Comparing Cold War Period (1947–1990) and Post-Cold War period (1991–Present)
The Cold War was a prolonged struggle between the Soviet Union and the United States that started in the aftermath of Hitler’s Germany surrender. In 1941, the aggression of Nazi over the USSR twisted the Soviet regime into the Western democracies ally. However, the progressive divergent viewpoints in the post-war world created rifts between countries that were allies once. From 1947 on, the USSR and the U.S. employed all the resources accessible to them for subversion and intimidation (Schultz, 1).
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The two adversaries clashed in a prolonged ideological and strategic conflict interrupted by crises of different intensity. The struggle between the two groups continued for long until the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991. This era was followed by the confrontational era that was characterized by the military confrontation between the United States among other western states against the rogue states, terrorism, and weapon of massive destruction. This confrontation started immediately after the end of the Cold War and continues to date (Schultz, 1). This paper discusses the two eras; Cold War and Post-Cold War and some of the strategies and real confrontations experienced during this period.
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History and Issues
As World War II came to an end, the alliance that had made the Soviet Union and the United State partners in their Axis powers defeat; Japan, Italy, and Germany, started to fall apart. Both sides recognized that their visions for the European and the globe were incompatible. The initial dormant of conflict between the USSR and the USA deepened and widened due to their failure to agree on a common settlement of global political issues of order and law. The two clashed over various unsolved issues of the post-war period that were typified by mutual fear of security zones infringement by the opposing sides. Consequently, there was a rise of two power blocks polarization in the nation-states place on the East-West contrasts (Schultz, 1). This resulted in the division of Europe, reinforcing the principal victorious powers strength in world politics and led to dominance fear by the opposing side turning to the defense policy mainspring. The outcome was a progressive struggle of resources and influence, with more parts of the world being drawn into East-West permanent arms race and tensions. There arose the global destruction danger with nuclear technology development. The development of equal destruction power is what resulted at the end of the competition, yielding to the fall of the Soviet Union. The end of the Soviet Union in 1991 ushered in a new era of confrontational war. The end of the Soviet Union was marked by a treaty on how to put the nuclear weapon under control from the two parties. However, there was a rise in other security challenges that resulted in the need to develop conventional military power to address modern advanced security challenges. This included the growth of terrorism and terrorist groups in the 1990s onwards. There was also the development of rogue states that focused on funding terrorists among other illegal activities. Besides this, there was the emergence of new states testing unclear weapons among other weapons of mass destruction. The U.S. then diverted its military attention to the contemporary issues that seem to threaten its internal security and that of its allies (Schultz, 1).
Cold War Strategic Period (1947-1990): Korean War and Containment
One of the issues discussed during the Cold War era was the application of containment strategy during the Cold War, particularly in the Korean War. Containment was applied by the U.S. and its allies to safeguard the spread of communist across other nations. Containment was a response to various moves by the Soviet Union to expand the influence of communists in Vietnam, Eastern Europe, Africa, China, and Korea. Containment signified a position of common ground between the rollback and détente. It permitted the opponent to select the time and place of any confrontation. Containment during the Cold War implied intervening to curb communism spread to new nations but not attacking countries that were already part of the communist (Hickman, 3). The U.S. in particular tried to prevent the influence of Soviets on the Korean Peninsula by inhabiting the southern part of the area. This area eventually turned into South Korea, with the area occupied and controlled by the communists turning into Northern Korea. The Korean War started in 1950 as the soviet Union pushed to occupy some parts of South Korea. To prevent this, and in the spirit of containment, the U.S. with the aid of the United Nations joint hands to prevent the Soviet Union which was aided by China from taking over South Korea. This was the initial containment war that was militarized in an attempt to push North Korea back to the border after pushing into the South Korea land. The U.S. military and its allies were able to achieve the prevention of the spread of Communist to the south through containment strategy (Hickman, 3).
Post-Cold War Period (1991-2020): Bombing of Libya 2011 & Rogue State
The end of the Cold War resulted in a new era where the U.S. focused on new security issues in the world. One of these issues is the rogue states. Rogue states refer to states and countries whose purposes are to disturb the peace of the world and destabilize the multinational community. These states are said to break international policies and laws meant to maintain global peace and commit transgression purposefully and deliberately. Such states intend to create a threat to the countries’ security across the world (Musili, 2).
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Libya was identified as a rogue state in 2011. The country populace conducted a revolution against its autocratic leader Muammar Gaddafi. Gaddafi lost patience with people and vowed to cleanse the country over libels. In reaction to violent threats from Gaddafi, the international coalition including NATO took the duty to safeguard Libyan civilians, particularly those at the Coastal City of Benghazi. The coalition connected a no-fly zone against Libya and bombed the military positions of Gaddafi. This was followed by a strong revolution, dethroning, and killing of Gaddafi. The country later experienced four years of civil war before peace restoration (Robins-Early, 4).
The world has been experiencing international conflicts that initiated the collection of allies for two opposing forces to create peace or to win a war. This started from World War I, extended to World War II, and eventually to the Cold War. The main aim of the Cold War was to restrict the spread of communism ideology in the world. This made the U.S. work with its allies to contain the spread of communism through containment policy. The end of the Cold War was highly influenced by the development of nuclear weapons by the two opposing forces, which gave each party the power to destroy the other one. These forced the two to develop a common ground that resolved the prolonged strategic war. The end of the Cold War ushered in a new era where the U.S. had to protect its internal security from arising modern security challenges. These included terrorism, rogue nations, and weapons of mass destruction. The U.S. took the responsibility of protecting its citizens and the world over modern security challenges. It is for this reason that the U.S. and other international bodies invaded Libya to protect the citizen over its authoritarian leader.
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