Who Won the Cold War: Indicators of the US Victory

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The Cold War is regarded as the period from 1945 to 1991, although some people would argue that it ended in 1990. The Cold War pitted the US against the Soviet Union due to differing attitudes in politics and military between the superpowers. There has been a debate on who won the Cold War. Many people believe that the US defeated the Soviet Union due to the collapse of the Union. Others argue that Reagan's policies led to the end of the war. It would be unrealistic to suggest that neither nation won the war. Both the Soviet Union and the US had interests that they wanted to address such as economic strength and foreign policy triumph evaluated by David Sykes in 2010. Ultimately, both nations did not want a third world war. America's rise to become a great economic power was mainly due to its ability to improve its living standards and economic perspective. The rise of the US as a global power gave the state a higher status in the international community. The question for this paper is still 'Who won the cold war?' and this essay aims to analyze the different contributions of the US to the world to find out what indicators of the US victory.

John Gaddis stated in 1997 that the US would have a higher chance of successfully negotiating a peaceful resolution of the Cold War with Russia. His assessment was based on the country's economic status at that time. The country had an advantageous economic state even then Fundamentally, the US was always destined to win the war. The various theories of international relations, realism, and to an extent liberalism show how different the war actually was from what was initially expected.

The liberal school of thought believes that the US won the Cold War due to economic supremacy and some, such as Francis Fukuyama, the superior democratic structure of the country. They stated that the Soviet Union's authoritarian system weakened the legitimacy of capitalism and the rule of law in the country. The liberals believe that the capitalist system was better at generating wealth than the government. This wealth was needed to sustain the nation's military and diplomatic activities. The USSR simply could not meet the US' economic standards due to its areas of extreme poverty. Liberalism proposed that if people were left alone, they would create devices and networks to create a more peaceful environment. The failure of the Cold War's foreign policies on the part of the US is mainly due to the neo-conservative approach to foreign affairs. They tend to believe that the world is a composition of nations and ideologies. Communism is often seen as a threat, as it can trigger a rebellion against the state if it spreads. This idea was identified by the domino theory. The Soviet Union's objective was to dominate the world. This prompted the US to back up its allies against the communists in Truman's Doctrine. The US had to prevent the spread of communism in order to emerge as victors in the Cold War. The domino theory provided the US with valuable information on how to implement its foreign policies. It also discouraged the use of communism due to its evils and stressed the importance of the adoption of capitalism.

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The USSR collapsed during the 1980s due to its economic inferiority. This conclusion was supported by many of the references cited in this essay. The major weakness of the economy was that it had a rigid command that heavily rewarded the productive sectors and ignored the productivity of the economy. The Soviet Union failed to implement its plans and regulations in time to enable it to compete with the US. This led to the country's economic downfall. The USSR's military and defence capabilities were not enough to compete with the US due to the country's economic inferiority. Its dependence on the Soviet Union's currency and other factors contributed to the country's lack of funds. Even if the Russians had the same technological capabilities as the US, they would still be outgunned in terms of their capabilities in terms of target acquisition hardware and software. To catch up with the US, the Soviet Union would need to improve its economy. This was largely due to the lack of basic commodities. The realist explanation is not inclined to believe that the policies of the US and its allies were more influential in ending the war than those of the Soviets. The Soviet Union was an expansionist nation that only wanted to increase its economic power at the expense of other nations. This led to the end of the Cold War primarily due to the US' economic superiority.

During the cold war, the US maintained a cautious approach toward foreign policies. It prevented the war from escalating. The success of the arms race was considered very important for the US. In 1983, the US initiated the Strategic Defense Initiative (SDI). This program served as a deterrent against the Soviet Union. The Soviet Union's economy was in poor shape evidenced by its research on satellite technology as it was also not very productive. This showed that the country would not be able to support such sectors. The US was able to convince the Soviets to alter their arms-control stance. This could have been the reason why Gorbachev decided to let go of the iron curtain. The realists see the war as a blend of the US' foreign policy and its. capitalization. The Cold War was brought about by the technological superiority of the US. Its economic dominance and political influence were also used to push its victory.

The realists believe that although the technological and economic superiority of certain countries were the main factors that led to the war, the role of the foreign policy was also crucial in the negotiation process. The concept that the Cold War was mainly due to foreign policy is faulty. The US' actions during the Cold War were very different from those of the previous generation. Contrary to popular belief, the war ended not because of foreign policy but because of the economic status of the two countries. As the Cold War ended, Gorbachev embarked on reforms to save the nation. When the Soviet Union was still a communist state, he decided to embark on major reforms to improve the situation of the people. Perestroika was an economic reform that aimed to improve the state's social and political status by encouraging market-orientated systems. The establishment of the awareness about the USSR and its people was made possible through the Glasnost. This organization also lifted the restrictions on the press media. The press freedom provided citizens with a better understanding of their state, which in turn, led to a more critical analysis of their government. Many of the members of the Soviet Union were unwilling to accept the status of the empire after the Soviet Union disintegrated.

Many people believe that the US' financial superiority was more important than the international policy in the Cold War. The role of the foreign policy in shaping global affairs is often overshadowed by the counter-productive policies pursued by the US. Those who believe that the Cold War was caused by the US' economic strength argue that both the US' foreign policy and economic strength contributed to the war's resolution. When discussing the Cold War, the Soviet Union's withdrawal from the running route was the only option. Withdrawing from a war is seen as a fear of a potential defeat. It can be either the US that won the war or the other side that didn't win it. Wars are used as political tools by nations to acquire their desired outcome. Wars have never been zero sum games. If both sides win, then neither side becomes the victor, which implies that one side must have done better than the other. If the outcome of the battle was decided on the basis of one country's defeat, then the victor would be the one that lost. For the USSR, it was already clear that they lost. Since the US always repeated the statement that the USSR was losers, the Russians believed that Reagan and Bush tricked Gorbachev into surrendering the store. After the collapse of the Soviet Union, the US citizens regarded the event as a military conquest, and they saw it as a victory. The US became the only superpower that could exist. The Soviet Union disintegrated and became a failed state. The US was able to achieve its objective by defeating the Soviet Union through the use of force. As a result, the US was able to endure the Soviet Union's high fighting costs.

To conclude, ideally, an entity should always be a winner. The US was a winner during the Cold War. It outmaneuvered the Soviet Union in many aspects. Even after the war, the US still stood by its principles for capitalism. It still viewed communism as an evil system. The Soviet Union copied the US in many ways. This was a clear indication of their defeat and followed by an acknowledgment of their victory.

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