Methods 200 Final Paper

How the Marshall Plan Created the Cold War

            After World War II in 1947, Western Europe was in an economic downfall: these countries within it were deteriorating, and the spread of communism was on the rise. During this time, the United States Secretary of State, George Marshall, came up with the Marshall Plan otherwise known as the European Recovery Program (ERP). This was a plan to revitalize Western Europe’s economy and make it stable again by the help and funding from the United States. Not all countries were in favor of this, especially the Soviet Union. The implementation of the Marshall Plan in Western Europe, leads me to the question: How different were the assessments of this plan between the United States and the Soviet Union? Why in history are we only taught the one sides view and never the others? This paper analyzes the United States and the Soviet Union’s outlook on this pressing matter.

In 1947 Secretary of State George Marshall drafted the Marshall Plan, which the United States viewed as a positive way to help restore Western Europe, after the destruction it went through during World War II. As bonus it would help them limit the spread of communism. The article The Marshall Plan and How It Works states that the purpose of the Marshall Plan is as follows, “the ultimate goal of The Marshall Plan is to promote industrial and agricultural production in these European countries, to aid in restoring sound currencies, budgets and finances, and to foster the growth of international through all appropriate measures including reduction of barriers which may hamper such trade.””[1].  The United States was allowed to exceed no more than $4,300,000,000 in aid to Western Europe. In June of 1947, George Marshall visited Harvard and gave a speech about this matter. He wanted educate intellectual people about this first hand, other than what they read in the newspaper. During his speech a specific portion of it stands out when Marshall declares that, “Any government which maneuvers to block the recovery of other countries cannot expect help from us. Furthermore, governments, political parties or groups which seek to perpetuate human misery in order to profit therefrom politically or otherwise will encounter the opposition of the United States”[2]. To a historian such as myself, he is saying the United States is going to do this no matter what the Soviet Union (and other communist countries) has to say about this, and if they get in our way we won’t back down.  The implementation of this plan seems like a moral thing to do, is it not? That is the point, the government of the United States, and its’ citizens of it see it as a very positive thing to do for those countries in Western Europe who are in dire need of such help. Do not forget that this is just the view of the United States and its people, not the view of the countries in Europe. The only nation to publicly show their personal view of this plan being implemented in Western Europe, was the Soviet Union.

In the article New Evidence on the Soviet Rejection of the Marshall Plan, from the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars for the Cold War International History project. It talks about both sides (U.S and USSR) opinions pertaining to this matter. This article was written by two different authors; Scott D. Parrish from the University of Texas in Austin, and Mikhail M. Narinsky from the Institute of Universal History, Moscow. Two historians from two different nations, both having different views on the implementation of the Marshall Plan. In this historiography we will look at both of these historians’ arguments, comparing and contrasting their arguments in order to further understand why the United States and the Soviet Union’s viewpoint of The Marshall Plan differed so much.

In Scott D. Parrish’s portion of this article, he starts off right away by stating “U.S. government officials viewed Moscow’s response to the Marshall Plan as additional evidence of inherent Soviet hostility and aggressiveness”[3], the United States saw this as an act of aggression that could lead to war, when they were “only” trying to help repair Europe’s economy post WWII. Walter Bedell Smith, the American ambassador in Moscow during this time said the Soviet actions were “nothing less than a declaration of war by the Soviet Union on immediate issue of the control of Europe”[4], the United States is basically saying that the Soviet Union doesn’t want to participate because they wish to control Europe. Whereas George Kennan, one of the authors who contributed to writing the Marshall Plan saw the response of the Soviet Union “as a indicative of a Soviet Desire to seize the substantial industrial and human resources of Europe”[5]. After the Soviet response the United States saw the Marshall Plan a crucial defensive step, “taken to prevent Soviet expansion into Western Europe”[6], they also feared that “the deteriorating economic situation in Western Europe could lead to communists coming to power in such countries as France and Italy”[7]. In the United States point of view the implementation of the Marshall Plan was the correct thing to do, not only for their own benefit but for the benefit of Europe as well.

On the other hand, the Soviets had a completely different view on this matter than the United States did. In Mikhail M. Narinsky’s portion of this article he starts off by stating that “The Marshall Plan proposed to exploit East European raw material resources for the rehabilitation of Western Europe”[8], in a sense he is saying that they are taking materials that are within the Soviets sphere of influence that they gained through WWII and will be using them to fix Western Europe.  Nikolai V. Novikov, the Soviet ambassador to the United States, sent a telegram to Molotov on June 24 that said”…the process of democratization in European countries, to stimulate forces hostile to the Soviet Union and to create conditions for the buttressing of the positions of American capital in Europe and Asia remain without any substantial change […] it is directed toward the establishment of West European bloc as an instrument of American policy”[9], this was an interesting point simply because it shows how the United States in the perspective of the Soviets were trying to make the transition in Europe to a more democratic political party while trying to encourage hostility towards the Soviet Union. This was a big problem for the Soviets because their political party was communism, and if their communist sphere of influence dwindles they will lose the states in which they are in control of, resulting in a loss of power. From the perspective of the Soviet Union you can now understand how they did not just see The Marshall Plan as a plan with the only intention to fix the European economy but more so as a plan with the full intentions of weakening the Soviet Union in the process, which it very much was.

When you look at both of these historians arguments, you can see how different the United States and the Soviet Union viewed the Marshall Plan. While the United States saw it as a great foreign policy; that would help strengthen the European, you don’t realize how much this plan would also help strengthen the United States economy as well. When in the end after the economy of Europe is in the hands of the United States, it would then become solely dependent on the nations that are a part of it, including the United States there for being very beneficial for them too, economically and politically. When the Soviet Union did not want to participate the United States, saw this as an act of aggression which then led to the plans defensive measures being incorporated into Europe which was limiting the power of the Soviet Union (communism). The Soviet Union knew that this plan would strengthen the United States economy as well as their political power with other nations in Europe, which in their eyes this ‘good dead’ would pull nations away from them. Thus weakening the Soviet Union. They did not want to be a part of a plan that would not be as beneficial to them as it would be to other countries. Keep in mind the Soviet Union was not receiving reparations like the other countries were, nor did they want to see Germany rise back to power after the last two consecutive world wars that Germany played a key role in. So it is very understandable why the Soviet Union did not want to participate in this plan, nor see it be incorporated into Europe when they thought that it should be only the Nations within Europe creating a plan to fix this without help from outside nations.

Historiography is the study of history, and it is a very important concept to understand. Once this is understood, you gain a deeper comprehension of the different views that nations have on certain events in history. As you can now see that the implementation of the Marshall Plan, sparked significantly different viewpoints between the United States and the Soviet Union. What arose from those different viewpoints, was nothing but sever amounts of tension. When comparing and contrasting the different views between these two countries, it is now apparent to me that no country was more wrong for the other. Both countries had very different reasoning for their actions which derived from their completely different viewpoints on The Marshall Plan. Friedrich Nietzsche once said “there are no facts, only interpretations” that quote suits this very well, both of these countries had very different interpretations on this matter.

