Cold War Cold War is a term used to describe the post-World War II struggle between the United States and its allies and the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) and its allies. During the Cold War period, which lasted from the mid-1940s until the end of the 1980s, international politics were heavily shaped by the intense rivalry between these two great blocs of power and the political ideologies they represented: democracy and capitalism in the case of the United States and its allies, and Communism in the case of the Soviet bloc. The principal allies of the United States during the Cold War included Britain, France, West Germany, Japan, and Canada. On the Soviet side were many of the countries of Eastern Europe—including Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Poland, East Germany, and Romania—and, during parts of the Cold War, Cuba and China. Countries that had no formal commitment to either bloc were known as neutrals or, within the Third World, as nonaligned nations (see Nonaligned Movement). American journalist Walter Lippmann first popularized the term cold war in a 1947 book by that name. By using the term, Lippmann meant to suggest that relations between the USSR and its World War II allies (primarily the United States, Britain, and France) had deteriorated to the point of war without the occurrence of actual warfare. Over the next few years, the emerging rivalry between these two camps hardened into a mutual and permanent preoccupation. It dominated the foreign policy agendas of both sides and led to the formation of two vast military alliances: the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), created by the Western powers in 1949; and the Soviet-dominated Warsaw Pact, established in 1955. Although centered originally in Europe, the Cold War enmity eventually drew the United States and the USSR into local conflicts in almost every quarter of the globe. It also produced what became known as the Cold War arms race, an intense competition between the two superpowers to accumulate advanced military weapons. Background Hostility between the United States and the USSR had its roots in the waning moments of World War I. Soon after the Bolsheviks (later Communists) overthrew the existing Russian government in October 1917, Bolshevik leader Vladimir Lenin resolved to withdraw Russia from the war. In 1918 the United States, along with Britain, France, and Japan, intervened militarily in Russia. They did so to restore the collapsed Eastern Front in their war effort against Germany; however, to Lenin and his colleagues, the intervention represented an assault on Russia’s feeble new revolutionary regime. In fact, the European powers and the United States did resent Russia’s new leadership, with its appeals against capitalism and its efforts to weld local Communist parties into an international revolutionary movement. In December 1922 the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) was formed as a federal union of Russia and neighboring areas under Communist control. The United States refused to recognize the Soviet state until 1933. The deep ideological differences between the USSR and the United States were exacerbated by the leadership of Joseph Stalin, who ruled the USSR from 1929 to 1953. In August 1939, on the eve of World War II, Stalin signed a nonaggression pact with German dictator Adolf Hitler. The two leaders pledged not to attack one another and agreed to divide the territory that lay between them into German and Soviet spheres of influence. Hitler betrayed the agreement, however, and in June 1941 he launched his armies against the USSR. Britain and the United States rallied to the USSR’s defense, which produced the coalition that would defeat Germany over the next four years. This American-British-Soviet coalition—which came to be known as the Grand Alliance— was an uneasy affair, marked by mistrust and, on the Soviet side, by charges that the USSR bore a heavier price than the other nations in prosecuting the war. By 1944, with victory approaching, the conflicting visions within the alliance of a postwar world were becoming ever more obvious. Course of the Cold War The Struggle for Europe Even before the defeat of Nazi Germany in May 1945, the United States and the USSR had become divided over the political future of Poland. Stalin, whose forces had driven the Germans out of Poland in 1944 and 1945 and established a pro-Communist provisional government there, believed that Soviet control of Poland was necessary for his country’s security. This met with opposition from the Allies, and it was not long before the quarrel had extended to the political future of other Eastern European nations. The struggle over the fate of Eastern Europe thus constituted the first crucial phase of the Cold War. Yet during this period, which lasted from 1944 to 1946, both sides clung to the hope that their growing differences could be surmounted and something of the spirit of their earlier wartime cooperation could be preserved. While the United States accused the USSR of seeking to expand Communism in Europe and Asia, the USSR viewed itself as the leader of history’s progressive forces and charged the United States with attempting to stamp out revolutionary activity wherever it arose. In 1946 and 1947 the USSR helped bring Communist governments to power in Romania, Bulgaria, Hungary, and Poland (Communists had gained control of Albania and Yugoslavia in 1944 and 1945). In 1947 United States president Harry S. Truman issued the Truman Doctrine, which authorized U.S. aid to anti-Communist forces in Greece and Turkey. Later, this policy was expanded to justify support for any nation that the U.S. government considered to be threatened by Soviet expansionism. Known as the containment doctrine, this policy, aimed at containing the spread of Communism around the world, was outlined in a famous 1947 Foreign Affairs article by American diplomat George F. Kennan. Containment soon became the official U.S. policy with regard to the USSR. By 1948 neither side believed any longer in the possibility of preserving some level of partnership amidst the growing tension and competition. During this new and more intense phase of the Cold War, developments in and around postwar Germany emerged as the core of the conflict. Following its defeat in World War II, Germany had been divided into separate British, French, American, and Soviet occupation zones. The city of Berlin, located in the Soviet zone, was also divided into four administrative sectors. The occupying governments could not reach agreement on what the political and economic structure of postwar Germany should be, and in mid-1947 the United States and Britain decided to merge their separate administrative zones. The two Western governments worried that to keep Germany fragmented indefinitely, particularly when the Soviet and Western occupation regimes were growing so far apart ideologically, could have negative economic consequences for the Western sphere of responsibility. This concern echoed a larger fear that the economic problems of Western Europe—a result of the war's devastation—had left the region vulnerable to Soviet penetration through European Communist parties under Moscow's control. To head off this danger, in the summer of 1947 the United States committed itself to a massive economic aid program designed to rebuild Western European economies. The program was called the Marshall Plan, after U.S. secretary of state George C. Marshall In June 1948 France merged its administrative zone with the joint British-American zone, thus laying the foundation for a West German republic. Stalin and his lieutenants opposed the establishment of a West German state, fearing that it would be rearmed and welcomed into an American-led military alliance. In the summer of 1948 the Soviets responded to the Western governments’ plans for West Germany by attempting to cut those governments off from their sectors in Berlin through a land blockade. In the first direct military confrontation between the USSR and the Western powers, the Western governments organized a massive airlift of supplies to West Berlin, circumventing the Soviet blockade. After 11 months and thousands of flights, the Western powers succeeded in breaking the blockade. Meanwhile, in February 1948 Soviet-backed Communists in Czechoslovakia provoked a crisis that led to the formation of a new, Communist-dominated government. With this, all the countries of Eastern Europe were under Communist control, and the creation of the Soviet bloc was complete. The events of 1948 contributed to a growing conviction among political leaders in both the United States and the USSR that the opposing power posed a broad and fundamental threat to their nation’s interests. The Berlin blockade and the spread of Communism in Europe led to negotiations between Western Europe, Canada, and the United States that resulted in the North Atlantic Treaty, which was signed in April 1949, thereby establishing the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO). The Berlin crisis also accelerated the emergence of a state of West Germany, which was formally established in May 1949. (The Communist republic of East Germany, comprising the remainder of German territory, was formally proclaimed in October of that year.) And finally, the Berlin confrontation prompted the Western powers to begin thinking seriously about rearming their half of Germany, despite the divisiveness of this issue among West Europeans. The death of Joseph Stalin in 1953 had a significant impact on the course of the Cold War. His successors, including Nikita Khrushchev, who ultimately replaced Stalin as Soviet leader, sought to ease some of the rigidities of Soviet policy toward the West, but without resolving the core issue: a divided Germany at the heart of a divided Europe. The Western powers responded cautiously but sympathetically to the softening of Soviet policy, and in the mid-1950s the USSR and the Western powers convened the first of several summit conferences in Geneva, Switzerland, to address the key issues of the Cold War. These issues now included not only the problem of German reunification, but also the danger of surprise nuclear attack and, in the background, the momentarily quieted but still unresolved conflicts in Korea and Indochina (for more information, see The Cold War Outside Europe below). The 1955 Geneva Conference achieved little progress on the central issues of Germany, Eastern Europe, and arms control. However, on the eve of the conference the two sides resolved the issue of Austria, which had been united with Germany during the war and divided into American, British, French, and Soviet occupation zones in its aftermath. The signing of the State Treaty between Austria and the Allies established Austria’s neutrality, freed it of occupation forces, and reestablished the Austrian