The Impact of the Cold War



The Cold technically never came down to actual peace but it left a significant impact on all the countries involved.The US and Soviet Union were not able to stop competing for power left tension and unrest from the US and throughout Europe
Generally the Cold War didn't have the same impact as a usual war such as World War II meaning there wasn't as many casualties through military battle. The impact was more of a struggle power between nations.
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The main effects of the cold war:
  • by the end of the cold war both the US and Soviet Union were able to build up strong militaries along with the ability to use the atomic and H- Bomb
  • NATO and the Warsaw pact were also formed. NATO was the alliance between the US, Canada, and the United Kingdom to defend themselves agaisnt the USSR
  • it also led to wars such as the Korean War and the Vietnam War. Both wars were caused by the dispute between communist's of the northern region of each country and non-communists of the southern region of each country. This is related to the Cold War because the Cold War was literally just a struggle between non-communist U.S. and Communist Soviet Union.
  • althought the U.S. ended up with an economy boost, the Soviet Union ended up the exact opposite. Their economy had become weak due WWII as well as the Cold War which caused the country to collapse.
  • one positive outcome was the destruction of the Berlin Wall, which led to the joining the the two separate German states.
  • the war affected many other countries other than the two main ones--many Soviet controlled countries were able to gain their independence while others were left in an economic downfall because of the war
  • The US also became the main superpower in the World because after the war with the Soviets there economy boosted while the Soviets collapsed

The Effect on the U.S.

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The US spent a very high amount of money to keep peace in the country and protect its people's security. After all it was a very risky and scary time for the citizens of the US because of the fear of the atomic and hydrogen bomb. This also increased the fear of communism because many of the countries that had the power of the atomic bomb were communist such as the Soviet Union and the Japanese.

Nuclear Bomb
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After all the Cold War was basically a battle of power and influence between two countries, and it began to seem like it was the communists against the non communists. This fear of communist nations in the U.S. was all due to the atomic bomb. Its safe to say that that the atomic bomb itself had a major impact on the US during the Cold War. As early as 1939 the US had heard rumors that the Nazis had taken a step towards developing this bomb using uranium.Then in 1941 the government spen

t over 2 billion dollars on what was known as the Manhattan Pr

oject to create their own atomic bomb.The US then decided to release this information the Soviet Union to show off world power. However, the US was not aware that the Soviets were already working on their own destructive bomb. From that point the two nations started what was known as an arms race in which they tried to show which nation was greater by who had the more powerful and most destructive bomb.This had a major impact on the people of the US because it caused a serious fear of communist countries that may have had power of the atomic bomb.Many things were put in the media such as this picture to the left to show the effect that the new nuclear
warfare had on the country.

Effect on Economy


To sum up the US economy after the Cold War in one word it would be prosperous. Many thought that there would be a depression but they didn't consider the needs of the people after the war. Going from a wartime economy to a peacetime economy caused an outburst of purchasing of goods that people were deprived of during the war.Due to serious savings during the war as well as the investment in war bonds citizens were able to spend money. This caused a serious boom in the American economy. Almost every aspect of the econom

y boosted including home ownership, automobile registrations, median family income, and savings accounts.
This led way to what was known as the "American Dream" style of living because American had become the sole superpower of the world and with economy skyrocketing family life took a new meaning. Everyone was happy spending there money and many moved into the suburbs an

d started a new life free of war. A baby boom in America also took shape causing the population to sky rocket. This was all due to the amount of money the US had after the war.



Effect on Soviet Union

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The Soviet Union was left in shambles after the cold war. They had spent an enormous amount of money in competing with the United States for world power. The Cuban Missile Crisis was a huge part of this wasted money as it was the closest both countries came to nuclear destruction.

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Althought it cost the US a serious amount of money, the Soviets were left worse off. They spend over 25% percent of the gross domestic national product on militarism which was barely used in the cold war. The warsaw pact which was created the
Soviets to better protect themselves and increase their power eventually fell to peaces as well.There recession has b

een compared to the US great depression as ten times worse. Ofcourse by this point it was no lo

nger the Soviet Union, but independent states.

Impact of the Cold War Today

  • After the Soviet destruction economically the US is still considered to be the sole superpower of the world.
  • Since the cold war the Us has declared treaties and alliances with over 50 countries worldwide increasing its popularity and power around the world.

  • the US lost over 100,000 troops during the Vietnam and Korean War and spent over 8 billion dollars on the cold war
  • many proxy nations in the war,mainly those in southeast Asia, were also seriously affected economically and in their militaries






1945 : ‘A’-Bomb dropped on Hiroshima + Nagasaki. USA ahead in the arms race.
1947 : Marshall Aid to the west of Europe. Stalin of USSR refused it for Eastern Europe.
1948 : start of the Berlin Blockade - ended in 1949
1949 : NATO established; USSR exploded her first ‘A’-bomb; China becomes communist
1950 : Korean War started.
1952 : USA exploded her first hyrogen bomb.
1953 : Korean War ended. USSR exploded her first hydrogen bomb. Stalin died.
1955 : Warsaw Pact created. ‘Peaceful coexistence’ called for.
1956 : Hungary revolts against USSR. Suez Crisis.
1957 : Sputnik launched.
1959 : Cuba becomes a communist state.
1961 : Military aid sent to Vietnam by USA for the first time. Berlin Wall built.
1962 : Cuban Missile Crisis.
1963 : Huge increase of American aid to Vietnam.
1965 : USA openly involved in Vietnam.
1967 : Six-Day War in Middle East.
1968 : USSR invades Czechoslovakia.
1973 : Yom Kippur War.
1979 : USSR invaded Afghanistan.
1986 : Meeting in Iceland between USSR (Gorbachev) and USA (Reagan).
1987 : INF Treaty signed.

This time line helps show when each major part of the Cold War occured to provide a better understanding of when each event took place that had a major impact on the the world.

Work Cited


Powaski, Ronald E,. The Cold WAr. Print.

TK, Chung. "Cold War 1945-1960." funfront. N.p., n.d. Web. 2 May 2011. <http://funfront.net/hist/europe/coldwar.htm>.

"The Post War Economy: 1945-1960." Economics at About.Com -- Your Portal to the World of Economics. Web. 02 May 2011. <http://economics.about.com/od/useconomichistory/a/post_war.htm>.

The Americans. MvDougal Littell, 2005. Print.

"EHistory.com: Historical Analysis of the Cold War." EHistory at OSU | Welcome to EHistory. Web. 02 May 2011. <http://ehistory.osu.edu/world/articles/ArticleView.cfm?AID=66>.