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The Cold War Era

1 mark
Name the major countries, which were a part of Allied and Axis powers.
Allied Powers consisted of U.S.A., USSR, Britain & France. Axis
powers consisted of Germany, Japan and Italy.
Name the military alliance formed by the two Super powers.
Name some of the places where the super powers were facing confrontation from
each other.
Korea (1950-53)
Berlin (1958 62)
Congo (Early 1960s)
When and where was the First Summit of NAM held? How many members
attended it?
The first summit of NAM was held at Belgrade in 1961. 25 members attended it.
Where and when was the last meeting of NAM held? How many members
attended it?
The last summit was held at Havana in Cuba in 2006. It was attended by 116 member
states and 15 observers.
2 marks
By remaining non-aligned India was also serving its interests. Comment
Due to nonalignment, India could take international stand and decision, which
suited its interests and not the interest of the Super Powers.
India could well balance one Super Power against the other. If India felt neglected
or pressurized by one power, it could get closer to the other one. Thus, no country
could take India for granted.
On what grounds is Indias policy of nonalignment criticized?
Indias policy of nonalignment criticized on grounds:
Of being unprincipled. i.e. India often refused to take a firm stand on crucial
international issues.
Of taking contradictory India signed the Treaty of Friendship in 1971 with USSR.
This action was viewed as virtually joining the Soviet alliance system.
What were the reasons for the establishment of NAM?
Cooperation among the five nations i.e. India, Yugoslavia, Egypt, Indonesia, and
Growing cold war tensions.

Entry of many newly decolonized countries into the international arena who did
not want to join any power bloc.
As a leader of NAM, what was Indias stand to the cold war?
Indias stand to the cold war was two-fold:
It remained away from the two power blocs.
It raised its voice against the newly decolonized countries, which were joining any
of these alliances.
Give an example of isolationism with reference to USA.
The American foreign policy between the period of World War I and World War II
can be said to be that of isolationism. When Germany went about with its aggressive
measures, U.S.A. did not interfere at all to this was one reason which paved the way
for World War II.
What was the primary challenge for the non-aligned countries? Why?
The challenge before most of the non-aligned countries or least developed countries
(LDCs) was to be more developed economically and to lift their people out of
Economic development was important not only for their own uplifment but also to be
politically independent of the richer colonial powers from whom they had achieved
Why superpowers needed allies during the Cold War?
The superpowers needed allies due to the following reason stated below:
The smaller states were helpful in providing vital resources such as oil and
Territory from where the superpowers could launch their weapons and troops.
Location from where the super powers could spy on each other.
Economic support that small sates could get from the superpowers
State the causes for the Emergence of two power blocs.
The two super powers were keen on expanding their spheres of influence in different
parts of the world; this divided the whole world into two power blocs and two-alliance
system. Causes behind it were political ideology of superpower states and to get
maximum benefit from the newly independent states.
What do you understand by the Cuban Missile Crisis?
In 1962 when Soviet Union placed nuclear missiles in Cuba, a nation off the coast of
the U.S.A, it made U.S.A for the first time a direct threat from U.S.S.R.
U.S warships were ordered to intercept the Soviet ships heading toward Cuba. This
clash between the U.S.S.R and U.S.A is known as Cuban missile crisis.
What reforms were proposed by UNCTAD in 1972, in favour of least developed
countries (LDC)?
The United Nations conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) brought out
some reforms in 1972, in favour of least Developed countries (LDC) over the global
trading system, are as follows:
Give the LDC's control over their natural resources exploited by the developed
Reduce the cost of technology from the developed countries.
Provide the LDC's with a greater role in international economic institutions.

