History - The Cold War

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When, who, and what was the Grand Alliance?
1941, USA, Britain, and the USSR. They all joined together to fight of the Nazis
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Describe the USA and the USSR's opposing ideologies
USA said communism enslaved people to the state, whereas Capitalism was based on freedom and democracy. USSR said that capitalism exploited the workers to make the rich richer, communism based on fairness
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Name the two telegrams that contributed to post-war tensions
The Long Telegram and the Novikov Telegram
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Describe the Long Telegram
A secret report from US ambassador Kennan in Moscow to President Truman, saying that USSR saw capitalism as a threat to communism that must be destroyed
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Describe the Novikov Telegram
A report from Novikov, soviet ambassador to the USA, told Stalin that the USA wanted world domination and was building up military strength
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Name the three conferences and their dates
Tehran (1943), Yalta (1945), and Potsdam (1945)
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Explain the key features of the Tehran Conference
Stalin wanted the Allies to attack Germany in Europe to take the pressure off of the USSR, whereas Churchill wanted this attack to be in the Balkans. Stalin objected.
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Explain the key features of the Yalta Conference
It was agreed that the USSR would help defeat Japan, that all allies would work for democracy in Europe, and that the UN would be set up to promote peace
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Explain the key features of the Potsdam Conference
Decisions were made on what to do with Germany. This included: prosecuting Nazis as war criminals, reducing Germany's size by a quarter, and dividing Germany temporarily into French, British, US, and Soviet quarters
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When was the Truman Doctrine and the Marshall Plan?
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Explain the Truman Doctrine
In a speech, Truman explained why the USA should get involved in Europe's devastation after the war: Countries had to choose between Capt and Com, and they must contain spread of Com.
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Explain the Marshall Plan
In response to the Doctrine, the USA gave $13 billion to rebuild Europe in return for trade. 16 countries accepted, however the USSR criticised the plan as an attack on them
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What is meant by the term 'satellite state'?
A country under the control of the USSR e.g. Poland, Hungary
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When was Cominform?
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When was Comecon?
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Explain the key features of Cominform
It organised all communist parties in Europe and arranged their leadership so they would follow rules set by Moscow. It got rid of any opposition to Soviet control in satellite states and encouraged parties to block Marshall Plan
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Explain the key features of the Berlin Blockade
The USA wanted Germany to be reunified, whereas the USSR wanted Germany to remain divided. In Western Germany, the Western Allies merged together to form Bizonia, which was part of the Marshall Plan. The USSR blocked off all supplies getting to Berli
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Why did Stalin create the Blockade?
He was upset that he had not been consulted about Bizonia, and thought it went against agreements made in Potsdam. He felt a blockade would show that the USSR had power to stop a divided Germany working
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When did the Berlin Airlift start?
24 June 1948
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Explain the effects of the Berlin Airlift
It lasted a year. It made the USA appear peaceful and generous, however made USSR appear aggressive. This led to the formation of NATO (1949), and the Warsaw Pact (1955)
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Explain the background to the Hungarian Uprising
After Stalin's death, Hungary began to move away from Soviet influence. However, new leader Khrushchev tightened control with fear that of Hungary left the Warsaw Pact other countries would follow
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When was the Hungarian Uprising?
November 1956
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Explain Khrushchev's reaction to HU 56
Any opposition in Hungary was wiped out, mainly by brutal ruler Matyas Rakosi. Com became very unpopular. Hunargy's leader Imre Nagy wanted new reforms which included leaving the Warsaw Pact, no com gov, free elect. USSR refused
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Explain what USSR did to stop uprising
Sent in 200,000 Soviet troops, killing thousands. Nagy was tried and executed.
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Why were people crossing from East Berlin to West Berlin?
Better jobs and higher wages
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Why couldn't the USSR attack West Berlin?
USA had developed H-Bomb in 52, had 20 times more H-bombs, and had money to develop b52 bombers which were capable of flying 600 miles
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Where and when did the four summits take place?
May 1959 - Geneva September 1959 - USA May 1960 - Paris June 1961 - Vienna
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Why was the Paris summit a disaster?
A US spy plane had been shot down over the USSR and Eisenhower refused to apologise
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Explain the key features of the Berlin Wall
USSR demanded West withdraw from Berlin, and Khrushchev set a 6 month ultimatum. They refused, however USSR backed down as they knew they could not win a nuclear war. USSR built Berlin Wall in August 1961, anyone who attempted to escape was shot.
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Describe the beginning of the Cuban Missile Crisis
Before 1959, the USA and Cuba were closely linked, with many US-owned businesses in Cuba. Cuba had a socialist revolution in 1959 and the US refused to deal with the new gov. Cuba started to build economic links with the USSR e.g. soviet oil for suga
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When was the Bay of Pigs incident?
17 April 1961
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What was the US reaction to the socialist revolution in Cuba?
US did not want a socialist country in their sphere of influence, so the CIA tried to assassinate the Cuban leader Fidel Castro. This failed so they attempted a US-backed invasion of Cuba
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Describe the Bay of Pigs incident
CIA told Kennedy that the invasion would look like a Cuban revolt, as they had trained Cuban exiles and disguised old US planes as Cuban. Planes were recognised, photographed, and published. 1400 US troops met 20,000 Cubans. The US troops surrendered
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What was the impact of the Bay of Pigs incident?
