Divided Together studies US and Soviet policy toward the United Nations during the first two decades of the Cold War. It sheds new light on a series of key episodes, beginning with the prehistory of the UN, an institution that aimed to keep the Cold War cold.

Gaiduk employs previously secret Soviet files on UN policy, greatly expanding the evidentiary basis for studying the world organization. His analysis of Soviet and US tactics and behavior, covering a series of international controversies over security and crisis resolution, reveals how the rivals tried to use the UN to gain leverage over each other during the institution’s critical early years.

Ilya V. Gaiduk, who died in 2011 during the completion of this book, was a Senior Research Fellow, Institute of World History, Russian Academy of Sciences, Moscow. He had been a Fellow at the Woodrow Wilson Center in 2005–6. He was also the author of Confronting Vietnam: Soviet Policy toward the Indochina Conflict, 1954–1963, which was published in 2003 in the Cold War International History Project series.


1. Introduction: An Elusive United Nations 

2. On the Way to the United Nations

3. A Very Tense Opening

4. The Cold War Enters the UN: US Rhetoric versus Soviet Propaganda

5. The Friendly Enemies

6. The Long Year 1950

7. Frosts, Thaw, and Crises

8. In Search of New Allies

9. With and Without

10. Conclusion: From Hell to Heaven?


“[T]ruly a groundbreaking work in the study of the history of the United Nations.… This is an elegantly-written book, with an ironic sense of humor and balanced analysis. Any scholar interested in the Cold War would benefit greatly from reading Gaiduk’s meticulously-researched study. The book is a pleasure to read, which makes it especially useful as a text for both undergraduates and graduate students.”—Svetlana Savranskaya, Journal of Cold War Studies

“Specialists on Soviet-American relations and international relations more generally will find it enhances and refines their understanding of US and Soviet policies toward the United Nations.”—David Foglesong, H-Net

“This academic monograph is a must-read for anyone who teaches or writes about the early Cold War or the United Nations. It could be equally valuable to a classroom audience…”—Russian Review

“This volume picks up on familiar threads synthesizes them, embellishes them with excellent materials from Soviet sources, and presents them clearly.”—Mel Leffler, University of Virginia

“Gaiduk’s research into the off-limits Soviet archives represents an original contribution to a better understanding of US-Soviet tensions at the UN.”—Stephen Schlesinger, author of Act of Creation