Essay by PaperNerd ContributorHigh School, 11th grade February 2002

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Containment After WWII ended, relations between the U.S. and the Soviet Union began to deteriorate. Problems in eastern Europe contributed to the development of the containment strategy. By ÒcontainingÓ the Soviet Union, the U.S. hoped to stop the spread of communism, and cause a collapse of Russia, without war. Although the policy had several problems, I think it was the right decision.

The biggest problem with the containment strategy is the fact that the U.S. was arrogant enough to feel that they had the right to ÒcontainÓ another country. One of the United StatesÕ biggest goals was/is the right to self-determination. ItÕs ridiculous that the U.S. firmly upheld that belief in Poland, but then decided that Russia did not have the right to determine communism as its political system. That seems very wrong, but in actuality, Russia was doing exactly what the U.S. was worried about: expansion. The U.S.

didnÕt have many options.

The Soviets were expanding aggressively across Europe, and their actions required an agressive response. Negotiation was pointless, because the interests were so different. The original containment policy, with emphasis on political and economic containment, rather than military, was a plausible solution to RussiaÕs increasing terrorism.

The U.S. had very few options after WWII. A military attack wouldÕve been straight-forward, but no one wanted to get involved in another war, especially a nuclear war. Isolation was too risky, because Stalin would expand into Europe as soon as he had the oppurtunity. Containment was really the only option.

The arguments for and against containment are not extremely clear-cut, but the fact is, containment worked. The reason that I support the containment is not that I agree with the principles behind it (actually, I will always disagree with not allowing freedom among everyone- democracy is not above all),