After the Second World War, non-violent rivalry, Cold War, emerged between the United States and the Soviet Union. The rivalry lasted for several years, creating division between the Eastern and the Western countries, who had been allies towards the end of World War Two. USSR and the U.S, who were super powers, engineered the Cold War with the aim of gaining supremacy worldwide. Their philosophies differed significantly since the United States practiced capitalism, while the USSR explored communism. Both countries developed superior weapons, such as nuclear weapons and atomic bombs, as well as best technologies to prove their superiority. Although the Cold War majorly involved the U.S and the Soviet Union, the impact was felt by other countries worldwide. In Boundless articles “Competition between East and West” and “Crisis Points of The Cold War”, the authors describe the competition between the U.S and the Soviet Union as well as the effects of the Cold War in other countries.
“Competition between East and West”
According to Boundless, the USSR and the U.S engaged in a space race competition to prove technological superiority in the exploration of the space and the flight capabilities. For example, the USSR was the first country to launch a satellite sputnik to the space on 4th October, 1957. The U.S responded by landing the first man to the moon, in 1969, with Apollo 11; the first space flight, to demonstrate its superiority over the Soviets. These successful space flights of the two nations, occurred after the fatal incidences of their pioneer crews, which was as a result of aircraft malfunctioning. The two rival nations, competed in other countries outside Europe, for philosophical and ideological influence. All countries that were influenced by USSR, adopted communism, whereas, countries influenced by the U.S, adopted capitalism. Both nations, scrambled for alliance with the decolonized countries, through promises of finance, diplomatic, and military support. Despite the superpowers’ promises, the third world nations declined to align with either nation. Instead, the third countries formed a Non-Aligned Movement, headed by Austria, India, and Egypt, whose goal was to unite against the rule of the U.S and Soviets. Propaganda was commonly used during the Cold War to achieve particular goals. The USSR spread propaganda through the Eastern Bloc, whereas the U.S counteracted the communist propaganda via the Radio Free Europe broadcast.
“Crisis points of the Cold War”
The 1956 Suez Crisis
Boundless argues that during the Cold War, Israel, United Kingdom and France invaded Egypt consecutively, with the main aim of overthrowing president Gamal Abdel Nasser as well as gaining control of the Suez Canal. Following the violence in Egypt, the U.S, USSR, and the United Nations joined forces to withdraw the three invaders from Egypt. Nevertheless, the invaders defeated the Egyptian forces, thus attaining some of their goals. Unfortunately, pressures from the U.S and the Soviets Union compelled the three nations to retreat, resulting in Britain losing its super power.
The Hungarian uprising: the Hungarian Revolution occurred after the arranging of removal of Hungarian president by Khrushchev, in 1956 (Boundless). The Hungarian new regime alongside the Soviet Army responded to the revolution by invading and crushing the uprising. Resultantly, many Hungarians were arrested, and some were imprisoned and deported to the Soviet Union while thousands fled. Additionally, the Hungarian leader and some of his accomplices were executed.
The Korean War: At the end of the World War II, Korea was divided in to two states; the Northern and the Southern. The Soviets governed the Northern Korea, while the South elected their leader under the supervision of the UN in 1948 (Boundless). In 1950, the Northern Korea invaded the South, compelling Truman; the southern leader, to commit the U.S and the United Nations to countering the North Korean invasion. The Koreas were separated as a result of the Japanese invasion to help the North Koreans, leading to a war of attrition.
The Building of the Berlin Wall: According to Boundless, the construction of the Berlin wall by the Soviets was a way of preventing the U.S from accessing the West Berlin as well as barring the East Germans from escaping. Consequently, families were separated, and the East-Berliner workers in the West lost their jobs.
Cuban Missile Crisis: The U.S Navy countered the nuclear weapons installed in Cuba by the Soviets, leading to tensions. These events occurred after the U.S administration attempted to assassinate Fidel Castro, and overthrow the Cuban government in turn. The weapons were resultantly removed by the USSR following the U.S pledge to avoid Cuba reinvasion (Boundless). After the crisis, the West and the Soviet improved their relations, bringing peace to the nations.
The Cold War was a non-violent competition for supremacy between the U.S and the USSR and their allies that impacted other countries negatively. The crisis led to the construction of the Berlin Wall, which separated families and resulted to joblessness for the East Berlin workers in the Western side of the wall. Similarly, the West and the East Pioneer Crews perished in the first aircrafts, which were mechanically unstable. Despite the fatal incidences, the rival nations proceeded with their space exploration completion, with U.S sending the first man on the moon. The continuous tensed events finally ended after the Cuban crisis, resulting to better relationships between the West and the East.
Boundless. “Boundless World History: The Cold War”. State Of University of New York Ore Services. 6 Aug. 2018 328306186_Competition_between_East_and_West_7930982020889067. 8 Nov. 2019.