Cold War Essay

1098 WordsMar 30, 20155 Pages
How far do you agree with the view that the Cold War came to an end because popular protest in the Communist Bloc during the 1980s weakened the Soviet hold over Eastern Europe? (30)! ! The Cold War came to an end in the 1980’s due to numerous factors. Political protests further weakened what was an already loose grip on Eastern Europe, protests had become increasingly more popular, and by 1989 large crowds were physically dismantling the Berlin Wall with hammers. The solidarity movement in Poland was popular, large in size and therefore influential, this pushed other Eastern European countries to consider a different style of government without Soviet control. Clearly the unhappiness in Eastern Europe against the communist regime did weaken the soviet hold, however the protests were caused by many other factors, the war did not come to an end because of this, instead the weakening of the soviet hold in the communist bloc was a catalyst in ending the war. It was the economic problems in the Soviet Union and thus in the Communist Bloc that had pushed people to there limits, many Eastern European countries were at the brink of starvation.The Reagan Doctrine was designed to weaken the Soviet empire ‘at the edges’, capitalist ideology was quickly spreading into the region. Gorbachev and his ‘New Political Thinking’ allowed the people to be more critical of the regime. In this way it was other factors that acted as the cause for the protests, and for the ending of the Cold War.! ! Leaders of Eastern European countries during the 1980’s were uninspiring and weak, the extensive use of secret police and surveillance systems, for example the Stasi in East Germany were the only things that had been keeping people from revolting. In Poland however, Solidarity had emerged, this was an illegal and independent trade union that was ready to challenge communist rule. Pope

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