Obtain access to developed markets so that the LDC's could sell their product, and
make trade more beneficial for the poorer countries.
Why was the tension between U.S.A and USSR after Second World War known
as the Cold war?
After the Second World War U.S.A and USSR emerged as two superpowers and they
both had nuclear power. In spite of that both were aloof from any type of war, instead
they kept on fighting verbally on international platform to show there supremacy as
they kept themselves in the mode of cold war and not enter in any hot war with each
other. Thus, it was known as the Cold War.
Why did United State drop bombs on Japanese cities; as Japan was about to
As critics suggest that the main motive behind dropping of bombs on Japanese Cities
was to stop the U.S.S.R for gaining military and political strength in Asia. This was
also to show that United States of America is more powerful than U.S.S.R. U.S.A
supporters argued that dropping of bomb was necessary to end the war quickly.
Why did USSR make a nuclear base in Cuba?
In April 1961, the USSR became worried that the United States Of America would
invade communist ruled Cuba and would take control of Cuba as it was anally of the
Soviet Union; as Cuba received diplomatic and financial aid from USSR. It was for
this reason that the leaders of USSR decided to make Cuba as a nuclear base for its
protection from USA.
How can you say that the W.W. II was a landmark in the contemporary world
In 1945, the Allied powers led by U.S.A, U.S.S.R, Britain and France defeated the
Axis powers led by Germany, Japan & Italy. Although U.S.A. and U.S.S.R had
fought together against the Axis powers, they split after the war. Thus, the end of
W.W. II was the beginning of the Cold War.
What was the justification given by USA supporters after the use of atom bomb,
how did Soviet Union take it?
The US supporters argued that in order to stop the war immediately and spare the
world from further destruction, it was necessary to drop the bombs on Japan to make
it surrender.
The USSR supporters argued that it had been done to show that U.S. was supreme and
leave her behind from making any military and political gains in Asia and other
What made the two Super Powers realize that no political gains would justify the
destruction of their societies?
Both the Super Powers had such dangerous stockpiles of weapons, that any use of
them would inflict immense death and destruction. Thus, both of them know that no
political gains were sufficient enough to risk a war in which none of them could be
declared as a winner.
What do you mean by the logic of deterrence?
It means that both the powers deterred from initiating a war because they knew that
they had a terrible capacity to retaliate, in which there could be unacceptable
destruction and yet nobody world be in a position to be declared as a winner.

What was the positive aspect of the cold war?

Knowing well the military capability of each other, both the Super Powers somehow
were expected to behave as rational and responsible in the sense that they knew the
risks in fighting wars, which could be massively destructive.
In this sense, cold war by not turning into a hot war, managed to ensure human
What were some of the disarmament measures undertaken by the two Super
The Super Powers decided to bring a balance of weapons, which could be done by
arms controlLimited Test Ban Treaty was signed on 5th Aug. 1963 between US, U.K. and USSR.
It banned nuclear tests in the atmosphere, outer space and underwater.
NPT in 1968 prohibited the spread of nuclear weapons from nuclear nations to nonnuclear nations.
Anti-Ballistic Missiles Treaty reduced the deployment of missiles from two to one.
4 marks
What role did India play during the Cold War?
India as one of decolonised countries during this period followed a policy of nonalignment. India sided neither with the US nor the USSR. Like India some other
countries such as Africa and Latin America followed this policy. India joined hands
with other countries such as Yugoslavia, Egypt, Indonesia and Ghana and founded
NAM (Non Alignment Movement).
India was very careful in not siding with any power bloc and at the same time it
strongly opposed newly decolonised countries becoming part of these power blocs.
But India did try to reduce differences between the alliances; there by it prevented
differences from escalating into a full scale war. Indian diplomats and leaders were
often used to communicate and mediate between Cold war rivals such as in the Korea
war in early 1950s.
During the cold war, India repeatedly tried to activate those regional and international
organisations , which were not apart of the alliances led by the US and the USSR to
bring peace in the International arena.
Who were the founder members of NAM? What was the motive behind its
The founder members of NAM are- Yugoslavias Josip Broz Tito, Indias Jawaharlal
Nehru, and Egypt's leader Gamal Abdel Nasser. Indonesias Sukarno and Ghanas
Kwame Nkrumah supported them.
Motive behind formation of NAM:
To establish peace, not through alignment with any major power or group of
powers but through an independent approach to each controversial or disputed issue.
Maintain the freedom of newly independent states.
Elimination of racial discrimination.
What is the Cold War?
The end of the Second World War is a landmark in contemporary world politics. In
1945, the allied Forces , led by the US, Soviet Union, Britain and France defeated the
Axis Powers led by Germany, Italy and Japan, ending the Second World War (1939-

