A Companion to International History 1900–2001 by Gordon Martel

By Gordon Martel

Valuable compilation of essays overlaying the key occasions of the twentieth century. status out from this total extraordinary physique of labor are the contributions at the undertones and reasons of WW I (Martel's strong point) and 3 chapters on often-overlooked advancements resulting in WW II.

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Sample text

In Brezhnev’s words, Soviet society was “proceeding to communism through the stage of ‘developed socialism’” and was one step behind “advanced” socialism. 13 Similarly, the idea of exporting Soviet-style socialism encountered some difficulties: China, Yugoslavia, and Albania had decided to depart from Moscow’s version of Marxism. The Soviet Union and the eastern bloc were also aware that NATO’s strategy was defensive, but this did not dispel the fear that NATO might attack the East. 14 It was a great relief to him when the West did not react adversely to the Warsaw Pact’s invasion of Czechoslovakia, which he attributed to the growing military power of the Soviet Union.

19 In 1946, faced with Stalin’s ambitions in the Mediterranean (Britain’s important security zone), the United States was by this time more determined to resist Soviet pressure in that region. ” This was quickly followed by the Marshall Plan designed to facilitate Europe’s economic recovery, thereby rendering it less vulnerable to the communist threat. The defi ning thrust of the plan was to force the Soviet Union to choose whether or not it wanted to be included in it. Stalin eventually rejected it, as he decided that it was an American attempt to control Europe.

In 1983, Reagan launched the Strategic Defense Initiative (SDI) or “Star Wars” – an antiballistic missile defense system in space. A successful SDI would intercept and destroy incoming Soviet missiles before they reached the US, thereby nullifying the nuclear deterrent power of the Soviet Union. The SDI deepened the Kremlin’s concern about the fate of future arms negotiations with the United States, which were in turn adversely affected by the Soviet shooting down of the South Korean airliner K AL 007 in September 1983.

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