The United Nations was officially formed in October 1945 to promote cooperation among different countries. It had its roots in the former League of Nations, which was formed after World War I but disbanded after failing to prevent the second World War.Continue Reading
During World War II, a group of 26 nations gathered together to sign the original Declaration of United Nations, in which each individual nation pledged to continue fighting the Axis powers and refuse to negotiate a separate peace with them. Following the war, a conference was held in San Francisco and representatives from 50 different nations attended. At this conference, the United Nations charter was officially ratified.
Peacekeeping is the primary concern of the United Nations. The organization helps negotiate peace treaties and supports the efforts of countries as they move towards democracy. On occasion, the United Nations dispatches soldiers to help with peacekeeping missions. The United Nations also seeks to promote human rights in all countries and strives to prevent the discrimination against and mistreatment of minorities across the globe. Other duties of the United Nations include providing humanitarian aid when necessary, such as organizing the drop-off of food and basic supplies in countries devastated by war and natural disasters.Learn more about Cold War
The main concern of the United States and the other western powers during the Cold War was that the Soviet Union would obtain control of the Western European countries through either invasions or by communist takeovers of unstable governments. Neither side was ever directly engaged in a full-scale armed combat, and the doctrine of mutually assured destruction, or MAD, prevented either faction from using their heavily armed nuclear arsenals. Psychological war, propaganda, proxy wars and espionage were the primary means of each side's struggle for dominance in post-World War II Europe.Full Answer >
The Cold War affected Europe by dividing it between communist and democratic countries, which essentially divided Europe into Western Europe and Eastern Europe. This divide caused tension, political unrest and economic difficulties. Germany, for instance, was fragmented, divided literally by the Berlin Wall and torn between American and Russian influence.Full Answer >
The United States compares favorably to the majority of other countries in terms of civil liberties, ranking among the "most free" nations in the world, according to the Freedom House Annual Surveys of 2013 and 2014. Other countries ranked in this category for the same years were Uruguay, Slovenia, Lithuania, Denmark and Costa Rica.Full Answer >
World War II resulted in many far-reaching and long-term effects on the course of history, some of which included a major rearrangement of the power balance between nations, the beginning of the Atomic Age and the Cold War, the end of colonial empires and the rise of nationalism within former colonies, the creation of the United Nations and the European Union, numerous border changes and a restrengthening of the United States economy which had been previously debilitated by the Great Depression. The balance of power shifted to two major post-war alliances: NATO, which was led by the United States, and the Warsaw Pact led by the Soviet Union. This resulted in the Cold War power struggle and the eruption of several proxy wars, such as the Vietnam Conflict.Full Answer >