Rare photographs taken at the end of World War II, 1945-1947

At the end of the war, millions were killed and millions were left homeless, the European economy collapsed, and much of European industrial infrastructure was destroyed.

The Soviet Union was also badly affected. The borders were redrawn and homecoming, expulsion and burial was underway. But large-scale reconstruction efforts had just begun.

Despite their wartime alliance, tensions between the Soviet Union and the United States and Great Britain allies during World War II, the United States and the USSR became competitors on the world stage and engaged in the Cold War, so-called because it never appeared. did not occur, declared heated war between the two powers, but was instead characterized by espionage, political sabotage and proxy wars.

Western Europe and Japan were rebuilt through the American Marshall Plan, while Central and Eastern Europe fell under the Soviet sphere of influence and eventually an "Iron Curtain". Europe was divided into the US-led Western Bloc and the Soviet-led Eastern Bloc..

Internationally, alliances with the two factions gradually shifted, with some nations trying to stay out of the Cold War through the Non-Aligned Movement.

The Cold War also saw a nuclear arms race between the two superpowers; The reason the Cold War never became a "hot" war was that the Soviet Union and the United States were pitted against each other with nuclear deterrents, leading to a mutually assured destruction stalemate.

As a result of the war, the Allies created the United Nations, an organization for international cooperation and diplomacy, similar to the League of Nations. The members of the United Nations agreed to outlaw wars of aggression in an attempt to avoid World War III.

The devastated Great Powers of Western Europe formed the European Coal and Steel Community, which later developed into the European Common Market and eventually the present-day European Union.

The effort began as an attempt to avoid another war between Germany and France and a common market for vital natural resources, mainly by economic cooperation and integration.

The rate of disintegration from the great powers increased with the independence of India (from the United Kingdom), Indonesia (from the Netherlands), the Philippines (from the Americas), and several Arab countries at the end of the war. Primarily from specific rights that were granted to great powers by the League of Nations mandate in the post-World War I era, but often actually existed before this time.

Also related was the US helping Israel gain controversial independence from its previous status as part of Palestine in the years immediately following the war. Independence came more slowly for the nations of sub-Saharan Africa.

After World War II, along with the People's Republic of China, Southeast Asia also saw the rise of communist influence, as the Chinese Communists emerged victorious from the Chinese Civil War in 1949.

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