Cold War Essay Example


Cold War Essay Example

Cold War Essay: Introduction

The ideological and geopolitical struggle on a global scale between the two poles led by the USA and the USSR, which started right after the Second World War, is known as the Cold War. The Cold War began in 1947 with the Truman Doctrine named after Harry Truman, the then President of the United States, and continued between 1991 when the USSR Communist Party abolished itself ("Cold War” para. 1). In this article, statements of George Kennan, Richard Nixon, Dwight Eisenhower, Lyndon Johnson, John F. Kennedy and Kwame Nikrumah, who lived during the Cold War and gained an important place with their ideas, are analyzed.

Body Paragraphs

George F. Kennan, in full George Frost Kennan, American diplomat and historian best known for his successful advocacy of a “containment policy” to oppose Soviet expansionism following World War II ("George F. Kennan” 1). George f. Kennan describes the Russian people and state order throughout the article; He criticized the American bureaucracy, which had a shallow perspective towards the Soviets, by addressing history, sociology, religion, wars and economy. He stated that the classical approaches of the old period would not work. The new system it offers is based on surrounding the Soviets both ideologically and geographically and preventing the spread of the communist ideology and the Soviets ("George F. Kennan” para. 3). In this context, the wars in Vietnam, Korea and Afghanistan can be given as an example of the geographic encirclement. The alliances established on an international scale and the spread of the free-market economy can be given as examples of ideological surroundings (The Sources of Soviet Conduct 566). The containment policy is a strategy that makes the cold war a cold war somewhere. Kennan then defended US counter-pressure wherever the Soviets threatened to expand, predicting that such counter-pressure would lead either to the Soviets' willingness to cooperate with the United States or perhaps eventually to the internal collapse of the Soviet government. This view later became the core of US policy towards the Soviet Union. Finally, George Kennan's predictions show that he has observed the situation he is in very well.

The Nixon Doctrine (also known as the Guam Doctrine) was first mentioned at the press conference of the President of the United States Richard Nixon in Guam on July 25, 1969 ("Nixon Doctrine” para. 1). The Nixon doctrine generally states that the United States of America will continue to fulfil its responsibilities and provide order without taking control. Under this Doctrine, the US will not be directly responsible for the defense of any of its allies. Still, it is mentioned that it will take them under the umbrella of nuclear protection upon request or in the event of possible danger (Nixon 1). It envisaged the establishment of peace between countries within the cooperation framework to be developed between the USA and its allies. The Doctrine explained the main issues as follows:

  • First, the US will fulfil all its obligations arising from international agreements.
  • Second, in the event of a nuclear threat to its allies or countries whose assets are essential to the United States' security, the US will provide nuclear protection to those countries.
  • Third, in non-nuclear conflicts, the US will provide all kinds of logistical and economic support to its allies, fulfil all other obligations arising from international agreements, but demand that the threatened country use its workforce for self-defence. (Nixon 2)

Dwight David Eisenhower, nicknamed "Ike", 34th president of the United States (1953-1961). II. He was the commander-in-chief of the Allied forces in Western Europe during World War 1944-45. He became NATO's first commander in chief in 1951. He is of German origin. ("Dwight D. Eisenhower” para.1). During the presidential term; It maintained the ceasefire in the Korean War, continued the pressure on the Soviet Union during the Cold War, produced nuclear weapons for defence priorities, launched the space race, and expanded the Social Security program. With the coup in Iran in 1953, he played an active role in the overthrow of Mohammed Mosaddeq and the replacement of Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi. The article "Misplaced Power" mentioned how necessary the use of military power and atomic technology is. Dwight David Eisenhower defended America's military might, although he did not start a war in his postwar strategies (Eisenhower 2). He thinks that physical strength and technology and atomic bombs, and nuclear activities are supported.

Lyndon Baines Johnson is the 36th president of the United States ("Lyndon B. Johnson” para. 1). When he came to the presidency, the United States supported South Vietnam against the USSR and Chinese-backed North Vietnam in Vietnam, divided into two ("Lyndon B. Johnson” para. 2). Why should the United States be in Vietnam in the text of "Excerpts from" Peace Without Conquest "? and shows how important it is to have America in Vietnam. He states that he contributed to world peace by participating in the Vietnam war and actively fighting, which is frequently mentioned in the text (Johnson 1).

