Lecture six: The Early Cold War: 1948-53
The Soviet Union was controlled by Nato.
The US security state
* The meaning and application of National Security
- the bureaucratic functioning of the National Security Council and the Department of Defense
* The relationship of American foreign policy to international requirements in the Cold War
- the greater Cold War need for external economic and political links due to
- the wartime developments of a) the US economy
b) the projection of US military power
* The role of American intelligence
- the continuation of SOE European covert operations through British wartime personnel and MI6 links with eg the ...view middle of the document...
The Soviet Stalinist state and its cautious ambition
* Stalin’s personal role in government
* The relationship of Soviet foreign policy to domestic requirements in the Cold War
-the greater Cold War need for internal controls due to
a) the campaign against ‘imperialist spies’
b) the elimination of ‘enemies’ who threatened Stalin’s need for total personal power and control
* The role of Soviet intelligence
- to use the open nature of Western society to infiltrate moles
- to use moles to clarify Soviet suspicions of democratic capitalist governments
* The desire to achieve greater Soviet power and international influence but the fear of risking military conflict with the West in so doing
– Berlin crisis 1948
Now let’s have a look at the other side. First of all very different organisation of power in the Soviet Union. At the centre of the Soviet system was Joseph Stalin, who would not tolerate any form of disobedience or disagreement under his watch. Examples of this include famous show trials of political opponents in the inter-war period, the purges of the late 1930s. It was Stalin’s force which drove the policy of the Soviet Union in the first five years of the Cold War.
As a result of the Cold War Soviet society once more turned in on itself. In 1943 Stalin had dissolved Cominterm which had intended by all available means, including armed force, for the overthrow of the international bourgeoisie and for the creation of an international Soviet republic as a transition stage to the complete abolition of the State’ to placate the allies during the war. Cominform was set up in 1947. Main focus of the Soviet Union in the post-war era, to use spies to bring about Communist rule in France and Italy.
Crucial first Cold War clash.
West wanting to consolidate West Germany and Soviets seeking the unification of Germany. The day after the 18 June 1948 announcement of the new Deutsche Mark, Soviet guards halted all passenger trains and traffic on the autobahn to Berlin, delayed Western and German freight shipments and required that all water transport secure special Soviet permission. 25 June, Allies stop food being supplied to the non-Soviet zones in Berlin.
The new American application of containment as defence.
* Containment as the political and ideological containment of communism within the West
* The use of CIA money in 1948 to influence the electoral defeat of communism in Italy
* The strengthening of political alliances with non-communist governments in the West to deter any Soviet organization of coups by indigenous Western European communists
Removing the root causes in the West i.e. the social and economic conditions (poverty) that were deemed to make communism attractive.
about the US policy of containment – based on the ideas of George Kennan, that the Soviets couldn’t be trusted due to their mixture of Marxism and imperialism.
Focus on maintaining American/capitalist...