Discuss the view that fear of the Soviet Union was mainly responsible for changes in international relations in the period 1945-1989.
There were several factors that were responsible for changes in international relations between 1945 and 1989, however I do not believe that the fear of the Soviet Union was mainly responsible for the change in relations during this period. I instead believe that Soviet aggression was primarily responsible for changes in international relations after the Second World War. The purpose of this essay is consider other factors such as US aggression and mutual misconceptions providing evidence to reinforce my view that Soviet aggression was mainly responsible for changes in international relations.
Firstly, the fear of the USSR was long and continuous international feeling. Ideological differences between the USSR and the US meant that both sides feared each other. The Grand Alliance of the two in 1945 quickly came to an end in 1946 when the Kennan Telegram was sent to the US by George Kennan in Moscow. It talked of the mass fear in the USSR that capitalism would mean the end of them, and so the US no longer believed that the Soviet Union would pursue a peaceful co-existence. After the Second World War, the creation of Soviet satellite states in Eastern Europe gave the US greater fear that Communism was going to spread to the West and also the fear that Stalin was creating this buffer zone in preparation for a full-scale war. This made relations between US presidents and Soviet leaders in the future, much tougher and made the fight for peaceful coexistence a much tougher process. Additionally, the end of the Berlin Blockade in 1948 showed the world that Stalin was willing to starve millions of people to maintain control of Europe and force the US into submission. This made countries around the world much more fearful of the USSR as they knew Stalin would attempt to control the US no matter the cost. This event led to more strained relations between the two superpowers and marked the start of what would be known as the First Cold War. In 1956, after increasing unrest from Hungarian students and an emerging leader proposing the banishment of Communism from the country, Soviet troops marched on Hungary. They quickly crushed the rebellion killing 2700 people in the process. This showed the West that the USSR had definitely not changed since Stalin's death and brought back the fear that the Soviet Union would once again stop at nothing to maintain control. This made several of the other satellite states fear the iron fist of the USSR and rethink their position aiding the USSR. These all show that the fear of the Soviet Union was an important factor in the change in international relations however, I believe that Soviet aggression was mainly responsible for the change.
Secondly, the aggression of the Soviet Union was, in my opinion, the root cause of the largest changes in international relations between 1945 and 19...