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Cold War . Vocabulary . superpower - a powerful nation, especially one capable of influencing international events and the acts and policies of less powerful nations. Nuclear - pertaining to or involving atomic weapons:

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superpower - a powerful nation, especially one capable of influencing international events and the acts and policies of less powerful nations.

Nuclear- pertaining to or involving atomic weapons:

Iron Curtain - The military, political, and ideological barrier established between the Soviet bloc and western Europe from 1945 to 1990


Containment - Truman’s idea to keep the Soviet Union from expanding their territory and influence

Eastern Bloc- The countries of eastern and central Europe that were under Soviet domination from the end of World War II until the collapse of the Soviet communist system in 1989–91, usually considered to include Poland, East Germany, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria, and Yugoslavia.


North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO)- United States, Canada, and 10 Western European countries agreed to protect each other from the Soviet Union or any other Communist nation.

Warsaw pact- Agreement between the Soviet Union and seven Eastern European to help each other if one was attacked. They also put down any rebellions against Communism.


Glasnost - a Soviet Policy started by Gorbachev that allowed open discussion about the political system. Allowed freedom of speech and free elections.

what is a cold war
What is a Cold War?

Take a few minutes to complete your K-W-L Chart

  • A Cold War is rivalry between nations, sustained hostile political policies and an atmosphere of strain between opposed countries.
  • The Cold War was a rivalry between the United States and Soviet Union based on different political and economical ideas.
  • It last over 40 years and although no major war was fought between the two countries and it involved an arms race, spying, tension, and the effects can still be seen today.
background united states
Background - United States


Separation of powers

Keep one person or group

From having complete


John Locke

All people are free and equal.

“Life, Liberty, and Property”


People need to form

Their government

background united states1
Background- United States
  • founded on individual freedoms
  • Individuals can improve themselves through hard work
  • Free market economy allows individuals to have choice
background soviet union ussr
Background - Soviet Union (USSR)

Karl Marx

Wrote - The Communist Manifesto Business owners treat workers unfairly to in order to make money. The rich stay rich and the poor stay poor. Feel there should be no classes and people should share wealth

Vladimir Lenin

Came to power during the Russian Revolution. Promised peace, food, and land. Became a dictator and started communism in Russia

background ussr
Background - USSR
  • Russia was ruled by czars and most people were serfs up till 1917
  • They had no freedoms, education, and payed little money
  • After devastating loss in WWI, the Russian people revoluted
  • Lenin came to power as a dictator and started Communism promising land and bread.
  • Government took over farms and the factories - people still did not get their bread and land
  • Stalin then came to power and took away religion had a secret police to scare people, but built up the military and industry
put the following terms under the correct nation
Put the following terms under the correct nation

Command economy

private ownership of property

Employment guaranteed

free elections with choice of parties

Freedom of press

State controls media: dissent crushed

high degree of the individual freedom

state ownership of property

free enterprise economy

One-Party dictatorship

No guaranteed employment for workers

Freedom of speech and religion suppressed

compare and contrast check your work
Compare and Contrast - check your work!

United States

  • free enterprise economy
  • private ownership of property
  • No guaranteed employment for workers
  • free elections with choice of parties
  • Freedom of press
  • high degree of the individual freedom


  • Command economy
  • state ownership of property
  • Employment guaranteed
  • One-Party dictatorship
  • State controls media: dissent crushed
  • Freedom of speech and religion suppressed
aftermath of world war ii
Aftermath of World War II
  • rebuilding of Europe was left to the Allies
  • The Soviet Union took Poland, Czechoslovakia, Hungary and other nations of Eastern Europe.
  • The United States and Great Britain took control of Western Europe.
  • The United States implemented the Marshal Plan, and The Soviet Union forced Communism on the Counties to the east
aftermath of world war ii1
Aftermath of World War II
  • Churchill warns of the spread of Communism
  • Talks about an Iron Curtain
  • US. President Harry Truman wants to stop the spread of Communism and comes up the policy of Containment
a divided berlin
A Divided Berlin

At the end of WWII, the Allies agreed to divide Germany into occupied zones. Berlin, Germany’s capital, would also be divided.

As competition and tension increased, Berlin’s location caused problems.

In June 1948, Stalin decided to

close all roads into Berlin from

West Germany. People in West

Berlin now faced shortages and


the berlin airlift
The Berlin Airlift

The United States is unwilling to give up West Berlin, but also unwilling to let Berliners starve. President Truman decides to use an airlift.

For nearly a year, the U.S. dropped supplies into West Berlin daily.

  • $224 million
  • 2,323,738 tons of supplies.
  • A new plane landed every 4 minutes!

After almost a year, Stalin gave in and reopened roads from the West. Berlin became a symbol of Freedom.

the nuclear arms race
The Nuclear Arms Race

By 1949, the Soviet Union had developed its own atomic bomb. This was the start of the nuclear arms race where both countries competed to build the most powerful arsenals of weapons.

Hydrogen bombs were 1,000 X more powerful than the atomic bomb.

ICBMs could hit targets around the world. This constant fear of nuclear attack led to an atmosphere of tension.

Both countries followed a policy of “mutually assured destruction”.

the space race
The Space Race

The U.S. and U.S.S.R. competed for cultural and technological dominance. The country that ruled space would be seen as the world leader.

  • Why do they care about space?

1957: Sputnik I- First artificial satellite. Sputnik II- First animal in space: Laika

1958: Explorer 1 & 2- The U.S. reaches orbit.

1961: Yuri Gagarin becomes the first man in space.

1964: First close range images of the moon.

1969: Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin set foot on the moon.


Spies on both sides gathered information on each other’s

  • technology
  • military
  • intentions.

Spying both caused and prevented conflicts.

  • Cuban Missile Crisis- 1962

Many of today’s most popular technologies are possible because of Cold War espionage.

communist governments controlled all aspects of life in russia and eastern europe
Communist governments controlled all aspects of life in Russia and eastern Europe.Life under Communism
  • Guaranteed employment
  • Free healthcare
  • Good education
  • Camaraderie
  • Lack of basic freedoms
  • One political party, no choice
  • Shortages- quotas
  • Propaganda and state media
the fall of communism
The Fall of Communism

1987- Ronald Reagan- “Tear down this wall!”

  • Two years later, communist governments in Eastern Europe fall like dominoes, peacefully!

Gorbachev’s glasnost policy allowed communist countries to make their own choices. Many chose democratic systems. Support for communism fell throughout the world, ending in the collapse of the Soviet Union.