Questions tagged [cold-war]

The Cold War was a continuing state of political and military tension from the 1940s to the early 1990s between the Western world, led by the United States and NATO allies, and the Communist world, led by the Soviet Union, its satellites and allies. The Cold War never saw direct military action, since both sides' nuclear weapons would have guaranteed "mutual assured destruction". Cycles of relative calm were followed by high tension and the threat of war.

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Did the US threaten a nuclear strike to defend Israel in 1973?

Did the US threaten a nuclear strike to defend Israel? In 1973, America and Russia Almost Fought a Nuclear War over Syria Soviet leaders were shocked by the American response. "Who could have ...
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Why did India sign the Indo-Soviet Treaty of Friendship and Cooperation?

India had a policy of non-alignment during the cold war. But just before war broke out between India and Pakistan in December 1971, India signed the treaty in August 1971. What were the reasons that ...
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How did the US plan to use nuclear shells for naval guns?

Acoodring to wikipedia: The W19 nuclear system was adapted into a nuclear artillery shell for the US Navy 16 inches (410 mm) battleship guns, the W23. Production of the W23 began in 1956 and they ...
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Is there a Soviet equivalent to foundational Cold War documents such as the Long Telegram and NSC-68?

During the early days of the Cold War, the United States produced key documents like Kennan's Long Telegram and NSC-68 to recognize the existence of the new conflict, understand the Soviet strategy ...
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How prevalent were American disinformation campaigns during the Cold War?

Numerous disinformation campaigns were spread about the US during the Cold War by the KGB. Some notable examples include Operation INFEKTION, which attributed the AIDS virus to the US's involvement, ...
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1985 magazine cover about Strategic Defense Initiative - Who is Darth Vader?

Here is a the cover of the French magazine "Science&Vie", dated February 1985. The lead article, "La Paix des Étoiles" (Star Peace) is obviously about the Strategic Defense Initiative. February ...
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How often were Soviet records faked?

In Viktor Suvorov's books, most notably The Liberators, Inside The Soviet Army, Inside Soviet Military Intelligence, a bleak picture is painted of a system where official figures were exaggerated or ...
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357 views

Did former SS-member Alois Brunner advise Syria on organizing it's Intelligence Service?

Alois Brunner was a Nazi, member of the Waffen-SS and assistant to Adolf Eichmann. After WWII he lived, more or less well hidden, in western Germany until he went to Syria in '54, aided by the BND. ...
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Were there films or literature that lampooned Mutual Assured Destruction made by non-Americans?

Dr. Strangelove is a 1964 film by American director Stanley Kubrick that lampooned Mutually Assured Destruction (MAD). In the 1960's was this film a phenomenon singular to America, or were there ...
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How were the Venera Probe missions received/presented in the Western world during the space race?

I can find barely any historical documentation on this subject. If you know anything about its development, please chip in as well. I'm writing a paper on the missions and putting them into ...
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472 views

“You Are Now Entering the X Sector”

This phrase is known from post-WWII Germany, written on boundary markers between the various sectors. Does anyone know if this was the first usage, or if the phrase was used in some earlier context? ...
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Why was Harry Truman chosen to be Vice President in 1944?

In 1944, FDR was running for his fourth and final election. He was starting to age rapidly, he would be dead in just 82 days from being sworn in to his fourth term. Henry Wallace had been FDR's VP ...
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Did any U.S. states or cities (outside of New York) ever make a decision to construct nuclear fallout shelters for their population?

According to this Wikipedia article on fallout shelters Germany has protected shelters for 3% of its population, Austria for 30%, Finland for 70%, Sweden for 81% and Switzerland for 114% Above ...
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Why did the United States not seriously develop Anti Aircraft Missiles?

During the Cold War, the United States did not seem to actively develop anti-aircraft missiles (I know that Wikipedia is not an exhaustive source for lists, but just as a rough estimate, they list ...
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363 views

Did NATO ever make plans for an unprovoked attack at the Soviet Union?

