Cold War a Critical Debate Term Paper

Pages: 10 (2953 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 10  ·  Level: College Senior  ·  Topic: Drama - World

SAMPLE EXCERPT:

[. . .] This policy certainly helped in increased production but it did not cause desirable progression in the industrial sector for two main reasons. The first reason was that managers of projects could not deliver. The greed and self-interest prevailed over the interest of state and secondly the state preferred the production of military hardware which was not a good economic choice for the growth and sustenance of large industrial sector. (Stearns)

The comparison of above two models reveals that consumerism promised rapid growth of economy as well as the public welfare, but on the other hand, productionism led to stagnant economy and no public welfare. In the long run United States benefitted immensely whereas it had devastating effects on USSR.

Deprivations of Third World Countries. In the Cold War period U.S. And USSR along with their allies spent huge sums of money on the acquisition of destructive military power, but nothing was done to ameliorate down trodden third world countries. Despite industrialization the poor countries still remain poor; rather they have become poorer than before. The gap between first world countries and third world countries continues to widen. According to the author of "Origins of Modern World," the per capita income of richest countries was fifty five times more than the poorest countries in 1990. In the period 1960-1995 the ratio of income between rich and poor countries increased from 1:30 to 1:80.

Another shocking dimension of this problem is that one half of the world population (about three billion) falls in the category of poor nations. The majority of these deprived people live in Africa, India and China. Despite international goals, the condition of these people is getting worst. Chronic diseases like Malaria and AIDS and poverty has sapped their energies and made them a miserable lot.

Another sad aspect of the problem is that developed countries do not care about the pathetic condition of poor nations. They lay extra tariffs on the products of developing countries so as to make these costlier for the domestic consumers, provide extra facilities to their farmers in the form of better seed, irrigation and loans. This has widened the gap between the living conditions of farmers in developed and underdeveloped countries. The poor countries have been raising their voices for better treatment but to no avail. It is due to this unfair treatment, that huge demonstrations have been made world over against the agenda of WTO.

The End of Cold War Era

Consequent to the enforcement of oil embargo imposed by OPEC for raising the prices of the oil, the world economies suffered badly. The U.S. And USSR was no exception. U.S. economy experienced an uncommon combination of stagnation and inflation, which put a lot of stress not only on the U.S. economy but also the whole capitalist world. In the words of historian Eric Hobsbawn "1973 saw the end of post World War II Golden age and start of Crisis decade."This situation demanded a major shift in U.S. Cold War policies.

On the other hand, the economic conditions in USSR were not good either. Due to consistent slowing down of economic growth, the industry was not able to meet the demands of military and consumers. Despite that, the bureaucracy in USSR was not prepared to carry out a reappraisal of existing policies which made situation bad to worst. President Ronald Reagen of U.S. tried to make the economic maladies more acute by enhancing the defense spending, but USSR was in no position to give a matching response. Had it done so the end of USSR would have precipitated. (Global Security)

Faced with these bitter realities Reagen and Gorbachev of USSR had to make important decisions. Following the policies of Glasnost and Prestroica, Gorbachev signed agreements of nuclear arms control and arms reduction with United States leading to the end of Cold War era. Some officers of USSR tried to reverse the situation but they could not succeed. USSR grew weaker and weaker domestically. Its position among its allies was also getting feeble. In Eastern Europe. Deep economic distress, political corruption and loosening control of Moscow emboldened the people of these countries to hold public demonstrations. State police and army refused to suppress these demonstrations thus creating a chaotic disorder. USSR lost the control of East European states completely by the end of 1989 and communist regimes were thrown out of power peacefully. It was only in Rumania that President was killed. The end of USSR was completed with the secession of Central Asian Republics. It gave birth to fifteen independent states, Russia being the largest.

The end of Cold War era resulted in some geographical changes in the continent of Europe. East and West Germany got united. Czechoslovakia split into two independent states, Czech and Slovakia. After fierce atrocities and ethnic cleansing, Yugoslavia was divided into six independent states. (History)

A Critical Analysis of Cold War Era Consequences

With the end of Cold War era, the world has converted into a unipolar world. Now the United States is virtually the only super power. With its largest economy and most powerful military paraphernalia it is in position to call shots. Its economic hold on International Monetary Fund, World Bank and WTO combined with its predominant influence on the world bodies renders U.S. A unique position. At present it cannot be challenged by any one. However the present state might not continue for indefinite period. There are indications that center of global power is gradually shifting towards Asia. China is emerging steadily as one contender for the world power. Its economy is the fastest growing economy and it is likely to surpass the U.S. And Japanese economy size by year 2025. India with its fast growing economy is another contender of power. The economies of Singapore, Malaysia, Hong Kong and Korea are also progressing steadily. Japan is already an established world power and member of G-7 club. It is difficult to say that which country could emerge as most powerful country from the east. (Clare)

Clash of Civilization

The cataclysmic event of 9/11 led to the drastic changes in the world order. The Muslims were declared villains after the assertion that clash of civilization is on its way. Some scholars thought that after avowed statement of Osama bin Laden about the creation of Muslim Empire and due to rising hatred against American repressive policies among Muslim countries, it was considered likely that Muslims may pose a big threat to existing world order. The presence of largest proven oil reserves on Muslim's soil strengthens this threat further. But this assessment appears to be based on conjecture. First, U.S. have cordial relations with all oil producing Muslim Countries. Even in some countries U.S. troops are present to safeguard American interests. Secondly at present Muslims are not capable and strong enough to disturb world order by launching another crusade.

Economic Globalization

The end of cold war has resulted in the global spread of markets and Capitalism. Now the global economic order has become more uniform under the auspices of sole super power, U.S.. However, no state, including United States is in position to control world economy. The growth of global markets has created difficulties for the implementation of domestic economic policies. In the face of international pressures, the governments have to tailor their policies accordingly. The WTO phenomenon is one example.

Scarcity of Energy Resources

Only those societies are strong and powerful which can mobilize energy resources for their industry, domestic consumers and armies. But in the post cold war era, the demand of energy resources has overshot its supply in developing countries. The rapid development of China and India including the advent of high consuming middle class has caused an increase in demand of oil. On the other hand resources of oil are depleting. This phenomenon has resulted in the price hike and may ultimately result in its scarcity. If more oil deposits are not discovered, then instability may result. (Hobson, 2004)

Bibliography

Clare, J. Consequences of the Cold War.

Ererdi, C. The Cold War Era.

Global Security. (n.d.). Cold War. Retrieved from GlobalSecurity.org: http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/ops/cold_war.htm

Harbutt, F. The Cold War Era.

History. (n.d.). Cold War. Retrieved from History.com: http://www.history.com/topics/cold-war

Hobson, J. (2004). The Eastern Origins of Western Civilization . Cambridge University Press.

Marks, R. (2007). The Origins of the Modern World. USA: Rowman and LittleField .

Stearns, P. Consumerism in World History. [END OF PREVIEW]

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