Essay: Cold War and Two Identifications

Pages: 3 (870 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 3  ·  Level: College Senior  ·  Topic: Drama - World  ·  Buy This Paper

Cold War

November 9, 1989 saw an enduring symbol of the Cold War between the U.S. And the Soviet Union fall. On that fateful night freedom seeking individuals from East Germany poured across the border after a government announcement indicating that travel restrictions were being removed. Those that crossed into West Berlin were met by throngs of West Germans and together they began chipping away at the steel and concrete edifice which for decades represented the tyranny of the totalitarian Soviet regime (MSNBC.com. N.D.). The dismantling of the wall marked the beginning of the end for the Soviet sphere of influence which had permeated throughout Eastern Europe and South East Asia. Less than two years later Eastern Europe had attained freedom from Communist rule, and the Soviet state collapsed under the weight of freedom. The dramatic end to the Cold War which marked fifty plus years of a Soviet- U.S. global struggle for influence did not mirror its beginnings. The initial stage of the Cold War was a slow "deterioration of relations between Moscow and Washington" (Eleanor Roosevelt National Historic Site. N.D.). However, after 1946 the Cold War moved from political squabbling between the nations to a struggle with considerable militaristic overtones.

From its inception the Cold War was about controlling spheres of influence around the globe. The Soviet Union was a committed Communist nation which sought a broad goal of advancing their ideology while concurrently protecting themselves from the U.S. And Western Europe through the establishment of Soviet satellite states in Eastern and Central Europe. The U.S. And the West were determined to see freedom and democracy take hold in global recognition of individual liberties and state self- governance. In this context statements such as Winston Churchill's in 1946 limn the formations of a drawn out struggle between ideologies and the pragmatism of state alliances. "From Stettin on the Baltic to Trieste on the Adriatic, an iron curtain has descended across the continent. Behind that line lie all the capitals of the ancient states of Central and Eastern Europe -- Warsaw, Berlin, Prague, Vienna, Budapest, Belgrade, Bucharest and Sofia" (the History Guide.org. N.D.).

As the Soviets and the West grappled with control over the political spoils of Europe left after the end of World War II, the Cold War began to heat up with a growing military component, as the Soviets raced to match the U.S. with the development of their own atomic bomb, as well as the development of the subsequent nuclear technology for the Hydrogen bomb. The nuclear arms race had its origins in the Cold War and was a hallmark of… [END OF PREVIEW]

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