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The cold war was something that grew out from the breakdown of the western-soviet coalition against Hitlers Germany and the countries allies during WWII In 1946 Sir Winston Churchill gave an address on foreign affairs at Westminster College In it he said From Stettin in the Baltic to Trieste in the Adriatic an iron curtain has descended across the Continent of Europe These words marked the beginning of the Cold War Churchills words referred to the fact that the Soviet Union from 1945 to 1948 strengthened its hold on Poland Hungary Romania Bulgaria Czechoslovakia and East Germany A major turning point in the Cold War was the North Atlantic Treaty Organization NATO which united many countries to have the power to discourage the Soviet Union from attempting direct assault on Western Europe The first countries that joined NATO on April 4 1949 were Belgium Canada Denmark France Great Britain Iceland Italy Luxembourg the Netherlands Portugal Norway and the United States After that turning point a whole new situation arose in the cold war The communists were winning a civil war in Greece and at the same time were applying pressure on Turkey in 1947 By the Soviets doing this it caused the US to get involved and start up a policy of containment This policy turned into the Truman Doctrine The Truman Doctrine was a policy where 400 million dollars were used to aid Greece and Turkey This was an American challenge to Soviet ambitions throughout the world There was also something called the Marshall Plan This would give aid to all the nations of Europe This plan officially called the European Recovery Program was authorized by Congress in 1948 Six billion dollars of aid was provided for the first year of the program The Soviet Union prevented the nations of Eastern Europe from accepting any aid so the program was confined to the nations of Western Europe When Stalin
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