Exploring Our World: People, Places, and Cultures

Chapter 14: History and Cultures of Russia

Student Web Activity

"Time Line of the Cold War"

The Cold War was a time of intense rivalry between democratic and Communist nations. The United States and the countries of Western Europe bitterly opposed the Communist ideas and practices of the Soviet Union and the countries of Eastern Europe. The Soviet Union and the United States competed fiercely to extend their influence around the world, both politically and militarily. Their race for supremacy even extended into space. The Cold War was marked by a number of important events, most dealing with shows of power and military actions in far corners of the world. The threat of nuclear war served as a constant backdrop during the almost six decades during which the Cold War took place. In this activity, you will examine a number of the key events that made up the Cold War.

Destination Title: CNN Cold War Knowledge Bank

Note: Clicking on the link above will launch a new browser window.
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Begin on the CNN Cold War Knowledge Bank page.

  • Click on Cold War Chronology: An Interactive Timeline of Flashpoints on the right side of the page.
  • Read the accompanying text, then click on the entries listed under the years of the time line to find out more about specific events.
Use the information presented to answer the following questions.

What was the Truman Doctrine and why would it have caused tension between the Soviet Union and the United States?
What event in the 1950s launched the space race?
Did Khrushchev’s “secret speech” seem to indicate a strengthening or easing of the Cold War? Why?
What was the INF and how did it ease Cold War tensions?
Choose one of the decades shown on this time line and create your own time line of the Cold War for those years. Carry out some further research and add several events not listed on the Web site. Include brief descriptions of those events and, if possible, illustrate your time line with images found in your research.
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