Cold War

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With the fall of Nazi Germany in 1945 only two ideologies remained to duke it out on the world stage. History since this date would be largely dictated by the actions of the communist Soviet Union and the liberal-democratic United States, and the Cold War would be remembered largely as the result of two contrasting and powerful ideological empires edging one another out for worldwide dominance. People, when considering the gross scale events of the Cold War, were largely not influential. Whether it be the Cuban Missile Crisis, Korean and Vietnam wars, or simply the flow of daily life in both superpowers, almost every significant event can be tied to the actions of small groups of governmental officials. When considering the defining events of the initiation, the continuation, and the conclusion of the Cold War, all accounts suggest that the Cold War was almost exclusively the result of top-down decision-making.
Throughout the events that initiated the Cold War it is obvious that top-down decision-making was solely responsible for the inception of this largely ideological battle. To suggest that one type of decision-making had a large impact on the Cold War, it would stand that one should see examples of this decision-making in each period, and while this is certainly true for a top-down mentality, the same could not be said about the effects of the general people. Rooted in the debate over what to do with Germany and the rest of Europe following the Second World War, the first ideological strikes of both empires came as a scramble to ensure spheres of influence in post-war Europe. The events that dominated this period were the Soviet’s spread and support of Eastern European Communism and the United States’ stalwart defense of...

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...old War proved to have immediate causes rooted in the people, but proximate and ultimately the important causes came as the result of top-down decisions in policy.
Each period in the Cold War can be characterized by a number of events, and almost every single one can be attributed to top-down decision making on the part of governmental officials. Throughout the initiation governments set the stage for the Cold War to Follow, throughout the continuation of the Cold War governments satiated citizens while continuing the ideological conflict, and throughout the events that led to the collapse and conclusion of the Cold War governments offered the proximate causes that created circumstances for communism to fall. Looking into the future and the past you can see that while social unrest and change dots history, governmental decisions and their results define history.

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