The Soviet Union was given a chance to participate in the Marshall Plan to help restore the economy, but then decided to withdraw from their involvement. During this time, Andrei Vyshinsky, who was a very powerful Soviet politician, wrote a very powerful document called A Soviet Criticism of The Truman Doctrine and Marshall Plan, which showed why the Soviet Union viewed the incorporation of this plan in Western Europe was such an unscrupulous idea. Vyshinsky states right off the bat that, “The Soviets withdrew from participation in the Marshall Plan in part because they viewed American motives in rebuilding Western Europe, especially Germany, with suspicion. The plan threatened Soviet control of the eastern bloc as much as it renewed fears of German recovery and remilitarization.”[10] Imagine living in the Soviet Union during WWII and everything they went through, this is more than a valuable excuse to not want to participate in such a plan. That was not the only reason why the Soviet Union did not want to be a part of this plan. Unlike how the United States viewed the Marshall Plan as a way of helping these countries, the Soviets viewed it as “attempts to impose its will on other independent states, while at the same time obviously using the economic resources distributed as relieve to individual needy nations as an instrument of political pressure.”[11] This view was completely different compared to how the United States saw it. Vyshinsky later makes a valid argument by saying, “This policy conflicts sharply with the principle expressed by the General Assembly in its resolution of 11 December 1946, which declares that relief supplies to other countries “should… at no time be used as a political weapon.”[12] This directly disobeyed what the General Assembly had said. As you can see both of these country’s viewpoints on the Marshall Plan are 100% opposite: the United States sees it as trying to help nations in need during a time of crisis, and the Soviet Union sees it as using resources as political pressure to essentially hand over their economy to them.

When observing an event in history, it is imperative to learn how both sides revolving around that said event react. This gives a firm understanding for both sides and makes understanding why they felt that way towards it. The Marshall Plan’s overall goal was to revive Western Europe’s economy, but when you compare and contrast these two county’s thoughts you realize that they are blatantly opposite and nothing good will come between the United States and the Soviet Union. If you look at another section of Marshall’s speech, he states, “The truth of the matter is that Europe’s requirements for the next three or four years of foreign food and other essential products-principally from America-are so much greater than her present ability to pay that she must have substantial addition help, or face economic, social and political deterioration of very grave character.”[13] It is clear that this is very different than Soviets perspective, where they feel that the United States is using the Marshall Plan as an “instrument of political pressure,”[14] and that they are not doing this under the right circumstances. The United States feels that they are just trying to revitalize Western Europe’s economy and get them back on their feet, which seems like they are doing this for a very good reason.

In contrast to that perspective, the Soviets believe that they are making the European countries that are in need of aid give away, “their inalienable rights to dispose of their economic resources and to plan their nation economy in their own way […] making all these countries directly dependent on the interests of American monopolies, which are striving to avert the approaching depression by an accelerated export of commodities and capital to Europe.”[15] In short making Western Europe directly dependent on the United States. The Soviets also believe that, “this plan is an attempt to split Europe into two camps and, with the help of the United Kingdom and France, to complete the formation of the bloc of several European counties hostile to the interests of the democratic countries of Eastern Europe and most particularly to the interests of the Soviet Union.”[16] In other words the United States is trying to limit the spread of communism. Everlasting tension was created by the implementation of the Marshall Plan, between the United States and Soviet Union (now Russia) that still persists to this day.

In the end it’s very understandable why both of these nations had very different views on the Marshall Plan. Yes, the Marshall Plan seemed like a great idea, with great intentions but the result of this plan led to the Cold War which still to this day has created a significant amount of tension between the United States and Soviet Union. It is very interesting to me to see how many foreign policies result in war, even today. In the end it is clear to me that it is not people who start a war but the words written on a piece of paper that leads nations to war with each other.

 

 

Disclaimer: Professor Patterson, since I did not see any additional revisions on my rough draft for both my historiography that I revised, and my rough draft I hope it is okay that I will be submitting the same exact paper as I have previously submitted.

 

 

 

 

Bibliography

Franke, Gregory, Joanne D. Hartog, Daniel D. Holt, and Mark A. Stoler. “The Marshall Plan And How It Works.” George C. Marshall Reasearch Library Pamphlet Collectoin, n.d. http://marshallfoundation.org/library/wp-content/uploads/sites/16/2014/06/The_Marshall_Plan_and_How_It_Works.pdf.

Marshall, George. “The Marshall Plan Speech | George C. Marshall,” June 1947. Accessed October 30, 2014. http://marshallfoundation.org/marshall/the-marshall-plan/marshall-plan-speech/.

Parrish, Scott D., and Mikhail M Narinsky. “New Evidence On The Soviet Rejection Of The Marshall Plan, 1947: Two Reports.” Woodrow Wilson Internation Center For Scholars, March 1994. Accessed December 8, 2014. http://wilsoncenter.org/sites/default/files/ACFB73.pdf.

Vyshinsky, Andrei. “Andrei Vyshinsky, A Soviet Criticism of the Truman Doctrine and Marshall Plan,” September 18, 1947. Accessed September 29, 2014. http://slantchev.ucsd.edu/courses/nss/documents/vyshinsky-criticism-of-truman-doctrine.html.

 



[1] Gregory Franke et al., “The Marshall Plan And How It Works” (George C. Marshall Reasearch Library Pamphlet Collectoin, n.d.), http://marshallfoundation.org/library/wp-content/uploads/sites/16/2014/06/The_Marshall_Plan_and_How_It_Works.pdf.

[2] George Marshall, “The Marshall Plan Speech | George C. Marshall,” June 1947, accessed October 30, 2014, http://marshallfoundation.org/marshall/the-marshall-plan/marshall-plan-speech/.

[3] Scott D. Parrish and Mikhail M Narinsky, “New Evidence On The Soviet Rejection Of The Marshall Plan, 1947: Two Reports” (Woodrow Wilson Internation Center For Scholars, March 1994), accessed December 8, 2014, http://wilsoncenter.org/sites/default/files/ACFB73.pdf.

 

[4] Smith to Secretary of State, 11 July 1947, in U.S. Department of State, Foreign Relations of the United States: Diplomatic Papers, 1947, vol.3, p.327 (Washington, DC: Government Printing Office, 197), 340-41. Volumes from this series will hereafter be referred to as FR, followed by the year, volume, and page number. See also harry S. Truman, Memoirs, vol.2, Years of Trial and Hope, 1946-1952(Garden City, NY: Doubleday and Co., 1956), 115-16. In Ibid.

[5] George F. Kennan, Memoirs, 1925-1950 (Boston: Little, Brown and Co., 1967), 330. in Ibid.

[6] Ibid.

[7] Ibid.

[8] Ibid.

[9] N. Novikov to Molotov, telegram, 24 June 1947, quoted in G. Takhnenko, “An Anatomy of a PoliticalDecision: Documents,” Mezhdunarodnaya zhizn 5 (may 1992), 121. in Ibid.

[10] Andrei Vyshinsky, “Andrei Vyshinsky, A Soviet Criticism of the Truman Doctrine and Marshall Plan,” September 18, 1947, accessed September 29, 2014, http://slantchev.ucsd.edu/courses/nss/documents/vyshinsky-criticism-of-truman-doctrine.html.

[11] Ibid.

[12] Ibid.

[13] Marshall, “The Marshall Plan Speech | George C. Marshall.”

[14] Vyshinsky, “Andrei Vyshinsky, A Soviet Criticism of the Truman Doctrine and Marshall Plan.”

[15] Ibid.

[16] Ibid.