The Warsaw Pact is known to have made plans for an aggressive, unprovoked invasion of NATO. Are there any known serious NATO plans for an aggressive, all-out attack on the Soviet Union? I am sure both ...
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Did Tito back the Bulgarian anti Communist Goryani resistance movement?

I was doing Wikipedia based (mixed quality source) research on the Goryani anti communist resistance movement in Bulgaria and found the following interesting statement: “During the same period, some ...
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Why has SACEUR exclusively been an American officer?

After reading this BBC article about the new SACEUR, General Philip Breedlove, United States Air Force, it occurred to me that SACEUR has always been an American officer. Supreme Allied Commander ...
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Why did the Hungarians protest and react so much about Khrushchevs secret speech? [closed]

I know that Khrushchev made a secret speech but I don't really understand what the speech was about and why it made the Hungarians so angry to protest. I know that the protest was about the lack of ...
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Why there were no economic sanction wars against Warsaw Pact countries by the West?

Currently there are sanctions against Iran for missile test, sanction against North Korea for its nuclear activities, sanctions against Russia for its intervention in Ukraine and so on. All these ...
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Cold War proxy countries views on nationalism or decolonization?

The Cold War countries like the US and USSR had interests in other regions of the world which often resulted in indirect proxy wars. I believe the funds were provided by the larger country and often ...
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564 views

Were sanctions used against East Germany?

North Korea has survived as an independent state for a lot longer than East Germany did. I am wondering. Did any country, such as the United States, use sanctions against East Germany, and if so, were ...
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525 views

Did the Chief of Soviet General Staff really say this?

The quotation, appearing in a 1992 New York Times opinions article, is as follows: "We cannot equal the quality of U.S. arms for a generation or two. Modern military power is based upon technology,...
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Why did the Soviet Union lift the Berlin Blockade?

Between 24th June 1948 and 12th May 1949 land routes into West Berlin were blocked by Soviet forces and West Berliners were supplied entirely by air (the famous Berlin Airlift). No one connected with ...
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Was Brezhnev's rule an “era of stagnation” [closed]

Reading my IB textbooks, they say Brezhnev's rule was an "era of stagnation". However they are only able to cite evidence of economic stagnation when claiming that would require "stagnation" in ...
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644 views

What were China's thoughts on the possibility of a nuclear exchange, during the Cold War?

What were China's thoughts on the possibility of a nuclear exchange, during the Cold War? We know, sorta, what the Soviets, and Americans thought, what about China?
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What did Kennedy know about Soviet missiles during the Cuban missile crisis?

After the 50th anniversary of the Cuban Missile Crisis, the US declassified reports showed that the USSR only had four operational ICBMs in October 1962, notwithstanding contrary rhetoric during the ...
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Is there evidence to suggest the CIA didn't want Reagan to end the Cold War?

Paul Craig Roberts writes: The US military/security complex did not want Reagan to end the Cold War, as the Cold War was the foundation of profit and power for the complex. The CIA told Reagan that ...
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Did one or both sides of the cold war plan to strategically attack the others' food production?

I'm basically defining 'Cold War', for the purpose of this question as the whole stretch of time between 1947 and 1991. During this time did either side plan to attack the other's food production on a ...
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Did Joseph Stalin ever attempt to assassinate or launch a coup against Josip Broz Tito?

Did Joseph Stalin ever attempt to assassinate or launch a coup against Josip Broz Tito? If so, which of these coup or assassination attempts almost succeeded? How did Tito respond to Stalin's ...
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Sino-Taiwanese air clashes

During the cold war, were there any serious air clashes, resulting in mass scrambling of aircraft on both sides, between the Chinese and Taiwanese Airforces over the Taiwan Straits and the Southern ...
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When did the Soviets get the ability to drop a nuclear bomb on the United States?

I'm researching the history of the Cold War and I have the impression that the Soviets failed to develop a bomber capable of flying from Russia to the United States until 1956, when the Tu-95 bomber ...
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Did Reagan really conspire to drop oil prices?

