Total Posts:14|Showing Posts:1-14
Jump to topic:

America's actions during the cold war

PatriotPerson
Posts: 1,062
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
3/10/2014 8:34:06 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 3/9/2014 9:19:06 PM, Bishk wrote:
Was America's actions during the Cold war justified or not
why or why not?
thanks

Yes. Because Capitalism.
"Victory has a thousand fathers, but defeat is an orphan" -JFK
"You all stink like poo poo" - Rich Davis
"That idea may just be crazy enough... TO GET US ALL KILLED!" -Squidward Tentacles
"My heart is always breaking for the ghosts that haunt this room." -Nate Ruess
whiteflame
Posts: 1,378
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
3/11/2014 11:46:30 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 3/9/2014 9:19:06 PM, Bishk wrote:
Was America's actions during the Cold war justified or not
why or why not?
thanks

It depends on what you view as sufficient justification. In a sense, yes, our actions were justified. The USSR presented a consistent and dire threat to a number of countries, and we had to counter that in order to ensure that it didn't become the sole superpower of the world and begin to creep its empire outward. It's difficult to say what could have happened in the absence of an actual Cold War, as that is a pretty big "what if?" scenario, but it's entirely feasible that, even in the absence of such a "war," many of the same things that did happen would have anyway. Vietnam, Korea, and China would have likely had similar actions occur, just without U.S. intervention, which can be good and bad in its own way.

Of course, there's always uncertainty. I'd say there's little we can be absolutely certain on, but one that comes to mind is that our vying for the top against a superpower like the USSR produced a Red Queen Effect. This effect is essentially what happens when you get two large companies competing against one another, and the name comes from a quote seen in Through the Looking-Glass:

"Now, here, you see, it takes all the running you can do, to keep in the same place."

That applies to businesses in the following manner. Let's say you have Coca Cola as the main producer of sodas. In the absence of competitors, Coca Cola is improving itself in a vacuum to try and stay ahead of potential competition. Trouble is, Coca Cola has no idea what that competition will look like, and it has little incentive to invest resources into improving itself without that knowledge. In contrast, if Pepsi Co. comes around and starts creating that competition, Coca Cola has to improve in order to meet this new competition. As such, Pepsi Co. also has to improve. They're usually not gaining market share, but they are ensuring that they have a more solid foothold in the market, thus other competitors have a much higher wall to climb than before.

The same principle applies for the U.S. and USSR. They went through a major arms race, building up vast supplies of nuclear weapons and jumping technological hurdles that left other countries decades behind. Thus, when the USSR collapsed, the U.S. was by far the largest superpower in the world, with few if any rivals. We can argue on the benefits or harms of this, but this is a major outcome of the Cold War, and something to base a lot of our conclusions on.
Idealist
Posts: 2,520
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
3/18/2014 8:14:48 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 3/9/2014 9:19:06 PM, Bishk wrote:
Was America's actions during the Cold war justified or not
why or why not?
thanks

Some were justified and some were not. McCarthyism was certainly a stain on our status as a free republic. Vietnam was at best a terrible mistake. Some people claim that the reason the US fought in Vietnam and rotated its troops on a limited-tour basis instead of keeping them there for the duration of the war as they had always done in the past was because the military leadership wished to increase the number of seasoned veterans in the Armed Forces in case of war with the Soviet Union. Not commenting on whether it was true or not. Russia's incursion into Afghanistan was just as bad. Both countries paid dearly, and the only way the US finally won was to out-spend the Soviets, which pretty-much left us broke as well.
PatriotPerson
Posts: 1,062
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
3/19/2014 8:38:29 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 3/11/2014 11:11:17 AM, ararmer1919 wrote:
At 3/11/2014 2:19:38 AM, Bishk wrote:
could you please elaborate PatriotPerson

Because Capitalism rocks!

This ^. That is my elaboration.
"Victory has a thousand fathers, but defeat is an orphan" -JFK
"You all stink like poo poo" - Rich Davis
"That idea may just be crazy enough... TO GET US ALL KILLED!" -Squidward Tentacles
"My heart is always breaking for the ghosts that haunt this room." -Nate Ruess
Soupnut
Posts: 1
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
4/1/2014 6:20:23 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
I think if you look at the Korean War. America's involvement was painted as a police action by Truman, but instead of staying at the parallel after they had beaten back the North's invasion, they launched a counter invasion under General MacArthur. This I would argue crossed the boundaries of a police action. The conflict in itself achieved nothing as the stand off went back to where it was before and still is today, perhaps why few people pay attention to it.

I realize this is a short example, but it highlights the US getting involved in a counter- invasion that was legally dubious and achieving little. I doubt whether America's actions in this instance were justified.