How the Marshall Plan Created The Cold War

How the Marshall Plan Created the Cold War

            After World War II in 1947, Western Europe was in an economic downfall: these countries within it were deteriorating, and the spread of communism was on the rise. During this time, the United States Secretary of State, George Marshall, came up with the Marshall Plan otherwise known as the European Recovery Program (ERP). This was a plan to revitalize Western Europe’s economy and make it stable again by the help and funding from the United States. Not all countries were in favor of this, especially the Soviet Union. The implementation of the Marshall Plan in Western Europe, leads me to the question: How different were the assessments of this plan between the United States and the Soviet Union? Why in history are we only taught the one sides view and never the others? This paper analyzes the United States and the Soviet Union’s outlook on this pressing matter.

In 1947 Secretary of State George Marshall drafted the Marshall Plan, which the United States viewed as a positive way to help restore Western Europe, after the destruction it went through during World War II. As bonus it would help them limit the spread of communism. The article The Marshall Plan and How It Works states that the purpose of the Marshall Plan is as follows, “the ultimate goal of The Marshall Plan is to promote industrial and agricultural production in these European countries, to aid in restoring sound currencies, budgets and finances, and to foster the growth of international through all appropriate measures including reduction of barriers which may hamper such trade.””[1].  The United States was allowed to exceed no more than $4,300,000,000 in aid to Western Europe. In June of 1947, George Marshall visited Harvard and gave a speech about this matter. He wanted educate intellectual people about this first hand, other than what they read in the newspaper. During his speech a specific portion of it stands out when Marshall declares that, “Any government which maneuvers to block the recovery of other countries cannot expect help from us. Furthermore, governments, political parties or groups which seek to perpetuate human misery in order to profit therefrom politically or otherwise will encounter the opposition of the United States”[2]. To a historian such as myself, he is saying the United States is going to do this no matter what the Soviet Union (and other communist countries) has to say about this, and if they get in our way we won’t back down.  The implementation of this plan seems like a moral thing to do, is it not? That is the point, the government of the United States, and its’ citizens of it see it as a very positive thing to do for those countries in Western Europe who are in dire need of such help. Do not forget that this is just the view of the United States and its people, not the view of the countries in Europe. The only nation to publicly show their personal view of this plan being implemented in Western Europe, was the Soviet Union.

In the article New Evidence on the Soviet Rejection of the Marshall Plan, from the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars for the Cold War International History project. It talks about both sides (U.S and USSR) opinions pertaining to this matter. This article was written by two different authors; Scott D. Parrish from the University of Texas in Austin, and Mikhail M. Narinsky from the Institute of Universal History, Moscow. Two historians from two different nations, both having different views on the implementation of the Marshall Plan. In this historiography we will look at both of these historians’ arguments, comparing and contrasting their arguments in order to further understand why the United States and the Soviet Union’s viewpoint of The Marshall Plan differed so much.

In Scott D. Parrish’s portion of this article, he starts off right away by stating “U.S. government officials viewed Moscow’s response to the Marshall Plan as additional evidence of inherent Soviet hostility and aggressiveness”[3], the United States saw this as an act of aggression that could lead to war, when they were “only” trying to help repair Europe’s economy post WWII. Walter Bedell Smith, the American ambassador in Moscow during this time said the Soviet actions were “nothing less than a declaration of war by the Soviet Union on immediate issue of the control of Europe”[4], the United States is basically saying that the Soviet Union doesn’t want to participate because they wish to control Europe. Whereas George Kennan, one of the authors who contributed to writing the Marshall Plan saw the response of the Soviet Union “as a indicative of a Soviet Desire to seize the substantial industrial and human resources of Europe”[5]. After the Soviet response the United States saw the Marshall Plan a crucial defensive step, “taken to prevent Soviet expansion into Western Europe”[6], they also feared that “the deteriorating economic situation in Western Europe could lead to communists coming to power in such countries as France and Italy”[7]. In the United States point of view the implementation of the Marshall Plan was the correct thing to do, not only for their own benefit but for the benefit of Europe as well.

On the other hand, the Soviets had a completely different view on this matter than the United States did. In Mikhail M. Narinsky’s portion of this article he starts off by stating that “The Marshall Plan proposed to exploit East European raw material resources for the rehabilitation of Western Europe”[8], in a sense he is saying that they are taking materials that are within the Soviets sphere of influence that they gained through WWII and will be using them to fix Western Europe.  Nikolai V. Novikov, the Soviet ambassador to the United States, sent a telegram to Molotov on June 24 that said”…the process of democratization in European countries, to stimulate forces hostile to the Soviet Union and to create conditions for the buttressing of the positions of American capital in Europe and Asia remain without any substantial change […] it is directed toward the establishment of West European bloc as an instrument of American policy”[9], this was an interesting point simply because it shows how the United States in the perspective of the Soviets were trying to make the transition in Europe to a more democratic political party while trying to encourage hostility towards the Soviet Union. This was a big problem for the Soviets because their political party was communism, and if their communist sphere of influence dwindles they will lose the states in which they are in control of, resulting in a loss of power. From the perspective of the Soviet Union you can now understand how they did not just see The Marshall Plan as a plan with the only intention to fix the European economy but more so as a plan with the full intentions of weakening the Soviet Union in the process, which it very much was.

When you look at both of these historians arguments, you can see how different the United States and the Soviet Union viewed the Marshall Plan. While the United States saw it as a great foreign policy; that would help strengthen the European, you don’t realize how much this plan would also help strengthen the United States economy as well. When in the end after the economy of Europe is in the hands of the United States, it would then become solely dependent on the nations that are a part of it, including the United States there for being very beneficial for them too, economically and politically. When the Soviet Union did not want to participate the United States, saw this as an act of aggression which then led to the plans defensive measures being incorporated into Europe which was limiting the power of the Soviet Union (communism). The Soviet Union knew that this plan would strengthen the United States economy as well as their political power with other nations in Europe, which in their eyes this ‘good dead’ would pull nations away from them. Thus weakening the Soviet Union. They did not want to be a part of a plan that would not be as beneficial to them as it would be to other countries. Keep in mind the Soviet Union was not receiving reparations like the other countries were, nor did they want to see Germany rise back to power after the last two consecutive world wars that Germany played a key role in. So it is very understandable why the Soviet Union did not want to participate in this plan, nor see it be incorporated into Europe when they thought that it should be only the Nations within Europe creating a plan to fix this without help from outside nations.

Historiography is the study of history, and it is a very important concept to understand. Once this is understood, you gain a deeper comprehension of the different views that nations have on certain events in history. As you can now see that the implementation of the Marshall Plan, sparked significantly different viewpoints between the United States and the Soviet Union. What arose from those different viewpoints, was nothing but sever amounts of tension. When comparing and contrasting the different views between these two countries, it is now apparent to me that no country was more wrong for the other. Both countries had very different reasoning for their actions which derived from their completely different viewpoints on The Marshall Plan. Friedrich Nietzsche once said “there are no facts, only interpretations” that quote suits this very well, both of these countries had very different interpretations on this matter.

