The start of the Cold War


The Grand Alliance


Prior to the Cold War, America and the USSR worked together as members of the Grand Alliance: an alliance created to defeat the Nazis.

However, they were only unted in their fight against Hitler. 

Once WW2 had ended, they no longer had a common interest, so relations began to break down.

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The Tehran Conference



USA an Britain would open a second front to split the German defences and take pressure of USSR

USSR would declare war on Japan 

Poland would be given more land from Germany


Churchill wanted to invade the Balkans

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The Yalta Conference



Germany would be reduced in size

Nazi party would be banned

UN would be set up to replae the League of Nations

Poland would be in Soviet sphere of influence but be run on 'a border democratic control'

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The Potsdam conference agreements


Set up a Council of Foreign Ministers to organise the re-building of Europe

Prosecute surviving Nazis as war criminals

Reduce the size of Germany

Divide Germany into four

Divide Berlin into four

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Potsdam disagreements

USSR wanted to impose heavy reparations on Germany, whereas America wanted Germany to be rebuilt.

Truman attempted to assert his authority during the Potsdam conference as he believed that America possessed the ultimate weapon (the Atomic Bomb). 

Stalin broke his word on the Polish government 

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The war of words

During 1946, it became clear that Europe was divided between communist and capitlist. 

Churchill gave his 'iron curtain speech' during a trip to America, and everyone understood that President Truman supporte what he had said. 

Both side had started to view each other as opponents rather than allies.

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The Long Telegram


From America's ambassador in Moscow.

It said:

Stalin had given a speech calling for the destruction of capitalism

There could be no peace with USSR while it opposed capitalism

The USSR was building military power

The USA should seek to contain capitalism

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Novikov's Telegram


Soviet ambassador in America

It said:

America desired to dominate the world

American government was no longer interested in co-operation with the USSR

The American public was being prepared for war with the USSR

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The Truman Doctrine


It stated that:

The world had a choice between communism and capitalsim

America had a responsibiltiy to fight for liberty if threatened

America would send troops and economic resources to help governments that were threatened by communists

Communism should not be allowed to grow

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Significance of the Truman Doctrine

It suggested that America had a responsibility to protect the world, rather than the UN.

America's pollicy of isolationism was reversed.

It divided that world by ideology.

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The Marshall Plan


$13 billion ere given to rebuild shattered economies of Europe.

By encouraging prosperity, the Marshall Plan would weaken the attraction of communism.

In order to qualify, European countries had to agree to trade freely with America.

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Reaction to the Marshall Plan

Satlin claimed that America was trying to split Europe into two camps.

He walked out of the Paris conference when America was dicussing its offer.

Stalin thought the Marshall Plan was the first step in building a military alliance against the SU.

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An international organisation that represented Communist Parties across Europe.

It rejected the Marshall Plan.

It was used to ensure the loyalty of Eastern European governments by investigating government ministers and employees and removing those who were not loyal to Stalin.

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Stalin's answer to the Marshall Plan.

Aimed to encourage the economic development of Eastern Europe.

Attempted to prevent trade with weatern Europe and America.

It minimised Americas political influence.

It ensured that the benefits of economic recovery would stay in their sphere of influence.

It meant that Eastern Europe missed out on the posperity of Western Europe.

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British and Amercan zones of Germany were operating together. They became knw as Bizonia.

Their relationship with France was also good so they were refered to as Trizonia.

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Germany: Unfinished business

Should a reunited Germany be part of the Soviet sphere of influence or should it be neutral?

Should a reunited Germany have a communist or a capitalist government?

Should a reunited Germany recieve Marshall Aid?

Should troops from America and the USSR be allowed to remain in a united Germany.

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East and West Germany

Stalin opposed the division of Germany because:

He was reluctant to allow America to have further influence over Germany.

He did not want American troops to remain stationed in Germany.

He realised that Germany's most valuable economic resources were in the west and feared that they would be used to wage war on the USSR

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The Berlin Blockade

June 1948-49

To prevent the establishment of a separate state in West Germany, Stalin set up a military blockade around West Berlin.

His plan was to cut western Germany off from its capital so that the new government couldnt control its territoy in West Germany.

Stain hoped it would prove that a divided Germany wouldn't work.

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The Berlin Airlift

Truman's response to the Berlin Blockade.

Allied planes transported supplies to west Berlin around the clock.

1000 tonnes of supplies a day were droped into west Berlin.

170,000 during January 1949.

The airlift prevented the blockade from succeeding.

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September 1949: FDR (west) was officially created as an independant state.

October 1949: GDR (east) was established as an independant state. This became anotheer Soviet satellite state.

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Western alliance.

Members agreed that if any NATO countries came under attack, all members would come to their defence.

This was a military alliance with the specific aim of defending the West against communism.

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Warsaw Pact


USSR response to NATO

A military alliance of Eastern European countries that mirrored NATO.

The uniform already had cominform but, when west Germany joined NATO, it was too provocative to ignore.

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The arms race


In 1945, the USA became the first country to develop and use a nuclear bomb.

1949, USSR caught up.

1953, both countries had hydrogen bombs, but USA's were more powerful.

The arms race prevented a war in Europe as both countries feared nuclear retaliation. 

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Hungary under Stalin

Hungarian land was redistributed to other Eastern European countires.

Hungarian coal, oil and wheat were shipped to Russia whilst Hungarian citizens were deprived of food.

Non-communist political parties were abolished.

Russian officials controlled the government, the police and the army.

Cominform began a regin of terror, executing popular political leaders and their supporters.

Rakosi was apponted as Hungary's dictator.

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Matyas Rakosi


Hungarian dictator.

Described himself as 'Stalin's best pupil' but was nicknamed 'the bald butcher.'

He developed salami tactics for dealing with his opponents.

He imprisoned 387,000 and was responsible for over 2,000 deaths.

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Stalin's style of government was extraordinarily oppressive. 

Khrushchev opened the way for a more liberal approach to governing the USSR and Eastern Europe.

In 1956, he gave the secret seach. This promised to end Stalinism throughout the entire Soviet sphere of influence.

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Nagy's reforms

Leave the Warsaw Pact.

Communism should end.

There should be democracy with free elections in the west.

Hungary should ask the UN for protection.

The reforms meant that Hungarys alliance with the USSR ended.

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Khrushchev's response

Khrushchev believed that the reforms were unaceptable and feared tha other countires would follow. He had secret intellegence reports that said that discontent with communism was widespread.

On November 4th 1956, 200,000 Soviet troops and 1,000 tanks entered Hungary. They marched into Budapest and fought with Nagy's supporters for two weeks.

Nagy was executed for treason in June 1958

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Response of the West

America gave food and medical aid worth $20 million

80,000 refugees moved to USA

Eisenhower encouraged Hungarians to fight on

UN condemed the Soviet invasion, conducted an enquiry but did nothing.

USA didn't give militaty aid

Radicals were discouraged frmo following Hungary's footsteps

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