Cold War
By: Michael Cheaney

Cold War Alliances
Cold War Alliances
This was a scary time for the entire world. Both sides were threatening each other with

nuclear bombs that if enough were launched the world would be covered in a hazardous

watse cloud that would destroy the human race. The World's fate was up to the men who

led the countries and the events that happened during this time became known as the Cold War. These are some of the events that happened during this time.

1. Fidel Castro
2. Cuban Missle Crisis
3. Marshall Plan
4. Nuclear Threat
5. Dissolution of USSR

=Fidel Castro=
Fidel Castro
Fidel Castro

Born: August 13, 1926
Birthplace: Cuba
Race: Hispanic
Religion: Atheist

Fidel's first surge for power failed as he tried to overthrow the Batista government. He was charged with treason but ended up only serving about two years in prison. Only four years out of prison and Castro was at it again. This time he succeded in overthrowing Batista and this started his almost fifty years of dictatorship in Cuba. Cuba, which already had an frigid relationship with the U.S., only got worse when all American-owned buisnesses in Cuba became nationalized and Cuba became the only Communist country in the Western Hemisphere. Also, American oil refineries in Cuba refused to process the oil so America cut Cuba's import of sugar. Things between U.S. and Cuba became more tense when a coup that was backed by the U.S. called the Bay of Pigs was attempted. To this day relations between the U.S. and Cuba are still icy with punishments coming if you travel to either place without the governments permission.More information

As Fidel stregthened his relations with the Soviet Union and almost brought the world to nuclear war. Soviet Union prime minister Krushchev met secretly with Kennedy and agents and made deals to take awy missiles from Cuba as long as the U.S. does not invade Cuba and removes their missiles from Turkey. After the deals had followed through it left Fidel looking humiliated being left out of negotiations and U.S. was able to end diplomatic relations with Cuba.

Fidel didn't stay ashamed long though and only a few years later was creating organizations and sending military forces to help the Soviet Union. Even though the U.S. had agreed not to launch an attack on Cuba, there were many reports on the CIA trying to assassinate Fidel. There was an estimated 638 assassination attempts in all, none of wich succeded. These ranged from mafia-style shooting to fungus-infected scuba suits and even exploding cigars.More Information

Though Fidel was credited with opening thousands of new schools, increasing literacy, and improving healthcare many things he did were not good. Religious institutions were harrassed, independent newsp[apers were shutdown, and the Cuban people lost many rights including labor unions being able to strike. This caused dislike towards Fidel and hunderds of thousands of people left to America during his rule. In all, there has been an estimated 120,000 that have left Cuba to find a safe place in the United States.

In the late 1990's questions began to be asked about the health of Fidel. Many health problems have been reported, the most significant one was in 2006 when he had surgery for
**gastrointestinal** bleeding. Due to his poor condition he gave up the Presidency to 76 year old brother Raul . To this day Fidel sremains as the First Secretary to the Communist party.More Information

Fidel in his late 70's
Fidel in his late 70's

=Cuban Missile Crisis=

"Nuclear catastrophe was hanging by a thread... and we werent counting days or hours, but minutes." -Soviet General and Army Cheif of Operations, Anatoly Gribkov Cuba and the Soviet Union were prepared if the U.S. tried to attack Cuba and the U.S. were at one of the highest levels of readiness they have ever been at. In 1962, the U.S. was ahead in the arms race with missiles that could strike the entire Soviet Union while the Soviet Union's missiles were only strong enough to make it to Europe. Soviet Union prime minister Krushchev had an idea to put medium ranged missiles at bases in Cuba. Fidel who was looking constantly for ways to defend on what he felt like was going to be another attack from the United States argeed with Krushchev and the missile bases were built secretly on the island.The bases didn't go unnoticed for long as an American reconnaissance plane took photos of the secret bases. President John F. Kennedy decided to blokade the small island with the navy and said ' That any missile launched from Cuba would warrant a full-scale retaliatory attack by the United States against the Soviet Union.' Because of the blockade and the agreement to remove missiles if the United States did not invade Cuba, the Soviet Union decided to remove all of the missiles that were in Cuba and ship them back to the Soviet Union. The Cuban Missile Crisis was finished just after it was started.Cuban Missile Crisis Information =Marshall Plan=

