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Nuclear Weapon and Cold War - Essay Example

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Ever since World War II in 1945, when the first nuclear weapon was developed by the United States and dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, the world The debate has been divided into two groups: supporters of nuclear proliferation, and critics of nuclear proliferation…
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Nuclear Weapon and Cold War
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Download file to see previous pages The debate on nuclear policy has addressed the deterrence of aggressive nations and the proliferation goals of nuclear weaponry. The Cold War, which took place following World War II, was a power struggle between the world powers, more specifically the United States and the Soviet Union. During the Cold War, nuclear proliferation became inevitable as the world powers and their allies struggled to obtain the resources necessary to build their own nuclear weapon. As other nations developed the capability to produce nuclear weapons, limiting nuclear proliferation to the greatest degree possible became one of the primary goals of American foreign policy. The events following World War II, inadvertently changed the international politics of the United States by requiring the American government to take a more active role in the affairs of the nation. In the long run, the proliferation of nuclear weapons increased the Cold War but diminished the desire for a hot war.
For centuries, the United States' foreign policy was isolationism, however, the Americans' international politics changed dramatically by the end of World War II.2 The United States rarely developed international policies, military advancements, or technological advancements before other nations. "The United States through most of its history had hardly led the world in developing new war-fighting technologies. Americans had tended to imitate rather than to originate weaponry"3 As the war came to a close, the United Stated tested the first nuclear weapon, an atomic bomb. The Americans' development of the first nuclear weapon was unprecedented, but the United States was trying to find a fast and cost effective solution to bring World War II to an end. "Having acquired this awesome weapon, the United States used it against Japan for a simple and straightforward reason: to achieve victory as quickly, as decisively, and as economically as possible Hiroshima and Nagasaki were destroyed"4 This devastating demonstration of the atomic bomb ended World War II only weeks after the creation of the United Nations. The United States government started to take an active role in the world and the security of the nation instead of maintaining its isolationist views. The United States government enacted organizations, policies, plans, and treaties to insure the safety and security of themselves and their allies, therefore taking on a very untraditional role. At the end of the Second World War, the major concern was the containment of communism and the security of the United States and its allies. In 1946, Winston Churchill warned the United States about the Iron Curtain. The Iron Curtain was a "symbolic separation of Europe" between countries that were controlled by the Soviet Union and those that were not controlled by the Russians.5 The fear was that a "domino effect"6 (one country falls to communism then they all ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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