Truman sacks McArthur, armistice signed in 1953 - Eisenhower + death of Stalin
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Death of Stalin and new leader - Krushchev, 1953

  • "The Thaw" 
  • Krushchev seemed very different from Stalin
  • Ended USSR's long fueds with China and Yugoslavia and seemed to bring about thaw in frosty cold war relations between the two superpowers
  • He talked of peaceful co-existence with the West
  • Plans to reduce expenditure on arms
  • De-Stalinisation
  • At communist party international conference 1956, Krushchev made astonishing attacks on Stalin. Denounced him as wicked tyrant who kept all power to himself
  • Released thousands of political prisoners
  • Relaxed iron control of Soviet Union on Eastern Europe
  • Closed down cominform as part of policy of reconciliation with Yugoslavia
  • Invited Marshal Tito to Moscow
  • Dismissed Stalin's former Foreign Minister, Molotov
  • Claimed he wanted to improve living standards of ordinary Spviet citizens and those of Eastern Europe
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Warsaw Pact,1955

  • Warsaw pact was created by Krushchev in response to Western allies allowing West Germany into NATO and allowing them to have their own army
  • It was similar to NATO involving Communist countries of Eastern Europe except Yugoslavia
  • Buffer from attack
  • Similar to cominform and comecon
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