republic. This period also saw fundamental change in one critical realm: Both the United States and the USSR came to recognize that nuclear weapons had produced a revolution in military affairs—making war among the great powers, while still a possibility, no longer a sane policy recourse. Meanwhile, the struggle over Europe continued. West Germany was recognized as an independent nation in 1955 and was allowed to rearm and join NATO. In response to this development, a group of Eastern European Communist nations led by the USSR formed the Warsaw Pact . In the late 1950s Khrushchev launched a new series of crises over Berlin, and in 1961 the Soviet government built the Berlin Wall to prevent East Germans from fleeing to West Germany. The Cold War Outside Europe In 1950 the superpowers’ involvement in Third World areas—limited previously to sporadic jousting—changed suddenly, as the USSR and the United States became entangled in an Asian war. In June of that year, Stalin appeared to endorse the plans of North Korean Communist leader Kim Il Sung to attack South Korea, assuming— according to documents that have since come to light—that the United States and other major powers would not get involved. This mistaken assumption led to the Korean War (1950-1953), which pitted American-led United Nations forces against the military forces of North Korea and China (which had become a Communist republic under the leadership of Mao Zedong in late 1949). The first armed conflict of the Cold War, the Korean War led to a major increase in defense spending by the United States. Because American leaders saw Stalin’s actions in Korea as a potential precursor to aggressive movements in Europe, the war helped prompt the United States to turn NATO into an ambitious and permanent military structure. In 1954, following the military defeat of France in its bid to reclaim Vietnam in the First Indochina War (1946-1954), the great powers assembled in Geneva with representatives from Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia to negotiate an end to that conflict. Among other provisions, the resulting agreement, known as the Geneva Accords, provided for the temporary partition of Vietnam into northern and southern portions, with the Viet Minh (a Communist group seeking Vietnamese independence) concentrated in North Vietnam and the French and their Vietnamese supporters in the south. To avoid permanent partition, the accords called for national elections to reunify the country to be held in 1956. When the South Vietnamese refused to hold the elections because Viet Minh leader Ho Chi Minh was favored to win, the North Vietnamese began to seek the overthrow of the South Vietnamese government. The Vietnam War, which began in 1959, pitted the Communist North Vietnamese and the National Liberation Front, a Vietnamese nationalist group based in South Vietnam, against the South Vietnamese. In 1965 the United States sent troops into Vietnam to fight alongside the South Vietnamese. A long and bloody conflict, the Vietnam War lasted until 1975. Before it ended, it spread to the neighboring countries of Laos and Cambodia, where it continued long after 1975. In Cambodia, the war brought to power the Communist movement known as the Khmer Rouge, led by Pol Pot, whose regime inflicted a genocidal massacre on the Cambodian people. Meanwhile, by the mid-1960s the Communist world had been dramatically reconfigured as the result of an increasingly bitter and open split between the USSR and China. The dispute stemmed in part from ideological disagreements but also reflected the intense rivalry of two former empires. The most serious Cold War confrontation between the United States and the USSR that took place in the Third World—one that raised the specter of nuclear war—occurred in 1962. In the summer of that year, the U.S. government discovered that the Soviets were in the process of deploying nuclear missiles in Communist Cuba. In October the United States moved to block Soviet ships carrying missiles to Cuba. The resulting standoff, during which the world stood seemingly on the brink of ultimate disaster, ended with Khrushchev capitulating to the demands of U.S. president John F. Kennedy. From the Cuban missile crisis both sides learned that risking nuclear war in pursuit of political objectives was simply too dangerous. It was the last time during the Cold War that either side would take this risk. In the early and mid-1960s the great powers even superimposed their competition on local conflicts in faraway Africa. In newly independent nations such as the Republic of the Congo (now the Democratic Republic of the Congo) and Nigeria, the United States and the USSR chose sides and lent military backing and other assistance to groups or leaders thought to be sympathetic to their interests. In the Middle East, the underlying conflict between Israel and its Arab neighbors became entangled with maneuvering by the superpowers to push one another out of the region. The Arab-Israeli wars of 1956, 1967, and 1973 drew in the United States and the USSR, creating the possibility of escalation to a direct confrontation between them. In the early 1970s the tenor of the Cold War changed. During the first administration of U.S. president Richard Nixon (1969-1973), the United States and the USSR sought to put their relationship on a different footing. While neither side abandoned its basic positions, the two superpowers tried to take the first steps toward controlling the costly nuclear arms race and finding areas for mutually advantageous economic and scientific collaboration. Détente, as this policy came to be called, collapsed in the second half of the 1970s, when the American-Soviet competition in the Third World intensified once again, this time during the civil war in Angola and the Somali-Ethiopian war over the Ogadēn region. During this phase of the Cold War, Communist Cuba played a significant role alongside the USSR, while the Chinese, now deeply wary of the USSR, participated on the side of the United States. End of the Cold War The early 1980s witnessed a final period of friction between the United States and the USSR, resulting mainly from the Soviets’ invasion of Afghanistan in 1979 to prop up a Communist regime and from the firm line adopted by U.S. president Ronald Reagan after his 1980 election. Reagan saw the USSR as an “evil empire.” He also believed that his rivals in Moscow respected strength first and foremost, and thus he set about to add greatly to American military capabilities. The Soviets initially viewed Reagan as an implacable foe, committed to subverting the Soviet system and possibly willing to risk nuclear war in the process. Then in the mid-1980s Mikhail Gorbachev came to power in the USSR. Gorbachev was determined to halt the increasing decay of the Soviet system and to shed some of his country’s foreign policy burdens. Between 1986 and 1989 he brought a revolution to Soviet foreign policy, abandoning long-held Soviet assumptions and seeking new and far- reaching agreements with the West. Gorbachev’s efforts fundamentally altered the dynamic of East-West relations. Gorbachev and Reagan held a series of summit talks beginning in 1985, and in 1987 the two leaders agreed to eliminate a whole class of their countries’ nuclear missiles—those capable of striking Europe and Asia from the USSR and vice versa. The Soviet government began to reduce its forces in Eastern Europe, and in 1989 it pulled its troops out of Afghanistan. That year Communist regimes began to topple in the countries of Eastern Europe and the wall that had divided East and West Germany since 1961 was torn down. In 1990 Germany became once again a unified country. In 1991 the USSR dissolved, and Russia and the other Soviet republics emerged as independent states. Even before these dramatic final events, much of the ideological basis for the Cold War competition had disappeared. However, the collapse of Soviet power in Eastern Europe, and then of the USSR itself, lent a crushing finality to the end of the Cold War period. Berlin Wall, fortified wall surrounding West Berlin, built in 1961 and maintained by the former German Democratic Republic (GDR), commonly known as East Germany, until 1989. The Berlin Wall was a highly visible symbol of the Cold War, the post-1945 struggle between the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) and its allies, including East Germany, and the United States and its allies. At the end of World War II in 1945, the city of Berlin was completely surrounded by territory occupied by Soviet forces. This territory officially became the country of East Germany in 1949. The city of Berlin itself was partitioned into East Berlin and West Berlin. West Berlin was occupied by British, French, and United States forces and was supported by the Federal Republic of Germany, commonly known as West Germany. Between 1949 when East Germany was established and the middle of 1961, at least 2.7 million people fled East Germany, more than half of them through West Berlin. Compared to other countries in Eastern Europe, East Germany was the most productive Communist nation between 1949 and 1961. However, East Germans had limited access to West German media and were aware that their standard of living was substantially lower than that of their counterparts in West Germany. Many East Germans left the GDR hoping to find better economic opportunities in the West. In 1961 the East German government decided to stop this flight to the West, which was depleting the country's labor force, among other things. During the night of August 13, 1961, East German soldiers and members of its militia surrounded West Berlin with temporary fortifications that were rapidly replaced by a concrete wall, 4 m (12 ft) high and 166 km (103 mi) long, of which 45 km (28 mi) lay between two sides of the city. Where a wall was not possible, buildings were bricked-up. The only openings in the wall were two closely guarded crossing points. Although the GDR announced that the wall was needed to prevent military aggression and political interference from West Germany, the East German government built tank traps and ditches along the eastern side of the wall, suggesting that it was constructed to keep East German citizens in. Between 1961 and 1989, a few East Germans managed to escape to West Berlin, but at least 80 people died trying to cross the border. In the summer of 1989, the Berlin Wall became irrelevant when Hungary allowed East Germans to pass through Hungary on their way to Austria and West Germany. In the fall of that year, the East German regime was on the verge of collapse, and on November 9, enthusiastic private citizens began to demolish whole sections of the wall without interference from government officials. East Germany eventually participated in the removal of the Berlin Wall and reunited with West Germany in 1990 as one nation, the Federal