April 16, 2009

Cold War gets it's name

April 16, 1947 was the first time the term "Cold War" was used to describe the tensions between the Soviets and the U.S.  The term was coined by Bernard Baruch, a U.S. financier and advisor to Harry Truman, during a speech to the South Carolina legislature.  The visions of post-war reconstruction following World War II were clearly conflicting between Soviet Communism and Western Capitalism.  The infamous "Iron Curtain" remained in place until the end of the Cold War in 1991 - the Berlin wall being the most notable and graffitied example of this border.  To this extent, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) was initially created to "keep the Russians out", said NATO's first Secretary General and known ladies-man, Hastings Lionel Ismay, who liked to dress up as the NATO mascot to sike everyone up before each meeting.

The term "Cold War" had numerous meanings throughout it's use, first referencing the fact that no direct conflict between the two superpowers had taken place and the barrels of U.S. guns were cold and depressed, second being that the Soviets always gave the U.S. the cold shoulder whenever they'd come by to shoot hoops or talk about life, and third being that nuclear shelters were usually made of concrete and lacked proper heating, so everyone was cold all the time.  All other meanings for the term "Cold War" are found here, here, here and here.  


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