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The Relations Between Soviet Union and United States After World War II

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The Relations Between Soviet Union and United States After World War II Source Based After the end of WWII, relations between the two superpowers, America
and the Soviet Union, began to break down. As a result, the Cold War
began in the late 1940's, named so because neither power came into
direct military conflict.coea ear From 1955 to 1958, U2 spy planes
from America had been flying photographic missions over the Soviet
Union. It showed mistrust toward the SU and broke international law.
The Soviets could not detect them, even though the arms race was in
progress, as shown in Source A1, a non biased primary source of good
utility published in a British magazine. It makes a joke of how the
arms race can be compared to an Olympic running race, where "The
important thing is not winning, but taking part". The Americans and
the Soviets are neck and neck, showing the tension and pressure to win
the race. On May 1 1960 a U2 plane, piloted by Gary Powers, was shot
down by a SAM-2 missile. Source A2 demonstrates the type of plane that
he flew. It is a primary source, however, the provenance is unsure and
the utility of the source, limited. The caption infers that the SU
knew the Americans were flying overhead. This would add to the tension
that was building between the powers at this point. The flight path of
the reconnaissance missions is shown in Source A3, a primary source,
published the day Powers was shot down. The reliability of the source
is bad due to the unknown provenance but the utility is good - it
shows the flight path over the SU, to see where military bases and
missiles were positioned. In doing this, the US were taking a great
risk in global security and foreign relations, but felt that it was a
necessary risk in order to analyse the progress made by the SU in the
arms race. President Eisenhower denied that the plane was flying in
Soviet airspace. In Source A4, a secondary source, SR Gibbons, a
British Historian interprets the impact the spy plane had on the Paris
summit, organised to resolve the issue of Berlin and reduce tension
between the two leaders. At the summit, Khrushchev demanded an
apology. Eisenhower, however stated that "the USA had the right to
gather intelligence in any possible way, since the USSR was a closed
society". Eisenhower feared that "espionage networks would be set
up…and so it was the responsibility of the US to protect itself from
surprise attack". Khrushchev walked out of the summit and this had a
detrimental effect on foreign relations. Khrushchev's view of the
situation was reflected in a speech given on his return from the
summit, shown in the primary Source A5. It is not biased, but phrased
to point out that the Americans have broken "international law" and
suggests that the SU is being reasonable in demanding an apology.
Later on Khrushchev, also said that the US "seem unable to call a halt
to their war effort". Eisenhower's refusal to apologise created
greater tension between the two superpowers and the Cold War became
more seriousAs relations were deteriorating, the situation in SE Asia
was becoming precarious for the US. A civil war had broken out and
America now had to decide whether to follow the Truman
DoctrinePresident Eisenhower made the decision and set the tone of US
foreign policy as Source B1, a primary source of good utility, shows.
Eisenhower reiterates the domino theory but focuses on "stopping the
Communist advances in Southeast Asia". oppressed phil72's
rationalisation .

After the Geneva Peace conference, Vietnam was split into communist
north and capitalist south. The borders are shown in Source B2. Its
provenance is unsure, although it may be from a textbook because of
the caption. The date is vague and it is unknown if these are
communist areas before or after American intervention. It appears that
the communists were making advances and depicts the Ho Chi Minh trail,
used to support the communist guerillas in S.Vietnam. This would have
caused anxiety amongst the country's political leaders. The American
leaders were clearly concerned. Kennedy received a report from Vice
President Johnson, shown in Source B3. It is a primary source and
states Johnson's view of the situation in Vietnam. The interpretation
sets out two options; "help these countries or throw in the towel". He
recommends action and implies America's reputation is at risk if "we
don't stand by our friends". America's political situation was
delicate due to the pressure to enforce the promises made in the
Truman doctrine. This pressure is shown in Source B4(i), a secondary
source written by SE Ambrose, a British historian. It's utility is
good, however, it is only an interpretation of why the situation got
worse. It states Kennedy's wishes, to "win the battle for the Third
World" and talks about a "counterinsurgency force" to stop rebels.
Kennedy realised that there must be more than just a military solution
to the problem and put "all his influence" into the Green Berets who
would stop communism. Ambrose implies that Kennedy took a very direct
approach to the situation but is ironic when saying, "when all was
ready [Kennedy] sent them out to save the world". The political
urgency to stop communism is shown in Source B4(ii), a primary source,
depicting the type of support given to the Vietnamese by the
Americans. It is assumed that the source's provenance is South
Vietnamese or American due to the proximity at which the photograph
was taken. It shows the Americans put a lot of money into South
Vietnam because of the helicopter. It is manned by the Vietnamese and
so was probably taken before the USA had intervened too much. This
dissertation from www.coursework.info

