Russian revolution of 1917
The October revolution of 1917 in which the Bolsheviks seized power in Russia marks the origin of the confrontation between the USA and the Soviet Union. Until then Russia had been an absolutisticAbsolute monarchy is a monarchical form of government in which the monarch has absolute power among his or her people state reigned by a czar, the country was industrially underdeveloped and largely destitute. LeninVladimir Lenin was a Russian communist revolutionary and served as leader of the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic from 1917, then concurrently as Premier of the Soviet Union from 1922 until his death, the Bolshevik partyThe Bolsheviks were a faction of the Marxist Russian Social Democratic Labour Party. They came to power in Russia during the October Revolution phase of the Russian Revolution of 1917 leader gained support for his slogan: “peace, land and bread” all over the country. He advocated the communistic ideology of Karl MarxKarl Marx was a German philosopher. His published books laid the basis for the current understanding of labour and its relation to capital, according to which the proletariatProletariat is a term to describe the class of hand-labour-workers was to gain state power and reign the country socialistically. During the 20th century the communism established in Russia through the revolution became the international rival of liberal democracy1.
During the Second World War the allied nations united against the national-socialistic expansion enforced by the German troops. The so called Anti-Hitler coalitionThe Anti-Hitler-coalition promoted the alliance as seeking to stop German, Italian and Japanese aggression in World War II united Great Britain, Russia and the USA in their goal to fight the NS-regime. Even though the countries distrusted one another as a result of their different ideologies, they solidarised in a coalition in 1941 as the approach taken by the Nation Socialists threatened the general world order. This led to the conferences of Yalta, Teheran and Potsdam between 1943 and 1945 on which the procedure taken against the NS-regime was negotiated2.
Potsdam Conference 1945
The underlying confrontations of the victorious powers surfaced again on the Potsdam ConferenceGoals of the Potsdam Conference 1945 included the establishment of post-war order, peace treaty issues, and countering the effects of the war. Germany had capitulated unconditionally in 1945 and was thereafter controlled by the Allied Control CouncilThe Allied Control Council was a military occupation governing body of the Allied Occupation Zones in Germany after the end of World War II. The Soviet Union had augmented its influence over several Eastern European states and demanded high reparations of Germany. The USA dreaded that the communistic influence of the Soviet Union within Europe would impair the economic rebuilding. Furthermore the victorious powers could not find a solution concerning the Oder-Neisse lineThe Oder-Neiße-line is the border between Germany and Poland which was drawn in the aftermath of World War II with Poland. Those debates were eventually decisive in the development from cooperation to a global confrontation3.