The Cold War: The Causes Of The Second World War

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The Second World War is the most catastrophic war of the twentieth century in terms of overall magnitude and mortality rate. The spark that ignited WWII can be attributed to the Treaty of Versailles and the wrongful treatment of the German people as outlined in the War Guilt Clause (Spielvogel 524). It specifically blamed Germany for causing WWI, rather than Austria-Hungary, as well as obligated the payment of war reparations on nations afflicted by the destruction of the war. In subsequent years, many European nations became susceptible to the totalitarian regimes as was the case in Italy and Germany, where the Fascists and Nazis took over with relative ease. The reason for the rapid takeover in Germany was that Adolf Hitler instilled hope …show more content…
and the Soviet Union, which played out globally, as both nations competed for political dominance throughout much of the world. According to President Eisenhower’s statement, “If men can develop weapons that are so terrifying as to make the thought of global war include almost a sentence for suicide, you would think that man 's intelligence and his comprehension... would include also his ability to find a peaceful solution” (“Dwight Eisenhower Biography”). Unlike previous wars, a threat of full-out nuclear war persisted between the two nations that could possibly result in a nuclear holocaust. Due to this frenzy, many international conflicts were ignited which led to countless confrontations between the U.S. and the USSR. The catalyst can be attributed to the idea of communism versus democracy in which one saw the other as politically inferior. Historians agree that the Cold War has its origins during the Yalta Conference when it was discussed what to do with Germany after its defeat. Moreover, it was agreed upon to divide Germany amongst them and hold democratic elections in the countries freed from Nazi control (CrashCourse). In spite of previous agreements, Joseph Stalin was very keen on keeping the eastern countries under his control. In response to the Soviet’s actions, the U.S. issued a policy known as containment, preventing the spread of communism by confronting it wherever the ideals seemed to expand. Another U.S. policy known as the Marshall Plan provided large-scale aid to many war torn Western European nations, helping to rebuild their shattered economies and offered protection against Communist expansion (“Marshall Plan”). Although a face-to-face confrontation between the U.S. and Soviet Union never occurred there were plenty of times when war was just on the horizon, such as the Korean War, the Cuban Missile Crisis, and the Vietnam War. The official end of the Cold War was

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