Early Cold War Years

By: Kenna, Ashtyn, Jamie and Emily


Containment was a United States policy to prevent the spread of communism. As a component of the Cold War, this policy was a response to a series of moves by the Soviet Union to enlarge communist influence in Eastern Europe, China, Korea, Africa, and Vietnam. It represented a middle-ground position between appeasement and rollback.

Truman Doctrine

The doctrine was presented on March 12, 1947. The doctrine established that the United States would provide political, military, and economic aid to Greece and Turkey to help them resist communism. The idea for the doctrine came when, in February of 1947, the British said that they would no longer provide military and economic assistance to the Greek Government in its civil war against the Greek Communist Party. The Truman administration believed that both Greece and Turkey were threatened by communism. In the doctrine Truman states that nations could adopt a way of life based on majority and governments that provided guaranteed individual liberty, or they could face a way of life based on minority forcibly imposed on the majority. Truman requested $400 million in assistance for the two nations. Congress approved his request two months later. The Truman Doctrine became known as the official declaration of the Cold War.

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Marshall Plan

On April 3, 1948, President Truman signed the Economic Recovery Act of 1948, also known as the Marshall Plan. The Marshall Plan was the American initiative to aid Europe.

It gave support for Europe to rebuild their economy after WWII in order to prevent the spread of Soviet Communism. It was named after Secretary of State George Marshall.

The only major power in the world that was not significantly damaged was the United States. There was economic prosperities in Europe through coal and steel that helped their economy grow back.

Berlin Airlift

Berlin airlift, 1948–49, Soviets placed a blockade on the allied sector of Berlin to starve the population into Soviet support. The allied response was a unbelievably massive air supply- flying night and day to feed the city. The massive effort to supply the 2 million West Berliners with food and fuel for heating began in June, 1948, and lasted until September 1949.