Britain and the Cold War, 1945–1990

Klaus Larres

in The Oxford Handbook of the Cold War

Published in print January 2013 | ISBN: 9780199236961
Published online January 2013 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks in History

Britain and the Cold War, 1945–1990


This chapter examines the role of Great Britain in the Cold War. It describes the condition and experiences of Britain from 1945 to 1990 and explores how Britain managed to maintain its global influence during the Cold War, despite its decline. The chapter argues that although Britain was forced to operate within structure of the Cold War, the British state and its leaders were able to make their own political decisions. Examples of these include the war resolution against Argentina to recapture the Falklands Islands in 1982, the decision not to participate in the Schuman Plan negotiations of 1950, and the determination to develop a nuclear bomb shortly after the end of World War 2.

Keywords: Cold War; Great Britain; political decisions; war resolution; Argentina; Falkland Islands; Schuman Plan negotiations; nuclear bomb

Article.  8671 words. 

Subjects: History ; Cold War ; British History

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