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The Cold War (1947 to 1991)
Transcript of The Cold War (1947 to 1991)
The Cold War (1947 to 1991)
The Cold War heats up.
The Korean War (1950-1953)
In 1949, two event make the simmering conflict between the
Union (Russia and its
) and the USA and its western allies.
The struggle gets "hotter."
The Berlin Air Lift (1948)
Deeper causes of the Cold War conflicts
NATO and the Warsaw Pact
The Cold War (1947 to 1991)
What started The Cold War?
After World War II, Europe was divided based on the
democracy v communism
capitalism v socialism.
To avoid the
spread of communism into western
Europe, the USA instituted the
After WWII, the Russia refused to withdraw its troops from eastern Europe. The USA, England and France remained in western sector of Germany to ensure the establishment of a stable German government and to prevent
government from taking over the western sector. Europe was divided between
governments that were pro-western
and pro-communist in eastern Europe.
President Truman's idea
to stop the spread of communism and socialism into western Europe.
commander in charge of Germany's reconstruction was given credit by Truman because the Republican controlled congress refused to give Truman any money to rebuild Europe after the war. However, Truman believed that the USA could not make the same mistake that it made after WW I when the USA became isolated from the affairs of Europe. He believed that if General Marshall requested reconstruction funds, Congress would approve the monies needed to rebuild western Europe.
Truman understood the new role that the USA would take in the post-World War II era. America was a
with responsibilities to ensure the freedom of other nations and people.
expanded monetary aid to
Turkey and Greece to prevent
the infiltration of Communism
into these regions.
a political belief
1) the Soviet Union developed its first atomic bomb from the plans
that it seized from German scientists, who had been working
on such plans during the end of WW II.
Chinese Nationalists under Chiang-Kai-shek
fall to the
communists army of Mao-Zedong.
More than a billion people in
Asia were now under communist rule.
These events make Americans fear a world dominated by Communism.
In an effort to starve West Berliners into submission to Communist rule, the Soviet Union blocked all rail lines and roads into West Berlin, which was under the control of the USA, France and England.
The USA refused to let the Soviet Union to seize control of West Berlin, which was located in the Soviet sector of East Germany. After WW II, the capital of Germany (like the country itself) was divided into West Berlin and East Berlin. The USA did not want to initiate a new war after the conclusion of WW II. Therefore, the USA launched an air drop of supplies and food to West Berliners between June 1948 and May 1949. The USA delivered 5,000 tons of food and supplies per day to 2 million West Berliners for almost 2 years.
As tensions developed between the
Soviet Union and the USA, Europe braced for a conflict. Two different "schools" of thought developed. One in defense of the
west, which supported
capitalism. The North Atlantic Treaty
consisted of the
USA and its allies in
Europe and Greece and
NATO countries are in green.
In response to NATO, Russia and its
which made up the
Europe now was braced for conflict. The US set up missile defenses in Turkey and the Soviet Union started to exercise greater political control over
eastern Europe. An
of political, social and economic differences separated eastern and western Europe.
is attributed to English Prime Minister Winston Churchill, who was the political leader
of England during World War II.
The North Atlantic Treaty Organization
The Vietnam War (1959 to 1975)
From 1910 to 1945 (the end of WW II) Korea was a colony of Japan. In the closing days of WW II, the Japanese army in the northern part of the peninsular surrendered to the Russian army; the Japanese army surrendered to the USA.
The Domino Theory is expanded.
The Korean War Veterans Memorial
in Washington, DC
This memorial was built after the Vietnam War Memorial.
The Vietnam War was much more controversial than the
Korean War since the USA entered the Korean
War under a UN mandate.
The movement of UN forces under the command of the US and the movements of North Korean forces with their Communist Chinese allies.
General Mac Arthur led
the UN Forces in Korea.
MacArthur was also the commander of the Ally forces during the "island hopping" process of World War II.
The photograph above shows MacArthur landing
in the Philippines after the US forces recaptured
the islands from the Japanese at the end
of World War II.
