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Rise of the Superpowers USA USSR from events prior to and duringWWIIWorld War II the process of superpowerdomIt is often wondered how the superpowers achieved their position ofdominance It seems that the maturing of the two superpowers Russiaand the United States can be traced to World War II To be asuperpower a nation needs to have a strong economy an overpoweringmilitary immense international political power and related to this astrong national ideology It was this war and its results that causedeach of these superpowers to experience such a preponderance of powerBefore the war both nations were fit to be described as great powersbut it would be erroneous to say that they were superpowers at thatpoint To understand how the second World War impacted these nations sogreatly we must examine the causes of the war The United Statesgained its strength in world affairs from its status as an economicpower In the years before the war America was the world s largestproducer In the USSR at the same time Stalin was implementing his five year plans to modernise the Soviet economy From thesesituations similar foreign policies resulted from widely divergentorigins Roosevelt s isolationism emerged from the wide and prevalent domesticdesire to remain neutral in any international conflicts It commonlywidely believed that Americans entered the first World War simply inorder to save industry s capitalist investments in Europe Whether thisis the case or not Roosevelt was forced to work with an inherentlyisolationist Congress only expanding its horizons after the bombing ofPearl Harbour He signed the Neutrality Act of 1935 making it illegalfor the United States to ship arms to the belligerents of any conflictThe act also stated that belligerents could buy only non-armaments fromthe US and even these were only to be bought with cash In contrast Stalin was by necessity interested in European affairs butonly to the point of concern to the USSR Russian foreign policy wasfundamentally Leninist in its concern to keep
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