Republic of Germany. The Berlin Wall is now commemorated by a few remaining sections and by a museum and shop near the site of the most famous crossing point, Checkpoint Charlie. Control of the Means for Mass Destruction After World War II ended in 1945, considerable support again developed for arms control and for alternatives to military conflict in international relations. The United Nations (UN) Charter was designed to permit a supranational agency to enforce peace, avoiding many of the weaknesses of the League of Nations covenant. Thus, Article 11 of the charter stated that the General Assembly could consider the general principle of disarmament and the regulation of armaments. Article 26 required the Security Council to submit plans for a system of armament regulation. Article 47 established a military staff committee to assist the Security Council in this task. Atomic Arms Race The development of the atomic bomb by the United States toward the end of World War II brought with it the capability of devastating whole civilizations. While the United States still maintained a monopoly on nuclear weapons, it made overtures in the UN for the control and elimination of atomic energy for military purposes. In June 1946, American representative Bernard Baruch presented a plan to the UN Atomic Energy Commission, calling for the abolition of nuclear weapons, international control over the processing of nuclear materials, full sharing of all scientific and technological information concerning atomic energy, and safeguards to ensure that atomic energy would be used only for civilian purposes. The government of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) vetoed the Baruch Plan in the Security Council, objecting to the UN's authority over disarmament and citing the domination of that body by the United States and Western Europe. In 1949 the USSR exploded an atomic weapon of its own, ending the U.S. monopoly. The possibility of a nuclear war was now present, because relations between the USSR and the West were tense. Both the United States and the USSR were engaged in a race to develop thermonuclear (hydrogen) devices, which have many times the destructive power of atomic bombs. These weapons raised the possibility of ending all life on earth in all- out war. After 1954, when the USSR exploded its first hydrogen bomb, the primary concern of arms control was to reduce nuclear arsenals and prevent the proliferation of nuclear weapons technology. Agreements Limiting Nuclear Weapons In 1957 the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) was established to oversee the development and spread of nuclear technology and materials. Two years later a treaty was negotiated to demilitarize the Antarctic and to prohibit the detonation or storage of nuclear weapons there. Both the United States and the USSR were among the signatories. In 1961 the UN General Assembly passed the Joint Statement of Agreed Principles for Disarmament Negotiations. It was followed in 1963 by a treaty that bound the United States, the United Kingdom, and the Soviet Union not to test nuclear weapons in space, in the atmosphere, or under water. In 1967 another treaty between the same nations limited the military use of outer space to reconnaissance only. The deployment of nuclear weapons in orbit was expressly prohibited. A second treaty in 1967 banned nuclear weapons from Latin America. One of the most important agreements on arms control was the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty of 1968. Signatories pledged to restrict the development, deployment, and testing of nuclear weapons to ensure that weapons, materials, or technology would not be transferred outside the five countries that had nuclear weapons (Great Britain, France, China, the United States, and the USSR). In 1995 more than 170 countries agreed to permanently extend the treaty. In the late 1960s the United States and the USSR initiated negotiations to regulate strategic weapon arsenals. These negotiations became known as the Strategic Arms Limitation Talks. The SALT I negotiations produced two important agreements in 1972: the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty (ABM Treaty), which drastically limited the establishment of defensive installations designed to shoot down ballistic missiles, and the Interim Agreement on the Limitation of Strategic Offensive Arms. That same year the two superpowers also signed a treaty barring the testing of nuclear weapons on the ocean floor. The SALT II negotiations, which began in 1972, produced another treaty in 1979 that would limit the total number of U.S. and USSR missile launchers. After the USSR invaded Afghanistan in 1979, relations between the United States and the USSR rapidly deteriorated, and the U.S. Senate never ratified the treaty. During the early 1980s controversy surrounded the placement by the United States of ballistic missiles on the territory of some of its Western European allies. Opposition to this within West Germany (which became part of the united Federal Republic of Germany in 1990) played a part in unseating Chancellor Helmut Schmidt in 1982. In 1983 U.S. antinuclear groups rallied to support a bilateral arms freeze, and U.S. Roman Catholic bishops approved a pastoral letter with a similar aim. Controversy also surrounded the Strategic Defense Initiative (SDI) introduced by President Ronald Reagan in 1983. This research program for developing a defense against ballistic missiles appeared likely to undermine the ABM Treaty and challenged the assumptions of nuclear strategy since the beginning of the arms race. Since the late 1940s both deployment of nuclear arms by the superpowers and restrictions upon their use had been founded upon a theory of deterrence. According to this theory, the mutual likelihood of destruction in the event of a nuclear confrontation between the United States and the USSR preserved a delicate balance between the two superpowers. Stable relations between the nations required that they possess a roughly equal capacity to harm each other. Critics of SDI believed that efforts to construct a defense against nuclear weapons would destroy that balance and remove the conditions that prevented nuclear weapons from being used. Despite these concerns, U.S.-Soviet arms negotiations resumed in 1985. At a summit meeting in Washington, D.C., in December 1987, President Reagan and Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev signed the Intermediate Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF), which eliminated many nuclear-tipped ballistic missiles that had been deployed throughout Europe and the western Soviet Union. The treaty called for the destruction of all U.S. and Soviet missiles with ranges of about 500 to 5,500 km (about 300 to 3,400 mi) and established a 13-year program to verify compliance. The INF treaty was ratified by the U.S. Senate and the Soviet Presidium in May 1988. Non nuclear Weapons Agreements Agreements to restrict or eliminate the production and use of biological and chemical weapons date back to the Geneva Convention of 1925. In 1972 the United States, the USSR, and most other nations signed a convention prohibiting development, production, and stockpiling of biological and chemical weapons. In the late 1980s and early 1990s, Iraq's use of chemical weapons against Iranian soldiers and civilians during the Iran-Iraq War, and in subsequent attacks on its own Kurdish population, prompted renewed international efforts to ban the use of such weapons. In 1993 representatives from 160 nations approved the Chemical Weapons Convention. This agreement banned production, use, sale, and storage of all chemical weapons. It also mandated destruction of existing stocks of weapons by the year 2005. The United States ratified this convention in 1997, despite concerns about the proliferation of chemical weapons among nations such as Libya, Syria, Iraq, and North Korea that were not signatories to the agreement. Conventional weapons such as booby traps and land mines also possess enormous destructive capacity. Land mines are especially troubling because they retain their destructive power for indefinite periods of time. The International Committee of the Red Cross estimates that nearly 2 million land mines around the world kill or maim nearly 15,000 civilians every year. Global sentiment against land mines led 125 countries to sign a treaty banning the use, production, transfer, and stockpiling of the weapons. The effectiveness of the ban was called into question, however, by the refusal of major powers such as the United States, Russia, Turkey, and China to sign the agreement. Cold War Aftermath As the 1990s began, the United States and the USSR continued to negotiate arms-control accords. In May 1990 Gorbachev and U.S. president George Bush approved a treaty to end production and reduce stockpiles of chemical weapons. In 1991 the United States and the USSR signed the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START I), requiring both nations to reduce their strategic nuclear arsenals by about 25 percent. Both sides also moved to reduce conventional weapons and to continue phased withdrawal of their forces from Europe. The collapse of the USSR in late 1991 raised complex new problems. The location of strategic nuclear weapons at multiple sites in Russia, Ukraine, Kazakhstan, and Belarus raised concerns about the safety and security of these weapons. The U.S. Congress appropriated $1.5 billion to help these former Soviet states dismantle nuclear weapons and develop safe storage of weapons-grade nuclear materials. In 1992 these countries and the United States agreed to abide by the terms of the 1991 START I agreement. In 1993 President Bush and Russian president Boris Yeltsin signed the START II treaty. This treaty called for the elimination of almost two-thirds of the nuclear warheads and all the multiple-warhead land-based missiles held by the United States and the former Soviet republics. In January 1996 the U.S. Senate ratified the START II treaty, but the Russian parliament never approved the accord. The START II treaty never went into effect, and in 2002 it was replaced by a new strategic arms reduction agreement known as the Treaty of Moscow. In September 1996 leaders of the five major nuclear powers—the United States, Russia, China, France, and Britain—and dozens of other countries signed the landmark Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty, which banned most types of nuclear weapons testing. In order to take effect, however, the treaty must be formally approved, or ratified, by all nations believed to be capable of producing nuclear arms. In 1999 the U.S. Senate rejected the treaty by a vote of 51 to 48. China, Israel, Pakistan, and India are among other known nuclear powers that have not ratified the treaty. The Senate’s failure to ratify the treaty drew criticism from many