Ended all chance of a friendly USA-Cuba relationship and Cuba and the USSR started having a closer relationship
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Describe the middle-part of the Cuban Missile Crisis
The USSR saw Cuba as a fix to the fact the USA had missiles close to the USSR, but the USSR had no missiles close to the USA. In September, soviet ships carried nukes to Cuba, in Oct, they were photographed and made public by US.
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Describe the end of the Cuban Missile Crisis
JFK decided to attack the Cubans and ordered a blockade of Cuba to block ships from delivering missiles. USSR said this was an act of aggression and its ships would ignore it. US and USSR prepared for nuclear war.
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End of CMC 62 (2)
However, Khruschev offered to remove the Cuban missiles in exchange for JFK removing missiles from Turkey. This boosted JFK's power, as it seemed that USSR had surrendered and the US had won by force
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What were the long-term consequences of the Cuban Missile Crisis?
Start of detente, the Hotline agreement created a direct communication link between Washington and Moscow, Limited Test Ban Treaty (both sides agrred to ban most nuclear weapon testing), and Khruschev was forced from power in 1964
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Why was communism unpopular in Czechoslovakia?
Had led to economy declining
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When did Alexander Dubcek become leader of Czechoslovakia?
January 1968
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Explain the 'Prague Spring'
Dubcek was a communist supporter but wanted to maker communism 'better'. He set out a number of reforms to create increased political freedom
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What were Dubcek's reforms?
Relaxation of censorship meant more freedom to say things, even if critical to communism. An increase in democracy meant that other parties were allowed alongside the Com party. More power given to Czech giv and Soviet control was reduced
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What was Brezhnev's response?
Despite being close to Dubcek, he could not allow these reforms, as any weakness in control could mean the break-up of the Warsaw Pact. After failing to convince Dubcek to stop, he sent in tanks to Prague and arrested Dubcek.
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Describe the Brezhnev doctrine
After Brezhnev's response, he set up the Brezhnev Doctrine, which gave the USSR permission to invade any Eastern Bloc country that threatened the security of the Eastern Bloc as a whole.
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Describe some features of Detente
The Outer Space Treaty (1967) - no nukes in space. The Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (1968) - countries would nukes would not help other countries get them. Salt I (1972) - superpowers agreed to limit number of nukes
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Why and when did the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan occur?
1979, to take control of the country after the president had been assassinated
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How did the USA respond?
Strongly, US president Jimmy Carter set up the Carter Doctrine in January 1980. Carter was worried because he felt that the USSR may get large control over the Middle East, and could block oil exports to the US.
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Describe the key features of the Carter Doctrine
Economic sanctions - no trade with USSR. Set up an alliance with China and Israel to back up Afgan rebels. Provided money and weapons to Afgan rebels. Broke off diplomatic relations with USSR and refused to sign SALT II. Boycotted 1980 olympics
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Explain the key features of the second Cold War
Reagen became president in 1981. and believed the USA had a mission from God to win the Cold War. Both superpowers new that 'MAD' was too risky. Reagen set up the 'SDI', a plan to have satellites destroy USSR nukes before they reached US.
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What did Reagen call the USSR?
The 'Evil Empire'
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Why was the second arms race in the US's favour?
Because the USSR could not afford to keep up with the USA's development of new missile technology
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When did Mikhail Gorbachev become the leader of the USSR?
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What did Gorbachev do to help restabilise the economy?
Set up 'perestroika' - restructing and rebuilding the economy & 'glasnost' - openess, giving more people freedom
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When and where did Gorbachev and Reagen meet, and what happened?
November 1985 Geneva, they agreed to meet again. October 1986 Reykjavik, agreed to cut down nukes. Gorbachev wanted US to end SDI but Reagen refused
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When was the INF Treaty signed and what was it?
December 1987. Stood for Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (nukes with 500-5500 km range). The INF removed all these types of missiles from the superpowers
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Describe the effect of Gorbachev's reforms
Had a negative effect as countries wanted independence. Gorbachev got rid of Brezhnev Doctrine, as he believed openness would improve this, and that West trade would help rebuild economy. This led to revolutions, Warsaw Pact ended in July 1991
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Describe the fall of the Berlin Wall
November 1989. After Hungarian Revolution (October 1989), people began to leave East Germany through Hungary. This forced German government to announce that East Germans could cross Berlin border. East Germans flooded into the West and the wall fell.
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Explain the key features of the end of the Cold War
After the break-up of the Eastern Bloc, the USSR soon followed, demanding independence. The August Coup in 1991 had lots of opposition to Gorbachev. During the coup, Gorbachev was locked in a holiday house. Boris Yeltsin led resistance to Moscow.
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Explain the key features of the end of the Cold War (II)
This was shortly defeated, however, Gorbachev looked weak compared to Yeltsin. Gorbachev attempted to fix the USSR by allowig more freedom, but countries wanted full independence. On 25th December 1991, Gorbachev resigned and the USSR dissolved.
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Card 2


Describe the USA and the USSR's opposing ideologies


USA said communism enslaved people to the state, whereas Capitalism was based on freedom and democracy. USSR said that capitalism exploited the workers to make the rich richer, communism based on fairness

Card 3


Name the two telegrams that contributed to post-war tensions


Preview of the front of card 3

Card 4


Describe the Long Telegram


Preview of the front of card 4

Card 5


Describe the Novikov Telegram


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