The Dollar Gap And The Cold War

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While America did not like Communism from an ideological standpoint and they threat of Soviet atomic nukes played a role in leading to the Cold War. The dollar gap played a much bigger role in the Cold War because the Soviet Union would gain more power if the European economies did not improve. America needed Europe to trade with them to keep their capitalist economy going, and both America and the Soviet Union needed Europe to support their economic plans post World War II.

With America promoting capitalism and needing Europe to participate in trades to make their economy work. If the American plan to promote European economies through capitalist ideological plans did not work, there would be a good chance that European countries turn to Communist countries to save themselves. Economic stagnation in Europe might strengthen Communist parties and motivate European governments to form closer ties with the Soviet Union (Kershaw, 2018. Lecture). If the European countries turned away from Americas economic plans and became cooperative to the Soviet Union’s economic plan, this would most likely result in cutting off trades with America.

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During World War II America’s economy was booming. The war raised demand for US exports from $1.6 billion in 1932 to $12.8 billion in 1943 and $14.3 billion in 1944 (Kernshaw, 2018. Lecture). The war also lifted a lot of people in the United States out of unemployment, War industries and the war itself absorbed large number of unemployed workers into either industry or military service (Kernshaw, 2018). However, while America was becoming more assure of a victory for the allies, growing concerns of industries being over-built for what was needed during peacetime. Lowering production would have resulted in mass unemployment, America needed a plan for post-World War II that could serve America’s ability to mass produce and keep their employment levels high.

To make sure the United States economy did not slip back into where it was before World War II, the great depression era, Europe needed to buy American products to match the production that the U.S. would be producing.

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