U.S. allies, including Britain, Germany, and France. Senate opponents of the treaty argued that it was unenforceable, and they raised concerns that the treaty left open the possibility that rogue powers, such as Iraq or North Korea, could stockpile nuclear weapons, while at the same time it blocked the United States from upgrading its nuclear arsenal. The Senate’s failure to ratify the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty came on the heels of another setback. In mid-1998 India conducted a series of underground tests of nuclear weapons. About two weeks later, India’s archrival, Pakistan, detonated its own nuclear devices to demonstrate that it also possessed the powerful weapons. Both nations were internationally condemned for the tests. The United States, the International Monetary Fund, the European Union, and individual nations imposed economic sanctions on India and Pakistan in retaliation. Roughly a year later India tested a ballistic missile capable of delivering a nuclear warhead to any target within Pakistan, and days later Pakistan responded by testing a missile with similar capabilities. In 2002 tensions between the two nations over the disputed territory of Kashmīr raised fears of a nuclear war. Meanwhile, the United States under the administration of President Bill Clinton reached an important arms control arrangement with North Korea in 1994. Although relations between the United States and North Korea remained tense, under the arrangement North Korea agreed to freeze all work on the infrastructure of reactors and reprocessing plants needed to produce plutonium for nuclear weapons. In exchange, Japan, South Korea, and the United States agreed to provide fuel oil and other economic aid to North Korea. In 2002, however, this arrangement began to unravel. United States intelligence agencies discovered that while being paid not to produce plutonium, North Korea was at work to enrich uranium, the other way of obtaining nuclear weapons. That triggered North Korea's inclusion in the “axis of evil” cited by U.S. president George W. Bush in his State of the Union speech in January 2002. In October 2002 North Korea openly told U.S. officials that it had a covert program to develop nuclear weapons with enriched uranium. The United States responded by halting supplies of fuel oil. In January 2003 North Korea expelled United Nations (UN) monitors and withdrew from the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty. In April 2003 North Korea told U.S. officials that it possessed nuclear weapons, and in October 2003 North Korean officials said they were extracting plutonium from spent nuclear fuel rods to produce nuclear weapons. In November 2003 the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency repeated its belief that North Korea possesses at least one and possibly two nuclear bombs. However, other former and current U.S. intelligence officials said they were skeptical that North Korea had the technological know-how to produce nuclear weapons. In February 2004 North Korea entered talks with China, Japan, Russia, South Korea, and the United States to discuss an agreement that would end North Korea’s nuclear weapons program. As of early 2004 the talks were inconclusive. Outlook for the 21st Century As the world entered the 21st century, both progress and setbacks occurred in arms control. In 2001 the administration of U.S. president George W. Bush announced that it would unilaterally withdraw from the ABM Treaty, laying the groundwork for the deployment of defenses against long-range ballistic missiles. For the first time the U.S. government also announced a policy that under extreme circumstances it would consider using nuclear weapons against a nonnuclear state that employed biological or chemical weapons. The Bush administration, however, also pursued an arms reduction agreement with the Russian Federation, and the two nations signed a treaty in 2002 to deactivate about 75 percent of their strategic nuclear arsenals. Under the 2002 agreement, both nations were to reduce their active inventories of strategic nuclear warheads from about 6,000 each to about 2,200 warheads each by the year 2012. The agreement, known as the Treaty of Moscow, required ratification by both the U.S. Senate and the Russian Duma (parliament) before it could go into effect. Once ratified the new treaty was to replace the previous START II treaty. Observers noted that the new treaty contained a number of escape clauses. Either side could withdraw from the treaty with only three months’ notice, and the reductions did not have to take effect until 2012, the same year the treaty expires. The treaty also enabled both nations to place the deactivated warheads in storage or to set them aside as “operational spares” that could be quickly reactivated. Critics of the agreement argued that the deactivated warheads should be destroyed, rather than stored, because of the danger that terrorists could obtain access to stored weapons, which are presumably less well guarded than those in active service. Cuban Missile Crisis Introduction Cuban Missile Crisis, major confrontation between the United States and the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) that occurred in 1962 over the issue of Soviet- supplied missile installations in Cuba. Regarded by many as the world's closest approach to nuclear war, the crisis began when the United States discovered that Cuba had secretly installed Soviet missiles able to carry nuclear weapons. The missiles were capable of hitting targets across most of the United States. The discovery led to a tense stand-off of several days as the United States imposed a naval blockade of Cuba and demanded that the USSR remove the missiles. Background The crisis was the culmination of growing tension between the United States and Cuba following the Cuban Revolution of 1959. The revolution ousted Cuba’s dictator, Fulgencio Batista and brought to power a government headed by Cuban revolutionary leader Fidel Castro. Prior to the revolution, the United States had had significant influence in Cuba’s economic and political affairs, but the Castro government refused to be influenced by the United States. Castro also caused concern in the United States when he confiscated property belonging to wealthy Cubans and foreigners in an attempt to implement policies to improve conditions for poor and working-class Cubans. Many of these properties belonged to businesses owned by U.S. companies. Fearing that Castro would establish a Communist regime in Cuba, the United States applied economic pressure, and in 1960 implemented an embargo that cut off trade between the United States and Cuba. Castro refused to give in to the pressure. He responded by establishing closer relations with the Communist government of the USSR. At the time, the USSR and the United States were engaged in the Cold War—an economic, military, and diplomatic struggle between Communist and capitalist nations. In an effort to topple Castro’s government, the United States trained and armed anti- Castro Cuban exiles living in the United States. The exiles invaded Cuba in 1961, with a landing at the Bay of Pigs. Castro’s army easily defeated the exiles. His victory during the Bay of Pigs Invasion solidified Castro’s control over Cuba. Most Cubans resented U.S. intervention in Cuban affairs and they rallied behind Castro, who declared that Cuba was a Communist nation. The Crisis Emerges In 1960, as tensions mounted between Cuba and the United States, Soviet premier Nikita Khrushchev began planning to secretly supply Cuba with missiles that could deliver nuclear warheads to most parts of the United States. Khrushchev mistakenly assumed that the United States would take no action. By 1962, however, concern was growing in the United States over reports that the USSR was channeling weapons to Cuba. In September, U.S. president John Fitzgerald Kennedy warned the Soviets that “the gravest issues would arise” should they place offensive weapons (a phrase widely understood to mean nuclear weapons) in Cuba. On October 14 U.S. spy planes flying over Cuba spotted the first ballistic missile. On October 16 U.S. intelligence officials presented Kennedy with photographs showing nuclear missile bases under construction in Cuba. The photos suggested preparations for two types of missiles: medium-range ballistic missiles (MRBM) able to travel about 1100 nautical miles (about 2000 km, or 1300 mi) and intermediate-range ballistic missiles (IRBM) able to reach targets at a distance of about 2200 nautical miles (about 4100 km, or 2500 mi). These missiles placed most major U.S. cities—including Los Angeles, Chicago, and New York City—within range of nuclear attack. Kennedy also saw evidence of nuclear-capable bombers. Kennedy now faced a situation with potentially grave consequences. However, he had noclear choice on the actions to take against the Cubans and Soviets. He knew that an attack on Soviet installations in Cuba risked touching off a global nuclear war that would result in the loss of millions of lives. At the same time, he thought, and repeatedly said, that he also risked war by doing nothing. If he ignored Soviet defiance of his pledge in September to oppose offensive weapons in Cuba, then all U.S. pledges might become suspect. A U.S. promise to defend the beleaguered city of West Berlin in Germany was already under severe pressure. Following the allied victory in World War II (1939-1945), Berlin had been divided into East Berlin, controlled by Communist East Germany, and West Berlin, governed by capitalist West Germany. Earlier in the year Khrushchev had threatened to take over West Berlin and told Kennedy he was willing to bring the matter to the point of war. Khrushchev set a deadline of November 1962 for the resolution of the issue. Before the Cuban missile crisis began, Kennedy and his advisers believed U.S. nuclear superiority would deter any aggressive Soviet moves. But when the photographs of the missiles arrived, Kennedy and his experts agreed that the weapons might have been placed in Cuba to keep the United States from going to war over West Berlin. For Kennedy, doing nothing about the missiles would only increase the danger in another war-threatening crisis later in the year, this time over Berlin. The dilemma, as Kennedy understood it, was acute. Debating the Options Kennedy quickly assembled a small circle of advisers, including both national security officials and others whose judgment Kennedy prized. On October 16, the first day of the crisis, Kennedy and almost all of his advisers agreed that a surprise air attack against Cuba—followed, perhaps, by a blockade and an invasion—was the only reasonable response. On October 18, however, former U.S. Ambassador to the Soviet Union Llewellyn Thompson suggested that Kennedy announce a blockade as a prelude to an air strike. Kennedy’s advisers supported a blockade, but