George Marshall
George Marshall

The Marshall Plan was a program that was sponsered by the U.S. that was supposed to rebuild the economies of seventeen southern and western European countries. This plan was made so that there would be stable conditions so that democratic economies could survive. Proverty, unemployment, and dislocation of the postwar period was what the United States feared would bring more western European voters to vote for communists parties. On April 3, 1948 the plan was signed in by President Harry S. Truman . Almost all of the European countries were offered the aid from this plan but the Soviet Union did not accept it and pulled out along with many other European countries that were under their influence. The following countries that were left to recieve the aid were; Austria, Belgium, Denmkark, western Germany, the United Kingdom, France, Greece, Iceland, Turkey, Switzerland, Sweden, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Portugal, the Netherlands, and Norway. The U.S. spent 13 billion dollars over the next four years to help the economy, expand trade, establish financial stability, and restore industrial and agriculture production. The Marshall Plan turned out to be a success. The countries that had taken the aid saw a rise in their gross national products by 15 to 25 percent. Also in western Europe, there was a rapid renewal of the steel, chemical, and engineering industries. In 1949, President Truman decided to expand the plan into less-developed countries.

=Nuclear Arms Race=
Destructive power of Nuclear weapons
Destructive power of Nuclear weapons
This was one of the main themes of the Cold War. Both the United States and the Soviet Union knew they would have the upper hand if they were leading the way in the nuclear arms race. In 1952 the United States launched the H-bomb (hydrogen) that massively chnged the world. This bomb was smaller then the first nuclear bomb, but almost 2500 times as powerful. The Soviet Union, not wanting to be thought of as less powerful exploded one of their own H-bombs just a year later. Even though nuclear war seemed like it might happen, the power of the weapons and the fear that they brought along with them might just have stopped a war.
American B-52 that carried nuclaer weapons
American B-52 that carried nuclaer weapons
Soon the Americans had a plane that could carry a nuclear weapon far, (picture to the left) but the Russians not having enough money to do so decided just to enlarge the size of their bombs. By the end of the 1950's America estimated that if a Russian nuclear misslie attack would happen the around 20 million people would die and around 22 million would be injured. The Soviet Union decided to go at nuclear weapons a different way then America did. The Soviets were more worried about quantity then quality and the Americans wanted better quality missiles then quantity. By 1961, there was enough nuclear weapons in the world to destroy the world. The U.S. was outnumbered in troops and artillary so they hoped that the nuclear weapons that they had would help them defend themselves. In the 1960s a theory called MAD or mutually assured destruction. Which meant that if the Soviets attack the west, then the west would retaliate and there would be no winners. By 1986, there was around 40,000 nuclear weapons throughout the world. World leaders had to trust each other and slowly the two leaders of the super powers held meetings and the bad relations started to ease.The Arms Race

=Dissolution of USSR= In the USSR, things were not going smoothly. They were slowly falling apart and everything aroun them started caving in. First it started when the price of oil went to low for the USSR to make a profit. Sudden changes in the government led to significant changes in the economy. Then in 1988, the USSR decided to withdraw their troops from their nine year war with Afghanistan and the Soviet leader Gorbachev did not want to send troops to protect the outer Soviet states which forcefully removed much of the communist power from them. Then in 1989, the largest state in the USSR, Russia , succeded and began to make their own laws that overpowered the Soviet's laws. Through much of 1991 there was a lot of legal uncerntantiy. Soon many of the USSR's old countries began to declare themselves independent countries. However there was a vote held in early 1991 that the majority of the voters voted to keep the Union. They signed a treaty that would have kept the USSR intact but much looser. But before the signing of the treaty could happen, the August Coup came into play. The coup was carried out by KGB members and hardline communist party members. The coup was supposed to put the power back in to the USSR. However, the coup failed and a new president was given power, his name was Boris Yelstin. This move gave more power to the independent states. Three of the main independent state leaders met together and came up with the Belavehza Accords. The made the Commonwealth of Independent States and declared that the Soviet Union was dissolved. With the accords not gaining a lot of power the countries decided to let the other independent states sign it. After this the CIS became more powerful. The day after this happened the highest government in USSR, the Supreme Soviet, saw the collapse happenning and dispersed. That was known as the final dissolution of the USSR. Soon police and the Soviet Army were either displaced or absored into the independent states.More Information

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