5.8 The Cold War

New Alliances

The term “cold war” is defined by Dictionary.com as an “intense economic, political, military, and ideological rivalry between nations short of military conflict; sustained hostile political policies and an atmosphere of strain between opposed countries.”2 The Cold War has become synonymous with an intense, five decade conflict between the former allies – the Soviet Union and the United States – where no one emerged unscathed.

Key Takeaways

By the time you are finished reading and watching the video clips, you should be ready and able to discuss the following questions:

  • By reviewing the Big Three wartime conferences, how would you show that participants in the conference should have foreseen the Cold War?
  • What were the causes of the Cold War? What issues divided East and West? Did world leaders during the 1950s and 1960s make things better or worse?

“Rift Begins.” Cold War. 2009. Films on Demand. 1:56.

If you get a message that the video cannot be authenticated, use the link below: https://ccco.idm.oclc.org/login?url=https://fod-infobase-com.ccco.idm.oclc.org/PortalPlaylists.aspx?wID=151823&xtid=47587&loid=143107.


  1. Dictionary.com, Unabridged (2019), s.v. “cold war,” https://www.dictionary.com/browse/cold-war?s=ts, 55. image


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PPSC HIS 1320: Western Civilization: 1650-Present by Wayne Artis, Sarah Clay, and Kim Fujikawa is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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