not all for the same reasons. One group saw the blockade as a form of ultimatum. Unless Khrushchev announced he would pull the missiles out of Cuba, the blockade would be followed very shortly by some kind of military action. Another group saw the blockade as an opening to negotiation. After his advisers debated the options, Kennedy decided to go ahead with the blockade. At the same time, the U.S. military began moving soldiers and equipment into position for a possible invasion of Cuba. Before Kennedy publicly announced the blockade, he wanted to prepare both military and congressional leaders. On October 19 he met in the Cabinet Room with the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the president’s military advisory group. The Joint Chiefs favored an air strike and an invasion, but Kennedy rejected their proposal, stating that an invasion could escalate into a nuclear war. Kennedy met with congressional leaders on October 22. The legislators' opinions mirrored those held by Kennedy and the majority of his advisers. Following the meeting with congressional leaders, Kennedy went on worldwide radio and television and announced the discovery of the missiles. He demanded that Khrushchev withdraw them and said that as a first step he was initiating a naval quarantine zone around Cuba, within which U.S. naval forces would intercept and inspect ships to determine whether they were carrying weapons. Kennedy warned that if Khrushchev fired missiles from Cuba, the result would be “a full retaliatory response upon the Soviet Union.” Because international law defines a blockade as an act of war, Kennedy and his advisers decided to refer to the blockade as a quarantine. The United States was supported by other members of the Organization of American States, an organization of nations in the western hemisphere that seek to cooperate on matters of security and economic and social development. Waiting for War The first days after the speech were consumed with tension as Kennedy waited to see whether the Soviet ships would respect the blockade or trigger a military confrontation at sea. For several tense days Soviet vessels en route to Cuba avoided the quarantine zone, and Khrushchev and Kennedy communicated through diplomatic channels. This cautious action postponed any confrontation between the U.S. Navy and the Soviet freighters or the Soviet submarines escorting them. On October 26 Khrushchev sent a coded cable to Kennedy that seemingly offered to withdraw missiles from Cuba in return for a U.S. pledge not to invade the island, a pledge Kennedy had already volunteered more than a week earlier during a meeting with Soviet Foreign Minister Andrey Gromyko. Before Kennedy and his advisers could react, Khrushchev delivered a public message in which he linked the withdrawal of the Cuban missiles to the removal of “analogous” U.S. weapons in Turkey along the southern border of the USSR. Khrushchev may have been emboldened to make this added demand by the fact that the United States allowed some Soviet-bloc ships to pass through the blockade. None of Kennedy's top advisers valued the U.S. missiles in Turkey, which were considered obsolete. However, nearly all of them counseled against removing the missiles in response to a Soviet demand, a demand they thought was made in bad faith to derail any solution. Meanwhile the United States faced the difficult problems of maintaining the blockade and keeping track of the Soviet missiles, which were camouflaged and moved soon after Kennedy's speech. Low-flying U.S. surveillance aircraft encountered hostile fire, and on October 27 the Cubans shot down a U-2, killing its pilot. The Kennedy administration debated the question of whether or not to retaliate by destroying some air defense sites in Cuba, but retaliation ran the risk of killing Soviet advisers and thereby escalating the crisis. Kennedy sensed that the U.S. public would support removing the missiles in Turkey, but he did not want to appear to be capitulating to Khrushchev's demand. Finally Kennedy decided his public reply would only address Khrushchev's first message, which offered to withdraw the missiles in exchange for a pledge not to invade Cuba. At the same time, however, Kennedy planned to privately assure Khrushchev that he intended to remove the missiles in Turkey. The president’s brother, Attorney General Robert Kennedy, paid a secret visit to Soviet Ambassador Anatoly Dobrynin at the Soviet Embassy in Washington, D.C., to convey the president's pledge and its terms. If the Soviets disclosed the assurance or intimated that the missiles in Turkey were part of the bargain, the missiles would not be withdrawn, Robert Kennedy told Dobrynin. He also warned the Soviets that time was running out and that the president would soon feel compelled to attack Cuba. By the time he received Dobrynin’s report, however, Khrushchev had already decided to remove the missiles because the danger of nuclear war was too great. Cuban leader Fidel Castro had sent Khrushchev a message saying Castro believed a U.S. invasion was imminent and that Khrushchev should be ready to launch the missiles. Khrushchev decided that Kennedy was serious and that an air attack on Cuba and an invasion were at hand. Khrushchev told his ministers that the missiles must be withdrawn from Cuba in return only for a noninvasion pledge. Resolution On October 28 the tension began to subside. In a worldwide radio broadcast Khrushchev said he would remove “offensive” weapons from Cuba in return for a U.S. pledge not to invade. He also called for United Nations (UN) inspectors to verify the process. Kennedy believed Khrushchev was sincere, but many of Kennedy’s advisers remained wary of the Soviets' intentions. A further problem developed when Castro refused to allow UN oversight of the dismantling process. Eventually an agreement was reached: The bombers would be removed within 30 days, and the missiles and other “offensive” weapons would be evacuated in the open so that U.S. surveillance aircraft could observe their removal. Conclusion In the years since the crisis, more details about the incident emerged from declassified U.S. and Soviet files; from conferences involving those who participated in the crisis, including some Soviet officials; and from the release of secretly recorded White House tapes of the meetings involving Kennedy and his advisers. The facts that came to light revealed that a U.S. invasion of Cuba might have met more opposition than the United States expected. Unknown to the U.S. government, Soviet forces in Cuba had been equipped with nuclear weapons intended for battlefield use. The United States had also incorrectly estimated the number of Soviet troops stationed in Cuba. Instead of a few thousand troops, there were about 40,000 Soviet soldiers in Cuba. Any U.S. invasion would have faced stiff resistance. The Cuban missile crisis was a very dangerous episode, bringing the world’s major military powers to the brink of nuclear war. Kennedy has been criticized for such policies as the failed Bay of Pigs invasion, which helped cement the Soviet-Cuban relationship and led Khrushchev to think Kennedy might be bullied. Yet most historians agree that it was Kennedy's good judgment, and the prudence Khrushchev displayed once the crisis intensified, that helped avert catastrophe. The crisis led to a temporary strain in relations between the USSR and Cuba. Castro felt he had been unfairly excluded from the negotiations over the fate of the missiles, which he thought Cuba needed to discourage a potential invasion from the United States. However, with the threat of invasion removed by the U.S. pledge and with Cuba badly in need of Soviet financial aid, relations between Cuba and the USSR soon grew closer. The apparent capitulation of the USSR in the standoff was instrumental in Khrushchev's being deposed as leader of the USSR in 1964. The younger Soviet leaders who ousted Khrushchev perceived his action during the crisis as weak and indecisive. This perception, combined with other foreign policy setbacks and difficulties meeting his goals for domestic programs, contributed to his removal from power. The Cuban missile crisis marked the point at which the Cold War began to thaw. Both sides had peered over the precipice of nuclear war and wisely decided to retreat. Khrushchev eventually accepted the status quo in West Berlin, and the predicted conflict there never materialized. The thaw also led to the signing of the Limited Nuclear Test Ban Treaty in 1963 by Britain, the United States, and the USSR. The treaty outlawed nuclear test explosions in the atmosphere or underwater, but allowed them underground. The Cold War At the end of World War II, the United States and the USSR emerged as the world’s major powers. They also became involved in the Cold War, a state of hostility (short of direct military conflict) between the two nations. The clash had deep roots, going back to the Russian Revolutions of 1917, when after the Bolshevik victory, the United States, along with Britain, France, and Japan, sent troops to Russia to support the anti- Communists. During World War II, the United States and the USSR were tenuously allied, but they disagreed on tactics and on postwar plans. After the war, relations deteriorated. The United States and the USSR had different ideologies, and they mistrusted each other. The Soviet Union feared that the United States, the leader of the capitalist world, sought the downfall of Communism. The United States felt threatened by Soviet expansionism in Europe, Asia, and the western hemisphere. The United States and the Soviet Union disagreed over postwar policy in central and eastern Europe. The USSR wanted to demilitarize Germany to prevent another war; to control Poland to preclude any future invasion from its west; and to dominate Eastern Europe. Stalin saw Soviet domination of Eastern Europe as vital to Soviet security. Within months of the war’s end, Stalin installed pro-Soviet governments in Bulgaria, Hungary, and Romania. Independent Communist takeovers in Albania and Yugoslavia provided two more “satellite nations.” Finally, the Soviets barred free elections in Poland and suppressed political opposition. In March 1946 former British prime minister Winston Churchill told a college audience in Fulton, Missouri, that a Soviet-made “Iron Curtain” had descended across Europe. President Harry S. Truman, enraged at the USSR’s moves, at once assumed a combative stance. He believed that Soviet expansion into Poland and Eastern Europe violated national self-determination, or the right of people to choose their own form of government; betrayed democratic principles; and threatened the rest of Europe. In contrast to the USSR, the United States envisioned a united, peaceful Europe that included a prosperous Germany. Truman became an architect of American Cold War policy. So did State Department official