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History of Soviet Union and America in 20th Century Essay


The factors that contributed to Soviet military successes after 1943

As it would be observed, there were a number of factors that contributed to the success of Soviet military after the year 1943. One of the main factors was that, Soviet Union had bulk military troops and resources than their opponents in the war, and in that case, they would emerge victorious in the conflict.

Another observable factor here was that, the Soviet Union received a lot of monetary and material support from their allies such as the U.S. and the UK. This served as a big boost, especially to the military forces, who utilized these resources strengthen their troops.

Even after reorganization, Soviet’s local industries could not produce half of what was required to move the country forward in terms of the above resources, all of which were essential to make a strong military. More importantly, the country received large quantities of basic supplies such as specialty items, ammunition, foodstuffs, trucks, and modest supplies of military materials from USA.

One of the key factors that can determine a country’s ability to lose or win a war is the comparative strength of the enemy. In this regard, another factor that would lead to the success of Soviet military after 1943 was the weakening strength of Germany military forces, who were their major rival in the war.

In order to be successful in any armed conflict, a country must be stable in a number of ways and some of the key aspects to observe here are things such as economical status and strength of the military forces of the country. In the years before 1943, the government of Germany had reasonably managed to supply all its forces with sufficient supplies in terms of military gear, arms, and equipment, among other things.

In fact, this made Germany military forces very strong those days, a factor that enabled them to defeat many of their rivals in the war. This, however, would be a short-lived glory for the Germans. In the period after 1942, Germany was unable to cater adequately for its military forces, and that would lead to their instant failure.

This came as a big advantage for the Soviet Union, whose army could access all the materials needed to win a war, due to the unfailing support of their allies. More importantly, the rapidly growing Soviet industrial base made the production of all the equipment and materials that were needed for the success of their military forces much easier.

Other significant factors that contributed to the success of Soviet military forces after 1943 would include things such as their economic base, their technological competence, ability and experience of their military personnel, and the advantages of their geographic environment.

The Soviet Union had managed to establish an effective economic base since early 1920s. This initiative was aimed at increasing the production of reliable military equipment and products in the near future, as one way of strengthening the country’s military forces against external pressures.

The Soviet Union was also associated with a strong technological competence that would to a large extent help strengthen their military forces. Soviet military leaders were regularly exposed to great technical expertise on state-of-the-art war technologies, especially from abroad.

Through such exposures, Soviet Military forces acquired great expertise in sophisticated weapons, and this gave them the upper hand in the war against the Germans. In terms of soldiers’ experience and ability, Soviet military personnel possessed a lot of experience and competence compared to their rivals who lacked exposure to major wars.

Finally, the geographic environment of the Soviet Union helped them to alleviate a number of military disadvantages, thus enabling them to outdo their opponents in the war. As observed from the above situations, Germany had relaxed in many ways, particularly in the production of military equipment and products.

As a result of these failures, the Soviet Union was able to catch up with them and even surpass them in matters to do with military power and capabilities. This would place the Germans at a severely disadvantaged position in the Soviet-Germany war that took place between 1941 and 1945. In that case, Germany had no option but to retreat from the Soviet territory.

Issues surrounding America’s decision to use atomic bombs against Japan

The decision for the United States of America to use atomic bombs against Japan as an attempt to bring World War II to an end would be surrounded many issues. The first bombing incident happened on August, 1945 on the city of Hiroshima, while the second one occurred two days later on Nagasaki. Less than a week after the bombings, the Japanese surrendered, bringing the war to an end.

Even though the move by President Harry Truman to release atomic bombs on Japan appeared to be the only possible resolution to the most destructive warring event in the world’s history, it ended up raising endless ethical questions and concerns from allover the world.

This was a very controversial move that would see many people in the world disagree on whether this was actually the most reasonable approach that America could have used to bring the big war to an end.

Many people, especially the Americans, praised Truman’s move terming it as a bravery action that helped to bring the war to a timely ending. However, Japan and her supporters had largely condemned the move, terming it as inhumane.

Apart from deaths of thousands of people as a result of instant burns and radiation effects, the double bombings had also brought many short-term and long-term consequences to the Japanese citizens. For instance, survivors of the attacks suffered crippling mutilations, starvations, and illnesses as a result of radiation. Moreover, the incidents had left many Japanese with emotional, psychological, and spiritual damage.

As it would be observed, one of the major issues surrounding the US decision to use atomic bombs on Japan would be the argument of numerous bomb critics that the move was racially motivated.

It was believed that the Japanese had been victims of racism for many years, as it had been demonstrated through different mediums of communication, ranging from commercial advertisements to novelty works.

Most of this ridicule, however, was said to have been perpetrated by the Americans who had a dislike for the Japanese race, and who would openly refer to them using all kinds of racist terms and slurs. This extreme racism towards the Japanese is thought to have played a significant role in President Truman’s decision.

Another issue surrounding Truman’s decision was the fact that, many people across the world viewed it as a barbaric move that would bring bad image on the American leadership. For example, the issue raised many questions on whether Truman was actually prepared for the big responsibility that comes with the highest office in his country.

Instead of using his wisdom to go about the issue, even after been advised by several religious leaders, Truman allowed himself to be influenced by some people in the government who advised him to go for the atomic bombs. In this regard, Truman would go down in the history books as the first leader in the whole world to use such a deadly weapon on another nation.

The other common issue surrounding Truman’s decision to use bombs on the Japanese was the perception of the bomb opponents that, there were better alternatives that America could have used to resolve the matter, before settling for the bomb decision.

For example, they could have organized a demonstration, perhaps through Russia, which had been in better diplomatic relations with the Japanese. This, among other reasonable approaches, would have prevented the diverse problems and consequences that occurred as a result of the bombings.

