What Were Some of the Effects of the Cold War?

Some effects of the Cold War included a stagnant Russian economy, a large loss of life and an increased chance of nuclear war. Tensions created by the superpowers during the Cold War remained high after the war ended.

Millions of people, both civilians and military personnel, lost their lives in Korea, Vietnam and in other parts of the world where United States and Soviet Union proxy wars took place. Russia was left with a devastated economy that forced the country to cut military spending and threw it into a recession. Economic and social tensions soared for years after the Cold War ended and because so many nuclear weapons were stockpiled during the war, the chances of an intentional or accidental nuclear strike were dramatically increased.

At the beginning of the Cold War, there were two superpowers, the U.S. and Russia. By the end of the war, only one superpower remained, the U.S. Russia had to dismantle most of its military and close down military production facilities and bases throughout the country. This caused millions of people to become unemployed, furthering Russia’s financial crisis.

Some countries gained and lost territory after the Cold War. South Yemen gained territory and became known as Yemen. West Germany gained territory and was called Germany. Russia, China, Ethiopia, the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia and South Africa all lost territory at the end of the Cold War.