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COLD WAR (1947 - 1991)


The Cold War, often dated from 1947 to 1991, was a sustained state of political and military tension between ;

- Powers in the Western bloc, dominated by the United States with NATO and its allies.

- Powers in the Eastern bloc, dominated by the Soviet Union along with the Warsaw Pact.

This began after the success of their temporary war time alliance against Germany, leaving the two (2) superpowers.


On August 6, 1945; the United States was dropped first atomic bomb (little man) on Hiroshima that destroyed the city and half of its population. Two days later the Russian declared war on Japan. At the Tehran conference in 1943, the Russia reaffirmed its pledge to enter the war against Japan after the defeat of Germany. The Russian entry into the war in Asia was again confirmed both the Yalta and Potsdam conference. The following day, August 9, the second bomb was dropped (fat boy) on Nagasaki and Japanese capitulation on August 15 made the Russian invasion unnecessary. Josef Stalin was convinced that the United States and the Britain had contrived a plan to force Japan out of the war, before the Russian were able to comply its promise to join the war against Japan and avoid agreement turning territory held by Japanese since their victory over Imperial Russia in the Russo-Japanese war of 1905.

When the Americans offered a plan for sharing nuclear capability among the great powers after the war, the Russians rejected what they regarded as unfair or suspicious conditions. Thus, the bomb that ended one war marked the beginning of another—The Cold War.


The phrase COLD WAR is remarkable for its lack of accurate definition. It could be defined as;

· “A State of intensive competition, political, economical and ideological, which fell short of an armed conflict between the states”.

· “A state of tension in which a country or a group of countries tries to influence the behavior and policies of the other – a line falling short of hot war”.

Causes of Cold War:

There was two school of thoughts i.e.

1. Mutual Antagonism:

The first school of thought sees Cold War as a product of mutual antagonism. They hold that the mistrust and the consequent fear were the basis of this conflict. The mutual fear and suspicion produced hostile interaction between two parties. There were mirror images of each other. The diplomatic relations between them were the marriage of convenience. No doubt the diplomacy of coexistence and the rise of neutral nations in Asia and Africa, contributing to the dampening of the Cold War, but it was kept alive by the fear of the Capitalist world about the ultimate motives of Soviet expansion and the fear of the Communist Countries that the imperialists were determined to destroy the Marx land. Thus the Cold War was kept alive due to illusions of both the Capitalists and Communists.

2. Ideological incompatibilities:

The 2nd School of Thought hold that the Cold War was simply an extension of the Superpowers mutual disdains for the others political system and way of life.

The U.S ideology was Capitalism and the Soviet Union ideology was Communism which was crusading and expanding ideology.

The Communists believed in;

· Fixed Election in which representative should be elected from one/single party.

· Closed Economy.

· Closed Party System where every member must be an active member otherwise he will be expelled.

· Nationalization AND

· State is the End and People are mean.

While the Capitalists believed in;

· Democracy.

· Free Elections

· Free Economy

· Open Party System

· Privatization AND

· People are the End and State is the mean.

So these were completely opposite ideologies.

US Secretary of State James. F. Byrnes embraced this thesis at the conclusion of WW-II arguing that;

“There is too much differences in the ideologies of U.S and Russia to work out a long term program of cooperation”

Not surprisingly therefore the US responded Russia combatively to what it perceived as an alien and threatening ideology. Thus the Cold War was a conflict “not only between two powerful states but also between two different social systems”.

The US policy maker like their rivals in Kremlin saw the world in ZERO-SUM terms, when one side won, converts the other side lost them.

US also feared that communism appeal to the world’s less fortunate nations and people made it continued spread likely. As KARL MARX in his communist manifesto says; “Oh, working men unit, you will lose nothing but chains”. This conviction became known as the “Domino Theory” a popular metaphor in the 1960s, which predicted that the fall of communism in one country would cause the fall of its neighbors and in turn still others, and this reaction would bring in entire world under communists domination. The metaphor suggested that the process would continue unless checked by US Power.