George Kennan, then stationed in Moscow, who in 1946 warned of Soviet inflexibility. The United States, wrote Kennan, would have to use “vigilant containment” to deter the USSR’s inherent expansionist tendencies. The doctrine of containment became a principle of U.S. policy for the next several decades. Throughout 1946 a sequence of events drew the United States and the USSR deeper into conflict. One area of conflict was defeated Germany, which had been split after the war into four zones: American, British, French, and Soviet. Stalin sealed off East Germany as a Communist state. The two countries also encountered problems beyond Europe. In 1945 and 1946, the Soviet Union attempted to include Turkey within its sphere of influence and to gain control of the Dardanelles, the strait in Turkey connecting the Aegean Sea and the Sea of Marmara. Control of the Dardanelles would give the USSR a route from the Black Sea to the Mediterranean. In response, Truman offered Turkey large-scale aid, and the two countries entered a close military and economic alliance. Meanwhile, an arms race began; each superpower rejected the other’s plans to control nuclear arms, and the United States established the Atomic Energy Commission to oversee nuclear development. Within the year, the Cold War was under way. The Truman Doctrine In 1947 the Cold War conflict centered on Greece, where a Communist-led resistance movement, supported by the USSR and Communist Yugoslavia, threatened to overthrow the Greek monarchical government, supported by Britain. When the British declared that they were unable to aid the imperiled Greek monarchists, the United States acted. In March 1947 the president announced the Truman Doctrine: The United States would help stabilize legal foreign governments threatened by revolutionary minorities and outside pressures. Congress appropriated $400 million to support anti-Communist forces in Turkey and Greece. By giving aid, the United States signaled that it would bolster regimes that claimed to face Communist threats. As George Kennan explained in an article in Foreign Affairs magazine in 1947, “containment” meant using “unalterable counterforce at every point” until Soviet power ended or faded. In 1947 the United States further pursued its Cold War goals in Europe, where shaky postwar economies seemed to present opportunities for Communist gains. The American Marshall Plan, an ambitious economic recovery program, sought to restore productivity and prosperity to Europe and thereby prevent Communist inroads. The plan ultimately pumped more than $13 billion into western European economies, including occupied Germany. Stalin responded to the new U.S. policy in Europe by trying to force Britain, France, and the United States out of Berlin. The city was split between the Western powers and the USSR, although it was deep within the Soviet zone of Germany. The Soviets cut off all access to Berlin from the parts of Germany controlled by the West. Truman, however, aided West Berlin by airlifting supplies to the city from June 1948 to May 1949 NATO In 1949 the United States joined 11 other nations (Belgium, Britain, Canada, Denmark, France, Iceland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, and Portugal) to form the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), a mutual defense pact. Members of NATO pledged that an attack on one would be an attack on all. Stalin responded by uniting the economies of Eastern Europe under the Council for Mutual Economic Assistance (COMECON). Then late in 1949, Americans learned that the Soviets had successfully exploded an atomic bomb in August. Finally, in February 1950, Stalin signed an alliance with the People’s Republic of China, a Communist state formed in 1949. The doctrine of “containment” now faced big challenges. To bolster the containment policy, U.S. officials proposed in a secret 1950 document, NSC-68, to strengthen the nation’s alliances, to quadruple defense spending, and to convince Americans to support the Cold War. Truman ordered the Atomic Energy Commission to develop a hydrogen bomb many times more destructive than an atomic bomb. In Europe, the United States supported the independence of West Germany. Finally, the United States took important steps to contain Communism in Europe and Asia. In Europe, the United States supported the rearmament of West Germany. In Asia in early 1950, the United States offered assistance to France to save Vietnam (still French Indochina) from Communist rule, and signed a peace treaty with Japan to ensure the future of American military bases there. Responding to the threats in Asia, Stalin endorsed a Communist reprisal in Korea, where fighting broke out between Communist and non-Communist forces. The Korean War Japan had occupied Korea during World War II. After Japan’s defeat, Korea was divided along the 38th parallel into the Communist Democratic People’s Republic of Korea in the north and the U.S.-backed Republic of Korea in the south. After June 1949, when the United States withdrew its army, South Korea was left vulnerable. A year later, North Korean troops invaded South Korea. Truman reacted quickly. He committed U.S. forces to Korea, sent General Douglas MacArthur there to command them, and asked the United Nations to help protect South Korea from conquest. MacArthur drove the North Koreans back to the dividing line. Truman then ordered American troops to cross the 38th parallel and press on to the Chinese border. China responded in November 1950 with a huge counterattack that decimated U.S. armies. MacArthur demanded permission to invade mainland China, which Truman rejected, and then repeatedly assailed the president’s decision. In 1951 Truman fired him for insubordination. By then, the combatants had separated near the 38th parallel. The Korean War did not officially end until 1953, when President Dwight Eisenhower imposed a precarious armistice. Meanwhile, the Korean War had brought about rearmament, hiked the U.S. military budget, and increased fears of Communist aggression abroad and at home. Cold War at Home As the Cold War intensified, it affected domestic affairs. Many Americans feared not only Communism around the world but also disloyalty at home. Suspicion about Communist infiltration of the government forced Truman to act. In 1947 he sought to root out subversion through the Federal Employee Loyalty Program. The program included a loyalty review board to investigate government workers and fire those found to be disloyal. The government dismissed hundreds of employees, and thousands more felt compelled to resign. By the end of Truman’s term, 39 states had enacted antisubversion laws and loyalty programs. In 1949 the Justice Department prosecuted 11 leaders of the Communist Party, who were convicted and jailed under the Smith Act of 1940. The law prohibited groups from conspiring to advocate the violent overthrow of the government. The Communist Party had reached the peak of its strength in the United States during World War II, when it claimed 80,000 members. Some of these had indeed worked for the government, handled classified material, or been part of spy networks. Although Communist party membership had fallen to under 30,000 by the 1950s, suspicion about disloyalty had grown. Concerned about the Sino-Soviet alliance and the USSR’s possession of atomic weapons, many Americans feared Communist spies and Soviet penetration of federal agencies. Attention focused on two divisive trials. In August 1948 Time magazine editor Whittaker Chambers, a former Communist, accused former State Department official Alger Hiss of being a member of the Communist Party and, subsequently, of espionage. Hiss sued Chambers for slander, but Hiss was convicted of perjury in 1950 and jailed.. In 1951 Julius and Ethel Rosenberg were convicted of espionage for stealing atomic secrets. They were executed two years later. Both of these trials and convictions provoked decades of controversy. Half a century later, the most recent evidence seems to support the convictions of Alger Hiss and Julius Rosenberg. Meanwhile, Congress began to investigate suspicions of disloyalty. The House Un- American Activities Committee (HUAC) sought to expose Communist influence in American life. Beginning in the late 1940s, the committee called witnesses and investigated the entertainment industry. Prominent film directors and screenwriters who refused to cooperate were imprisoned on contempt charges. As a result of the HUAC investigations, the entertainment industry blacklisted, or refused to hire, artists and writers suspected of being Communists. One of the most important figures of this period was Senator Joseph McCarthy of Wisconsin, who gained power by accusing others of subversion. In February 1950, a few months after the USSR detonated its first atomic device, McCarthy claimed to have a list of Communists who worked in the State Department. Although his accusations remained unsupported and a Senate committee labeled them “a fraud and a hoax,” McCarthy won a national following. Branding the Democrats as a party of treason, he denounced his political foes as “soft on Communism” and called Truman’s loyal secretary of state, Dean Acheson, the “Red Dean.” McCarthyism came to mean false charges of disloyalty. In September 1950, goaded by McCarthy, Congress passed, over Truman’s veto, the McCarran Internal Security Act, which established a Subversive Activities Control Board to monitor Communist influence in the United States. A second McCarran act, the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1952, also became law over Truman’s veto. It kept the quota system based on national origin, although it ended a ban on Asian immigration, and required elaborate security checks for foreigners visiting the United States. The Cold War played a role in the presidential contest of 1952 between Republican Dwight Eisenhower and Democrat Adlai Stevenson. Many voters feared Soviet expansionism, Soviet atomic explosions, and more conflicts like Korea. Eisenhower’s running mate, former HUAC member Richard M. Nixon, charged that a Democratic victory would bring “more Alger Hisses, more atomic spies.” Eisenhower’s soaring popularity led to two terms as president. McCarthy’s influence continued until the Army-McCarthy hearings of 1954, when the Senate investigated McCarthy’s enquiry into the army. The Senate censured him on December 2, 1954, for abusing his colleagues, and his career collapsed. But fears of subversion continued. Communities banned books; teachers, academics, civil servants, and entertainers lost jobs; and unwarranted attacks ruined lives. Communists again dwindled in number after 1956, when Stalin was revealed to have committed extensive crimes. Meanwhile, by the end of the decade, new right-wing organizations such as the John Birch Society condemned “creeping socialism” under Truman and Eisenhower. McCarthyism