The post-Stalin thaw and the bid for peaceful coexistence: Soviet policy under Khrushchev


Soviet policy under Khrushchev

  • Khrushchev emerged as a Soviet leader in 1955.
  • Malenkov was removed from Soviet leadership after the failure of his policies in East Germany.

Khrushchev's personality

  • His personality played a big part in the development of the Cold War.
  • His temperament was unpredictable and was known for his sudden explosions of anger.
  • He didn't always consult colleagues or think through policies and had a tendancy to make wild claims about the scale of the USSR's nuclear arsenal.
  • His erratic nature and crude manner of expression led to an attempt to remove him from the leadership in 1957.
  • Eisenhower recognised that Khrushchev was under pressure from the Soviet government to stand up to the US.

Khrushchev's policies

Domestic aims:-

  • Krushchev agreed with Malenkov that the USSR's primary aim must be to revitalise the economy.
  • This along with his belief in peaceful coexistence had massive implications for the conduct of foreign policy including cuts in the defence budget.
  • This created problems with some Kremlin hardliners and also with leaders of the…


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