Discuss the path and outcomes of the Second Cold War.Discuss the path and outcomes of the Second Cold War.

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Ashley Kannan eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The Second Cold War is used the period of the 1980s, when intense antagonisms between both the Soviets and Americans hit a fever pitch.  Essentially, with the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan and an economically and socially weakened America, both nations were "on the ropes" heading into the 1980s.  The effort to knock the other out was a desired one, primarily because there was not seen as much being left in either's tank.  This led to a resurgence in animosity between both sides, leading to the term, "The Second Cold War."  Reagan's belief as he took office was that the war could be won if America redoubled all of its interests, military and political, into defeating the Soviets.  The combination of deregulation as well as increases in military spending made this a reality.  As these helped to generate more income with which fighting the Soviets became a conceivably victorious reality, the political focus helped to categorize the Cold War in "good" vs. "evil" terms, something that had not been as dominant in quite some time.  Reagan was able to case the Soviets as "evil," something that was echoed in the Polish solidarity movements in the mid 1980s, and a reality that the Soviets tried, but failed, to avoid.  In making the war an almost historical inevitability, America was able to increase its military spending, coalesce its public to accept the political spin, and ensure that the pressure was on the Soviets.  Coupled with feeble and aged leadership, and even more economic ineptitude, this helped to give America an upper hand and proved to be decisive in ending the Cold War.

litteacher8 eNotes educator| Certified Educator
The Second Cold War was more pathetic than the first. I'd say none of the players really had their hearts in it. It has been accused of being created just so each country could look good in front of its constituents. Nonetheless, it did not last long and was not eventful.

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