Post-War World: The Cold War Cold War: Origins and Background



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Social Studies 11

Fleetwood Park


Post-War World: The Cold War
Cold War: Origins and Background

The Cold War was an ideological struggle between the_______________________________. These two nations emerged as_____________________, and attempted to spread their influence and power on a global scale (capitalist democracy vs. communism). The Cold War is characterized by the ever-present_______________________, and lasted from approximately____________.



  • Ideological Differences: The United States feared that the Soviet Union would eventually spread communism throughout the world and______________________. The Soviet Union feared that the _____________________________would eventually trigger a revolution in the Soviet Union and destroy communism.

  • ________________: After WWII, Stalin quickly established control in ___________nations (Bulgaria, Hungary, Romania, Poland, Czechoslovakia, and Yugoslavia) known as Satellite States. The United States used the domino metaphor to warn of_______________________.

  • ______________________: to halt the spread of communism by providing economic aid and military support to people ‘threatened’ by communism. The ___________________was the first step in this policy. It promised to support______________________________. The Marshall Plan was the second step to containment. In 1947, the US offered billions of dollars in aid to ____________________to help them resist the advance of communism.

Essentially, this is the___________ of the Cold War; both sides attempting to spread their influence in other regions, while trying to ‘__________’ or stop the other from doing the same.
Cold War: Major Events and Confrontations
1. The ___________________4._The_______________,_1950_–_1953'>___________________and Airlift, June 1948

  • After WWII, Germany was divided into____________: West Germany was controlled by the United States, Britain, and France. East Germany was controlled by the___________. Berlin was situated within the Soviet sector of the country, and western nations were only permitted access to West Berlin through specified highways, corridors, and railways.

  • When western powers decided to introduce a _____________________in West Berlin, the Soviet Union refused to accept it. Stalin ordered a blockade of all routes to West Berlin, and the western nations were forced to either ______________(not an option; fear of the domino theory) or airlift supplies into West Berlin. Airlifts went on for__________________.

  • Result: Berlin was officially divided into two separate governments.

2. The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), 1949

  • Formed mainly in response to the Berlin Blockade incident and fear of the domino theory

  • Several western nations joined NATO to _______________________________and ensure mutual defense. Each member contributed to NATO’s military force, and agreed that an attack on one member meant an_______________________.

3. The__________________, 1955

  • Developed in response to NATO, as a defensive alliance between the Soviet Union and its satellite states(although satellite states were technically____________________, they formed Soviet-style governments and essentially answered to ‘Mother Russia’ –________________


4. The_______________, 1950 – 1953

  • After Japan lost control of Korea in 1945, the country was______________. North Korea soon became communist, and South Korea became democratic. You see the problem here?

  • _____________________ (supported by Soviet-built tanks and aircraft) invaded the south.

  • The United States demanded that the __________________intervene in South Korea. The United Nations replaced the bogus League of Nations after WWII. The big difference was that the UN established a _____________________that had the power to force member countries to follow decisions.

  • The UN sent troops from ____________to Korea (26,000 Canadians). Led by the Americans, South Korean and UN forces forced an end to North Korean advancement.

  • _____________________was signed, and Korea remained divided between North and South.

Significance: The United Nations showed the world that unlike its predecessor, it was willing and able to take serious action when called upon. Also, _________________on March 5th 1953.

5. The_______________, 1956

  • Egyptian President Nasser seized the Suez Canal from_________________. Britain and France joined with Israel to attack_______. The Soviet Union, in response, supported Egypt.

  • Canada’s________________________, Lester B. Pearson (later PM Pearson) suggested that the UN create a ______________________________(UNEF) to keep combating forces apart until a settlement was reached. Pearson won the ________________________for his efforts.

  • Although the US promised to aid against Soviet aggression, the incident was diffused.

6. The_________________, 1954 – 1975 (periods of varying severity and combat)

  • The Indochina (______________) War between France (the colonial power) and the Vietminh (_________________) lasted from 1946 until the defeat of the French in________.

  • Following the French defeat, Vietnam was divided between the North (communist support) and the South (________________). Fearing the spread of communism, the United States (with minor support from other anti-communist countries) began to support South Vietnam’s war against the North. By 1969, there were 543,000_____________________________.

