During the 1950’s

During the 1950’s, Middle Eastern states that were not free took out all the mandates that Europe created after WWI. Independence and the wealth that the Middle Eastern states made through the production and selling of oil caused the people to become more confident. WWI had many consequences that directly and indirectly affected the middle east. Zionism was one such example, and it was a movement for the Jews to the Promised Land. It was the development of a Jewish nation-state in Israel. Britain promised a homeland for the Jews if the Ottoman empire was taken over by the end of the war. The U.S. did not want to get involved in dividing the Ottoman Empire. To help this movement, the Balfour declaration was issued. It had an endorsed zionist goal of establishing a Jewish state in Palestine and stated the government’s intentions in declaring a Jewish state in the Middle East. Because of the Balfour Declaration, Israel and the Palestinians were always in a constant state of turmoil. When the state of Israel was created, a conflict started between the Arabs and the people of Israel. This was called the Arab-Israeli conflict. The British supported the Balfour declaration but delayed their decision in order to avoid Arab unrest. Mandate systems were made for Arab Lands. They became administered by France and Britain under the League of Nations. These mandate systems enraged many Arabs. Soon, the British and the French created the Sikes-Picot Treaty. It was a secret agreement that stated that after the war, the Middle East will be divided into zones of control/influence for both Britain and France. A war was later started on Israel. Israel won and became a country. The map of the middle east was redrawn and a new type of colonialism replaced Ottoman rule. The new boundaries ignored religious and cultural boundaries, which led to much of the unrest and turmoil in the region.

WWII had devastating effects on Eastern Europe and it became very difficult for this region to move towards democracy and prosperity. Political systems were restricting. Economies were industrial rather than post-industrial. However, Eastern Europe did try to modernize economically, mainly through the development of social welfare systems. Eastern Europe was poor, had poor quality production, consumer goods were short in supply, lower quality of life and life expectancy, and there was a smaller population. Western Europe, on the other hand, was more rich, had a higher population, and recovery was more dramatic due to the Marshall plan. After WWII, the cold war began. The Iron curtain was the name for the boundary between East and West europe. It lasted from the end of World War II all the way to the end of the cold war. The U.S. dominated the west, and the Soviet Union dominated the East. The U.S. played a role in this because they wanted to prevent the spread of communism abroad. This was called containment. The Truman doctrine was issued to help with containment. Its purpose was to counter Soviet expansion during the Cold War, and to provide political, military, and economic assistance to all democratic nations under threat from external or internal authoritarian forces. In the 1980’s, communism eventually collapses, and Germany unified.