In this speech of John F. Kennedy in 1962, it is mentioned why Cuba is a threat (Kennedy 809). The military base established in Cuba in 1962 and the nuclear armament on this top started to pose a significant threat to America. This threat is mentioned that a nuclear weapon or missile that can be fired from Cuba can be effective in half of America and this threat should be eliminated as soon as possible. In his speech, JFK states that America's actions are not intending to start a war but only to ensure their safety. The measures to be taken, consisting of 7 items, are also explained in the speech. The first action to be taken is to arming back against the threat in Cuba. Besides, it has been said that by warning the USSR, which is the power behind the armament in Cuba, it will be held responsible in case of any attack. In general, it can be said from the text that they followed a defensive attitude for the Cold War. Defence-oriented measures have been taken in case of a threat.

In his speech "Excerpt from a Speech Delivered to the Council on Foreign Relations", Kwame Nkrumah talked about how Africa wanted to participate in the Cold War period (Nkrumah 1). He mentions that African peoples are technologically backward from the rest of the world, and that situation must be changed. He notes that their forces do not want to be involved in the war, and they know that their military forces will not make any difference in the war. He mentions that what African countries wish is the support of states to contribute to their education and technology development. In turn, African countries will support police and local law enforcement agencies. In this speech, Kwame Nkrumah was defensive on Africa's behalf during the Cold War (Nkrumah 1).

On the other hand, Red Army was prepared for the winter fight, and the conditions were on their behalf as they waited for the right moment. More specifically, the Nazis were exhausted and got so little supply to continue. Also, hard weather conditions block them to move forward, their tanks had not run, and their clothes did not protect them from the cold. In the 1941 winter, many Nazis got cold bites and died because of the lack of supply. When the spring came, they slowly regained their power and started to attack again. However, Soviet forces were ready to fight them back as they brought new T34 tanks, which played a critical role in defeating Nazis.

During the Soviet invasion, Hitler made severe strategical mistakes that led the Nazis to failure. The first one was to delay of occupation of Moscow; secondly, his plan was no good for the long term, and he constantly ordered armies to go in different directions. He sent the army south to north for Leningrad's invasion, which was a game-changer move because the Soviets knew that they were going to invade there. By the time they invade Leningrad, Red Army has already reinforced new soldiers, regained its power and ambushed them in there. More specifically, at first, the Nazis thought that they had won the city, but Red Army surrounded them and blocked their way out. Many Nazi soldiers were killed and captured.

Cold War Essay: Conclusion

As a result, many American leaders and prominent leaders followed different strategies during the Cold War, and these strategies had different results. Until 1991, with various reasons and finally the collapse of the USSR, the cold war period and its policies came to an end.


Cold War." Encyclopedia Britannica.

"Dwight D. Eisenhower." Encyclopedia Britannica.

Eisenhower, Dwight D. "Farewell Radio and Television Address to the American People." 17 Jan. 1961.

"First Annual Report to the Congress on United States Foreign Policy for the 1970's." Welcome to The American Presidency Project | The American Presidency Project.

"George F. Kennan." Encyclopedia Britannica.

Johnson, Lyndon B. "Peace Without Conquest." The American Presidency Project, 7 Apr. 1965.

Kennedy, John F. Radio and Television Report to the American People in the Soviet Arms Buildup in Cuba. Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States, John F. Kennedy, 1962.

"Lyndon B. Johnson." Encyclopedia Britannica.

Mayers, David. “Containment and the Primacy of Diplomacy: George Kennan's Views, 1947-1948.” International Security, vol. 11, no. 1, 1986, pp. 124–162. JSTOR.

"Nixon Doctrine." Encyclopedia Britannica.

Nixon, Richard. "First Annual Report to the Congress on United States Foreign Policy for the 1970's." Welcome to The American Presidency Project | The American Presidency Project,

Nkrumah, Kwame. "The Cold War: A History in Documents and Eyewitness Accounts." United States and the Third World at the Council on Foreign Relations, 1958, New York. Speech.

X (George Kennan). The Sources of Soviet Conduct. Foreign Affairs 25, 1945.

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