The Soviet Union was given a chance to participate in the Marshall Plan to help restore the economy, but then decided to withdraw from their involvement. During this time, Andrei Vyshinsky, who was a very powerful Soviet politician, wrote a very powerful document called A Soviet Criticism of The Truman Doctrine and Marshall Plan, which showed why the Soviet Union viewed the incorporation of this plan in Western Europe was such an unscrupulous idea. Vyshinsky states right off the bat that, “The Soviets withdrew from participation in the Marshall Plan in part because they viewed American motives in rebuilding Western Europe, especially Germany, with suspicion. The plan threatened Soviet control of the eastern bloc as much as it renewed fears of German recovery and remilitarization.”[10] Imagine living in the Soviet Union during WWII and everything they went through, this is more than a valuable excuse to not want to participate in such a plan. That was not the only reason why the Soviet Union did not want to be a part of this plan. Unlike how the United States viewed the Marshall Plan as a way of helping these countries, the Soviets viewed it as “attempts to impose its will on other independent states, while at the same time obviously using the economic resources distributed as relieve to individual needy nations as an instrument of political pressure.”[11] This view was completely different compared to how the United States saw it. Vyshinsky later makes a valid argument by saying, “This policy conflicts sharply with the principle expressed by the General Assembly in its resolution of 11 December 1946, which declares that relief supplies to other countries “should… at no time be used as a political weapon.”[12] This directly disobeyed what the General Assembly had said. As you can see both of these country’s viewpoints on the Marshall Plan are 100% opposite: the United States sees it as trying to help nations in need during a time of crisis, and the Soviet Union sees it as using resources as political pressure to essentially hand over their economy to them.

When observing an event in history, it is imperative to learn how both sides revolving around that said event react. This gives a firm understanding for both sides and makes understanding why they felt that way towards it. The Marshall Plan’s overall goal was to revive Western Europe’s economy, but when you compare and contrast these two county’s thoughts you realize that they are blatantly opposite and nothing good will come between the United States and the Soviet Union. If you look at another section of Marshall’s speech, he states, “The truth of the matter is that Europe’s requirements for the next three or four years of foreign food and other essential products-principally from America-are so much greater than her present ability to pay that she must have substantial addition help, or face economic, social and political deterioration of very grave character.”[13] It is clear that this is very different than Soviets perspective, where they feel that the United States is using the Marshall Plan as an “instrument of political pressure,”[14] and that they are not doing this under the right circumstances. The United States feels that they are just trying to revitalize Western Europe’s economy and get them back on their feet, which seems like they are doing this for a very good reason.

In contrast to that perspective, the Soviets believe that they are making the European countries that are in need of aid give away, “their inalienable rights to dispose of their economic resources and to plan their nation economy in their own way […] making all these countries directly dependent on the interests of American monopolies, which are striving to avert the approaching depression by an accelerated export of commodities and capital to Europe.”[15] In short making Western Europe directly dependent on the United States. The Soviets also believe that, “this plan is an attempt to split Europe into two camps and, with the help of the United Kingdom and France, to complete the formation of the bloc of several European counties hostile to the interests of the democratic countries of Eastern Europe and most particularly to the interests of the Soviet Union.”[16] In other words the United States is trying to limit the spread of communism. Everlasting tension was created by the implementation of the Marshall Plan, between the United States and Soviet Union (now Russia) that still persists to this day.

In the end it’s very understandable why both of these nations had very different views on the Marshall Plan. Yes, the Marshall Plan seemed like a great idea, with great intentions but the result of this plan led to the Cold War which still to this day has created a significant amount of tension between the United States and Soviet Union. It is very interesting to me to see how many foreign policies result in war, even today. In the end it is clear to me that it is not people who start a war but the words written on a piece of paper that leads nations to war with each other.

 

 

 

 

 

Bibliography

Franke, Gregory, Joanne D. Hartog, Daniel D. Holt, and Mark A. Stoler. “The Marshall Plan And How It Works.” George C. Marshall Reasearch Library Pamphlet Collectoin, n.d. http://marshallfoundation.org/library/wp-content/uploads/sites/16/2014/06/The_Marshall_Plan_and_How_It_Works.pdf.

Marshall, George. “The Marshall Plan Speech | George C. Marshall,” June 1947. Accessed October 30, 2014. http://marshallfoundation.org/marshall/the-marshall-plan/marshall-plan-speech/.

Parrish, Scott D., and Mikhail M Narinsky. “New Evidence On The Soviet Rejection Of The Marshall Plan, 1947: Two Reports.” Woodrow Wilson Internation Center For Scholars, March 1994. Accessed December 8, 2014. http://wilsoncenter.org/sites/default/files/ACFB73.pdf.

Vyshinsky, Andrei. “Andrei Vyshinsky, A Soviet Criticism of the Truman Doctrine and Marshall Plan,” September 18, 1947. Accessed September 29, 2014. http://slantchev.ucsd.edu/courses/nss/documents/vyshinsky-criticism-of-truman-doctrine.html.

 


[1] Gregory Franke et al., “The Marshall Plan And How It Works” (George C. Marshall Reasearch Library Pamphlet Collectoin, n.d.), http://marshallfoundation.org/library/wp-content/uploads/sites/16/2014/06/The_Marshall_Plan_and_How_It_Works.pdf.

[2] George Marshall, “The Marshall Plan Speech | George C. Marshall,” June 1947, accessed October 30, 2014, http://marshallfoundation.org/marshall/the-marshall-plan/marshall-plan-speech/.

[3] Scott D. Parrish and Mikhail M Narinsky, “New Evidence On The Soviet Rejection Of The Marshall Plan, 1947: Two Reports” (Woodrow Wilson Internation Center For Scholars, March 1994), accessed December 8, 2014, http://wilsoncenter.org/sites/default/files/ACFB73.pdf.

 

[4] Smith to Secretary of State, 11 July 1947, in U.S. Department of State, Foreign Relations of the United States: Diplomatic Papers, 1947, vol.3, p.327 (Washington, DC: Government Printing Office, 197), 340-41. Volumes from this series will hereafter be referred to as FR, followed by the year, volume, and page number. See also harry S. Truman, Memoirs, vol.2, Years of Trial and Hope, 1946-1952(Garden City, NY: Doubleday and Co., 1956), 115-16. In Ibid.

[5] George F. Kennan, Memoirs, 1925-1950 (Boston: Little, Brown and Co., 1967), 330. in Ibid.

[6] Ibid.

[7] Ibid.

[8] Ibid.

[9] N. Novikov to Molotov, telegram, 24 June 1947, quoted in G. Takhnenko, “An Anatomy of a PoliticalDecision: Documents,” Mezhdunarodnaya zhizn 5 (may 1992), 121. in Ibid.

[10] Andrei Vyshinsky, “Andrei Vyshinsky, A Soviet Criticism of the Truman Doctrine and Marshall Plan,” September 18, 1947, accessed September 29, 2014, http://slantchev.ucsd.edu/courses/nss/documents/vyshinsky-criticism-of-truman-doctrine.html.

[11] Ibid.

[12] Ibid.

[13] Marshall, “The Marshall Plan Speech | George C. Marshall.”

[14] Vyshinsky, “Andrei Vyshinsky, A Soviet Criticism of the Truman Doctrine and Marshall Plan.”

[15] Ibid.

[16] Ibid.

 

Outline

Thesis Question: There are many reasons to why the Cold War started, but what was the main reason that sparked it all? It is like wondering how many times you can poke a lion without expecting it to bite back, because eventually it will bite back.

 

Thesis: The main poked issued towards this lion that caused it to bite back was the implementation of the Marshall Plan. In my historical outlook the Marshall Plan was the spark that ignited the Cold War.

 

Intro: Start Paragraph with Thesis Question.