But, I think you have to take each major point in the Cold War on its own and decide whether or not the outcome justified the means. What you have to remember is that the people who made the decisions on both sides operated under constant fear and stress. They made the decisions they did and luckily we didn't have a nuclear war.

I'd argue that both sides were as bad as each other and played a dangerous game. The actions of America in the Cold War are justifiable in some events but not in others.
WheezySquash8
Posts: 130
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
5/9/2014 5:24:10 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 3/9/2014 9:19:06 PM, Bishk wrote:
Was America's actions during the Cold war justified or not
why or why not?
thanks

I think they were right because I feel we needed to do them.
Pacifist Since 3/12/14
Wheezy
Book-Head
Posts: 4
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
5/9/2014 6:16:48 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
Most were not. Especially if you look at the fact that most of the time America acted and the Sowjetunion just answered.
Both sides should could have done better, of course, but the cold war was also the fault of the american government.
there are always two sides in such a conflict.

and capitalism is not a reasonabe answer.
there are many sides in capitalism which are just as shitty as communism.
Elen s"la l"menn' omentielvo.
- A star shines over the hour of our meeting.
Chimera
Posts: 178
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
5/18/2014 6:19:53 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 3/9/2014 9:19:06 PM, Bishk wrote:
Was America's actions during the Cold war justified or not
why or why not?
thanks

No side's actions were justified during the Cold War. Both America and the USSR are completely guilty for what occurred and nothing can justify what they both did to the world.

The USSR started 'socialist' (which were a far-cry from what socialism and even communism were originally birthed as) dictatorships around the world. Whereas America created counter-dictatorships to 'preserve democracy'.

Both sides used nuclear weapons in areas populated by civilians. Hiroshima and Nagasaki being targeted by America, whereas the Soviets tested atomic weapons in populated areas of Kazakhstan, and also suffered from the Chernobyl disaster in Ukraine. These areas are still suffering from the effects of nuclear explosions today.

America only 'won' because Gorbachev tried to reform the USSR, which resulted in it's collapse. If Gorbachev hadn't become the premier, then the Cold War would probably be alive and well today.

However, I don't really see the destroyed world that we live in today as being 'winning'.
Mcinnes
Posts: 1
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
5/18/2014 8:02:57 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
Neither sides actions were justified. However, in my honest opinion the U.S.A. were in the wrong more than the U.S.S.R.
In the history of the cold war there were more wars instigateed by the U.S. than there were by the Soviet Union. The Soviets seemed to understand that a civil war involves two or more parties of a single nation fighting against eachother over conflicting ideals. The U.S. did not understand this and by the look of it saw it as more of a war they could join.
Vietnam is a perfec example, the country was in a civil war, north vs south. The soviet Union remained out of the war, not sending troops but sending armament (which is okay and is not a declaration of war), while the U.S. sent armament to the south and eventually deployed troops, and not just from there country. Australia (my country, which I love), U.K. etc all sent troops and aided.
Granada is another example, U.S. sent troops to Granada to overthrow the leader and begin a pro-capitalist government.
Although the Soviet Union did invade Afghanistan.

Most of the Soviets warring and conquering was done during WW2, and in my opinion, those countries (Germany, Romania etc.) broke a Non-agression pact (NAP) and invaded Russia making the NAP void. Soviet Union was only defending itself, until the end when they counterattacked and annexed much of the enemies lands. This in my opinion is okay as they were the ones who were backstabbed and attacked and it happened in WW2. Don't say U.S. didn't do the same in West Germany and Japan, or at least something very very similar.

Cuban Missile Crisi- Soviets were in the right to send nukes to Cuba. The U.S. had nukes in Turkey, Italy and much of Europe that bordered the Soviets capable of launching and reaching the mainland of Russia in very short times and completely ignoring the Soviet Block established in Eastern Europe. The Russians would have to launch from, Vladivostok and much of far east Russia or conquer West Europe and even then it would be difficult for them to do so by the time Russia was radiated and barren. Soviets wanted equal footing, nukes in Cuba would have evened the odds and allowed the Soviets and U.S. to have an equal chance. U.S. are just hipocrites, plain and simple and it has not ended to this very day.

History i written by the victor, and in this case the U.S. were the victor. Howver, I wonder how the cold war will fare in history with U.S. eventuall fall from power while China, and to an extent Russia rise back to prominence.
I am not forgiving what the Soviets have done during the cold war, but they were not as much in the wrong as the Eagle of America.
Idealist
Posts: 2,520
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
5/18/2014 11:51:08 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 3/9/2014 9:19:06 PM, Bishk wrote:
Was America's actions during the Cold war justified or not
why or why not?
thanks

Yes, they were justified, at least on an overall scale. More importantly, they were necessary. But capitalism doesn't "rock." Capitalism is a system of greed and it will cost us dearly in the long-run.