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'How did the Korean War affect the Cold war?'

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Guest ojlikjumhnzdfgre

So.... this was question we were asked to discuss in class..(I am a pre-IBer).. what i have with so far is that :

  • The USA wanted to confront communism (indirectly combat USSR). Doing this invited the USSR in this civil war which later became part of the cold war
  • The Truman Doctrine - The USA helping countries that were being subjugated / oppressed by communism.

There is nothing apart from those two that I can think of. If this thread has already been started somewhere else, accept my apologies.

Thank you in advance!

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The Korean War was the first real armed confrontation of the Cold War and set the tone in a sense for later conflicts. It created the idea of a proxy war, where the two superpowers would fight in another country, forcing the people in that nation to suffer death and destruction involved in a war between the then world's most powerful nations. The superpowers avoided descending into an all-out war with one another, as well as the mutual use of nuclear weapons. It also expanded the Cold War, which to that point had mostly been concerned with Europe.

The conflict had spread to Asia and was poised to spread to other countries...

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Guest ojlikjumhnzdfgre

Right, I think i have to expand on my answers for this...

So basically, the super powers were avoiding a horrible nuclear war with each other, so they decided to use the civil war on the Korean peninsular as a battle ground. Correct me if I am wrong. (I just paraphrased what you said). Didn't the North Koreans want to unification but the South Koreans were heading towards "democracy" while the North was just "One Godfather" ruling the country? So there is a conflict in ideology here? I am a bit confused.

Edited by WendieA

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Right, I think i have to expand on my answers for this...

So basically, the super powers were avoiding a horrible nuclear war with each other, so they decided to use the civil war on the Korean peninsular as a battle ground. Correct me if I am wrong. (I just paraphrased what you said). Didn't the North Koreans want to unification but the South Koreans were heading towards "democracy" while the North was just "One Godfather" ruling the country? So there is a conflict in ideology here? I am a bit confused.

You're right that they wanted to avoid a horrible nuclear war with each other, that was never the intention. There was this idea of brinkmanship introduced by Eisenhower and Dulles a little later. You might want to look into that. They didn't decide on a battleground. There was no intended battleground....the whole point of the cold war, was that there was never any definitive battleground.

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Guest ojlikjumhnzdfgre

Oh okay..so, the USA was basically 'scaring' communism that may seem to be controlling "free" nations? That was what the Truman doctrine was about.

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The USA was trying to send out a warning to the Soviet Union (Stalin) with the onset of the Truman Doctrine. The Doctrine didn't mention the USSR specifically, but the intended message was clear. The USA was prepared to contain communism by any means possible. However, in some cases this simply turned out to be plain rhetoric. This belief of containment arose from a series of countries behind the iron curtain and a few others slowly turning communist, and linked to the concept of the Dominoe Theory.

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