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American History 1946-2012 - Essay Example

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Name: Course: Tutor: Date: A Critical Analysis of the United States’ Role during the Cold War: How the Cold Affected the US Foreign Policy and Culture The most important event which determined the Americans’ fate in the 20th century is the Cold War. If the Americans had failed to tackle the situation, they might not have been in the position which they occupy…
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American History 1946-2012
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American History 1946-2012

Download file to see previous pages... Primarily two objectives, that is, supporting democracy and containment of communism, shaped the US policy for the Cold War. In his “Joint Address before Congress”, President Truman clearly asserts, “Greece must have assistance if it is to become a self-supporting and self-respecting democracy.” (Truman, 1947, p. 3) The US policy of containment was fundamentally the outcome of President Truman’s reaction to the Soviet leaders’ expansionist tendency. This policy of containing the expansionist Soviet leaders remains the baseline of the US policy during the whole period of the Cold War. Indeed, almost all of Truman’s descendants, more or less, had attempted to put this policy of containment into operation in different contexts with different measures (Nigel, 2006, pp. 45-49). The Cold War can be considered as a clash of interests between the Soviet Union and the United States of America, the superpowers of the world during the post Second-World-War era. The war continued from 1947 to 1991. After the World War II, the US foreign policymakers did not need Soviet support any more to defeat the Axis Powers; therefore, they refused to acknowledge the Soviets’ security concern in Europe. ...
Indeed, these distrusts and strife between the two superpowers subsequently the 50 years long Cold War ensued. In February 1945, the failure of the Yalta Conference in the Crimea was essentially one of the events which forecasted the Cold War (“The Cold War”, 2003, pars. 1). Though during the Cold War, ideological, political, economic and military tensions existed at an extreme level, the superpowers did not become involved in any direct war. Rather their military involvements were confined to proxy wars in various geographical regions of interests. Nuclear arm race between the two main parties of the war, the USA and the Soviet Union, began as a response to the superpowers’ desire to overpower each other. (Schweizer, 1994, pp. 69-74) During the Cold War, Kennedy Administration’s cold-war policies diverged a bit from the baseline of the traditional US foreign policy. During the most critical period of the War in the 1960s, President Kennedy adopted a policy, variedly known as “Flexible Response”, “Containment of Communism” and “Reversal of Soviet Progress”, etc, which was more tactful than his predecessor, Dwight Eisenhower’s militarily staunch response to the Soviet Forces (Schweizer, 1994, p. 209). In fact, this diplomatic stance of the Kennedy Administration critically shaped the premises of future American foreign policy. Truman’s policy was to restore economy in the war-affect European countries, since he believed that “The seeds of totalitarian regimes are nurtured by misery and want…They spread and grow in the evil soil of poverty and strife” (Truman, 1947, p. 6). The main goal of his policy was to ensure ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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