List main points that will become my body paragraphs. (Marshall Plan: how it came to be and what it did (2), Soviet reactions to the marshall plan (2?), my thoughts (1-2)

End paragraph with thesis statement.

With a transition towards its historical context.

 

Historical Context: See Blog Assignment

 

Historiography: See Blog Assignment

(do not use all my historiography, pick out some main points of it to incorporate into my paper, just the comparing and contrast parts between the Soviet Union and the United States) (3-4 pages)

 

Start Body:

 

Body Paragraph 1:  How the Marshall Plan Started

Mini Thesis/Statement: The Marshall plan first came about in a speech given by George C. Marshall in 1947 at Harvard, during their commencement. Marshall explained how Europe was in need of aid at this time following the end of the war.

Evidence/Facts:  Use quote “the ultimate goal of The Marshall Plan is to promote industrial and agricultural production in these European countries, to aid in restoring sound currencies, budgets and finances, and to foster the growth of international through all appropriate measures including reduction of barriers which may hamper such trade.”

Use this to support my mini Thesis Statement of my Body Paragraph 1

Insight: The Marshall Plan seems like a great idea, one country helping multiple ones. There is nothing wrong with helping countries in need, creating a form of unity. But there is much left unsaid about how the United States will incorporate this into Europe so it will actually help them, not just be a thought of helping them.

 

Transition: With that being said, how in debt will the Marshall Plan go into helping these countries, specifically what will they do to help them?

 

Body paragraph 2: How the Marshall Plan Works

 

Mini Thesis: The main plan for the Marshall Plan was to revitalize the economy in Europe post WWII, but how exactly does the Marshall plan do this?

 

Evidence:  Direct quote

“this policy is to be attained by furnishing goods and financial assistance to

the participating nations (the plan is open to other European nations which may later decide to

cooperate) in such manner as to aid them “through their own individual and concerted efforts, to

become independent of extraordinary outside economic assistance.”

 

Talk about what it did to and for the economy.

 

Use this quote: “The ultimate goal of The Marshall Plan is to promote industrial and agricultural production in these European countries, to aid in restoring sound currencies, budgets and finances, and to foster thegrowth of international trade through all appropriate measures including “reduction of barriers whichmay hamper such trade.”

 

Give insight about above quote ^. Remember to change these around because they do not have to be in the same order that are on the outline.

 

Talk about the provisions pertaining to the “Iron Curtain”

Transition: Yes, the Marshall Plan was intended for good, it is helping different countries and hundreds of thousands of people. That does not mean that this plan was liked by all though, in particular the Soviet Union.

 

Body Paragraph 3/4:

 

Mini Thesis:  This is where in the course of history, the Soviet Union’s frustration with the United States becomes more than just frustration.

 

Evidence:  Andrei Vyshinsky response to the Marshall Plan. (Use this primary source for your supporting evidence for this portion of your paper)

Using aid as political pressure

Controlling the European economy

Making these countries solely dependent on American monopolies

 

Insight: You can see why the Soviet Union was now so against the Marshall Plan. They feared that… (continue to explain the question of why)

 (Remember that you will split this up into 2 paragraphs, since the amount of detail that this document list, separate the supporting evidence into two separate reasons!!)

 

 

Body Paragraph 5: How this was the cause of the Cold War

 

Mini Thesis:  You can now see the amount of tension that the implementation of the Marshall Plan has created between these two countries.

 

Evidence: Refer to the Compare and contrast of the United States and the Soviet Union, regarding the Marshall Plan.

 

Insight: Tie everything up with this last body paragraph, show how this was the cause.

 

Transition: The Marshall Plan played an enormous roll in the Cold War, it  was the spark to a war that would make these two countries feel indifferent about each other to this day.

 

Conclusion:

Restate Thesis question

Short and quick recap of main points

Restate thesis but use *that is* to show the point

Closer.

 

(This is how I do my outlines and what works for me)

 

 

Historiography Blog

Historiography Blog Assignment

            After World War II in 1947, Western Europe was in an economic downfall: these countries within it were deteriorating, and the spread of communism was on the rise. During this time, the United States Secretary of State, George Marshall, came up with the Marshall Plan otherwise known as the European Recovery Program (ERP). This was a plan to revitalize Western Europe’s economy and make it stable again by the help and funding from the United States. Not all countries were in favor of this, especially the Soviet Union. The implementation of the Marshall Plan in Western Europe, leads me to the question: How different were the assessments of this plan between the United States and the Soviet Union? Why in history are we only taught the one sides view and never the others? This historiography compares and contrasts the United States and the Soviet Union’s outlook on this pressing matter.

In 1947 Secretary of State George Marshall drafted the Marshall Plan, which the United States viewed as a positive way to help restore Western Europe, after the destruction it went through during World War II. As bonus it would help them limit the spread of communism. The article The Marshall Plan and How It Works states that the purpose of the Marshall Plan is as follows, “the ultimate goal of The Marshall Plan is to promote industrial and agricultural production in these European countries, to aid in restoring sound currencies, budgets and finances, and to foster the growth of international through all appropriate measures including reduction of barriers which may hamper such trade.””[1].  The United States was allowed to exceed no more than $4,300,000,000 in aid to Western Europe. In June of 1947, George Marshall visited Harvard and gave a speech about this matter. He wanted educate intellectual people about this first hand, other than what they read in the newspaper. During his speech a specific portion of it stands out when Marshall declares that, “Any government which maneuvers to block the recovery of other countries cannot expect help from us. Furthermore, governments, political parties or groups which seek to perpetuate human misery in order to profit therefrom politically or otherwise will encounter the opposition of the United States”[2]. To a historian such as myself, he is saying the United States is going to do this no matter what the Soviet Union (and other communist countries) has to say about this, and if they get in our way we won’t back down.  The implementation of this plan seems like a moral thing to do, is it not? That is the point, the government of the United States, and its’ citizens of it see it as a very positive thing to do for those countries in Western Europe who are in dire need of such help. Do not forget that this is just the view of the United States and its people, not the view of the countries in Europe. The only nation to publicly show their personal view of this plan being implemented in Western Europe, was the Soviet Union.

The Soviet Union was given a chance to participate in the Marshall Plan to help restore the economy, but then decided to withdraw from their involvement. During this time, Andrei Vyshinsky, who was a very powerful Soviet politician, wrote a very powerful document called A Soviet Criticism of The Truman Doctrine and Marshall Plan, which showed why the Soviet Union viewed the incorporation of this plan in Western Europe was such an unscrupulous idea. Vyshinsky states right off the bat that, “The Soviets withdrew from participation in the Marshall Plan in part because they viewed American motives in rebuilding Western Europe, especially Germany, with suspicion. The plan threatened Soviet control of the eastern bloc as much as it renewed fears of German recovery and remilitarization.”[3] Imagine living in the Soviet Union during WWII and everything they went through, this is more than a valuable excuse to not want to participate in such a plan. That was not the only reason why the Soviet Union did not want to be a part of this plan. Unlike how the United States viewed the Marshall Plan as a way of helping these countries, the Soviets viewed it as “attempts to impose its will on other independent states, while at the same time obviously using the economic resources distributed as relieve to individual needy nations as an instrument of political pressure.”[4] This view was completely different compared to how the United States saw it. Vyshinsky later makes a valid argument by saying, “This policy conflicts sharply with the principle expressed by the General Assembly in its resolution of 11 December 1946, which declares that relief supplies to other countries “should… at no time be used as a political weapon.”[5] This directly disobeyed what the General Assembly had said. As you can see both of these country’s viewpoints on the Marshall Plan are 100% opposite: the United States sees it as trying to help nations in need during a time of crisis, and the Soviet Union sees it as using resources as political pressure to essentially hand over their economy to them.

