Start Of Cold War To End Of First Berlin Crisis


Tehran Conference

November 28, 1943 - December 1, 1943

• Main agreements:
- Britain and USA agreed to open up a second front by invading France in May 1944
- The Soviet Union was to wage war against Japan once Germany was defeated
- A United Nations organisation was to be set up after the war
- An area of eastern Poland was added to the Soviet Union



World War II ends with the surrender of Japan to the Allies, Nazi Germany having previously surrendered. This means that the alliance is under threat as they no longer have a common enemy.

Yalta Conference

February 4, 1945 - February 11, 1945

• They agreed to:
- The Soviet Union entering war against Japan
- Divide Germany into 4 zones (and also Berlin): US, British, French and Soviet
- To hunt down and try Nazi war criminals
- To allow countries that had been liberated to have free elections in order to choose the government that they want
- To Join the United Nations organisation in order to maintain peace
- That Eastern Europe would be a Soviet Sphere of Influence
They disagreed on:
- How much Germany was to pay in reparations (Stalin wanted a much higher figure then Roosevelt and Churchill)
- About poland: Stalin wanted to Polish border to be further West and wanted a friendly Polish government. The western powers agreed but persuaded Stalin to agree to allow free elections

Potsdam Conference

July 1945 - August 1945

They agreed:
• To divide Germany and Berlin as previously agreed
• To demilitarise Germany
• To re-establish democracy in Germany
• That Germany had to pay reparations to the Allies in equipment and materials
• To ban the Nazi party
• To participate fully in the UN
• Poland's borders to be moved further West
• Disagreed over how to treat Germany. The Soviet’s wanted to crush her whereas UK & USA wanted to avoid the mistakes of Versailles & ensure a stable strong capitalist democracy in Europe.
• They also disagreed over the lack of free elections in Eastern Europe.

Truman was leader of USA at this point and hated Communism, distrusted Stalin

Iron Curtain Speech

March 5, 1946

It was a metaphor used by Winston Churchill in a speech after the Second World War, to describe the ideological and physical line in Europe dividing the countries that were Soviet-influence and American-influenced.

Truman doctrine


The Truman Doctrine was President Truman’s idea that it was the USA’s duty to prevent the spread of communism to eastern Europe and the rest of the world.



• As a response to the Truman Doctrine, Stalin set up Cominform (the Communist Information Bureau)
• It was set-up to enable the Soviet Union to co-ordinate communist parties throughout Europe
• It was introduced to ensure that the satellite states:
- Followed Soviet aims in foreign ideas
- Introduced Soviet style economic policies, such as collectivisation of agriculture and state control of the industry
• The Soviet Union also set it up so that they could purge any members who disagreed with them

Marshall Plan


• Aide ($17 billion) was given to all war-torn European countries (16 countries join):
- Cash
- Machinery
- Food
- Technological assistance
• USSR stop countries in Comecon from receiving aid

Berlin Blockade and Airlift

24th June 1948 - 12th May 1949

In 1948, Stalin blockaded all routes by land and rail into West Berlin. This was why:
• In 1948, the British and American zones of Germany merged into one zone called Bizonia
• In 1948, the Allies created a West German country with its own money (western Deutschmark) and government.
• Stalin wanted to weaken Germany, not make it stronger
1. On the 24th June: Stalin cut off road, rail and canal traffic in an attempt to starve West Berlin. His aim was to try and cut off the West’s access to food and bring it to starvation point
2. However, Truman was determined to stand up to the Soviet Union so he decided to start airlifting supplies from their bases in West Germany into Berlin.
3. The airlift began on 28th June and lasted for 10 months
4. The West Berliners were supplied with:
- Food
- Clothing
- Oil
- Building materials
5. On 12th May 1949, Stalin called off the blockade