Soviet motives for, and moves towards, Peaceful Coexistence

Mind Map by jacksearle, updated more than 1 year ago
Created by jacksearle almost 6 years ago


A-Levels Cold War (Post-Stalin Thaw) Mind Map on Soviet motives for, and moves towards, Peaceful Coexistence, created by jacksearle on 04/15/2014.

Resource summary

Soviet motives for, and moves towards, Peaceful Coexistence
1 Peaceful Coexistence
1.1 Shortly after Stalin death, Beria tried to forge better relationship with West by proposing reunified, neutral Germany.
1.1.1 His initiative was ruined in June 53 by Soviet repression of anti comm protests in East Germany 2 months later, Malenkov called for a 'new course' in foreign policy, which focused on peaceful coexistence with the West Malenkov not convinced that a capitalist-communist war was inevitable Consequently, USSR could devote resources to living standards and developing consumer industries K initially opposed the new course, but once Malenkov had been removed, adopted it under the name of 'Peaceful Coexistence'
1.2 Summary - Peaceful Coexistence was a Soviet doctrine that was put forward in the 1950s - that argued peaceful relations with the West were possible
1.3 Georgi Malenkov 1902-1988
1.3.1 Succeeded Stalin as party PM in 1953 forced by other members of collective leadership to hand over party post to K 1953-54 M tried to ease tensions with West and boost Soviet consumer industries Was easily outmanoeuvred by K, losing the premiership in 55 and his seat on the Politburo in 1957 with his political career over - Malenkov was sent to Kazakhstan to manage a hydroelectric plant
2 Why did the USSR pursue Peaceful Coexistence?
2.1 Stalin's death and the emergence of a more progressive Soviet leadership are 2 key reasons
2.2 Soviet leadership believing in the inevitable triumph of communism
2.2.1 As Marxists, the Soviet politburo genuinely believed that communism would inevitably triumph over capitalism Sooner or later, the West would be overwhelmed by an economic slump - but until then the USSR could bide its time and avoid any damaging conflicts K summed up this position by saying "Peaceful Coexistence between difference systems of government is possible, but peaceful coexistence between different ideologies is not"
2.3 K confident that USSR's economic output would soon overtake West
2.3.1 1956 - claimed that, since 1929, Soviet industrial production had risen by 1.95% - Corresponding figure for USA was 1.34% K also favoured P.C due to what he called 'the disintegration of the imperialist colonial system' In his view - newly decolonised states and national liberation movements would reject the imperialist West and look to USSR for support
2.4 Consolidation of Influence
2.4.1 By end of 40s, both sides had consolidated their respective spheres of interest in Europe Each also tacitly recognised the other's area of influence This gave the superpowers a greater sense of security - made them more willing to negotiated
2.5 Implications of the arms race
2.5.1 Economic and military implications of the nuclear arms race, which gathered pace in 40s, provided another reason for P.C Cost and sheer destructive power of nuclear weapons had sobering effect on superpowers As K said 'There are only two ways - either peaceful coexistence or the most destructive war in history. There is no third way'
3 Key Measures of Soviet Peaceful Coexistence
3.1 End of Korean War July 1953
3.1.1 After Stalin's death - new leadership moved rapidly to bringing fighting in Korea to an end Change of policy abandoned Stalin's hardline approach of 1952 of continuing the conflict decision influenced by Soviet concerns of the economic impact of prolonging the war Represented clear sign that new govt wanted to manage affairs in a different way to Stalin As Malenkov put it 'there is no dispute or outstanding issue, which cannot be settled peacefully' Armistice was negotiated along 38th parallel in July 53
3.2 Cuts in the Red Army (from mid 1950s)
3.2.1 K reduced conventional forces partly to convince the West of his peaceful intentions 2nd half of 50s, size of Red Army decreased from 5.8mil to 3.7mil men Further cuts of 33% were announced in early 60s K also did it to save on military costs - was convinced nuclear weapons afforded USSR much better protection
3.3 Austrian State Treaty 1955
3.3.1 Like Germany, Austria had been placed under joint occupation by the big 4 in 1945 Subsequent talks between the big 4 failed to settle Austria's future USSR extracted resources from their Austrian zone and USA secretly rearmed their zone and supported it with Marshall Aid After overcoming Malenkov's resistance in 54- K was ready to accept a neutral rather than divided Austria Hoped west would see this as proof of his willingness to negotiate on key issues Result was Austrian state treaty of 1955 Agreement signed by big 4 - removed all foreign troops and guaranteed Austrian independence and neutrality treaty paved way for Geneva summit of 55 and marked first occasion since 45 that Soviet troops had willingly left any part of Europe
3.4 Soviet withdrawal from Finland 1956
3.4.1 Finnish Soviet treaty 1947 - formally ended conflict which had taken place during WW2 Under its terms - Finland handed over border territory and $300million in reparations to USSR USSR also given 50 year lease to the Porkkala peninsula where it kept a naval base K decided to remove Soviet influence from Porkkala - was handed back in 1956 K wanted West to see this as further evidence that USSR wanted a more constructive relationship however, Porkkala did have little strategic value and Finland pledged to remain neutral and outside NATO
3.5 Other Soviet Initiatives
3.5.1 1953 - settled border disputes with Turkey and Iran - reestablished relations with Greece - formally recognised Israel
3.5.2 1955 - recognised West Germany and restored relations with Tito's Yugoslavia
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