How did the Cold War develop?
The Cold War got worse, 1949 to 1962
1949 : The ending of the Berlin blockade ; USSR developed atom bomb;
China becomes a communist country ; the creation of NATO
Why was NATO created ? (North Atlantic Treaty Organisation, created by capitalist west)
• There was a great fear of the spread of communism. Eastern Europe
had been taken over by the USSR between 1946 and 1948. Countries like
Hungary, Czechoslovakia, Poland, etc were all occupied by the USSR.
Why was the Warsaw Pact created ? (created by the Communists)
• West Germany had been allowed to join NATO. This brought back
to the Russians the memory of World War Two and how Germany had caused
so much damage.
So Europe is divided into two : NATO vs. the WARSAW PACT. Stalin died in 1953 but things did not get better. In fact, they got a lot worse.
The new leader of the USSR, Khrushchev promised PEACEFUL CO-EXISTENCE. Basically it meant that he believed that the west had the right to exist and rather than trying to destroy it, the USSR should try to compete with the West.
So was Khrushchev any different to Stalin in his dealings with the eastern
European countries ? /Why did trouble start in Hungary ?
What were the results of the Hungarian uprising ?
There were two weeks of bitter fighting between the Soviets and the
Hungarians. The Hungarians were determined not to give in. By the end
of October, there were heavy casualties amongst the Hungarians. Around
30,000 were killed and 200,000 fled the country.
Crisis develops in Berlin / Why was the Berlin Wall built ?
Berlin was losing between 20,000 and 25,000 people monthly following
the blockade. Many of these people who moved were either doctors, lawyers
or engineers. It was difficult to replace these people.
(c) In 1959, Cuba had been taken over by a communist leader, Fidel Castro. Cuba was less than one hundred miles away from the American coast. If nuclear weapons were put onto the island it would mean that America could easily be bombed. America was also frightened that the influence of communist Cuba would mean other countries near to America would become communist.
(d) to try to stop this, the American President, John F. Kennedy had tried to get rid of the Castro. In 1961, the American CIA had tried to help Cubans get rid of Castro. Americans helped with the invasion of the Bay of Pigs but the attack failed. Cuba (and Russia) and America became even more suspicious of each other.
(e) In 1962, Castro turned to Russia and asked them secretly for military
help. In August 1962, the Russians secretly shipped equipment and technicians
to Cuba in preparation for nuclear weapons. In October 1962, the Russians
send ships to Cuba carrying nuclear weapons. As the ships were entering
the area closed to Cuba, President Kennedy acted. He stated that any ships
which entered an exclusion zone around Cuba would be boarded and taken
over by Americans. Eventually, the Russian leader, Khrushchev ordered
the ships to turn around and sail back. Russia.
How did relations between the superpoWers change between 1949 and 1962?
In 1949, relations between the superpowers was getting worse, Following
on from the Berlin jlirlift, trust between b'Oththe USA and the USSR had
broken down. Stalin had tried to force the capitalist west Berlin into
becoming communist. The determination of the USA, GB and France to make
sure that this did not happen forced Stalin to back down and allow all
land routes to west Berlin to be restored.
In 1956, Khrushchev became the new leader of the USSR. His peaceful co -existnece speech seemed to offer some new hope that he would accept that the USSR and USA could get on with each other. This proved to be short lived as he ordered the crushing of the uprising in Hungary in 1956 when they threatened to leave the Warsaw Pact. He also tried to compete with the west over sporting competitions and the developments in space .
Things got worse in 1961 with the building of the Berlin wall. Khrushchev was worried that many of the most important people in east Berlin were being attracted to west Berlin because of the better lifestyle and greater income. Seeing Kennedy as a weak and inexperienced president over the Bay of Pigs event in Cuba, Khrushchev ordered the building of a wall. Tension was increasing further and this was seen over the arms race.
The Soviet's built their first atom bomb in 1949 which meant that the USA was no longer ahead of the Soviets. This encouraged both sides to build more powerful weapons -the H -bomb in 1952 and later the development of ABM's and ICBM's. Relations were breaking down as both sides tried to have more weapons than the other. Events in Cuba now showed how bad superpower relations were when the pro -communist government of Cuba had nuclear weapons sent there. Kennedy's decision to blockade the island nearly brought the superpowers to conflict. In the end, the Soviets backed down.
Between 1949 and 1962, relations between the superpowers obviously got worse. The USA and USSR came into direct competition over arms and nearly into direct conflict over Cuba.