The Containment Policy

Essay by EssaySwap ContributorHigh School, 11th grade February 2008

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Pursuant to World War II, the Soviet Union extended its rule over several countries in Eastern Europe. Eventually, the Soviet empire carried out significant efforts to expand its Communist regime even further to vulnerable Western European countries, which lay shattered as a result of the war. President Harry S. Truman, like many Americans, saw Communism as a threat to international peace and stability that had to be contained, and correspondingly put the Containment Policy into operation. The Containment Policy was adapted as the American foreign policy and sought to discontinue the expansion and influence of Communism by creating strategic alliances or supporting states in areas of aggression. The first application of the Containment Policy was in the Truman Doctrine of 1949, a request to Congress to provide assistance to Greece and Turkey and support any country resisting outside pressures. Shortly after in the same year. the Containment Policy was also extended to all of Europe in the Marshall Plan, also known as the European Recovery Program, which offered American financial aid to assist in the recovery of Europe.

Also in 1949, the United States joined the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, a peacetime alliance to promote stability and well being in the North Atlantic area. The ultimate effect of these attempts at containment was the hindrance of any one country to be entirely Communist.

The development of the Truman Doctrine initiated in February of 1947 when Great Britain, weakened by an unprosperous economy, notified the United States that it could no longer afford to supply military and economic aid to Greece and Turkey (Sexton 2). The conditions in Greece were deteriorating, as there was a severe economic crisis and a civil war taking place between the Greek monarchy and the Communists of the country (Sexton 3). The Germans had...