McCarthyism and the Korean War's effect on Us, USSR relations.

Essay by jake1321High School, 11th gradeA-, May 2004

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The Korean War and McCarthyism served as eye-openers to American society. They let the U.S. see what the Soviet Union, and Joseph Stalin really were--a totalitarian nation whose leader slaughtered millions of people.

As World War II came to and end, the US and USSR were at a standoff. The two countries resembled one another very closely. They both conducted a kind of missionary diplomacy--trying to export all of their ideals to all other nations, and they were both great powers of the world. As Europe lay in front of them, battered, a conflict was inevitable. Soon, the two powers provoked each other into the standoff known as the Cold War.

As Harry Truman entered the Presidency, the Cold War entered a disturbing phase--a shooting phase. In June of 1950, the Korean War had begun. The Soviets believed that Japan had surrendered its land north of the 38th parallel, and the U.S.

believed the same, south of the line. They both, however, believed in a reunification of Korea; but like Germany, they each set up rival regimes above and below the parallel, thus causing more tension between the US and USSR relations. The first shot came from the North Korean army in a Soviet-made tank. Truman sprang into action, for he believed that if America relaxed its guard for a moment, that he would give communism an invitation.

President Truman was not the only person who believed that communism was a bad thing. A man named Joseph R. McCarthy, a Wisconsin Republican, came to Washington and made a huge splash. He accused scores of government officials of being communists and spies. This was shocking, because to be called a communist at this time, was the worst thing you could be called. He was unable to prove his accusations at that...