1945). The war had involved all major powers of the world and spread out to regions
outside Europe including Southeast Asia, China, Burma.
The end of the Second World War can be said as the beginning of the Cold War. The
intention behind dropping bombs on the Japanese cities by the US despite the truth
that Japan was ready to surrender was to show Moscow that the United States was
supreme and to give warning that Moscow should not go ahead with its military
building task with Asia and elsewhere.
The Cold War was an outcome of the emergence of the US and USSR as two
superpowers. The two superpowers were keen on expanding their spheres of
influence. Most countries of the west sided with the US and those of Eastern Europe
joined the soviet camp. That is why they were called the 'western' and the 'eastern'
The western alliance was formalised into an organisation, the North Atlantic Treaty
Organisation (NATO), which came into existence in April 1949.
State the reasons that led to the emergency of Power blocs.
There are three reasons why there was emergence of the Power blocs:
The two Super Powers wanted to expand their spheres of influence in the world
due to which they wanted to bring as many countries as they could under their
The smaller states that joined the alliance knew their own interests in doing so.
They would get protection, weapons and economic aid against their local rivals.
Therefore, the world got divided into two camps-Eastern Camp having its influence
over most of the East European countries led by USSR and the Western Camp led by
How idea of New International Economic Order (NIEO) came into
The third world or non-aligned countries are facing different threats from different
fronts since their independence. First one is under-development and then followed by
poverty, malnutrition, starvation, famine, wars and militancy. In 1972 these problem
were recognized and New International Economic Order (NIEO) originated with this
realization. The United Nation Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD)
proposed reforms in report named Towards a New Trade policy for Development for
all least developed countries (LDCs) regarding their control over own natural
resources, access to western market, availability cheap technology and role in
international economic institutions.
6 marks
What do you think were the reasons why the Super powers needed any alliances
at all?
Although the Super Powers had their nuclear weapons & regular armies and were
extremely powerful, yet the smaller states were helpful for them in gaining access to:
Resources such as oil and minerals.
Territory from where the Super Powers could launch their weapons on the rival
Locations from where they could spy on each other.
Smaller states together could pay for the military expenses.
Ideological reason: By bringing as many countries as possible under their
alliance, the Super Powers would prove that their ideology was better than that of the

other one. USA could prove that their liberal democracy and capitalism was better
than USSRs socialism and communism and vice versa.
The confrontation of Cuban Missile crisis is regarded as a situation when the
cold war came nearest to turning into a nuclear war. Explain.
Soviet Union had fears to its security from U.S.A and it also feared that USA might
attack Cuba. Due to this, it decided to secretly station its missile in Cuba from where
the major cities of USA could be targeted.
USA came to know of these missiles where its spy plane U-2 took photographs of
missile bases being built in Cuba. The origin of this conflict goes to 1961 where CIA
trained Cuban exiles opposed to Fidel Castro invaded Bay of Pigs.
Although, this invasion was terminated by Cuba, Castro was sure that he should
modernize his military with the help of USSR.
However, Kennedy declared naval blockade of Cuba and stated that if any missile
would be launched by Cuba, it would be regarded as an attack by USSR. The world
was on the verge of W.W. III. Then Khrushchev proposed that Soviet Union would
dismantle its missiles if USA promised not to invade Cuba. With the intervention of
U.N. Secretary General U. Thant, this agreement was signed and so the war was