left permanent scars. The Cold War under Eisenhower When Eisenhower took office in 1953, he moved to end the war in Korea, where peace talks had been going on since 1951. Eisenhower’s veiled threat to use nuclear weapons broke the stalemate. An armistice, signed in July 1953, set a boundary between the two Koreas near the 38th parallel. Eisenhower then reduced the federal budget and cut defense spending. Still, he pursued the Cold War. When Stalin died in 1953, the United States and the USSR had an opportunity to ease tensions. However, the USSR tested a nuclear bomb in 1954, and Eisenhower needed to appease Republicans who urged more forceful efforts to defeat Communism. He relied on his secretary of state, John Foster Dulles, who called for “liberation” of the captive peoples of Eastern Europe and the end of Communism in China. Dulles was willing to bring the world to “the brink of war” to intimidate the USSR. With reduced conventional forces, Dulles’s diplomacy rested on threats of “massive retaliation” and brinksmanship, a policy of never backing down in a crisis even at the risk of war. In 1955 the United States and USSR met in Geneva, Switzerland, to address mounting fears about radioactive fallout from nuclear tests. Discussions of “peaceful coexistence” led the two nations to suspend atmospheric tests of nuclear weapons. Still, the United States spent more on nuclear weapons and less on conventional forces. Dulles, meanwhile, negotiated pacts around the world committing the United States to the defense of 43 nations. The focus of the Cold War now shifted to the so-called Third World, where the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) represented U.S. interests. Established in 1947 to conduct espionage and assess information about foreign nations, the CIA carried out covert operations against regimes believed to be Communist or supported by Communist nations. In 1954, for example, the CIA helped bring down a Guatemalan government that the United States believed was moving towards Communism. Finally, to stop the USSR from spreading Communism, the United States became involved in Indochina and the Middle East. In Vietnam, Ho Chi Minh, a nationalist and a Communist, led a movement for independence from France. The Truman administration had aided France, but in 1954 the French were defeated. An international peace conference in Geneva divided Vietnam at the 17th parallel. The United States refused to sign the Geneva Accords, which it believed conceded too much to the Communists. Instead the United States sent economic aid and military advisers to South Vietnam from 1954 to 1961. Although Eisenhower feared further involvement in Vietnam, he supported what was called the domino theory: If Vietnam fell to Communism, all of Southeast Asia might follow. In the Middle East, the United States promised a loan to Egypt’s new ruler, Gamal Abdel Nasser, to build the Aswan High Dam on the Nile River. But when Nasser bought arms from Communist Czechoslovakia, the United States canceled the loan. Nasser retaliated in July 1956 by nationalizing the Anglo-French Suez Canal, an artificial waterway across the Isthmus of Suez in northeastern Egypt. Britain, France, and Israel (formed in 1948) responded with force, which the United States condemned. The invaders of Egypt withdrew, and the Suez crisis was defused. In reaction to the Suez crisis, the United States announced a new policy, the Eisenhower Doctrine: The United States would intervene in the Middle East if necessary to protect the area against Communism. In July 1958 the United States sent 14,000 marines to Lebanon during a civil war that the United States feared would destabilize the region. In the USSR, Stalin’s successor, Nikita Khrushchev, did his part to keep the Cold War alive. He extended Soviet influence by establishing relations with India and with other nations that were not aligned with either side in the Cold War. In 1955 Khrushchev created the Warsaw Pact, a military alliance of seven European Communist nations, to secure the Soviet position in Europe. In 1956 he used force in Hungary and political pressure in Poland to ensure continued Soviet control of those countries. He increased Soviet power by developing a hydrogen bomb, and by launching the first earth satellite in 1957. Finally, he formed an alliance with Cuba after Fidel Castro led a successful revolution there in 1959. At the end of Eisenhower’s second term, the Cold War still dominated American foreign policy. United States efforts around the world to quell Communist-inspired or nationalist insurgencies sometimes caused anger. In 1958 angry crowds in Peru and Venezuela stoned Vice President Nixon’s car. On May 1, 1960, the Soviets shot down a U-2 spy plane, and plans for a second summit collapsed. When Eisenhower left office, he warned against “unwarranted influence … by the military-industrial complex.” But the nuclear arms race had intensified, and the Cold War seemed to be widening. The Cold War brought divisiveness and discord in the United States. Americans of the 1950s clashed on the extent of the threat posed by Communism at home and abroad. Historians debate this question, too, as well as the origins of the Cold War. Some contend that Soviet aggression in the postwar era reflected valid concerns for security, and that a series of hostile acts by the United States provoked the USSR to take countermeasures. Others argue, variously, that Communism was inherently expansionist; that Soviet aggression was a natural outgrowth of Communism; that with Stalin in power, the Cold War was inevitable; that the USSR was bent on establishing Communist regimes in every region where a power vacuum existed; and that containment was a necessary and successful policy. Starting in the early 1990s, scholars have gained access to Soviet evidence that was previously unavailable. New revelations from Russian archives—as well as declassification in 1995 and 1996 of U.S. intelligence files on interception of Soviet spy cables, known as the Venona decryptions—has recently made possible new scholarship on the Cold War era. For the moment, debates about U.S. Cold War policy are likely to remain. A World of Plenty In the post-World War II decade, the United States was the richest nation in the world. After a brief period of postwar adjustment, the economy boomed. Consumers demanded goods and services. Businesses produced more to meet this demand, and increased production led to new jobs. Federal foreign aid programs, such as the Marshall Plan, provided overseas markets for U.S. businesses. Finally, the government spent large amounts of money by providing loans, fighting the Cold War, and funding social programs. Government spending plus consumer demand led to an era of widespread prosperity, rising living standards, and social mobility. Postwar Arrangements The Soviet Union suffered grievous losses during World War II. Much of its European territory was devastated by mechanized warfare and the horrors of occupation. Official Soviet reports at the time stated that 20 million soldiers and civilians perished in the war, but it was later revealed, during Gorbachev’s time in office in the 1980s, that a more realistic figure for Soviet losses was between 27 million and 28 million. At this astronomic price, the Soviet Union subdued its bellicose neighbors, expanded its frontiers, and moved its troops into Germany, Eastern Europe, and formerly Japanese- held parts of East Asia. Bargaining over postwar arrangements afforded it recognition as one of the great powers of the world. Stalin participated with the American and British leaders at the Tehrān Conference in 1943, the Yalta Conference in February 1945, and the Potsdam Conference later in 1945 to decide the overall military and political strategy of the war and a common postwar European policy. The Soviets also played a leading role in the conferences leading to the establishment of the United Nations (UN) in 1945. Instead of making a treaty immediately with defeated and disorganized Germany, the victor nations temporarily designated four occupation zones. The eastern zone was assigned to the USSR. Berlin, surrounded by the Soviet zone, was divided into four sectors; its eastern zone was also assigned to the USSR. All were to be administered as parts of one country, with free trade among them. German territory east of a line formed by the Odra (Oder) and Neisse rivers was consigned to Polish occupancy pending a final peace settlement. The northern part of East Prussia was awarded to the USSR. The Soviets exacted huge reparations in the form of machinery and raw materials from the Soviet-occupied areas of Eastern Europe. During the postwar reconstruction of the Soviet economy, which had been devastated in the war, Germany and former Nazi satellites such as Finland also made reparations to the Soviet Union. The Cold War Begins The wartime alliance was based on aversion to a common enemy, not on philosophical consensus or similarity of social system or way of life. Victory removed the mutual enemy and opened the coalition up to strains between the totalitarian Soviet Union and the two leading democracies, the United States and the United Kingdom. Stalin initially hesitated in his policy, unsure how far he could push Soviet interests and whether it would be necessary to alienate his wartime partners. At the Potsdam Conference, held on the heels of the victory in Europe, Stalin offended the United States and the United Kingdom by making demands they held to be in excess of the needs of Soviet national security. Despite the acrimony, the Allies reached agreement on the general lines of the occupation, on reparations policy, and on the German-Polish and Polish-Soviet demarcation lines. Within several years, the Soviet Union violated many of these agreements and embarked on a sustained assault on the political, economic, and social structures of most of the countries it occupied. In late 1946 the former British prime minister, Sir Winston Churchill, presciently remarked that an “iron curtain” was descending across the middle of Europe. The Soviets used force and threats to press their advantage and by 1947 and 1948 gave Communist groups in Eastern Europe the green light to govern in roughly the same repressive way the USSR itself was ruled. In July 1947 Soviet foreign minister Molotov served notice that the USSR would not participate in the Marshall Plan, the American program for reviving the postwar economies of Europe. In a return to the spirit of an earlier age, the USSR established the Communist Information Bureau (Cominform) as a successor to the defunct Comintern with the cooperation of eight other Communist countries. As Moscow shirked cooperation and turned inward, the Western countries committed themselves to the globe-girdling political, diplomatic, and economic conflict between blocs—and for the most part between the two