Roosevelt's Responsibility for the Cold War Essay

Roosevelt's Responsibility for the Cold War Essay

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Roosevelt's Responsibility for the Cold War


Certainly Roosevelt’s naive attempt to foster diplomacy with his World
War II ally allowed Stalin to quickly secure the Eastern front of
Russia placing the nation in a position of power in Europe. However in
the context of the post-war period this policy of appeasement and
gratuitous diplomacy during the Yalta conference was not significant
in starting the Cold War because it produced no immediate results that
would have triggered such a dispute. Truman on the other hand, created
an ideological discord between communism and capitalism that was
unprecedented at the time and pursued this policy with great ardor
during the Potsdam conference and during the closing stages of World
War II. It is a fallacious to assume that Roosevelt’s naïve foreign
policy with the U.S.S.R was significantly responsible for the Cold War
when it was clearly Truman’s belligerent approach to foreign affairs
that ignited the conflict.

Roosevelt diligently tried to ignore the popular claim that soviet
expansion into Eastern European nations bordering Russia was an
attempt to spread communism and attain hegemony. In his view, Russia
was just insecure having been the victim of the spurious Nazi-Soviet
pact and Operation Barbarossa instigated primarily through Poland. He
believed that Stalin just wanted to secure the Eastern front of Russia
to avoid future invasions. Harriman, advised Roosevelt on taking a
coercive stance with Russia, and on fulfilling the goals of the
Atlantic Charter. Roosevelt always took a moderate path and therefore
loosely abided to encourage democracy in Europe, but not to the extent
that it...


... middle of paper ...


...g of the
bombs indicated to Stalin that Truman was willing to threaten the
security parameters of the Soviet Union. Stalin therefore realized
that he could only gain back negotiating powers by building a bomb
himself.

It now appears inane to claim that Roosevelt’s attempt at avoiding a
conflict such as the Cold War actually led to it, when contrasting his
policies with those of Truman’s. Certainly the U.S.S.R. made
tremendous progress in terms of securing its influence of power, and
for that the blame is ascribed to Roosevelt. Yet he was never
significantly responsible for starting the Cold War. The conflict
could have easily been avoided. Without a doubt, Truman’s coercive
diplomacy incorporated with his atomic threat really created the
conflict. His policies also greatly shaped the conflict in its
entirety.

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