Cold war (general term)

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This article is about the general term for a type of international conflict. For the specific conflict between the Soviet Union and the United States, see Cold War.

A cold war is a state of conflict between nations that does not involve direct military action but is pursued primarily through economic and political actions, propaganda, acts of espionage or proxy wars waged by surrogates. The surrogates are typically states that are "satellites" of the conflicting nations, i.e., nations allied to them or under their political influence. Opponents in a cold war will often provide economic or military aid, such as weapons, tactical support or military advisors, to lesser nations involved in conflicts with the opposing country.

Origins of the term[edit]

The expression "cold war" was rarely used before 1945. Some writers credit the fourteenth century Spaniard, Don Juan Manuel for first using the term (in Spanish), when dealing with the conflict between Christianity and Islam as a "cold war". However he used the term "tepid" not "cold". The word "cold" first appeared in a faulty translation of his work in the 19th century.[1]

At the end of World War II, George Orwell used the term in the essay “You and the Atomic Bomb” published October 19, 1945, in the British newspaper Tribune. Contemplating a world living in the shadow of the threat of nuclear war, he warned of a “peace that is no peace”, which he called a permanent “cold war”.[2] Orwell directly referred to that war as the ideological confrontation between the Soviet Union and the Western powers.[3] Moreover, in The Observer of March 10, 1946, Orwell wrote that “[a]fter the Moscow conference last December, Russia began to make a ‘cold war’ on Britain and the British Empire.”[4]

The definition which has now become fixed is of a war waged through indirect conflict. The first use of the term in this sense, to describe the post–World War II geopolitical tensions between the USSR and its satellites and the United States and its western European allies is attributed to Bernard Baruch, an American financier and presidential advisor.[5] In South Carolina, on April 16, 1947, he delivered a speech (by journalist Herbert Bayard Swope)[6] saying, “Let us not be deceived: we are today in the midst of a cold war.”[7] Newspaper reporter-columnist Walter Lippmann gave the term wide currency, with the book Cold War (1947).[8]

The general term has been used to describe the regional proxy conflict between Iran and Saudi Arabia.[9][10]

In popular culture[edit]

Television and video games

See also[edit]

References[edit]

Notes

  1. ^ Simon Dalby; Gearoid O.u Tuathail (2002). Rethinking Geopolitics. Routledge. p. 67. 
  2. ^ Kort, Michael (2001). The Columbia Guide to the Cold War. Columbia University Press. p. 3. 
  3. ^ Geiger, Till (2004). Britain and the Economic Problem of the Cold War. Ashgate Publishing. p. 7. 
  4. ^ Orwell, George, The Observer, March 10, 1946
  5. ^ Gaddis 2005, p. 54
  6. ^ Safire, William (October 1, 2006). "Islamofascism Anyone?". The New York Times (The New York Times Company). Retrieved December 25, 2008. 
  7. ^ 'Bernard Baruch coins the term "Cold War"', history.com, April 16, 1947. Retrieved on July 2, 2008.
  8. ^ Lippmann, Walter (1947). Cold War. Harper. Retrieved 2008-09-02. 
  9. ^ Broder, Jonathan (11 January 2016). "The Loser of the Cold War Between Iran and Saudi Arabia May Be Obama". Newsweek. Retrieved 11 July 2016. 
  10. ^ Barakat, Sultan (22 June 2016). "Is the Iranian-Saudi 'cold war' heating up? How to reduce the temperature". Brookings Institution. Retrieved 11 July 2016.