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The Cold War Expands. Section 16.3. How Quickly Winning can Change. 2 Sept 1949 – A B-29 flying over Alaska detects atmospheric radiation It was drifting east from Siberia The Soviet Union had an atomic bomb!. The Rules just changed. 1949 – USSR exploded its first A-Bomb

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how quickly winning can change
How Quickly Winning can Change
  • 2 Sept 1949 – A B-29 flying over Alaska detects atmospheric radiation
    • It was drifting east from Siberia
  • The Soviet Union had an atomic bomb!
the rules just changed
The Rules just changed
  • 1949 – USSR exploded its first A-Bomb
    • There are now two nuclear superpowers
    • Big Fear for US – the Soviets would overpower us
1952 the hydrogen bomb
1952 – The Hydrogen Bomb
  • Built by the Atomic Energy Commission after Truman ordered it
    • Predicted to be 1,000 times more powerful than an A-Bomb
    • Nicknamed the


    • Edward Teller –

Father of the


the difference between the two b ombs
The Difference Between the Two Bombs

Fusion Reaction (H-Bomb)

Fission Reaction (A-Bomb)


comparison of fireball sizes
Comparison of Fireball Sizes

seen and felt 1,000 km away. The heat from the explosion could have caused third degree burns 100 km away from ground zero. The subsequent mushroom cloud was about 60 km high (nearly seven times higher than Mount Everest) and 30–40 km wide. The explosion could be seen and felt in Finland, even breaking windows there. [6]Atmospheric focusing caused blast damage up to 1,000 km away. The seismic shock created by the detonation was measurable even on its third passage around the Earth.

mutually assured destruction
Mutually Assured Destruction
  • Both sides started to build up their nuclear programs
    • Submarines, planes, missiles…

Policy in which the United States and the Soviet Union hoped to deter nuclear war by building up enough weapons to destroy one another

leadership changes in 1953
Leadership Changes in 1953

President Dwight D. Eisenhower

Premier Nikita Khrushchev

brinksmanship massive retaliation u s
Brinksmanship & Massive Retaliation (U.S)
  • Eisenhower and SoS Dulles use BRINKMANSHIP – pushing the enemy to the edge of declaring war to win
  • MASSIVE RETALIATION – if any ally of the US was attacked, the attacker would be overwhelmingly crushed by America
vs khrushchev s peaceful co existence
Vs. Khrushchev’s Peaceful Co-Existence
  • Khrushchev was not as suspicious or cruel as Stalin
    • Condemned some of the steps of the Stalin regime
    • Moved toward more peaceful relations with the West
co prosperity until
Co-Prosperity until…
  • Hungry tries to break from the Warsaw Pact in 1956
    • The Soviets decimated the rebellion
    • The Americans just watched, afraid to wage a nuclear war
sputnik i 1957
Sputnik I (1957)
  • 4 October 1957 – Soviet Union launches a 184 lbs steel ball containing a transmitter into space
  • The next month they send a dog named Laika
  • So now the Russians have the technological advantage…
reaction to sputnik
Reaction to Sputnik
  • National Defense Education Act (1958) – Teach more math and science in schools
  • National Aeronautics and Space Administration (1958) – to coordinate American space-related efforts
spy vs spy
Spy vs. Spy
  • Americans develop the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA)
    • Eisenhower increases its powers
  • Soviets develop the Committee for State Security (KGB)
open skies and the us incident
Open Skies and the US Incident
  • At Geneva Summit in 1955 – Eisenhower proposed an “Open Skies” treaty to monitor each other
    • Soviets turned it down (secretly too weak to do it)
  • U-2 Spy Plane
    • 1 May 1960 – Francis Gary Powers is shot down over Russia
    • Relations collapse…