Wikipedia says that Ronald Reagan persuaded Saudi Arabia to rise oil production so to drop the prices and make pressure on the Soviet economy. I encountered such claim in many other sources as well. ...
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Accuracy of the Show “I Go On Singing”

I recently saw a show about the life of Paul Robeson called I Go On Singing. It was a good show, but it contained several assertions that made me wonder. Tens of thousands of slaves escaped to ...
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How much impact did US Policy of containment have?

This will border dangerously close to a discussion rather than question/answer, but I would like to know whether there exists any consensus regarding the effects of the United States' policy of ...
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Why were there no nuclear detonations in 1959?

According to this visualization there were no nuclear detonations in 1959, and only 3 by France in 1960. Why were there no nuclear detonations by the USA or USSR in 1959 and 1960 but over 50 in each ...
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456 views

Was there ever a case where *physically* exporting fiat money caused severe damage to an economy?

For those people who did not experience it: During the Cold War most countries of the Warsaw Pact had ridiculously high sentences for exporting their own money. That means that if you have some coins/...
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335 views

How did the SAGE system send data to in flight assets for intercept tasks?

According to Wikipedia, the Semi-Automatic Ground Environment system could automatically update the autopilot of the F-106 and the guidance system of the CIM-10 Bomarc. Presumably this would send ...
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Why was the Bay of Pigs invasion unsuccessful? [closed]

Goal of The Bay of Pigs invasion in April,1961. was to overthrow Cuba's president Castro. It was totally unsuccesful and counter-revolutionary military, trained by CIA was defeated in just two days. ...
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Did Soviet Influence Improve Women's Rights in the Middle East?

I'd like to know if my impression is correct: that women in the Middle East enjoyed substantially better rights and respect around the 50s-70s than they did before and after, owing largely to the ...
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674 views

Did US and Soviet nuclear war policies allow for a pause?

In the HBO made-for-tv movie "By Dawn's Early Light", the commander of the navy (codename "Harpoon") explains to the US President that USAF nuclear bombers are at their positive check points and await ...
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When did countries start developing military aircraft? [closed]

When, where and which countries developed the most powerful military aircraft? .
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Why is Finland represented as a Soviet satellite in this 1947 cartoon?

The cartoon is a British one. I found it at http://lenta.ru/articles/2013/05/28/secretwar/ but without any specific attribution.
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Why was the US unable to win in Korea? [closed]

The US had just defeated 1 Axis power and contributed greatly to the defeat of another. Its soldiers saw wide ranging combat experience over the 3 years in conflict against veteran soldiers of Germany ...
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136 views

GDR citizens stood to be executed as they made their vain bids for western freedom [closed]

Does "western freedom" in the following context mean "to free up the western Germany" or "freedom in the style of western countries"? Which historical event is it referring to when it says "GDR ...
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What were all the countries of the First, Second and Third Worlds, when WWII ended? [closed]

What were all the countries of the First, Second and Third Worlds, when WWII ended? That is, using the World terms in their Cold War formulation. The term Third World arose during the Cold War to ...
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Did Japan perceive their hypergrowth as stable and unstoppable as the United States did?

Did Japan perceive their hypergrowth as stable and unstoppable as the United States did? Or was it commonly known to the man on the street that it would fail?
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How efficient was the (Cold War) Red Scare? [closed]

How many spies were really caught in the Red Scare? We all know about the Red Scare and how damaging it was to many Americans and their families. However, given that the Cold War was so filled to the ...
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Were there any westerners who entered the soviet bloc to escape capitalism? [closed]

It is a well known fact that many people from the soviet bloc fled to the west to escape communism, and that during the entire soviet time frame, from the beginning of the Russian civil war in 1918 ...
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Why didn't the participants of the Korean War also fight in the Vietnam War?

In the Korean war from 1950 to 1953, a lot of countries including the U.S., the U.K., France, Canada, Australia, and even Colombia, the Philippines and Ethiopia participated in the war under the U.N. ...
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What happened to schizophrenics in the USSR?

I'm looking for information on people who were unable to work because of schizophrenia or other major mental illness. Does anyone know what happened to them in the USSR?