- Created by: MC
- Created on: 21-11-18 16:22
The Berlin Question
The 1950's saw more communication between the two superpowers, but underlying tensions remained.
There were some steps to improve East-West relations...
President Eisenhower succeeded Presiden Truman in January 1953, while Khrushchev came to power in September. This provided an opportunity to create a fresh start - there were several encouragin steps towards defusing tensions betwen the two powers:
- USA and USSR met in Geneva in 1955 and agreed to communicate more openly.
- In 1955, USSR officially recognised the Federal Republic of Germany (West Germany) as a state.
- Khrushchev also freed some prisoners and reduced censorship in USSR.
...but Berlin remained a source of tension
After the Berlin crisis in 1948, West Berlin was a unified zone and continued to develop economically, benefiting form a new currency and American (Marshall Plan) aid.
The situation in East Berlin was very different - USSR had drained it of resources and its economy was slow to develop. Many people wanted to leave and go to the more prosperous West Berlin instead.