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Flashcards in The Beginning of the Cold War Deck (28)

What are the three major schools of thought on the causes of the Cold War?

Traditionalists, Revisionists, and the Post-Revisionists.


What were the ideas of the Traditionalists?

They thought that the Soviet union and the brutal dictatorship of Joseph Stalin was responsible for the development of hostilities between the East and West.


What were the ideas of the Revisionists?

They thought the the United States' fear of a postwar economic downturn made their policy one making the world safe for American trade rather than making the world safe for democracy.


What were the ideas of the Post-Revisionists?

They thought that while the Soviet Union bore the brunt of the responsibility for the Cold War, the United States played a larger role in increasing hostilities than Traditionalists would admit.


What was the premise behind the Cold War?

It was an conflict between the Anglo-American understanding of capitalism and the Communist ideals of totalitarianism and market control.


Where did differences between the Russians and the Anglo-Americans emerge?

Differences emerged even back in the Russian Civil War when the Allies aided the White Army. Even during WWII, mistrust played a role in the relationship between the Soviet Union and its Western allies.


What was the Yalta conference?

It was the emergence of mutual antagonism between the three powers as the war died down. The Big Three (Churchill, Roosevelt, Stalin) agreed to the temporary division of Germany after the war, where it was divided into 4 zones (France, Britain, America, Soviet Union), and Berlin was divided into 4 zones. It provided the Allies each an opportunity to affect the transformation in their own zone,.


How did the Soviet Union govern its sector of Germany?

It allowed for the re-establishment of all non-rightwing parties. Walter Ulbricht, the leader of the German Communist Party (KPD), thought there would be support for his government. However, anger at the Soviets for mass rape, dismantling of factories, and the failure of land reform made the people hostile to the Soviets and the KPD, so Ulbricht merged the KPD with the SPD (Social Democratic Party) to create a one-party state.


What was the conflict over reparations after WWII?

Neither the Americans nor the British were fundamentally opposed to reparations, while the Soviets wanted part of the Allies' money. However, the Western Allies did not want to decimate the German economy and be forced to care for the Germans. By his own initiative, American General Lucius Clay halted the collection of reparations, followed by the other Western allies, meaning that the goods stopped flowing to the Soviet Union.


How did tensions increase over Iran?

The Soviets and British jointly divided and occupied Iran and promised to leave at the end of the war. The British left, but the Soviets stayed behind and demanded oil concessions. When Truman heard that Soviet tanks were heading to Tehran, he sent warships to the Persian Gulf and Stalin removed his troops.


How did tensions rise over Turkey?

Stalin tried to intimidate Turkey into granting the Soviets naval bases. He massed troops along the Turkish border, and only withdrew his forces when he understood that the Americans would support Turkey.


What was George Kennan's Long Telegram?

He indicated that the Western relationship with the Soviets was one of dealing with an ideological enemy. He said that the West and the Soviet Union could not coexist.


What was the American policy of containment?

It was a policy with the long term, patient but firm and vigilant containment of Russian expansive tendencies.


What was the Truman Doctrine?

It was the policy of supporting free peoples who are resisting attempted subjugation by armed minorities or by outside pressures.


Where was containment first tested?

A Communist insurgency in Greece fought against the Greek Government. When the British were forced to stop supporting Greece for economic reasons, America intervened in order to inhibit Soviet control over Greece.


What was NATO?

It was a military alliance between the United States, Great Britain, France, Canada, Denmark, Belgium, Iceland, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, and Norway, soon joined by Greece and Turkey. An attack on one member was seen as an attack on all countries.


What was the Percentages Agreement?

It divided the various nations of Eastern Europe into spheres of influence based on percentages. While Britain and the Soviet Union signed the agreement, the United States refused to accept it.


What was the Declaration of Liberated Europe?

It stated that those in countries that were Axis or liberated, governments were to be formed that were representative of all elements of the population and that free elections were to be held at the earliest time.


What was Churchill's Iron Curtain speech?

Churchill was bemoaning Soviet dominance over Eastern Europe that the West could not stop or slow down, saying that an "iron curtain has descended across the Adriatic."


How did the Soviet Union control Poland?

Stalin continued with his plans to establish a government dominated by Polish Communists. He had Soviet troops in Poland and there was little the Western powers could do to stop it. After the Communists won in a landslide election, they ended the multiparty state. This single-party system was especially effective as Polish resentment grew and the Poles discovered the murder of 15,000 Polish officers in the forests of Katyn during WWII.


What were the advantages the Soviets had in controlling post-WWII states?

The Soviets wanted to control countries through less violent means. It was easy for them to do so because of the economic and social failure of Eastern states during the interwar period, and the Soviets were seen as liberators from German dominance.


What types of governments did the Soviet Union initially try to establish?

They initially tried to establish People's Democracies in Eastern Europe. These governments were more proletarian than the bourgeois West but not ready for a full-fledged Communist system.


What was the Marshall Plan?

It was the American led program that offered aid to destroyed countries after WWII.


What prompted tighter control over Eastern Europe?

The Soviets saw the Marshall Plan as a threat to informal Soviet control over eastern countries, as they would be drawn to the capitalist West. Stalin then asserted more direct control by intimidating or creating false plots against non-Communist political leaders in these eastern countries.


How was the post-WWII situation different in Czechoslovakia than other nations?

The government was dominated by Eduard Benes, who understood the necessity of maintaining pro-Soviet policy if Czechoslovakia were to retain its independence. Also, the Czechs thought the West sold them out at the Munich Conference, and saw the Soviets as liberators. However, Benes needed Marshall Plan money to rebuild Czechoslovakia.


How did the Soviets assert control over Czechoslovakia|?

The Czech Communists formed a People's Militia to put pressure on Benes's government and intimidated Benes into forming a government dominated by Communists. When the body of the foreign minister was found dead outside his house, it was clear that the multiparty state was coming to an end. The Social Democrats were forcibly absorbed into the Communist Party and in controlled elections, the Communists won complete victory and set up a Soviet-style state.


What was the major exception to Soviet control over Eastern Europe?



How was Yugoslavia run?

It was initially a broad alliance that was formed against the Croatian puppet government, but partisan fighting broke out between the Communists and the royalist Chetniks. Ultimately, the Communists won under the leadership of Josip Tito. Tito still maintained a brutal, communist police state, but was never trusted by Stalin because he received aid from Britain and America. Stalin was also wary of indigenous Communist movements, and a formal break in relations took place in 1948.