How the Marshall plan enhanced ideas set out in the Truman Doctrine

The Marshall Plan and the Truman doctrine were international relations policies set by George Marshall and Harry Truman, respectively. The Truman Doctrine was a foreign policy that was introduced in 1947, which was geared at extending economic and military support to Turkey and Greece as a way of stopping them from being absorbed into the Soviet sphere.

The Marshall plan, on the other hand, was an initiative of the U.S. government to extend support to Europe. The plan was unveiled in 1948 by the then Secretary of State, George Marshall, and was aimed at helping to reestablish the economies of European countries following the end of the Second World War. As it would be observed, the Marshall plan enhanced the ideas set out in the Truman Doctrine in a number of ways.

Truman doctrine was based on democracy and humanitarian principles whereby it was keenly observed that, America was ready to take peace beyond the ability of the common people who are in need of it from every corner of the world.

Through this view, the Truman policy proved to have a strategic bearing and meaning. This idea was further enhanced by the Marshall plan several months later, whose one of the major objectives was to bring countries together through trade relations and diplomatic links.

Truman had also expressed concerns that the main agenda behind the doctrine would be to recognize and assist countries that had shown resistance to attempted subjugation by powerful external forces.

Through this observation, Truman was more concerned that outside pressures or armed minorities could use their influence to coerce free people to join them, thus posing serious threats to the US national security. This idea was enhanced by the Marshall Plan through its European Recovery Program that extended support to the European nations, even the ones under Soviet Union’s military occupation.

Another key objective behind the Truman Doctrine was to set the pace for America’s foreign policy allover the world after the year 1947. This idea was also enhanced by the Marshall Plan through its large-scale rescue program that was purely based on foreign policy.

Some of the main goals of the plan would be to remove existing trade barriers between countries, rebuild countries that have been affected by wars, modernize foreign industry, and uplift the face of Europe economically.

Marshall’s comprehensive plan to help Rebuild European countries was widely accepted in the US. This would lead to direct approval of the plan by Members of Congress, who went on to approve huge amounts of funding towards the revival of Europe.

The funds kept on increasing over time, and the Committee of European Economic Cooperation was formed within a matter of four years, as a way of coordinating the European countries involved in the plan. This way, there is no doubt that the Marshall plan had actually played a key role in enhancing most of the ideas that had been set out in the Truman Doctrine.

Ways by which Khrushchev policies were a thawing of Stalinist ideas and practice

Nikita Khrushchev was a Soviet leader who was recognized for a number of key events in the country’s history. Some of these events would include relatively liberal changes in the region’s domestic policy, the partial de-stabilization of the country, and the early Soviet program for space missions.

Khrushchev was a key icon in Joseph Stalin’s government, where he would serve as his assistant and close adviser for many years. Khrushchev had also served as an intermediary between the communist dictator and his generals. Khrushchev would become the next Soviet ruler following Stalin’s death in 1953. As it would be observed, Khrushchev policies seemed to be a thawing of Stalinist ideas and practice in a number of ways.

First of all, Khrushchev’s leadership policies appeared to be in contrary with Stalin’s approach of leadership. This was witnessed immediately after Stalin’s death when Khrushchev went on to denounce him in what was termed as the secret speech. Later on, Khrushchev would visit several countries in just a very short period of time, thus succeeding in doing what his predecessor had failed to do for many years.

Some of these countries included the People’s Republic of China, Belgrade, Yugoslavia, and the United States. In fact, these international visits opened up the Soviet Union for global trade and economic affairs.

Khrushchev policies also brought a lot of freedom to arts, media and cultural institutions in the country. This, however, helped to promote the entertainment world through various interactive ways such as international festivals, engaging TV programmes, uncensored books, and foreign movies and films.

More freedom in the entertainment sector would come in 1956, when Khrushchev helped to facilitate the agreement between the U.S. and the Soviet Union, which paved way for more freedom of media relations between the two countries. Such engagements helped to liberate the minds of many people in the Soviet Union who had been victimized by Stalin’s dictatorship for many years.

Khrushchev also played a crucial role in the transformation of the industrial infrastructure of the Soviet Union, even though this had risked putting him in serious conflicts with some key people in the Soviet economy. It was also observable that, Khrushchev’s government mainly comprised of younger and well-educated personnel who had proved to be more useful in bringing positive transformations in the Soviet Union.

Khrushchev is also remembered for his role of introducing the concept of minimum wage in the Soviet Union in 1956. This was closely followed by a contemplated financial reform that helped to facilitate replacement of the old money bearing Stalin portraits. Khrushchev’s last battle against his predecessor was witnessed in 1961, when he ordered for the removal of Stalin’s remains from the Lenin’s Mausoleum.

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O., L. (2019, August 20). History of Soviet Union and America in 20th Century [Blog post]. Retrieved from https://ivypanda.com/essays/history-questions-essay/

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O., Luciano. "History of Soviet Union and America in 20th Century." IvyPanda, 20 Aug. 2019, ivypanda.com/essays/history-questions-essay/.

1. Luciano O. "History of Soviet Union and America in 20th Century." IvyPanda (blog), August 20, 2019. https://ivypanda.com/essays/history-questions-essay/.


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O., Luciano. "History of Soviet Union and America in 20th Century." IvyPanda (blog), August 20, 2019. https://ivypanda.com/essays/history-questions-essay/.

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O., Luciano. 2019. "History of Soviet Union and America in 20th Century." IvyPanda (blog), August 20, 2019. https://ivypanda.com/essays/history-questions-essay/.

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O., L. (2019) 'History of Soviet Union and America in 20th Century'. IvyPanda, 20 August.

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