Cultural Studies

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By Oliver Edwards

The chilly struggle is an enormous and complicated subject in contemporary overseas historical past. the writer of this identify has delineated the function of the U.S. from the worldwide clash, so that it will concentration upon the factors, direction and outcomes of yankee coverage. thoughts equivalent to "containment", "roll again" and "massive retaliation" are deconstructed in a transparent and concise demeanour. diplomacy are tested as responses to US activities, allowing scholars to acquire a coherent evaluate of America's involvement on the planet regulations of the interval and supplying them with solutions to advanced questions which require massive authentic wisdom.

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The aims of containment are examined. There is then a full discussion of the measures taken by the United States to check the expansion of communism both in Europe and in Asia during the opening phase of the Cold War. Finally it is important to construct a balance-sheet, weighing the successes of containment in this period against its failures. KEY DATES 1947 12 March 7 June 26 July Truman addressed Congress on the issue of financial aid to Greece and Turkey: the Truman Doctrine Announcement of the Marshall Plan Congress passed the National Security Act 1948 24 June 25 June Soviets imposed road, rail and river blockade on west Berlin Berlin airlift began 1949 4 April 12 May 11 September Creation of NATO Soviets lifted Berlin blockade Federal Republic of Germany (West Germany) was established 1 Introduction In 1947 the United States adopted a policy of containment.

Marshall Aid would create a captive market for American goods in western Europe for the next four years and help American farmers and businessmen threatened by falling domestic demand after the end of the Second World War. The real function of the Marshall Plan, however, was the containment of communism. In the spring of 1947 Washington’s reading of the situation in western Europe was pessimistic. Americans saw a continent in the grip of economic recession. In actual fact the economy of western Europe was stronger than Americans believed, but there was some supporting evidence for their gloomy diagnosis of western Europe’s condition.

Hitherto Stalin had accepted a degree of free enterprise and democratic politics in countries such as Hungary, but at the beginning of 1948 non-communists were expelled from the Hungarian government and Stalinists were placed in key positions. Events in Czechoslovakia were the best example of Stalin’s tightening grip on the Soviet bloc. When the Czechs pursued their interest in the Marshall Plan, the Czech communists seized power in February 1948 and the pro-western Czech foreign minister, Jan Masaryk, was murdered.

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