When observing an event in history, it is imperative to learn how both sides revolving around that said event react. This gives a firm understanding for both sides and makes understanding why they felt that way towards it. The Marshall Plan’s overall goal was to revive Western Europe’s economy, but when you compare and contrast these two county’s thoughts you realize that they are blatantly opposite and nothing good will come between the United States and the Soviet Union. If you look at another section of Marshall’s speech, he states, “The truth of the matter is that Europe’s requirements for the next three or four years of foreign food and other essential products-principally from America-are so much greater than her present ability to pay that she must have substantial addition help, or face economic, social and political deterioration of very grave character.”[6] It is clear that this is very different than Soviets perspective, where they feel that the United States is using the Marshall Plan as an “instrument of political pressure,”[7] and that they are not doing this under the right circumstances. The United States feels that they are just trying to revitalize Western Europe’s economy and get them back on their feet, which seems like they are doing this for a very good reason.

In contrast to that perspective, the Soviets believe that they are making the European countries that are in need of aid give away, “their inalienable rights to dispose of their economic resources and to plan their nation economy in their own way […] making all these countries directly dependent on the interests of American monopolies, which are striving to avert the approaching depression by an accelerated export of commodities and capital to Europe.”[8] In short making Western Europe directly dependent on the United States. The Soviets also believe that, “this plan is an attempt to split Europe into two camps and, with the help of the United Kingdom and France, to complete the formation of the bloc of several European counties hostile to the interests of the democratic countries of Eastern Europe and most particularly to the interests of the Soviet Union.”[9] In other words the United States is trying to limit the spread of communism. Everlasting tension was created by the implementation of the Marshall Plan, between the United States and Soviet Union (now Russia) that still persists to this day.

Historiography is the study of history, and it is a very important concept to understand. Once this is understood, you gain a deeper comprehension of the different views that nations have on certain events in history. As you can now see that the implementation of the Marshall Plan, sparked significantly different viewpoints between the United States and the Soviet Union. What arose from those different viewpoints, was nothing but sever amounts of tension. When comparing and contrasting the different views between these two countries, it is now apparent to me that no country was more wrong for the other. Both countries had very different reasoning for their actions which derived from their completely different viewpoints on The Marshall Plan. Friedrich Nietzsche once said “there are no facts, only interpretations” that quote suits this very well, both of these countries had very different interpretations on this matter.

 

 

Bibliography

Franke, Gregory, Joanne D. Hartog, Daniel D. Holt, and Mark A. Stoler. “The Marshall Plan And How It Works.” George C. Marshall Reasearch Library Pamphlet Collectoin, n.d. http://marshallfoundation.org/library/wp-content/uploads/sites/16/2014/06/The_Marshall_Plan_and_How_It_Works.pdf.

Marshall, George. “The Marshall Plan Speech | George C. Marshall,” June 1947. Accessed October 30, 2014. http://marshallfoundation.org/marshall/the-marshall-plan/marshall-plan-speech/.

Vyshinsky, Andrei. “Andrei Vyshinsky, A Soviet Criticism of the Truman Doctrine and Marshall Plan,” September 18, 1947. Accessed September 29, 2014. http://slantchev.ucsd.edu/courses/nss/documents/vyshinsky-criticism-of-truman-doctrine.html.



[1] Gregory Franke et al., “The Marshall Plan And How It Works” (George C. Marshall Reasearch Library Pamphlet Collectoin, n.d.), http://marshallfoundation.org/library/wp-content/uploads/sites/16/2014/06/The_Marshall_Plan_and_How_It_Works.pdf.

[2] George Marshall, “The Marshall Plan Speech | George C. Marshall,” June 1947, accessed October 30, 2014, http://marshallfoundation.org/marshall/the-marshall-plan/marshall-plan-speech/.

[3] Andrei Vyshinsky, “Andrei Vyshinsky, A Soviet Criticism of the Truman Doctrine and Marshall Plan,” September 18, 1947, accessed September 29, 2014, http://slantchev.ucsd.edu/courses/nss/documents/vyshinsky-criticism-of-truman-doctrine.html.

[4] Ibid.

[5] Ibid.

[6] Marshall, “The Marshall Plan Speech | George C. Marshall.”

[7] Vyshinsky, “Andrei Vyshinsky, A Soviet Criticism of the Truman Doctrine and Marshall Plan.”

[8] Ibid.

[9] Ibid.

Blog Assignment #3 Revised

When analyzing the incorporation of both the Truman Doctrine and the Marshall Plan, particularly within Western Europe, many questions regarding these specific policies may have been overlooked. Some such questions might be: How did the specific subjected nations react to the new rules being implemented into Western Europe?  Who was upset about this? Or even the general question, of “why”? That is what my primary source analysis is comprised of. Specifically the reactions of the Soviet Union towards these two plans. My source answers all those questions, but more importantly it answers “what does the other side think about this?”, because we have all been taught what the United States thought about this, but we have never been taught what other nations thought about these two plans. The purpose of this paper is to further understand the document entitled A soviet Criticism of the Truman Doctrine and Marshall plan, as a primary source of information, particularly the Soviet Union and Western Europe’s reactions to these plans.

For my Primary source analysis, I am analyzing a document called A Soviet Criticism of the Truman Doctrine and Marshall Plan. This document was written by a man named Andrei Vyshinsky who was a soviet politician, and it was written on September 18th, 1947. This is a very interesting document because it shows their true feelings about the Truman Doctrine and The Marshall Plan being integrated into Western Europe. It was written for the United States so they would be able to grasp the Soviet Union’s perspective about these two plans and I believe it was written for the Soviet people to see as well, so they can understand what the United States was trying to do. Vyshinsky’s point of view was to let the United States and the United Nations, know how their nation really felt about this, and why they are choosing not to participate in the Truman Doctrine and the Marshall Plan. This documents main purpose was to inform the United States why they were not participation in these two plans which was “the plan threatened Soviet control of the eastern bloc as much as it renewed fears of German Recovery and remilitarization”[1], not to mention putting the European economy in the hands of the United States. This document is best suited to deal with a qualitative analysis, since it deals with raw information and descriptions of the Soviet Union’s feelings towards these two plans. The form this document has is a person’s thoughts on this or should I say criticism of the Marshall Plan and the Truman Doctrine, but more importantly this document comes from a very respectable politician in the Soviet Union, someone who has a voice.

Vyshinsky relates to this phenomenon happening in Western Europe because he is a politician and this is politics, he sees what is happening in Western Europe differently than a politician would in the United States. So I would say yes, Andrei Vyshinsky was in a position of having reliable knowledge about these events happening. In this document he states “the United States government has moved towards a direct renunciation of the principles of international collaboration and concerted action by the great powers and towards attempts to impose its will on other independent states, while at the same time obviously using the economic resources distributed as relief to individual needy nations as an instrument of political pressure”[2] , Vyshinsky is an expert in politics and he has every right to speak out on any matters that could harm his country. Another valid point he brings up is “this policy conflicts sharply with the principle expressed in the General Assembly in its resolution of 11th of December 1946, which declares that relieve supplies to other countries ‘should…at no time be used as a political weapon’”[3].

