The Cold War still remains a topic of heated debates. American historians distinguish three main views on the origins of the cold war: orthodox, revisionist and post-revisionist. The paper "The Origins Of The Cold War" provides writer's understanding each of them…
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The orthodox approach blames the Soviet Union for its expansion into Eastern Europe, thus triggering tensions with the US. The USSR believed to be the initiator of the Cold War due to "the intransigence of Leninist ideology, the sinister dynamics of a totalitarian society, and the madness of Stalin". On this situation, the US found itself involuntarily involved in this game. The Korean War, American McCarthyism with its communist hunt and the fact that China chose the path of communism also contributed to the orthodox understanding of the Cold War. McCauley writes: “however, internal Soviet events had a decisive impact on relations”. Supporters of the orthodox view claim that Stalin tried to solve internal problems of the country by acting aggressively on the international arena. However, this claim that is not entirely accurate. Indeed Stalin’s aggressive domestic policy terrorized the nation: people were massively sent to prisons and Gulag; spies were seen at every corner, ideas of conspiracy rocketed. Constant fear of getting arrested did not contribute to the stability. In this regard, the US represented an "external enemy," which needed to be eradicated. At that point, Stalin was losing grip over the nation and tried to get it back by implementing those extreme measures. Image of “external enemy” was maintained by political elites. Can this negative perception of the US be explained in terms of Marxism-Leninism with its ideas of class struggle and a world revolution? Or there was a different explanation and the orthodox approach simply omitted it? Do Stalin’s actions represent and internal reaction to “American imperialism,” as revisionists would claim? Soviet Union was very fragile and devastated after the long exhausting war. The country barely had any resources for expansion into Eastern Europe; it did not have enough power to fight the new war at this point. In this regard I would agree with McCauley stating that ruined Soviet economy
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