Decline of cold war certainties Essay
One very important event that took place in global history was the Berlin airlift, which lasted from 1948 to 1949. After World War II, Germany was split into four individually controlled sections. The western half Of Germany was controlled by the United States, Great Britain and France, which were the western powers. The eastern half was controlled by the Soviet Union. The eastern part of Germany was communist, the western part was democratic. Berlin, the capital of Germany, happens to sit right in the middle of the two opposing halves.
The Berlin wall was built August 15, 1 961 , and it rearmament shut off contact to the west. Http://www. History. Com/this-day- in-history/Berlin-wall-built). Joseph Stalin was the leader of the Soviet Union, Stalin blockaded Berlin because he thought that Germany should remain weak, but the democratic side believed differently. The western powers were trying to re-build Germany. The western powers united West Germany into a country called Begonia in 1947, and they also introduced a new currency into Berlin.
Then the next day, Stalin cut off all rail and road links to West Berlin. (https://www. BBC. Co. UK/schools/specificities/history/MPH/rim. The city was disconnected from the west.
The western powers saw this as starving Berlin. The western powers were surely not going to stand for this. “When Berlin falls, Western Germany will be next. If we withdraw our position in Berlin, Europe is threatened… Communism will run rampant. ” This was said by General Luscious Clay, but he had developed a plan that would indeed cause a war. His plan consisted of sending the army to essentially breakdown the blockade (Halverson. Http://WV. Spinsterhood. Org/airlift. HTML). However, British Commander, Sir Brian Robertson, offered another idea. He suggested hat the western powers should supply Berlin though the air.
Thus, the Berlin Airlift began. Nothing like this has been tried before. Supplying an entire population with the necessary goods and materials to remain alive was surely an overwhelming task, but it had to be done. President Truman said, “We would not abandon these people! ” At one point during the operation, transport planes were arriving in Berlin every ninety seconds. By the spring of 1949, aircraft were transporting 8800 tons Of supplies daily. It was evident that Stalin’s blockade was unsuccessful. May 12th, 1949, the blockade was called off. Harrison 10-11).
Although the Berlin Airlift was rather a heroic and courageous event, it did come with some consequences that impacted the nations involved. It was quite harsh for the Berliners during the winter months of the airlift. Food was strictly limited and fresh vegeTABLEs were rare. There were extreme power cuts, due to the city power plant being cut off in the Soviet sector (Halverson. Http://www. Spinsterhood. Org/airlift. HTML). East and West Germany became the Democratic Republic of Germany and Federal Republic of Germany, respectively. This continued until 1990. (https://BMW. BBC. Co. W schools/specificities/h story/ MPH/air/brokenheartedly. SHTML). Stalin’s militant actions also lead to the development of NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organization), which was created to stop communist threats in parts of Europe. Also, because of Stalin’s actions, the United States became more involved in European military security. (Hairstyle, https://www. Traces. Org/ Brilliantine. HTML). Another event that occurred during the Cold War was the Vietnam War. The Vietnam War lasted from 1960 to 1975. The United States aided France financially as the French fought against Communist Vietnam (Rooter, https:// www. English. Illinois. Deed/maps/Vietnam/causes. HTML). The French were defeated in 1954, and then Vietnam split into two. The north was communist, led by Ho Chi Mini, and the south was capitalist, led by Mongo Ding Diem. The United States provided Dime’s rule with billions of dollars. The United States got involved with the war to discontinue the spread of communism. The united States feared that if Vietnam fell to communism the bordering nations would then fall to communism. This was called the domino effect, and it was developed in the late asses. It provided justification for involvement in the war.
If in order to avoid further Communist expansion in Asia and particularly in Indo-China, if in order to avoid it we must take the risk by putting American boys in, I believe that the executive branch of the government has to take the politically unpopular position of facing up to it and doing it, and I personally would support such a decision. ” This was said by Richard M. Nixon in 1954. Although there is no official declaration of war when the US entered the war, 1961 marked the beginning of twelve years of American military warfare when President John F.
Kennedy decided to send over 2,000 military advisers to South Vietnam. The CSS sent troops to South Vietnam to join the war and started bombing North Vietnam. By the summer of 1 965, more than 180,000 American troops had arrived in Vietnam. By 1968, 540,000 troops had arrived. (Harrison 30-33). Kennedy’s successor, Lyndon 8. Johnson decided to increase U. S. Military assistance because of the succeeding political instability in South Vietnam. However, massacre and devastation increased as the war continued. U. S. Casualties had reached 15,058 killed and 1 09,527 wounded.
Many Americans started resenting and opposing the war. The Et Offensive was when North Vietnam attacked over 00 South Vietnam citied and towns. This happened in 1968. The anti-war movement began in the late asses, particularly attracting student protest on college campuses. There were different tactics used to indicate the disagreement of war: legal demonstrations, electoral challenges, civil disobedience, draft resistance and political violence (Wells, https:// www. English. Illinois. Deed/maps/Vietnam/antiwar. HTML). However, little change was made.
In 1 970 Nixon launched an invasion of Cambodia, which turns out to be a military failure and even further increased protests in the united States. In the autumn of 1973, it was clear that there was no victory in sight. North Vietnamese troops invaded numerous parts South Vietnam. The United States agreed to accept a settlement that would withdraw American troops and leave the revolutionary troops where they were, but the South Vietnam government refused to agree. So the US decided to make one final attempt to intimidate the North Vietnamese into backing down. This attack also did not work and led to yet more devastation.
Finally a peace agreement had been made called the Paris Peace Accords and US troops were removed from the AR but continued to aid South Vietnamese government. However, North Vietnam continued attacking the south and the government collapsed. Then, in 1 975 the long, harsh war was over and both north and South Vietnam were unified as he Democratic Republic of Vietnam (https://libido. Org/history/ articles/Vietnam-war). The impact of the Vietnam War was mostly negative and would remain long after the troops returned to the US in 1973. The United States spent more than SSL 20 billion on the war in Vietnam.
This immense spending led to inflation. All of the anti-war protests left a tear tenet American citizens. Some people saw no point in the war and hated the idea. Others thought that opposing the war was unpatriotic. An estimated 3 million Vietnamese were wounded, while 2 million died and another 12 million became refugees. The war left Vietnam in shambles. Infrastructure was completely destroyed, as well as the economy. Conflicts with neighboring nations like China and Cambodia led to periodic violence which continued in Vietnam for 1 5 years. (https://www. History. Com/topics/Vietnam-war).