The Cold War: Its Causes And Its Conclusion

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| The Cold War | Its Causes and Its Conclusion | | Eben Curtis-Maynard | 12/13/2010 | HI1313 Professor Watters | Eben Curtis-Maynard The Cold War HI 1313 Professor Watters For forty-three years, although no war between the superpowers of the United States and the Soviet Union was ever officially declared, the leaders of the democratic West and the Communist East faced off against each other in the Cold War. The war was not considered “hot” because neither superpower directly attacked the other. Nevertheless, despite attempts to negotiate during periods of peaceful coexistence and détente, these two nations fought overt and covert battles to expand their influence across the globe. The conflict between East and West had deep roots. Well before the Cold War, the relationship between the United States and the Soviet Union had been hostile. Although in the early 1920s, shortly after the Communist revolution in Russia, the United States had provided famine relief to the Soviets and American businesses had established commercial ties in the Soviet Union, by the 1930s the relationship had soured. By the time the United States established an official relationship with the new Communist nation in 1933, the oppressive, totalitarian nature of Joseph Stalin’s regime presented an obstacle to friendly relations with the West. Americans saw themselves as champions of the free world, and tyrants such as Stalin represented everything the United States opposed. At the same time, the Soviets, who believed that capitalism exploited the masses, saw the United States as the oppressor. Despite deep-seated mistrust and hostility between the Soviet Union and Western democracies such as the United States, an alliance was forged among them in the 1940s to fight a common enemy, Nazi Germany, which had invaded Russia in June 1941. Although the Allies eventually
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