The Cold War Era –  CBSE Notes for Class 12 Political Science

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1. Cuban Missile Crisis made whole world nervous by creating clashes between the two superpowers, the US and Soviet Union namely Cold War.
2. Cold War referred to competitions, tensions and series of confrontations between the US and USSR.
3. In 1945, with the end of Second World War, Cold War began when the US dropped bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki in diplomatic manner to warn Soviet Union.
4. Both the powers became reluctant to initiate war to protect world from large scale destruction as they were a.vare that it will not lead only political aim to them.
5. The greed of expansion of their spheres of influence divided the world into alliances. The
US built NATO, South East Asian Treaty Organisation (SEATO) and Central Treaty Organisation (CENTO).
6. The Soviet UnrIri created Eastern alliance known as WARSAW PACT.
7. Smaller states „Maine either the alliance to get the promise of protection, weapons and economic aid against their local rivals.
8. Superpower required them to gain on access to vital resources, territory to launch weapons and troops, to spy on each other and economic support.
9. Despite of occurring crisis in Korea, Vietnam and Afghanistan, both the superpowers behaved rationally and responsibly.
10. Both the superpowers maintained ‘arms control’ by signing various treaties as Limited Test Ban Treaty, Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty and Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty.
11. Countries outside the two blocs known as NAM (Non-Aligned Movement), joined by decolonised countries of Asia, Africa, and Latin America, played a crucial role in reducing cold war conflicts to maintain peace and stability all over the world.
12. Five founder members of NAM were Yugoslavia’s Josip Broz Tito, India’s JL Nehru, Egypt’s leader Gamal Abdel Nasser, Indonesia’s Sukarno and Ghana’s Kwame Nkrumah.
13. The majority of NAM members was categorised as Least Developed Countries (LDCs) which initiated economic development under the head of New International Economic Order (NIEO).
14. The United Nations Conference of Trade and Development (UNCTAD) brought out a report in 1972 to propose to give the LDCs control over their natural resources, to make western market available to them to reduce cost of technology and to provide greater role in international economic institutions.
15. India responded to growth of Cold War into two fold. First, it stayed away from alliances and secondary, it raised voice against newly decolonised countries becoming part of either the alliance.
16. NAM served India’s interests also to participate in international decisions and maintained balance between two superpowers.
17. India’s policy was criticised on grounds of possessing contradictory postures i.e. signed treaty of friendship with the USSR in August 1971 for 20 years and developed good relations with the US during Bangladesh crisis.
18. It is said that NAM has lost its relevance after disintegration of USSR and end of cold war in 1991.
19. NAM is based on a resolve to democratise international system to redress existing inequities that poor and very small countries need not to follow any of the big powers instead they can pursue an independent foreign policy also.
20. These core values make NAM relevant even in today’s scenario as it has stood of adverse circumstances and served an important purpose of protecting the interests of third world countries.
1. Cold War: Cold war referred to competitions, tensions and a series of confrontations between the US and USSR.
2. Cuban Missile Crisis: It created tensions between the US and USSR when Soviet Union (USSR) installed missiles in Cuba to make it a Russian base.
3. Allied Forces: Allied forces were one of the two camps during second world war including the US, Soviet Union, Britain and France.
4. Axis Power: It was another camp against allied forces led by German”Italy and Japan.
5. Alliance System: Alliance system was created by the two superpowers to expand their sphere of influence all over the world.
6. Deterrence: It was a logic followed by both the superpowers to avoid large scale destruction
i. e. not to take place hot war between them because both of them had the capacity to retaliate.
7. Neutrality: Neutrality is a condition not to participate in world affairs or make oneself aloof from world.
8. Decolonisation: To make colonised states free from the rule of mother country.
• 1947 American President Harry Truman’s Doctrine about containment of communism.
• 1947-52 Marshall Plan: US aid for reconstruction of Western Europe.
• 1948-49 Berlin blockade by the Soviet Union.
• 1950-53 Korean War
• 1954 Defeat of the French by Vietnamese at Dien Bien Phu; Signing of Geneva Accord; Division of Vietnam along the 17th parallel formation of SEATO.
• 1954-75 American intervention in Vietnam.
• 1955 Signing of Baghdad Pact, later CENTO.
• 1956 Soviet intervention in Hungary.
• 1961 US-sponsored Bay of Pigs invasion of Cuba construction of Berlin Wall.
• 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis
• 1965 American Intervention in the Dominican Republic
• 1968 Soviet intervention in Czechoslovakia.
• 1972 US President Richard Nixon’s visit to China
• 1978-89 Vietnamese intervention in Cambodia
• 1979-89 Soviet intervention in Afghanistan
• 1985 Gorbachev becomes the president of the USSR and begins reform process.
• 1989 Fall of Berlin Wall
• 1990 Unification of Germany
• 1991 Disintegration of Soviet Union, End of the Cold War era.