What was the cartoon's message?
Early in war (1950), the UN forces had advanced and pushed the North Korean army almost to the North Korean/Chinese border. Then, the Chinese government committed its forces to the conflict and pushed the UN forces back to
(southeast corner of the Korean peninsular (See the map above.)
united in the defense of democracy
The Korean peninsular was divided in half with the north under control of the
(Russia and its
). The USA controlled the south. In 1950, the unification of Korea was threatened
when North Korean troops crossed the 38th parallel.
At the 38th parallel there is a
Demilitarized Zone (DMZ).
If either side transgresses into this zone, it will be perceived as an act of hostilities and could trigger an all out war.
America believed that the "free world" had to take a stand against the growing tide of Communism
in the world.
If America did not take a stand
against the world would fall to
the ideology of Communism,
like dominoes in a chain.
This idea of American foreign policy became known as the
After World War II, Ho Chi Minh, the leader of the Vietnamese Nationalists who fought against the Japanese, sought independence from France, which had colonized and occupied Vietnam
(as part of French Indochina)
(Age of Imperialism)
(the beginning of WW II).
After WW II, the
tried to reestablish its colonial claim on Vietnam.
The USA backed France's recolonization process because a
government could be reestablished and prevent the potential threat of a take over by
(Remember the Domino Theory).
However, Ho Chi Minh was determine to free his country from foreign rule.
Ho Chi Minh did support communism; he was ONLY an ideological friend of China. He did not want to replace the French occupation with a Chinese occupation under Mao Zedong. (Chinese and Vietnam had been bitter enemies for centuries because China had conquered Vietnam earlier in Vietnam's history.) The USA was more focused on ideology than history.
Vietnamese Nationalist, Ho Chi Minh
As a young student,
Ho Chi Minh attended the peace
conference at the end of WW I. He was inspired by
for all nationalities and people around the world.
Vietnam War (1959 to 1975)
How did the USA get into the war?
Although the USA backed the French in Vietnam to maintain democracy in the region, the French government never stabilized itself enough after the Nazi occupation during WW II. In fact, there was a pro-communist faction within France. The USA was concerned about Vietnam (in Asia) and France (in Europe) falling to Communism.
The USA felt that it had a commitment to France in both Europe and Asia, but French forces in Vietnam were defeated by Ho Chi Minh's Nationalist forces at Dein Bien Phu in 1954. With this defeat of the French, the best that the pro-western world could expect was to divide Vietnam as Korea had been in 1953.
North Vietnam would be controlled by pro-communist forces under Ho Chi Minh;
South Vietnam would be ruled by a Christian pro-western politician of the Diem family.
In 1959, the USA sent military advisers to South Vietnam to train pro-western troops.
In 1964, the USA began to send armed forces to Vietnam after an American gunship was
by North Vietnamese gunboats. The US Congress gave President Lyndon Baines Johnson full authority to
"execute the war"
as he deemed necessary to thwart the aggression of North Vietnam. By 1967, the USA had almost 400,000 soldiers
"in the theater." (That was double the number that the USA had in both Iraq and Afghanistan from 2003 to today.)
The Valley of
Dien Bein Phu
where the French forces were defeated by Ho Chi Minh's Nationalist forces in 1954.
The Vietnamese forces were in the highlands surrounding the valley where the French were dug in. All supply lines to the French forces were cut; the French were trapped.
The "attack" on the USS Maddox
was the "trigger point" that led to
the USA's involvement in Vietnam.
The US Congress siged the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution, which gave the president (LBJ) full authority over the prosecution of the war in 1964.
This resolution will lead the USA into a
commitment of war until 1975.
President Richard M. Nixon and Secretary of State, Henry Kissinger, negotiated peace in Vietnam with Ho Chi Minh (Vietnam) and Mao Zedong (China). They will"normalize" peace among the three nations.