superpowers, the United States and the Soviet Union—known as the Cold War. Takeover in Eastern Europe In the European countries where Soviet influence was paramount during and after World War II—Poland, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria, Yugoslavia, Albania, and East Germany—political structures were reorganized in stages. Local Communists first cooperated in coalition governments in which they controlled the ministries directing the police, the army, and the economy. This was followed, beginning in 1945, by the institution of "people's democracies," Soviet-type regimes under Communist control domestically and subservient to the USSR in foreign policy. Opposing political factions were isolated and then destroyed, large land holdings were expropriated, and (with the exception of Poland) farms were collectivized; virtually all industry was nationalized. Czechoslovakia, the only democracy in Eastern Europe between the two world wars, was the last to come under Communist control in February 1948, through subversion of a coalition government. That same year, Yugoslavia, having acquired a Communist regime led by Marshal Josip Broz Tito, resisted Soviet efforts to dictate to it and was expelled from Cominform. Developments in Eastern Europe, and the 11-month Soviet blockade of Berlin in 1948- 1949, alarmed the United States and Western Europe and led to the creation of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) in April 1949. To coordinate the economies of the countries under its control, the USSR in 1949 established the Council for Mutual Economic Assistance (COMECON or CMEA), with all the Communist states of Eastern Europe except Yugoslavia as members. Relations with China In August 1945 the Soviet Union concluded a treaty of friendship and alliance with the Republic of China’s Kuomintang (KMT) government, granting it economic concessions and defense facilities, as previously agreed upon by the wartime Allies. Although the Soviets promised to respect KMT sovereignty in Manchuria, they stripped the region of nearly all of its industrial machinery, resisted efforts by the Chinese government to reestablish its authority, and gave arms taken from captured Japanese soldiers to the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), the KMT’s adversary in a civil war. When Soviet troops withdrew, all Manchuria fell to the CCP. The subsequent victory of the Chinese Communists over the KMT in 1949 altered the balance of power in Asia to the momentary advantage of the Soviet Union. Struggle for Leadership Stalin, although increasingly erratic and paranoid as he grew old, remained in control until his death in March 1953. A collective leadership took power after his death. It was headed briefly by Georgy Malenkov, who was chosen CPSU first secretary and premier of the government. Other key figures included Molotov (reinstated as foreign minister), Beria (minister of internal affairs), Nikita Khrushchev (party secretary), Kaganovich and Nikolay Bulganin (first deputy premiers), and Kliment Voroshilov (ceremonial head of state). The ruling group soon fell out among themselves. Malenkov lasted as chief organizer of the party for only one week and was eclipsed there by Khrushchev, whose title was elevated to CPSU first secretary in September 1953. The ambitious Beria was arrested in June and denounced for “criminal and antiparty activities”; in December 1953 the Kremlin announced he had been tried for treason, found guilty, and shot. Malenkov was demoted in February 1955 and replaced as head of government by Bulganin, a confederate of Khrushchev. Cold War Aftermath As the 1990s began, the United States and the USSR continued to negotiate arms-control accords. In May 1990 Gorbachev and U.S. president George Bush approved a treaty to end production and reduce stockpiles of chemical weapons. In 1991 the United States and the USSR signed the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START I), requiring both nations to reduce their strategic nuclear arsenals by about 25 percent. Both sides also moved to reduce conventional weapons and to continue phased withdrawal of their forces from Europe. The collapse of the USSR in late 1991 raised complex new problems. The location of strategic nuclear weapons at multiple sites in Russia, Ukraine, Kazakhstan, and Belarus raised concerns about the safety and security of these weapons. The U.S. Congress appropriated $1.5 billion to help these former Soviet states dismantle nuclear weapons and develop safe storage of weapons-grade nuclear materials. In 1992 these countries and the United States agreed to abide by the terms of the 1991 START I agreement. In 1993 President Bush and Russian president Boris Yeltsin signed the START II treaty. This treaty called for the elimination of almost two-thirds of the nuclear warheads and all the multiple-warhead land-based missiles held by the United States and the former Soviet republics. In January 1996 the U.S. Senate ratified the START II treaty, but the Russian parliament never approved the accord. The START II treaty never went into effect, and in 2002 it was replaced by a new strategic arms reduction agreement known as the Treaty of Moscow. In September 1996 leaders of the five major nuclear powers—the United States, Russia, China, France, and Britain—and dozens of other countries signed the landmark Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty, which banned most types of nuclear weapons testing. In order to take effect, however, the treaty must be formally approved, or ratified, by all nations believed to be capable of producing nuclear arms. In 1999 the U.S. Senate rejected the treaty by a vote of 51 to 48. China, Israel, Pakistan, and India are among other known nuclear powers that have not ratified the treaty. The Senate’s failure to ratify the treaty drew criticism from many U.S. allies, including Britain, Germany, and France. Senate opponents of the treaty argued that it was unenforceable, and they raised concerns that the treaty left open the possibility that rogue powers, such as Iraq or North Korea, could stockpile nuclear weapons, while at the same time it blocked the United States from upgrading its nuclear arsenal. The Senate’s failure to ratify the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty came on the heels of another setback. In mid-1998 India conducted a series of underground tests of nuclear weapons. About two weeks later, India’s archrival, Pakistan, detonated its own nuclear devices to demonstrate that it also possessed the powerful weapons. Both nations were internationally condemned for the tests. The United States, the International Monetary Fund, the European Union, and individual nations imposed economic sanctions on India and Pakistan in retaliation. Roughly a year later India tested a ballistic missile capable of delivering a nuclear warhead to any target within Pakistan, and days later Pakistan responded by testing a missile with similar capabilities. In 2002 tensions between the two nations over the disputed territory of Kashmīr raised fears of a nuclear war. Meanwhile, the United States under the administration of President Bill Clinton reached an important arms control arrangement with North Korea in 1994. Although relations between the United States and North Korea remained tense, under the arrangement North Korea agreed to freeze all work on the infrastructure of reactors and reprocessing plants needed to produce plutonium for nuclear weapons. In exchange, Japan, South Korea, and the United States agreed to provide fuel oil and other economic aid to North Korea. In 2002, however, this arrangement began to unravel. United States intelligence agencies discovered that while being paid not to produce plutonium, North Korea was at work to enrich uranium, the other way of obtaining nuclear weapons. That triggered North Korea's inclusion in the “axis of evil” cited by U.S. president George W. Bush in his State of the Union speech in January 2002. In October 2002 North Korea openly told U.S. officials that it had a covert program to develop nuclear weapons with enriched uranium. The United States responded by halting supplies of fuel oil. In January 2003 North Korea expelled United Nations (UN) monitors and withdrew from the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty. In April 2003 North Korea told U.S. officials that it possessed nuclear weapons, and in October 2003 North Korean officials said they were extracting plutonium from spent nuclear fuel rods to produce nuclear weapons. In November 2003 the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency repeated its belief that North Korea possesses at least one and possibly two nuclear bombs. However, other former and current U.S. intelligence officials said they were skeptical that North Korea had the technological know-how to produce nuclear weapons. In February 2004 North Korea entered talks with China, Japan, Russia, South Korea, and the United States to discuss an agreement that would end North Korea’s nuclear weapons program. As of early 2004 the talks were inconclusive. Outlook for the 21st Century As the world entered the 21st century, both progress and setbacks occurred in arms control. In 2001 the administration of U.S. president George W. Bush announced that it would unilaterally withdraw from the ABM Treaty, laying the groundwork for the deployment of defenses against long-range ballistic missiles. For the first time the U.S. government also announced a policy that under extreme circumstances it would consider using nuclear weapons against a nonnuclear state that employed biological or chemical weapons. The Bush administration, however, also pursued an arms reduction agreement with the Russian Federation, and the two nations signed a treaty in 2002 to deactivate about 75 percent of their strategic nuclear arsenals. Under the 2002 agreement, both nations were to reduce their active inventories of strategic nuclear warheads from about 6,000 each to about 2,200 warheads each by the year 2012. The agreement, known as the Treaty of Moscow, required ratification by both the U.S. Senate and the Russian Duma (parliament) before it could go into effect. Once ratified the new treaty was to replace the previous START II treaty. Observers noted that the new treaty contained a number of escape clauses. Either side could withdraw from the treaty with only three months’ notice, and the reductions did not have to take effect until 2012, the same year the treaty expires. The treaty also enabled both nations to place the deactivated warheads in storage or to set them aside as “operational spares” that could be quickly reactivated. Critics of the agreement argued that the deactivated warheads should be destroyed, rather than stored, because of the danger that terrorists could obtain access to stored weapons, which are presumably less well guarded than those in active service.