3. Misperceptions:

The 3rd School of thought sees the roots of the Cold War in mutual misunderstanding and psychological factor, particularly the superpowers misperception of each other motives.

The Soviet suspicion of America was based on;

· America’s intervention in Russia in 1918-19.

· After Bolshevik revolution in 1917, refusal to establish diplomatic relations till 1933 which was too late.

· During the WWII, USA informed UK and France more than Russia. Russia was ignorant of “Little Boy and Fatman”.

· America’s refusal to inform the Soviet Union about the Manhattan project to develop Atomic Bomb.

· Delay in dending the Soviet promised Lend Lease Support.

· Delay in opening the 2nd Front which made Stalin suspected that the American Policy was to let the Germans and Russians destroy each other so that the US could then pick up the pieces from among the rubble; and

· The Russian ignorant about the use of Atomic Bomb against Japan.

Likewise, US nourished hostility towards S.U because of increasing indications of growing Soviet belligerence. This feeling arose because OF

Russian unwillingness to permit democratic elections in the countries liberated from the Nazis.

· This refusal to assist in post war reconstruction in regions outside Soviet Control.

· The maintenance of an unnecessarily large as standing armies after war.

· Intersegment or uncompromising behavior of S.U at international forum. For example, Russian Ambassador to UN Andre Gromik said “NO” 3000 times in Soviet Council AND Above all their Anti American Propaganda.

Regardless of the reasons for its corruption the COLD WAR because the central issue in world affairs. Its shadow stretched across the entire spectrum of world politics from 1945 until its final demise in 1991.

4. Implications of Cold War:

The Cold War had far-reaching implications in the international affairs which are as under;

i. Grouping:

The Cold War divided the whole world into two groups or blocs i.e. Communist and Capitalism.

ii. Rise of Fear:

It resulted in fear psychosis which resulted in mad race for the manufacture of more sophisticated weapons/armaments.

iii. Alliances System Emerged:

Cold War led to the formation of various Alliances. Both the blocs formed Alliances and counter alliances to counterbalance the growing power of the opponent. Some of the Alliances which were thus formed include NATO, SEATO, CENTO, WARSAW PACT etc.

iv. Proxy Wars Started:

Both the superpowers started proxy war against each other for example;

· US against Russia in Afghanistan and Russia against US in Vietnam.

v. Ineffectiveness of UN:

Cold War rendered the UN ineffective because both the superpowers tried to oppose the actions proposed by the opponents. As S.U exercised into Veto to prevent action in Greek, Trieste etc. because she destructed western powers. Likewise US made use of its Veto power on the question of Red China’s membership of UN.

Why everyone tried to capture Germany?


· Germany was the counter between Eastern and Western Europe.

· Having Strong Military.

· To which side it talks, the balance of Power will be on that side.


What is Diplomacy?

The subject of International relations is incomplete without diplomacy as it is very important chapter of International Relations. Political philosophers described it “art” and practice of conducting negotiations between representatives of groups or states. It usually refers to international diplomacy, the conduct of international relations through intercession of professional diplomats with regard to issues of peace making, trade, wars, economics, cultures, environment and human rights.

International treaties are usually negotiated by diplomats prior to endorsement by national politicians. In an informal or social sense, diplomacy is the employment of tact to gain strategic advantage or to find mutually acceptable solutions to a common challenge, one set of tools being the phrasing of statements in a non-confrontational or polite manner.

The process of diplomatic processes, dealing with the study of old documents also owes its name to the above, but its present meaning is completely distinct from that of diplomacy.

Diplomatic Recognition

Diplomatic recognition is an important factor in determining whether a nation is an independent state. Receiving recognition is often difficult, even for countries which are fully sovereign. For many decades after its becoming independent, even many of the closet allies of the Dutch Republic refused to grant it full recognition.