Ho Chi Minh
Deeper yet, there was a threat of Communism infiltrating the Western Hemisphere (America's
"sphere of influence"
Ninety miles away from Florida, the Cuban Revolution led by Fidel Castro overthrew pro-USA ruler, Fulgencio Batista, who was a dictator.
The NY Times
actually supporter the overthrew. However,
did not bring democracy to Cuba, rather he replaced Batista with his rule under
President John F. Kennedy tried to overthrow Castro in the infamous
Bay of Pigs invasion
of Cuba. This covert CIA operation used Cuban Nationalists, who were in exile in the USA, as assassins. The plot failed and Castro sought aid from the Soviet Union. This led to the
Cuban Missile Crisis
In 1963, the Soviet Union sent missiles to Cuba secretly. These missiles could target and hit every major city in the USA.
Kennedy responded with a "quarantine" of the island of Cuba. Through negotiations a third World War was avoided. The USA would remove its missiles from Turkey and the Soviet Union would remove its missiles from Cuba.
the missiles from Cuba
Cold War Propaganda
During the 1970s and 1980s, the Cold War continued because there was a perceived threat of Communism expanding throughout Latin America. Many Latin American countries resented the intrusion of the USA into their internal affairs.
The USA started its role of "Big Brother" in Latin America during the Golden Age of Imperialism during the Gilded Age (1876 to 1912) and continued to exercise its power in the western hemisphere into the later part of the 20th century.
"Sphere of Influence"
America's Foreign Policies in Latin America:
(1823) – the USA will tolerate no NEW European colonies in the western hemisphere.
The Roosevelt Corollary
(1906) – the USA will consider any interference from European powers as a direct
act of war on the USA.
(Taft-1908) – the USA will provide economic support of its neighbors, rather than use
force to secure its "Sphere of influence" in the western hemisphere.
(The USA intervened with military force in the Dominican Republic, Honduras and Nicaragua to secure its invest ments in the region.)
(Wilson-1912) – the USA will only participate in the affairs of its "neighbors"if it is
asked to assist.
(The USA intervened in Mexico to bring stability to the region.)
The "Good Neighbor" Policy
(FDR-1935) – Like a "good" neighbor the USA will respect the sovereignty of
(Throughout the late 1930s and 1940s, the USA intervened to secure its interest in the region.)
The Soviet Union built the Berlin Wall, which prevented
people in East Berlin from observing the economic success that West Berlin was experiencing as a result of the Marshall Plan. The Soviet Union's ability to keep up with the economic power of western capitalism was dwarfed. It was a testimony to the "free world" that capitalism worked and East Berlin's failure was an embarrassment to the ideology of Communism. The soviet Union also built the wall to prevent East Berliners from fleeing to West Berlin. The fall of the Berlin Wall (1991) was the symbolic end of the Cold War (1947 to 1991).
President Wilson intervened in Mexico's civil war
when a struggle for power between a dictator,
Huerta, and a revolutionary, "Poncho" Villa, threatened
the safety of American investors and their families.
Wilson sent troops into Mexico. "Poncho" Villa
intercepted a train on which 28 American marines
were traveling. He detained the soldiers, but released
them when Wilson threatened action.
Later , in 1916, "Poncho" Villa attacked a community
in New Mexico and killed 128 civilians. This was the first attack on the USA since the War of 1812. Wilson conducted a massive search throughout Mexico for Villa from 1916 to 1917 (the start of America's involvement in World War I.)
Note: 100,000 Vietnamese soldiers fought side by side with the French against the Japanese during World War II.
In this political cartoon (circa 1940), Dr. Suess portrayed America's ideals for foreign
policy in Latin America.
However, in reality and to the
disappointment o many Latin
American countries, the USA
pursued its long standing foreign policy as laid out
by TR in the early 1900s. America resorted to power,
and TR's "Big Stick" Policy in Latin America.
For three years the conflict persisted. In 1953, an
was signed by the warring parties (UN forces and the South Korean government, and the Soviet Union, Communist China and the North Korean government.
