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2012-01-23 The Cold War.docx

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Western University
Geography 2142A/B
Mireya Folch- Serra

The Cold War From 1945 to 1991 January 23, 2012 -Fascism defeated in 1945 -democracy against fascism Capitalism vs. Communism -Uncle Sam vs. the bear (aggressive type of animal) = U.S. vs. Soviet Union -ideas are made into novels, cartoons, etc. “World Political Map” -What is such a map? -political map of countries and nation states -A patchwork of countries? The borders and capitals are carefully drawn and the whole of the earth’s land surface appears covered by territorial units, i.e. countries -Antarctica There is not a single little piece left without name -less than 200 countries The playground of geopolitics -some countries/domain under the influence of Soviet Union or United States -some countries are nonaligned with the west of Sovietsthey are Non-Aligned countries ABipolar World -During the CW the World Political Map became a bipolar world -Why? -How? -CWAntecedents: -Second World War = Invasion of Poland by German army 1939 -1945 defeat of Nazi Germany -antecedent of Cold War -1917 Soviet Union formed after demise of Russian czar Nicolas II Bipolar Map: Europe after 1945 -Winston Churchill -divided Western Europe and Eastern Europe -iron curtain made the world bipolar Antecedents Part 1 Resentment of Weimar Germany -antecedents are a must -Germans resented their treatment by the Treaty of Versailles (1919) after losing First World War (1914-1918) -Rise of school of German geopolitik during the 1920s (Ratzel) -Ethnic maps and atlases produced “Natural” frontiers -frontiers: areas where German people lived -encompass the German population that are dispersed throughout Europe -why not expand the German land to incorporate German-ethnic people -Books and articles on the ‘stranded’German enclaves beyond the limits of the new Germany (irredentism) -German population living under Polish rule Cartography of resentment Hitler’s Germany -Eastern Europe Demands for a reconstituted German Reich -What is irredentism? Aterritory that would encompass as many German nationals as possible -Haushofer’s maps emphasized strategic and economic weakness of the diminished and fragmented Weimar Republic -bringing back German nationals that live outside of Germany (not literally) and enlarging the borders: main goal to reconstitute German rights -Haushofer’s critique of Versailles: fewer than 60% of Europe’s 100 million Germans lived within the 1914 borders. The Weimar state was even more restricted -they were Germans, but they don’t live in Germany Weimar Republic -French and Germans always at odds -French were the ones who were in charge of the area between France and Germany Rise of Fascism -1920-1945 Period of fascist and counter fascist geopolitics -DEBATE SURROUNDING THE GERMAN SCHOOL FOUNDED BY KARL HAUSHOFER -Ratzel: pioneer of geopolitics in 1920s -Haushofer: follower of Ratzel and he does the geopolitical thinking during period of Nazi regime -Lebensraum (living space) -associated with irredentism -concepts that have to do with resentment of Germany -can expand the territory -both concepts are overlapping -‘Living space’of central importance to German expansionism and irredentism Second World War (1939-1945) -Allies: UK, USA, Soviet Union (don’t include France because it was occupied by Germany) -Axis: Germany, Italy, Japan st -September 1 1939 Germany’s invasion of Poland -1941->Pearl HarbourUS enter war -Failure of German campaign in 1943 in Russia -they did not realize it was not the Russian army that lost incredible amount of soldiers -Defeat ofAxis power in northernAfrica (1943) -May 8 1945 Germany surrenders unconditionally Theoretical Detour -The two key concepts underlying geopolitics are power and territory -Power refers to the ability to exercise control or influence over others -politics: game of power -Territory, the area under control of a state or individual, often enhances power -In international politics the relationship between power and territory underlies many international conflicts The geopolitics of the Cold War -for the first time in history there was a clear cut dichotomy between East and West -a conflict lived by the whole world -even for those countries that are non-aligned, they still cannot be isolated from the politics of the cold war -Perceived as a zero sum game -no middle ground; either you win or you lose Cold War Cliches -1. Good versus evil -no way of compromising or be in middle ground -US thinks they’re good and Soviet Union evil; vice-versa -2. Freedom against tyranny -3. Right against wrong -4. Evil empire -Ronald Reagan coined the term Why are they clichés? -unreal assertions -cliches are irrational -used to indoctrinate population and used as purpose of scaring people -fascists flourished in many parts of the world -fascism flourished in the west during the Cold War -the enemy now is communism Unfolding of the Cold War -escalating hostilities between USAand USSR -Truman doctrine (1947) -Marshall Plan after 1945 -distribution of assets to people in Western Europe -Real and imaginary spies (1944-1994) -UK many espionage going on -reveal economics of Western Europe -loans and support by the WWII The world dominant powers -for centuries, Europe had been at the center of global geopolitics -European powers were major players until 1945, when the US took over -glaring fact of power and politics: until 1945, Europe was the main geopolitical power in the world (from the beginning of history) -During the Cold War Europe was relegated to a secondary role -After 1945 it was the turn of
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