Paper 2 Review

Questions from 2012-2013

2012: In what ways did advances in technology affect the nature and outcome of warfare in the first half of the twentieth century?

  • Blitzkrieg and rapid advances, 1939-42
  • The rapidly discredited "cult of the offensive" of 1914-1918 to the "cult of defensive," which dominated military thinking in Western Europe post 1918 until it was called into question
  • The increasingly destructive nature of conflict in terms of casualties (civilian and military) and physical plant and infrastructure of the participants due to the ability to wreak more damage because of technological developments
  • The growing importance of new military fronts (including aerial warfare)
  • Battle of Britain(1940):German and British air forces clashed in the skies over the United Kingdom, locked in the largest sustained bombing campaign to that date.A significant turning point of World War II, the Battle of Britain ended when Germany’s Luftwaffe failed to gain air superiority over the Royal Air Force despite months of targeting Britain’s air bases, military posts and, ultimately, its civilian population. Britain’s decisive victory saved the country from a ground invasion and possible occupation by German forces while proving that air power alone could be used to win a major battle
  • The involvement of whole populations (total war)
  • Advances in weapons and other technological advances such as radar, sonar, improved radio communication, cryptology

2013: Assess the contribution of one of the following to the development of the Cold War: Truman; Mao; Castro.


  • The programme of Castro and how it was seen by Washington after Castro's coming to power (Washington's percephtion of Castro as a threat to U.S. economic and strategic interests)
  • U.S. resentment of policy of nationalism and subsequent economic embargo by President Eisenhower leading to Havana's friendship with the USSR
  • The Bay of Pigs invasion and Cuban missile crisis from 1961-1962 and its consequences
  • Was seen as agent for the promotion of communism in Bolivia, Nicaragua, Grenada which led to US involvement to either destabilize or overthrow Marxist type regimes
  • Castro was being seen as a Soviet surrogate in cases such as the Congo, Angola's civil war, etc.