(An armistice is
an agreement to stop the fighting,
reestablish political or economic links between
) There is still no
between the USA and the North Korean government.
The country of Korea is divided at the 38th parallel,
as it was prior to the war.
Ngo Dinh Diem was a pro-western
He was perceived as a pro-democracy leader by the USA.
Ngo Dinh Diem, on the cover of
magazine, indicated the hopes that the USA had for Diem to establish a democratic government in South Vietnam.
never fulfilled America's hopes for
He never connected with the people. He was a
who sought power for himself and his family. He was backed by the
who feared that their fortunes would be seized by
the Communists led by Ho Chi Minh
in the north. Diem was assassinated in an August 1963 CIA operation.
Before the coup plot, President John F. Kennedy
(JFK) had determined that the corruption within the Diem
government was a liability to the USA's efforts to unify the
country of Vietnam and to ensure a stable democracy in
Southeast Asia. Acting on the advice of US advisers/trainers in
Vietnam, JFK realized South Vietnamese troops were not willing to fight as aggressively as their counterparts in the North. JFK started to plan America's
On November 22, 1963,
was assassinated and the conduct of the war
was turned over to his vice president.
Lyndon Baines Johnson
be remembered as the Vietnam
president although he was
instrumental in securing Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s Dream for America
By 1967, LBJ had committed almost 400,000
Americans to the struggle in Vietnam. As America's
war effort increased, the world started to react. The
people of North Vietnam rallied behind the charismatic
leadership of Ho Chi Minh and joined
forces (known as the
Viet Cong – VLA
throughout the country.
To break the supply lines of the Viet Cong and the North Vietnamese
Army (NVA), America resorted to
"carpet bombing" of the Ho Chi
which transverses the country.
The North Vietnamese leadership circumnavigated the strategy of "carpet
bombing" by crossing into neighboring
Loas and Cambodia
supplies to the Viet Cong (VLA) and the North Vietnamese
"Regular" Army (NVA) in the South.
(1968 to 1975)
In 1967, President
Lyndon Baines Johnson
(LBJ) shocked the
nation when he announced that he would not run as presidential candidate for the Democrats. The war in Vietnam had drained his
strength and the nation's perception of him. He would be
remembered as the "Vietnam War President," not the "Civil Rights advocate" that he was. The Democrats were split and the Republican candidate,
, won the presidency in 1968.
Protest over the war in Vietnam
In Vietnam, Buddhist monks protested against American aggressions and support of the corrupt South Vietnam government, which the USA supported in the name of "freedom."
In the USA, there were draft riots and burning of draft card in protest against a war 8,000 miles from home and with no real end in sight.
Draft board files were destroyed by the Berrigan brothers and college campuses were sites of massive student "sit-ins" against the war, LBJ, and Secretary of Defense, Robert McNamara and General Westmoreland, who seemed to mislead the American public about the progress of the war.
The press turned against the war as nightly tallies of the "body counts" of Americans mounted and reports of corruption within the government and South Vietnamese army command.
Civil Defiance in the name of peace
Robert Mc Namara,
Secretary of Defense
Fallen soldier returns home
The line was drawn
between the USA
and the Soviet Union
(Russia and its
After the "Cold War" ended some former Warsaw Pact countries joined NATO.
(1947 to 1991)
The UN forces launched a daring invasion at Inchon ( in
a flanking maneuver) and pushed the Chinese forces back
(See map above – west coast of the peninsular)
The coup to remove Diem was a
costly political error for the USA.
Upon hearing about the coup d' etat executed by
the USA's Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), it was reported
that Ho Chi Minh said, "I can scarely believe that the Americans would be so stupid."
Triumph Forsaken: The Vietnam War, 1954-1965.
New York: Cambridge University Press, 2006.
Among the anti-Communists in South Vietnam or those exiled
in other countries, no one had sufficient political assets or
abilities to cause others to obey. The South Vietnamese
government became destabilized.
