Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Legacy Department



Moise, Edwin


Starting in June 1950, the Korean War marked the beginning of a new era of warfare. The first limited war to take place in the nuclear age amid increasing Cold War tensions, Korea raised numerous questions of how the U.S. would interact with the Soviet Union in the new international climate. In this climate, both sides strove to maintain the world's balance of power. Small shifts in that balance, such as in Korea, assumed great importance, forcing the U.S. to act in areas not previously considered vital.
Despite the need for a firm response, U.S. actions in Korea were tempered by influences such as atomic weapons, diminished military force, communist expansion, and containment. All of these factors were amplified by the pervasive Cold War mentality of mutual fear and distrust. The course of the Korean War further intensified these suspicions, setting a precedent for U.S. actions throughout the Cold War.