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The Cold War 1945-1950: What Went Wrong?

Subjects / History / The Cold War

Price: £2.95 Duration: 24mins Full topic price: £9.95

As the Allied forces swept through Germany in 1945, the leaders of the Soviet Union, the USA and Great Britain were faced with the mammoth task of dealing with the consequences of six years of war. In May 1945 American and Soviet troops met and celebrated victory together in Berlin. This celebration was short-lived. Less than three years later these former allies were arguing over the fate of both Germany and Eastern Europe. Over the next four decades the USA and the Soviet Union became world 'superpowers', determined to see their conflicting ideologies of communism and capitalist democracy succeed on a global scale. This conflict became known as the Cold War and resulted in countries, governments and people being used by both the USA and the Soviet Union to achieve military and ideological supremacy throughout the world.

Author: Cathal Doyle Publisher: GCSEPod®
Narrator: Peter McGowan ISBN: 978-1-84906-001-1
Video ISBN: 978-1-84906-501-6


  1. The Yalta Conference: The Big Three
  2. The Potsdam Conference
  3. Division in Europe
  4. Stalin's 'Iron Fist': Living in fear
  5. The Truman Doctrine, Marshall Aid and Czechoslovakia
  6. The Berlin Blockade

Exam Board Relevance

  • Edxcel
  • AQA
  • CEA
  • IGCSE (EdExcel)
  • OCR
  • SQA
  • WJEC
  • IGCSE (CiE)

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Curriculum and Exam Board Information

Key Issues



  • East-West ideological gap
  • Decisions made at Yalta and Potsdam, and their importance
  • Attitudes of Stalin and Truman
  • Soviet expansion into Central and Eastern Europe
  • Iron Curtain
  • Truman Doctrine
  • Marshall Plan
  • Berlin 1945-1948
  • Berlin blockade and airlift
  • 1945-47 Emergence of Cold War: post-war tensions, 'Iron Curtain', Truman Doctrine, Marshall Aid
  • Personalities: Truman, Stalin, Churchill
  • 1948-49 Berlin Blockade, NATO, partition of Germany, emergence of Communist China
  • Personalities: Stalin, Truman, Mao Zedong
  • The origins of the Cold War
  • the 1945 summit conferences and the breakdown of the USAUSSR alliance in 1945-6
  • Soviet expansionism in Eastern Europe
  • the Iron Curtain
  • the Truman Doctrine and the Marshall Plan
  • the Berlin Blockade and its immediate consequences
  • Soviet power in Eastern Europe - 1948-1950
  • the Cold War: the beginnings of the Cold War
  • Berlin
  • the nuclear arms race


A friend and I listened to the Cold War in his dad's car on his iPod holder and I thought that it was really good. I think that this is a really easy way of learning. Freddie H, Student This is a really excellent assessment of the reasons why the Cold War started and should be of immense help to students studying the Cold War. 2.95 is not going to break the bank and neither is the topic price of 9.95. Tim E, Parent
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