With that being said, I do believe that the form permits accurate reporting, and no the author does not have any reason to avoid telling the truth as he saw it. Due to the fact that he experienced this first hand, within his own nation. Another interesting fact that Vyshinsky wrote was that “the United States also counted on making all these countries directly dependent on the interests of American monopolies, which are striving to avert the approaching depression by an accelerated export of commodities and capital to Europe”[4]. This is an interesting point that Vyshinsky brings up because it makes the United States seem like the bad guy here.

In conclusion I do think that this document is a very reliable source for a couple of reasons. For one it shows a different perspective of United States involvement in Western Europe rather than just being taught to see it from the United States view of it. It actually gives something that is much needed when writing papers which is “perspective”, because how can you truly learn something when you don’t understand both of the side’s perspective on it. Another reason why this source is very reliable is because it comes from a very well respected Soviet politician, someone who understands how The Truman Doctrine and The Marshall Plan will affect their own country and economy. This document perfectly fits my thesis statement, that these two plans were the start of the Cold War. When looking for other documents to compare and contrast this document too, I will be primarily focusing on United States politicians, the Truman Doctrine, the Marshall Plan and whoever was involved in the making of these two plans.

 

 

 

Bibliography

 

Vyshinsky, Andrei. “Andrei Vyshinsky, A Soviet Criticism of the Truman Doctrine and Marshall Plan,” September 18, 1947. Accessed September 29, 2014. http://slantchev.ucsd.edu/courses/nss/documents/vyshinsky-criticism-of-truman-doctrine.html.

 



[1] Andrei Vyshinsky, “Andrei Vyshinsky, A Soviet Criticism of the Truman Doctrine and Marshall Plan,” September 18, 1947, accessed September 29, 2014, http://slantchev.ucsd.edu/courses/nss/documents/vyshinsky-criticism-of-truman-doctrine.html.

[2] Ibid.

[3] Ibid.

[4] Ibid.

Primary Source Analysis

Blog Assignment #3

            When looking at the incorporation of the Truman Doctrine and the Marshall Plan in Western Europe, there are a lot of factors that contributed to this that have been overlooked. Like what do these nations feel about these plans being incorporated into Western Europe? Who was upset about this? Or even the general question, of “why”? That is what my primary source analysis is comprised of.  Specifically the reactions of the Soviet Union towards these two plans. My source answers all those questions, but more importantly it answers “what does the other side think about this?”, because we have all been taught what the United States thought about this, but we have never been taught what other nations thought about these two plans.

For my Primary source analysis, I am analyzing a document called A Soviet Criticism of the Truman Doctrine and Marshall Plan. This document was written by a man named Andrei Vyshinsky who was a soviet politician, and it was written on September 18th, 1947. This is a very interesting document because it shows their true feelings about the Truman Doctrine and The Marshall Plan being integrated into Western Europe. It was written for the United States so they would be able to grasp the Soviet Union’s perspective about these two plans and I believe it was written for the Soviet people to see as well, so they can understand what the United States was trying to do. Vyshinsky’s point of view was to let the United States and the United Nations, know how their nation really felt about this, and why they are choosing not to participate in the Truman Doctrine and the Marshall Plan. This documents main purpose was to inform the United States why they were not participation in these two plans which was “the plan threatened Soviet control of the eastern bloc as much as it renewed fears of German Recovery and remilitarization”[1], not to mention putting the European economy in the hands of the United States. This document is best suited to deal with a qualitative analysis, since it deals with raw information and descriptions of the Soviet Union’s feelings towards these two plans. The form this document has is a person’s thoughts on this or should I say criticism of the Marshall Plan and the Truman Doctrine, but more importantly this document comes from a very respectable politician in the Soviet Union, someone who has a voice. Vyshinsky relates to this phenomenon happening in Western Europe because he is a politician and this is politics, he sees what is happening in Western Europe differently than a politician would in the United States. So I would say yes, Andrei Vyshinsky was in a position of having reliable knowledge about these events happening. In this document he states “the United States government has moved towards a direct renunciation of the principles of international collaboration and concerted action by the great powers and towards attempts to impose its will on other independent states, while at the same time obviously using the economic resources distributed as relief to individual needy nations as an instrument of political pressure”[2] , Vyshinsky is an expert in politics and he has every right to speak out on any matters that could harm his country. Another valid point he brings up is “this policy conflicts sharply with the principle expressed in the General Assembly in its resolution of 11th of December 1946, which declares that relieve supplies to other countries ‘should…at no time be used as a political weapon’”[3]. I do believe that the form permits accurate reporting, and no the author does not have any reason to avoid telling the truth as he saw it. Due to the fact that he experienced this first hand, within his own nation. Another interesting fact that Vyshinsky wrote was that “the United States also counted on making all these countries directly dependent on the interests of American monopolies, which are striving to avert the approaching depression by an accelerated export of commodities and capital to Europe”[4]. This is an interesting point that Vyshinsky brings up because it makes the United States seem like the bad guy here.

In conclusion I do think that this document is a very reliable source for a couple of reasons. For one it shows a different perspective of United States involvement in Western Europe rather than just being taught to see it from the United States view of it. It actually gives something that is much needed when writing papers which is “perspective”, because how can you truly learn something when you don’t understand both of the side’s perspective on it. Another reason why this source is very reliable is because it comes from a very well respected Soviet politician, someone who understands how The Truman Doctrine and The Marshall Plan will affect their own country and economy. This document perfectly fits my thesis statement, that these two plans were the start of the Cold War. When looking for other documents to compare and contrast this document too, I will be primarily focusing on United States politicians, the Truman Doctrine, the Marshall Plan and whoever was involved in the making of these two plans.

 

 

 

Bibliography

 

Vyshinsky, Andrei. “Andrei Vyshinsky, A Soviet Criticism of the Truman Doctrine and Marshall Plan,” September 18, 1947. Accessed September 29, 2014. http://slantchev.ucsd.edu/courses/nss/documents/vyshinsky-criticism-of-truman-doctrine.html.



[1] Andrei Vyshinsky, “Andrei Vyshinsky, A Soviet Criticism of the Truman Doctrine and Marshall Plan,” September 18, 1947, accessed September 29, 2014, http://slantchev.ucsd.edu/courses/nss/documents/vyshinsky-criticism-of-truman-doctrine.html.

[2] Ibid.

[3] Ibid.

[4] Ibid.

Working With Historical Data

1) Write a thesis question: Did the Marshall Plan push the United States into the Cold War?

2) Write a thesis statement: The Marshall Plan continued to cold war polarization because of X, Y, and Z.

3) Write a preliminary annotated Bibliography: (Consists throughout this document)

 

2 Primary Sources:

1)      My first primary source will be George Marshall’s speech about the implementation of the Marshall Plan.[1] I think this is a great primary source for me to use for my paper, and it will give me a lot of first hand insight on this topic.