Note: President Kennedy was unaware
of the coup plot planned by the CIA
America will be stuck in the
known as Vietnam.
Student rioted on Kent State University campus.
The National Guard was called in to disrupt the protestors.
Four students were killed when the National Guard opened fire
Draft cards were destroyed
to protest the war in Vietnam.
Protestors march on the capital
Behind the Closed Doors
It is during this time in American history
that the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA)
and the the National Security Agency (NSA)
The USA also created the Tactical Air Command
(TAC) and the Strategic Air Command (SAC) to
conduct 24 hours of surveillance of the Soviet
Union and its allies around the world.
Can America "save face?"
on January 30, 1968, Americans
had grown tired of the protracted war in Vietnam. With a
new administration in charge of the war, American wanted a
peace that would allow them to avoid humiliation. Nixon achieved
peace. Americans have bitter memories our hurried exit from Vietnam.
Refugees fleeing from the Viet Cong
The last chopper leaving from the roof top of the US Embassy left many who collaborated with American forces behind to face the Viet Cong.
The Tet Offensive was a coordinated attack by the Viet Cong and the NVA on numerous strategic positions throughout
South Vietnam during a "cease fire" was declared by both combatants in celebration of the Chinese New Year. This attack
caught American forces off guard and brought into question how American commanders were conducting the war.
Those who were left behind faced work camps and
education under Communist rule.
The cost of the Vietnam War (1959 to 1975)
57,000 Fallen American "Heroes"
"A Deadly Game"
Throughout the Cold War,
both the USA and the Soviet Union
built enough nuclear weapons to destroy
the world fifteen time. Both countries realized that
would result in "
was the only solution when
conflicts arose or one combatant felt threatened by the
other. The Cold War ended in 1991 when
failed to compete with
The Soviet Union could
not keep up with the arms production of the America.
The End of the Cold War
The Cold War Period was a time of Spy v Spy.
Soviet Union's KGB
Neither side trusted the other.
Both sides viewed the other
side as a "power grabber."
Soviet Union Propaganda
Secretary of State, Dulles consuming Soviet region
Stalin grabbing eastern Europe
The threat of Communism spreading became
an even greater threat with the fall of
Chaing Kai shek's army to the
Communist backed forces of
Mao Zedong in China.
At the beginning of the
Cold War, Truman was president
(1945 - 1952).
From 1953 to 1960,
Dwight D.Eisenhower was president and
policy of "contaiment"
stop the spread ofCommunism.
Eisenhower was the supreme ally
commander during World War II.
After the Cold War ended, the USA was the only "superpower" in the world, but this status would be threatened by several unforeseen forces in the world.
Unpredictable peace with Russia
Economic and political pressures
and other dangers to democracy
from within the country
(The Cold War from 1960 to 1968)
The Cold War
In 1991, the Berlin Wall was
dismantled and symbolically ended the Cold War.
President Gorbachev, Premier of the Soviet Union
President Ronald Regan of the USA
What will happen next?
Why was the time period
from 1947 to 1991 called
the "Cold War?"
What started the "Cold War?
How did it escalate?
What is ideology?
USS Maddox was in support
of the aircraft carrier,
Note: the USA
sack of $$$.
meant "Mutual Destruction."
A build up of nuclear weapons
Look into the relationship
that the USA and Russia
(20 years after the Cold War ended.)
The rise of Communist China as an economic rival
Overview of the first decade of the Cold War
Click on this link to review the Cold War
1969 – Nixon established a policy of
to turn control over
to the South Vietnamese army.
The USA army would withdraw its ground
engagements and provide only air support
to South Vietnamese ground forces.
To achieve Vietnamization, Nixon
set up diplomatic ties with Communist China, which was Ho Chi Minh's ally.
In an effort to position the USA's negotiating
powers at the Paris Peace Accords, Nixon secretly expanded the role of American forces into Laos and Cambodia to counteract the insurgent NVA forces . He had no authority to expand US involvement into these countries.