Cold War

From ProleWiki, the proletarian encyclopedia

The Cold War was a term coined by anti-communist essayist George Orwell and given to a period of global class warfare between the capitalist and socialist world following World War II, which concluded with the dissolution of the USSR. The Cold War has been instrumentalised by the imperial core so as to pretend communism is a crumbling ideology that belongs to the 20th century, but it is safe to say that communism is still very much alive and keeps being targeted by imperial interests, making the Cold War an ongoing process.

Although the end of the cold war due to the implosion of the socialist bloc was presented as the end of history by Western 'cold warrior' scholars such as Francis Fukuyama. Today, some analysts believe the West is now entering a "New Cold War" with its posturing against the emerging superpowers, Russia and China.


The US and more generally the Allied block were content to let the Soviets fight the brunt of the war against Germany and then swoop in to deliver the finishing blow after the two had exhausted each other. Notably, Stalin offered to commit 1 million Red Army soldiers to an invasion of Germany if France and the British Empire followed with their own troops, opening two fronts at once before Hitler had a chance to ramp up the war effort.[1] The Allied powers refused his request, as they had hoped that both would fight each other first. Despite the close alliance in the anti-fascist war, this remained an area of contention which the allied powers failed to recognise.

After WW2, tensions picked back up between capitalists and socialists, the latter holding a dominant place in Eastern Europe and socialist-led anti-colonialist movements rising to the fore. The USSR, whom especially had industrialized rapidly since Hitler's election and was now a world power of its own regard, could no longer allow herself to be treated as a pariah in international politics. As the Red Army were the first into Berlin, which rushed the surrender of Germany and the victory of anti-fascist pro-democratic forces, they scared the reactionaries of the Allied powers into uniting against the Soviet republics (so as to defeat socialism for the time being and reinforce their bourgeois class privileges in the world).

While bourgeois historians will downplay the criminal acts committed by the Allies (excluding the USSR after 1945), or try to make some false equivalences between the two powers abusing their authority (allegedly during the so-called Berlin Blockade of 1948), we know since the opening of the Soviet archives and the declassification of US documents that the Cold War was a front for imperialism and anticommunism, and most if not all international criminal acts were committed by the Allied powers -- such as the Years of Lead in Italy (NATO-funded neo-nazi groups under Operation Gladio committed several terrorist acts) or the separation of Germany itself (The Eastern side was provoked into taking a limited set of restrictions to ward off pernicious Western influence, which was left less in ruination by the war and old reactionaries were being reinstated).

Three worlds theory

It is also from the Cold War that the terms first-, second-, and third-world started appearing in bourgeois republics.

The first-world, also called the "free world" by the bourgeoisie, represented the countries aligned with the United States.

The second-world were therefore the countries aligned towards the USSR, and the third-world were the non-aligned countries.

Such distinctions were mostly made in the imperial core. Countries such as Cuba considered themselves non-aligned, but were forced to trade heavily with the USSR as first-world aligned countries embargoed them -- which more easily allowed these same countries to later justify military intervention, citing communist ties as a reason for intervention. Several other 'third world' countries were forced to turn to the socialist bloc after being turned down and facing hostility from imperialist powers.

Conflicts caused by the first world


North America

South America

During the 60's and the 70's, the United States has helped install right-wing dictatorships in Latin America, such as Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Paraguay and Uruguay, Colombia, Peru and Venezuela. One of the most pervasive operations against Latin America was Operation Condor, which was a United States-backed campaign of political repression and state terror involving intelligence operations and assassination of left-wing opponents. Some estimates are that at least 60,000 deaths can be attributed to Condor, roughly 30,000 of these in Argentina, and the Archives of Terror discovered in Chile list 50,000 killed, 30,000 disappeared and 400,000 imprisoned.


Western Europe

In Italy, where Italian fascists were never systematically reeducated and moved away from positions of authority, NATO started recruiting them to commit assassinations and terrorist acts against communists. This was broadly known as Operation Gladio, which was more of a collection of smaller operations. For a long time, most people (including in Italy) fought the biggest terrorist acts were committed by communist organizations, due in part to a disinformation campaign waged by various Italian governmental agencies. In truth, most if not all assassinations and acts of terrorism were committed by neo-nazi organizations.

Eastern Europe

Middle East


North Africa

West Africa

East Africa

South Africa

Southern Africa would prove to be a major struggle for many in the hopes of liberation during the Cold War. After the Sharpeville massacre in South Africa, there was public outcry against apartheid both in the country and outside of it, particularly in regards to the United States' relationship with the RSA (Republic of South Africa). As historian Gerald Horne contends: "Washington was in the same bind in which it had been ensnared for years: eager to take advantage of he vast mineral wealth and cheap labor of Southern Africa but reluctant to be left holding the apartheid tar-baby. Then there was the vise in which U.S. imperialism found itself when it was compelled to back away from centuries of encrusted anti-Negro racism. It was in 1960 that presidential aspirant Richard M. Nixon declared ingloriously that "some of the peoples of Africa have been out of the trees for only about fifty years." These remarks were followed by another official who spoke acerbically of JFK's comrades G. Mennen Williams and Chester Bowles: "when they saw a handful of black baboons beating tom-toms they saw George Washington." A 1962 State Department policy paper cast Africans as barbarians in a sea of whiteness. Yet it was Williams - JFK's point man on Africa - who acknowledged that unless Washington moved more forcefully against apartheid it might lose military bases in Libya and Ethiopia, scientific bases in Nigeria and Zanzibar, and communications facilities in Liberia and Nigeria."[2] Around the same time, Angola would see the start of an anti-colonial war spearheaded by the MPLA (Movement for the Liberation of Angola) from February 1961 until liberation in 1975, though it would face subsequent problems with an internal revolt led by Jonas Savimbi and "sponsored by Washington and Pretoria."[3]


East Asia

The end of the second world war was immediately followed by the struggle of the colonized countries against the European colonial empires, whom tried to cling on to their imperial possessions and betray promises made inter-war.

Democratic elections promised to the Korean nation were denied seeing the dominance of indigenous communist influence and instead a brutal American-educated dictator , Synghman Rhee, was installed in the American occupation zone. He eventually went on to start the Korean war, the destruction of which surpassed even the second world war.

The waning British Empire was involved in a brutal war - given the euphemistic name of Malayan Emergency - against Malayan freedom fighters, whom were led by the communists. Millions of villagers were placed in internment camps and armed mercenaries were employed to fight the communists.

In Indonesia, the USA funded General Suharto's effort in committing genocide against the native populations. This was all committed under the guise of fighting communist influence, and led to more than a million death of local communists and other civilians (such as people deemed "ethnic Chinese" or atheists, but also Gerwani members or Javanese Abangan).

Japan was occupied militarily by the US - the subsequent rearming of Japan aroused major concern Eastern Asian nations which had been under the jackboot of American Imperialism

South Asia

The Afghanistan War of 1979, which is part of a broader imperialist conflict lasting to this day, was caused after the Afghan government asked the Soviets for help fighting against the Mujahideen, who were soon funded and protected by NATO. Notably, Osama bin Laden was directly trained and funded by the USA during this war.

South-east Asia

The Vietnam War, which led to the creation of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam, was first caused by French colonial interests in what they then called Indochina. After their devastating defeat, the USA swooped in to pick the fight back up and prevent a socialist Vietnam from being formed. However, the war caused catastrophic destruction of life and land not only to Japan but also to the neighboring countries.




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