2)      My second primary source is called Andrei Vyshinsky, A Soviet Criticism of the Truman Doctrine and Marshall Plan, September 18, 1947. It is by a man named Andrei Vyshinsky who was a soviet politician and in this document he gives the soviets thoughts and perspective about the Marshall Plan as well as the Truman Plan. I think this is a great piece of evidence for me to use as well because it shows how the “other side” views this document. [2]

3 Monographs:

1)      My First monograph will be for the Marshall Plan. This secondary source gives a quick overview of what the Marshall Plan was. It is from the U.S. Department of State’s website, so I do believe that it is a trustworthy source for my paper. [3]

2)      My Second monograph is called “Moscow and the Marshall Plan: Politics, Ideology and the Onset of the Cold War, 1947”, this journal’s focus is on the Soviets reaction to the Marshall Plan. Why they felt that this was not in their best interests to participate in this reconstruction. [4]

3)      My last monograph is titled, “Influences on the Congressional decision to pass the Marshall Plan”. The title of this article really sums up what it is about, I think this will be another valuable source for my paper and this will give me some ideas to work with. [5]

2 Scholarly Articles:

1)      For my First Scholarly Article, I choose one that had a different nation’s opinion in a sense about the Marshall Plan and the Soviet Union.  This article brings up some valid points that I am going to use in my paper. The British were also involved in Europe during this time era so I think that this could be one of my key sources. [6]

2)      For my second Scholarly source I would like to use a source about the Truman Doctrine, because as much as the Marshall Plan was a cause for the start of the Cold War, the Truman Doctrine also did not help us avoid this war. Primarily I want to use this for some fine points to help narrow my argument. [7]

3 Historiographical Sources:

1)      My first Historiographical Source is called “The Marshall Plan and the Creation of the West”, it is a chapter from a book and the authors name is William Hitchcock. This gives a pretty specific overview of the planning for the Marshall Plan, everywhere from how it started, how it was going to help the economy (and in which ways). [8]

2)      My second Historiographical source is also about the Marshall plan, but this one is primarily a quick overview of the economic standpoint of the Marshall Plan but also outlines the key controversies about it as well. [9]

3)      My last source is titled “The Early Cold War” and it talks about the Early Cold War. It just gives an overview of the begging of this war. I think this source could give me some nice contextual evidence about this topic. [10]

 

 

 

 



[1] George Marshall, “The Marshall Plan Speach,” n.d., http://www.oecd.org/general/themarshallplanspeechatharvarduniversity5june1947.htm.

[2] Andrei Vyshinsky, “Andrei Vyshinsky, A Soviet Criticism of the Truman Doctrine and Marshall Plan,” September 18, 1947, accessed September 29, 2014, http://slantchev.ucsd.edu/courses/nss/documents/vyshinsky-criticism-of-truman-doctrine.html.

[3] “Marshall Plan,” n.d., http://history.state.gov/milestones/1945-1952/marshall-plan.

[4] Geoffrey Roberts, “Moscow and the Marshall Plan: Politics, Ideology and the Onset of the Cold War, 1947,” Europe-Asia Studies 46, no. 8 (January 1994): 1371–1386.

[5] Harold L. Hitchens, “Influences on the Congressional Decision to Pass the Marshall Plan,” The Western Political Quarterly 21, no. 1 (March 1, 1968): 51–68.

[6] C. C. S. Newton, “The Sterling Crisis of 1947 and the British Response to the Marshall Plan,” The Economic History Review 37, no. 3, New Series (August 1, 1984): 391–408.

[7] “The Truman Doctrine, 1947,” n.d., http://history.state.gov/milestones/1945-1952/truman-doctrine.

[8] William Hitchcock, “The Marshall Plan and the Creation of the West,” in The Bitter Road to Freedom: A New History of the Liberation of Europe, n.d., 154–174.

[9] Francisco Alvarez-Cuadrado, “The Marshall Plan” (n.d.), http://francisco.research.mcgill.ca/daniel_barczyk/research_files/Marshall%20Plan%20Palgrave%20final.pdf.

[10] “The Early Cold War: 1945-1952,” n.d., http://history.state.gov/milestones/1945-1952/foreword.

What Is History?

What is History?

 

What is History?  Is it the memorization of facts? Is it peeking into a time hole to get a glimpse of the past?  This question has been asked by so many different people whether it is students, a child’s curiosity or even a professor. The underlying fact is that history can’t have one definition to it, it is everything, it was yesterday and it’s today because when today fades away it too becomes history. My whole career I have been asking myself that question, “What is History?”, so maybe I will finally understand why am I so passionate about History. It is so interesting because everything that is will one day become history. After searching for this answer to this question I came to the conclusion that, History is the study of past events through evidence that helps us better realize our world today, but that evidence can be argued, and questioned to obtain the deeper meaning of “History”.

When one is trying to understand history they must first form a hypothesis, which is “a central question, […] tested against primary evidence. It should not become an end to be proven by careful selection of only that evidence that fits a preconceived notion or pet argument” (Galgano,11). As historians we refer to a hypothesis as an “historical argument”, which is your thesis.  This is the layout to your question, the heart of your paper or research will revolve around your thesis statement. As a young historian such as myself this was the first thing that was taught to me. Whether you are starting to type a paper or are questioning an event in history you will always need an historical argument, all great historians have had an historical argument that has been the precipice of their life work. The hardest part about getting that career changing historical argument all depends on the evidence you have to support it.

When trying to support your historical argument, it is imperative that you use the correct type of evidence to support it. This can be done by using a primary source, a primary source is “any record contemporary to an event or time period. Primary sources may be written, oral, visual, or physical. Some of these sources were produced with the intent of being preserved for the future” (Galgano,59). Sources that were meant to be preserved could be “government documents, church records, autobiographies, or memoirs” (Galgano,59), sources like these can give your historical argument that extra “umph” between an great argument and an amazing argument.  Once you determine how trustworthy this source is you will then apply something called “external criticism” and “internal criticism” which is asking questions about your source. For example “Who authored the source? How long after the event is it being described? Is the author an eyewitness? Who was the intended audience? What is the audience’s relationship to the author? What is the purpose of the source? How reliable is the evidence? Is the source significant? Does the source help explain casual or other relationships?” (Galgano,60). Those are just some of the questions that you ask about your source, there are many more you would want to consider prior to using a source to back up your historical argument. These sources can and should be applied to every one of your historical arguments, and they can be used for any type of the many varieties of history.

There are many different varieties of history, not just one type of “history”. In the book Doing History by Michael J. Galgano he states that “educated people believe that history provides a sense of perspective to understand the present and how society arrived at a particular point in time” (Galgano,13) this is why there is such a need for the various different spectrums of history.  The biggest category of history is “political history” which looks at “governments, political leaders, electoral activities, the making of policy, and the interaction of branches of government” as we learned from Dr. Patterson’s slide show presentation in class. As Galgano puts it “important questions in a society were ultimately determined in the political arena” (Galgano,14), which is why this is such a big category in history. Diplomatic history is the second biggest category in history because it looks at the relations between different nations (foreign relations), diplomats and diplomacy. Those are just some of the categories in history there are many more like, social history, economic history, intellectual history, military history, history of empire and colonialism and religious history. All of which you can use your supportive evidence skills to really make your historical argument amazing.

History is the study of past events through evidence that helps us better realize our world today, but that argument can be argued, and questioned to obtain the deeper meaning.  No matter what type of history you are forming a historical argument for you can use any of these supportive evidence skills to better understand history. More so to reach for the “gold standard” of historical arguments, because that is the heart of your research and once you unlock the ability to conjure “gold standard” historical arguments you will become a true historian. Then you will be able to realize why our world is the way it is today, and find your own answer to the question “What is History?”.