the rulers of the West hoped that Khrushchev would bring an end to the
Cold War, they were disappointed:
did not mean a change back to capitalism, or freedom from Russia.
When communist countries went too far in their reforms, Khrushchev
sent in the Red Army to stop them.
‘peaceful co-existence’, Khrushchev really meant ‘peaceful
started to build up Russian power:
visited countries like Afghanistan and Burma and gave them economic aid if they would support Russia.
began the ‘space race’ with America.
In 1957 Russia launched Sputnik
the first satellite.
In 1961 Yuri Gagarin became the first astronaut to orbit the
1955 Khrushchev set up the Warsaw Pact – a military alliance of
Communist countries – to rival NATO. Pact
detailed plans of how to wage nuclear war against NATO if there was a war.
began an ‘arms race’ with America.
In 1953, Russia got the
waged a propaganda
war against America and Britain.
by this, America became just as aggressive:
led a ‘witch-hunt’ for ‘Communists’
in America (e.g. Charlie Chaplin was accused of being a Communist.)
There was a
had an 'arms
In 1955, NATO agreed to a West German Army of ½ million men
(this led to the formation of the Warsaw Pact).
became determined to win the
Americans used U2 planes to spy on Russia.
a result, the period 1955–1963 was the time of GREATEST tension in the
1961 cartoon shows America and Russia at loggerheads with each
other. Most people expected that
would happen - the atom bomb affected modern life and culture
American children were trained what to do in the event of a nuclear strike
- 'Duck and Cover'.
In fact, however, the 'thaw' was only partial: Khrushchev's policy was a
curious mixture which western leaders often found difficult to
understand [and] he was quick to respond to anything which seemed to be
a threat to the east.
Norman Lowe, Mastering Modern World History (1982)
as a GCSE revision book by a History teacher.