Today there are a number of independent entities without widespread diplomatic recognition, most notably the Republic of China (ROC) on Taiwan. Since the 1970s, most nations have stopped officially recognizing the ROC’s existence on Taiwan, at the insistence of the People’s Republic of China (PRC).

Currently, the United States and other nations maintain informal relations through de facto embassies, with names such as the American Institute in Taiwan. Similarly, Taiwan’s de facto embassies abroad are known by names such as the Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office.

The Palestinian National Authority has its own diplomatic service, however Palestinian representatives in most Western countries are not accorded diplomatic immunity, and their missions are referred to as Delegations General.

Diplomatic Immunity:

The sanctity of diplomats has long been observed. The sanctity has come to be known as diplomatic immunity. While there have been a number of cases where diplomats have been killed, this is normally viewed as a great breach of honor.

Genghis Khan and the Mongols were well known for strongly insisting on the rights of diplomats, and they would often wreak horrific vengeance against any state that violated these rights.

Diplomatic rights were established in the mid-seventeenth century in Europe and have spread throughout the world. European diplomats realized that protection from prosecution was essential to doing their jobs and a set of rules evolved guaranteeing the rights of diplomats. These were still confined to Western Europe and were closely tied to the prerogatives of nobility.

In the 19th century, the Congress of Vienna reasserted the rights of diplomats; and they have been largely respected since then, as the European model has spread throughout the world. Currently, diplomatic relations, including diplomatic immunity, are governed internationally by the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations, which has been ratified by almost every country in the world.

In modern times, diplomatic immunity continues to provide a means, albeit imperfect, to safeguard diplomatic personnel from any animosity that might arise between nations. As one article put it: "So why do we agree to a system in which we're dependent on a foreign country's whim before we can prosecute a criminal inside our own borders? The practical answer is: because we depend on other countries to honor our own diplomats' immunity just as scrupulously as we honor theirs."

The Diplomatic Relations Act of 1978 follows the principles introduced by the Vienna Conventions. The United States has had a tendency to be generous when granting diplomatic immunity to visiting diplomats, because a large number of U.S. diplomats work in host countries less protective of individual rights. If the United States were to punish a visiting diplomat without sufficient grounds, U.S. representatives in other countries could receive harsher treatment.

If a diplomat does commit a serious crime while in a host country he may be declared as persona non grata (unwanted person). Such diplomats are then often tried for the crime in their homeland.

Ambassadors and other diplomats are sometime recalled temporarily by their home countries as a way to express displeasure with the host country. In both cases, lower-level employees still remain to actually do the business of diplomacy.

Types of diplomacy

There are a variety of diplomatic categories and diplomatic strategies employed by organizations and governments to achieve their aims, each with its own advantages and disadvantages.


Appeasement is a policy of making concessions to an aggressor in order to avoid confrontation.

Soft power

Soft power, sometimes called hearts and minds diplomacy, as defined by Joseph Nye, is the cultivation of relationships, respect, or even admiration from others in order to gain influence, as opposed to more coercive approaches.

During the 20th century the United States commonly seen as having the most ability to exercise soft power because its wealth and economic involvement in the world giving it respect around the world. As a result the many nations looked to the U.S. for leadership or as a model to emulate even without any overt coercion.

Monetary diplomacy

Monetary diplomacy is the use of foreign aid or other types of monetary policy as a means to achieve a diplomatic agenda.

Gunboat diplomacy

Gunboat diplomacy is the use of conspicuous displays of military strength as a means of intimidation in order to influence others.

Public diplomacy

Public diplomacy is exercising influence through communication with the general public in another nation, rather than attempting to influence the nation's government directly. This communication may take the form of propaganda, or more benign forms such as citizen diplomacy, individual interactions between average citizens of two or more nations.

Nuclear diplomacy

Nuclear diplomacy is the area of diplomacy related to preventing nuclear proliferation and nuclear war. One of the most well-known and most controversial philosophies of nuclear diplomacy is “Mutually Assured Destruction (MAD).”