  • The Vietnam War was what is known as a _____________(Americans fought on behalf of a client: the South Vietnamese).

  • Although the Soviet Union and China _________________to Vietnam, they did send massive amounts of supplies to aid the Northern communists.

  • Widespread television images and _________________witnessed a large anti-war protest in the US and abroad. Many _______________came to Canada to escape military conscription.

  • In 1975, after _______________of conflict, the last American troops left the country, and Vietnam was soon under the control of the _________________________of the North.

7.________________________, 1962

  • Both the US and the Soviet Union had ___________________stored all over the world.

  • In 1962, an American plane discovered Soviet missiles in ___________(communist).

  • The United States set up a _________________around Cuba, to stop Soviet ships from delivering more missiles, and demanded that all nuclear weapons be removed from Cuba.

  • The crisis intensified when Soviet ships (and submarines)_____________________.

  • Some say that nuclear war was avoided with ________________(probably an exaggeration, but it was wayyyy to close for comfort nonetheless).

  • The Agreement: communication between US President ___________________and Soviet leader __________________resulted in the following: the Soviets promised to remove all weapons from Cuba as long as the Americans promised to_____________________.

President Kennedy was assassinated on November 22nd, 1963.
8._________________, late 1960s – 1979

  • Détente simply means a_________________. Although indirect conflicts and disagreements continued throughout this period, the détente era _______________between the two nations.

  • Détente was possible through ________________(each nation possessing an equal amount of nuclear weapons) as both countries feared complete annihilation from the other.

  • _______________________________: In 1968, the USA, Soviet Union, and Britain signed a treaty to limit the number of nuclear weapons in the world (_________________by 1975).

  • ________________________________ (SALT): In 1972, an agreement was signed between the US and the Soviet Union to limit certain missile types. These talks failed__________.

  • ________________, 1975: US, Soviet Union and European powers discussed the following:

  1. to accept the division of Germany and the existing boundaries in Europe

  2. the USSR agreed to ____________________

  3. the movement of people across borders was made easier and more possible


9. The Soviet Invasion of__________________: End of the Détente Era

  • In 1979, the Soviet Union placed 350 missiles in _______________and invaded Afghanistan

  • The Soviets placed ___________________as President (dictator) of Afghanistan

  • Many countries (including the US) feared that the USSR was trying to control the Persian Gulf. The United States (and many others) banned the____________________________.

  • From________________, a vicious war between the Soviet military and Afghan patriots caused many deaths and created a huge ___________________in neighbouring states.

  • In 1988, the Soviet Union withdrew from Afghanistan due to domestic problems.


10. The ____________________________and the End of the Cold War

A. Problems Within the Soviet System

  • _______________________: flaws in the strict state-controlled communist economic system slowly began to cripple the Soviet economy.

  • ______________________: Constant competition with the US cost the USSR billions of dollars that they could not afford.

  • ____________________: Greedy communist officials abused the system and refused reform.

  • _______________: Approximetly 50% of the Soviet population was not ethnically Russian. As people became increasingly unhappy with the Soviet system, they sought independence.

B. ______________________


Gorbachev became the Soviet leader in____________. He attempted to rid the communist party of corruption, and tried to implement several key reform policies:

  • __________________: roughly translated, this term means “openness”. Gorbachev shocked the world (and most Russians) when he advocated for ____________________facing the country, ‘_________________’ communism would make it superior to capitalism.

  • ________________: this term means “_____________”. Gorbachev pushed for economic, social, and political reform in order to focus on _____________and revitalize Soviet society.

  • Gorbachev’s Problem: Simply put, Gorbachev wanted _________________without an ideological change (ex. Communists would remain the only political party).

C. The End of the Soviet Union, ___________

  • Through the late 1980s and early 1990s, Soviet citizens began to demand more freedom, ethnic minorities______________________, and the Soviet system was in general decline.

  • August 1991: __________________replaced Gorbachev as the leader of the country.

  • December 1st 1991: an ________________broke the Soviet Union into 15 smaller states.

  • December 31st 1991: documents were signed to______________– The Cold War ends!!



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