The Function of the Truman Doctrine and Marshall Plan in Preventing the Spread of Communism During the Cold War

The Function of the Truman Doctrine and Marshall Plan in Preventing the Spread of Communism During the Cold War

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The foreign policy of the United States during the Cold War fully supported the growth of democratic nations. The USSR, however, wanted countries to become communist like them. These opposing views led to tension between the two nations. As a result, in 1947, President Truman issued the Truman Doctrine which stated that the United States would supply aid to any country as long as they pledged to be democratic. The Marshall plan was enacted in 1948 and it was similar to the Truman Doctrine except it provided financial aid to these countries. In the late 1940s and early 1950s, the United States used its foreign policy to help countries resist communist influence.
The Korean War , although successful in preventing the spread of communism, was one of the first tests of communism in Asia. North Korea was strictly communist while South Korea was democratic. As usual, the United States supported democratic South Korea and the Truman Doctrine was applied to the Korean situation. The North Korean forces crossed the dividing line (38th parallel) and invaded South Korea. Thus, they provoked a war over communism. With the possibility of democratic South Korea falling to the communistic North, the U.S. stepped in and supplied aid mostly through troops. The U.S. then urged the United Nations to support South Korea and fight against the communist North. Once the North Korean forces were defeated at Inchon, they eventually got pushed back to the 38th parallel. However, against President Truman’s word, American General MacArthur decided to keep pushing back the North Korean forces by crossing the dividing line. This caused more trouble because the People’s Republic of China (Communist China) now sent troops to aid the communists against the pro...


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...the United States did not step in, all of Korea today would probably be communist. Greece’s democratic stability was being threatened by communists who sought to overthrow the government. Once the U.S. stepped in, the threat was avoided and Greece remained democratic. Similarly, Turkey was vulnerable to communism so the United States made a preemptive move by supplying Turkey with a massive amount of troops and financial aid.
The U.S. foreign policy failed when the government was unable to convince Mao Zedong into making China a democratic nation. This led to tension between the United States and China and also between the United States and the USSR because of the soviet’s support of Chinese communism. Although not always successful, the United States’ foreign policy during the Cold War proved to be effective in preventing the spread of communism around the world.

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