America's role in the war is viewed in a negative manner in Source B5.
It has been written by JM Roberts, a British Historian, however the
source is a more general account. The source explains how and why "the
loss of 50,000 American lives" is Kennedy's fault and how his actions
led to events that "Truman had been determined to avoid". It was the
first time the Americans took unilateral action and Roberts suggests
that this was a major failing of KennedyAs US involvement in Vietnam
increased, Kennedy was faced with the issue of Berlin, which was
problematic to the SU and US alike. The statistics in Source D1 show
the thousands of refugees who fled from the rundown Communist East to
the prosperous Capitalist West throughout the whole of Germany from
1955-65. On 13 August 1961 the Berlin Wall was built and the number of
refugees decreased by almost ninety percent. The source's reliability
is questionable due to the unknown provenance, but the number of
people wanting to leave the East would have caused tension and
mistrust amongst the Soviet leaders towards the western world.
Foucault obfuscated phil72's structuration hypothesis.

Before the wall, relations between the US and the SU were good enough
so that the two leaders could convene "face to face at the Vienna
summit" as the primary Source D2(i) shows. The utility is limited
because the provenance is unknown. It was possibly a posed photograph
used for propaganda purposes to gain a political advantage on
Kennedy's behalf. The SU would not have benefited from the picture
because of the censorship policy. At face value the photograph shows
that relations were formal with Khrushchev speaking and both men
smiling and that the tension was not high because they are sitting
quite close together. This, however, is not the case. At the summit,
Kennedy is given the impression that the SU "were willing to risk a
nuclear war" interprets the historian Laqueur in the secondary Source
D2(ii). The historian suggests that the SU wanted to provoke a world
crisis and were trying brinkmanship but "misjudged the American
temper". The conference ended in a "sombre mood" which created greater
tension between the powers. RTAl Visit coursework gg in gg fo gg for
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After returning from the conference, Kennedy made a speech on 25 July
1961 (Source D3) and it embodied his attitude towards Berlin and the
Cold War. He makes a big issue of Berlin, using emotive words such as
"symbol…beacon…showcase". It is a very judged speech and talks about
Stalingrad, perhaps suggesting that the US would have Berlin as their
great victory, just as the Soviets had Stalingrad as theirs. This
speech would have had a detrimental effect on the relations between
the US and the SU and the hostility would have grown. The severity of
the war was so great that a few months later, the Berlin Wall was
constructed. The photograph in Source D4(i) was taken from West to
East, possibly as an American propaganda exercise to show what the
communists were doing; bricking people into the East was the only way
that they could make them stay. The isolation of the wall increased
tension between the Soviets and the Allies as there was now a distinct
separation between East and West. Kennedy went to see the wall in June
1963. Source D4(ii), a primary source, shows this. It would have been
taken by the Western media and depicts Kennedy looking into the East,
close to the centre of Berlin. Kennedy showed a great commitment to
Berlin by putting himself in full view of assassins and is
demonstrating an act of defiance by looking into the East. This could
be seen as a provocative act, which would increase the friction
between the powersDuring the visit, Kennedy made the speech that is
shown in Source D5. It captures everything that was good in the free
world. He states what the Cold War was about, how America will never
"work with the communists", communism is an "evil system" and also
repeats "Let them come to Berlin". This speech was a great propaganda
victory and would have added fuel to the fire. Sources D3, D4 and D5
exploit the Berlin situation and create the image of wicked, evil
communism. This would not have relieved tension but worsened the
relationsSources A - D show that the Cold War became much more serious
during 1961-3 and that relations between America and the Soviet Union
were rapidly deteriorating throughout this time.

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