Differences During The Cold War And The United States

Improved Essays
The Cold War lasted nearly 45 years because neither the United States nor the Soviet Union wanted to compromise their political or religious ideals. Both nations considered their way of thinking to be the best, and the looming threat of nuclear warfare further escalated the tension. A stalemate resulted from the countries’ inability to address their differences, especially those on politics, economics, and religion. When the United States and the Soviet Union began to address their differences, both had seen significant increases in arms productions and were facing their fears that the Cold War might turn hot. The United States held that democracy was the best government for all people. Because the Soviet Union ran under a totalitarian regime, …show more content…
After China obtained a new government, the United States refused to recognize the communist party, headed by Mao Zedong (Foner 888). Shortly after, the National Security Council (NSC) met and decided to pursue a “global crusade against communism” (Foner 888). The council proposed a plan to dramatically increase military spending: “In the broadest terms, the ability to perform these tasks requires a build-up of military strength by the United States and its allies…” (RAP 220). The NSC’s goal then was to produce more weapons than the Soviet Union in order to properly defend itself and its …show more content…
The United States wished to prevent the spread of communism and instead promote democracy and capitalism. Both countries increased production of arms, both nuclear and not, in order to stave off a possible invasion. Tensions between the two countries showed no signs of dissolving until Nixon introduced an idea of “peaceful coexistence” with the Soviet Union (Foner 1012). Détente, a softening of relations, would “replace the hostility of the Cold War” (Foner 1012). Both countries felt that their ideals were best, and Nixon saw that reworking relations was the only way to prevent an active war from breaking out. A result of Nixon’s new policy were the Strategic Arms Limitation Treaties (SALT). The treaties ceased the production of weapons and aimed to shrink each countries’ vast collection of nuclear missiles (Foner 1011). For the first time, the United States and Soviet Union worked to diffuse the possibility of an all-out war instead of preparing to retaliate if the other attacked

Related Documents

  • Improved Essays

    However, article two does give Reagan some credit on the military tactics, but focused more on how Gorbachev reacted to the threat of nuclear war and how he was the main reason the war ended. Both articles show major bias toward different people. Article one shows biased toward Reagan, while article two is inclined toward Gorbachev. For example, the author of article one says “Reagan did not need a Ph.D. in economics to recognize that any economy based on centralized planners… was doomed to disastrous failure.” This comment shows how the author of article one looked down on the Soviet government and thought Regan’s government was much better. The bias in the second article begins when the author says “Not…

    • 1778 Words
    • 7 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Defeating Communism

    • 847 Words
    • 4 Pages

    Between 1945 and 2001, the perceived national interest of defeating Communism took precedence over the real national interest of promoting Americans’ physical and economical security. The United States entered wars in Korea, Vietnam and Afghanistan because they believed preventing the spread of Communism was necessary to protect the American people. However, the success of the wars did not dictate American success in the overall Cold War. Professor Brands suggested that American leaders rally the people against a singular enemy to focus foreign policy on one mission at a time. Once the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991, the United States needed to find a new enemy.…

    • 847 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Great Essays

    War Over Religion Analysis

    • 1414 Words
    • 6 Pages

    While Americans believed that their capitalist government was superior. Where “the people own the means of production and set prices”, leading to “Economic growth and a higher standard of living” (Pettinger). With these differences the cold war started. To prepare for war both sides went back and forth attempting to out due one another in technology and weaponry, but since World War two just ended both nations agreed to not attack unless the other nation did. To attempt to end the cold war president Richard Nixon negotiated the Strategic Arms Limitation Treaty (SALT) prohibiting the manufacturing of nuclear arms, and agreed with the Soviet Union to settle things without the use of violence.…

    • 1414 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Great Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Some skeptics argue that President Truman dropped two atomic bombs on Japan, which he knew was on the verge of defeat, to intimidate the Soviet Union in an already developing Cold War. Also, others believe that two atomic bombs weren’t necessary; instead, one was more than enough. However, facts prove that using the atomic bombs were the lesser of two evils. To prove such beliefs, I will use the six criteria for just war. The first criteria (legitimate authority) ensures that war isn’t waged for private ends, but for those of the majority.…

    • 429 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Brilliant Essays

    Although the US claimed there was no missile gap between the two, the USSR was clearly behind in the race. This was particularly fearful for the Soviet Union who did not want the US to launch a first strike from Turkey which was merely 150 miles away. The decision made by Khrushchev to build launch sites in Cuba is likely because “Khrushchev was attracted by the idea of appearing to gain greater military strength relative to US”(IBID, 168). This came from domestic issues brewing in the USSR, where it is was essential to appear strong and convince both the citizens of the Soviet Union and the rest of the world that socialism was equally if not stronger than the US and their democracy. Therefore, all weaknesses, in this case military, needed to be concealed and so the idea the USSR were now on par with the US in nuclear missiles arguably encouraged Khrushchev to continue gaining greater military strength.…

    • 1482 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Brilliant Essays
  • Great Essays

    Ronald Reagan Influence

    • 1501 Words
    • 7 Pages

    However, President Reagan would not allow this spread of evil. Ronald believed that the advancement of communism anywhere threatened freedom everywhere. So, to stop this malevolent political movement, Reagan though it would be best to not work alone. He worked with countries who were involved with the NATO such as the United Kingdom, France, and Italy. Reagan worked and provided these anticommunist countries with financial and military aid to prevent this dispersion of communism.…

    • 1501 Words
    • 7 Pages
    Great Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Nixon like very president before him wanted to avoid a nuclear war and thus wanted Soviet relations improved upon. But on a more selfish note Nixon new that his domestic approval was low and that he needed to boost his voter support by focusing on the positive foreign relations rather than the negative press he was getting from civil rights leaders and Vietnam War opponents. Dente became an interest of the USSR when the U.S created a positive interaction with China when Nixon visited China in February of 1972. This made the USSR nervous since they were at odds with China and the U.S and did not want their two opponents teamed up rights next to their nations border. So, the USSR…

    • 1137 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Superior Essays

    The fact that there was no need for a unity between the two sides after WW2 meant that the Cold War emerged. The original cooperation was because of the common goal to defeat fascism and Gaddis describes it as “a single planet shared by superpowers who shared the means of wiping each other out – but who now also shared an interest in each other’s survival.” Geoffrey Roberts further backs up this point as he states that it was “period of cooperation, not confrontation.” Both the West and Russia realised that they needed each other in order to beat fascism and Hitler. Without the USSR 's troops and the West’s funding Germany may have been successful. However, once the war had ended and the fascism threat was dealt with the superpowers continued…

    • 2362 Words
    • 9 Pages
    Superior Essays
  • Improved Essays

    If one were to decide whether proliferation should occur simply from this information, the only rational choice would be to oppose the negative consequences. However, preventing proliferation undermines the powers of other nations. The prohibition of procurement or development of nuclear weapons for some countries, and the acceptance of stockpiling of nuclear arsenal for other countries cannot be justified. Furthermore, democratic nations such as the United States guarantee equality and liberty to their citizens, but hypocritically prevent other nations from developing nuclear arsenal that they themselves enjoy. In addition to reaping economic advantages and increased influence in international politics, these countries, through the development of nuclear weapons, will also gain a sense of security that they will be able to retaliate if attacked.…

    • 1380 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Decent Essays

    Geography of the Cold War: What is Containment? Containment means to stop the spread of communism. America during the Cold War wanted to stop communism from spreading to other places in the world. The Soviet Union however wanted communism to spread throughout the world and they wanted to be the ones to spread it. Stalin and The Soviets believed that communism is better than capitalism and that they would win this war.…

    • 434 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Decent Essays