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Following the collapse of Germany and then Japan in 1945, the USA began a rapid de-militarization. It was assumed by American political leaders that the bad guys had disappeared from the planet. This childish outlook was quickly assaulted by the Soviets. The brutal reign of terror the Soviets unleashed on defenseless Germany after the war did not go unnoticed. In the east, Soviets used captured Japanese arms to build up communist Chinese units which quickly overran that country. During this time, both the USA and British governments were shot through with Soviet sympathiers and outright traitors. The Soviets were able to steal the science to build atomic weapons from these sources. Using captured German scientists they also began building a major rocket program. Gradually the USA began to awaken to the Soviet threat. Proxy units from the Soviet nation invaded southern Korea in 1950. Earlier the Soviets had tried to seize all of Berlin. China, as noted, had fallen. Soviet sponsored units were on the move in Greece, Malaysia and Turkey. When the USA went to war in Korea, it was with WWII veterans for the most part, fighting with WWII equipment. The major exception being that the air force now had excellent jet aircraft. This war was the first attempt of the USA to face the communist/Soviet threat in a major way. With this as background, the USA finally began to develop a coherent post WWII strategy. Since the Soviet/Chinese bloc was so huge and powerful (and nuclear armed), outright confrontation was essentially impossible. Instead the USA began to use its vast wealth and power to 'contain' the communist threat. Korea was fought to a draw. Next came Vietnam. Cuba was a big victory for the Soviets, in 1959. American proxy wars were fought in various parts of Latin America and Africa. Americans supported the Taliban in Afganistan in the 1980s. Gradually this policy of containment caused a drain on Soviet resources. Finally under the leadership of President Reagan the USA saw light at the end of the tunnel - a possible way to finish the Soviets. With the Soviets low on cash due to low petroleum prices, the USA moved to more and more confrontational policies. Seeing no way out, the Soviets decided to abandon their communist roots, the USSR collapsed and with it their vast empire slipped away. \

2009-05-06 00:23:28
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