Postwar U.S. Economic Policies
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During Post World War II years, the United States was the greatest power in the world. Europe was devastated after having experience two major wars within the course of a 30 year period. The soil of the U.S. had never been subjected to the destruction associated with major military invasion and it was, therefore, strong enough to exploit others throughout the world. Consequently, the United States was able in the post war years to dominate most of the third-world countries. Eventually, the strategy used by the U.S. to make itself economically and politically powerful posed problems to the U.S. As the military expenses associated with maintaining its role in the world increased, European countries, as well as Japan, were able to develop strong economies rather than investing money within military forces.
Japan and Economic Policies
In the case of Japan, after World War II had ended, Japan was devastated due to the following:
- All the large cities (with the exception of Kyoto), the industries and the transportation networks were severely damaged.
- A severe shortage of food continued for several years.
- During the post-war period, under the protection of the U.S., Japan was in a catch-up phase of its economic development.
With an initial boost by the U.S., Japan moved towards industrialization and through the 1980's developed itself into one of the fast growing economies in the world. However, when the stock market plummeted in the early 1990's, Japan's economy plummeted as well and continues in its' attempts to restore itself.