Diplomats recognize three types of wars. These are the ‘hot’ war, ‘warm’ war and the ‘cold’ war. Hot war is one in which there are no diplomatic efforts made to stop fighting militaries and if there are any efforts, they have failed. A warm war is one in which there are peaceful talks still going but fighting still persists in the battlefronts though in small scale. Cold war may not fit to the definition of war per se but has the characteristics of a war by all means. It is a war fought through spreading propaganda, military support to enemy states, and competition in production of weapons of mass destruction. By 1945, the world had only witnessed the First and Second World wars, which by all means were hot wars.
The two hot wars had caused a lot of damage to the economies of many nations as well as demobilized the military powers of many. However, two nations remained relatively intact. These are the USA and the Soviet Union. The two had fought in the same side against Nazi Germany in the Second World War but had different ideologies all the same. The US held democratic and capitalist views while the Soviet Union clung to dictatorship and Communist ideologies.
After the Second World War, the world experienced a power vacuum due to the poor state of many nations economically and militarily. This led to the two relatively stable nations, the US and the Soviet Union, to come to fill that vacuum. Each endeavored to take control of many states as possible. This was made by advancing ideologies, propaganda, economic wars, proxy wars and diplomatic haggling against the enemy nation. This conflict between the Capitalist nations led by the US and the Communist nations led by the Soviet Union is what came to be known as Cold War.
The Cold World War was the zenith of a series of events that greatly changed the global distribution of power. Indeed, the National Security Council Paper No.68, the seminal statement of US Cold War policies clearly put it that “within the past thirty-five years the world has experienced two global wars of tremendous violence… two revolutions-the Russian and the Chinese- of extreme scope and intensity…the collapse of five empires- the Ottoman, the Austro-Hungarian, Germany, Italian and Japanese.” Apart from these empires, the world had also experienced the decline of two major regal systems, the British and the French. The result of all these eventualities created a power vacuum that was soon filled by the United States and the Soviet Union (Mc Mahon, 2003).