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The Cold War (1946-1963): Excluding Civil Rights and Vietnam

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Robert Baker

on 20 March 2017

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Transcript of The Cold War (1946-1963): Excluding Civil Rights and Vietnam

Age of Affluence

Conglomerate – Major corporation that owns smaller companies in unrelated industries
Franchise – Company that offers similar products or services in many locations
Consumerism – Excessively concerned with buying material goods
Consumerism soared in the 1950s
There were new items to buy
Furniture, appliances, etc. for the new houses
Planned obsolescence – Purposely making products to become outdated or wear out too quickly

American Dream in the 50’s
When asked if they were communists…
Both Rosenbergs denied the charges, plead the 5th

Both convicted and sentenced to death

Judge Irving Kaufman declared their crime “Worse than murder.”

It has been proved that Julius acted as a courier (a spy). Confirmed in 1995, and again in 2008. Evidence against his wife, Ethel, is ambiguous at best

Only time in U.S. that citizens suspected of espionage were executed.

MacArthur began to lose influence
Joint Chiefs bypassed him and went straight to Ridgeway
MacArthur wanted to nuke interior North Korea
Truman fired him on April 11th, 1951
For crossing the 38th parallel, which he was not supposed to do
and advocating the use of nukes
War finally ends in 1953 with an armistice
US and South Korea create a Mutual defense alliance

Korean War
US has a very small army now
Nuclear weapons were the deterrent to any aggressor
NSC-68 – suggested the U.S. needed a rapid expansion of conventional military forces and nuclear weapons
This would increase defense spending from $13 to $50 Billion.
Truman was reluctant to increase spending in a time of peace, the Korean War changed his mind

Nuclear Deterrent
The Cold War
Dealey Plaza

JFK’s assassination

Realizing the U.S. was behind, Kennedy asked VP Lyndon Johnson to look into the space program,
Kennedy wanted to catch up.

Johnson replied, the U.S. needed to do a lot, BUT, a piloted moon landing was far in the future, and the U.S. could likely get there first.

May 25, Kennedy announced the Apollo program, to put a man on the moon.

Disaster would strike first.

Kennedy Launches the Moon Race

Crisis: Cuba & Russia had jointly placed over 40 nuclear missiles well within reach of hitting the U.S., Latin America, and Canada

In October of 1962
Spy planes saw IRBM’s on Cuba
All they needed were nuclear bombs
Kennedy had to decide how to handle it

High Noon in the Cold War
Bay of Pigs

The CIA trained Cuban exiles to land in Cuba
and lead a revolution against Castro
Cubans were supposed to join them
They didn't
On April 5, 1961 the Cuban exiles landed and were crushed by the Cuban Army and Air Force
1,400 Cuban exiles are captured by Castro
they revealed the U.S. backing
Kennedy took full responsibility

The Bay of Pigs

Cuba was a major exporter of sugar to the U.S. and a tourist destination
In 1952, General Fulgencio Batista overthrew the Cuban government and established a military dictatorship
He was corrupt, took Mafia and Big Business bribes
In 1952-53, a revolution began led by Fidel and Raul Castro
stated goal was to bring democracy to Cuba
It failed
The brothers were exiled
In 1956, the brothers returned with Guerrilla soldiers
Fidel Castro takes over in 1959 without US support.
Fidel named himself President for life
The U.S. applied economic sanction against Cuba
Cuba became dependent on the Soviet Union for support
Eisenhower and the CIA planned an overthrow
Kennedy decided to continue with the plans

Television predates World War II - but it was not commercially feasible
Radio and print dominated
1947 – 7,000 TV sets in homes

By 1950 – 7.3 million owned TV’s
By 1960, 87% of Americans had a TV in their home
FCC licensed stations
Federal Communications Commission
Their domain now extended to TV
The Television now dominated Radio


Dick Clark’s American Bandstand

Soldiers returned home to marry and start families.
Birth rate shot up
More babies born from 1946-1964 than in the last 30 years
Boom peaked in 1957, but continued into the early 1960’s
Couples who could not afford families during the depression made up for lost time
Approx. 79 million babies born

The Baby Boom
Restrictive covenants - Placed rules on community
Must cut grass once a week
No laundry hanging during the weekends
No blacks, Jews, or Catholics

Shelley v. Kraemer – outlawed restrictive covenants
Still happened

Post WW2 conference at Bretton Woods, New Hampshire
Set up the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund (IMF)
US dominated both
Gave the most money
Established U.S. currency as the backbone of internation exchange
Remember, the United States was not torn apart by war - that left our economy and market stable

Bretton Woods System

Writers and directors in Hollywood
All accused of being Communists
Went to jail – tried to use 1st amendment rights

Actors, writers, producers, directors, etc.
Many couldn’t find work

Hollywood Ten
Soviets launched the first satellite in 1957
They won the “Space Race”
Eisenhower approved NASA
Prior to that, the Air Force ran space research for the nation
Millions of dollars are pumped into education, primarily for a revamp of math and science
That legacy continues today, those subjects often get the most funding
Eisenhower wanted more scientists and engineers

Sputnik and The Space Race
Throughout the Cold War…
Defense spending skyrocketed
Lots of money invested in Research and Development
GDP tripled by 1970
Top 10% got richer

Defense Spending

Eisenhower defeated Adlai Stevenson
Began an age of modern Republicanism
Less change than some were expecting

1952 Election
Korean War
Kim Il-sung started a war to unify Korean, with Soviet blessings
convinced North Korea that if they acted swiftly and decisively they could unite the country before anyone could do anything about it
Didn’t think U.S. would intervene - the U.S. had recently announced that South Korea was not in the U.S.'s defensive sphere
Invasion started June 25, 1950
UN approved a “police action” to stop the invasion
Mostly US forces – led by Douglas MacArthur

Korean War
Soviet’s response - Mutual Defense Treaty
USSR, Albania, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, East Germany, Hungary, Poland, and Romania
The Cold War heated up

Warsaw Pact
As a part of the Truman Doctrine, the US entered into a peacetime military alliance
First time outside of the Western Hemisphere
North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO)
US, Canada, Britain, France, Italy, Belgium, Netherlands, Luxembourg, Denmark, Norway, Portugal, and Iceland
You attack one, you attack us all

NATO agreed to the creation of West Germany
Joined NATO in 1955


To combat the negative impact of WWII in Europe
Proposed by Secretary of State George C. Marshall July 1947 – lasted 4 years
$13 billion to war-torn Western Europe
($160 billion today)
Aided 22 European nations

Two Major Aims:
prevent spread of Communism in Western Europe
stabilize an international political order in a way favorable to democracies and free-market economies

Marshall Plan
There was a U.S. belief that communism would infiltrate those areas of Europe left weakened by World War II

America would support free people resisting Communism by any means necessary
$400 million in aid to Greece and Turkey to assist in resisting Communist take-overs

Truman Doctrine
Stalin wanted to expand Communism
To him, security could be achieved if the countries of Eastern Europe were Communist
Kept troops in Iran
Tried to gain access to the Mediterranean Sea
Stirred up trouble in Greece

By 1948, All Eastern Europe was a Soviet Satellite State
Never held free elections
Violated the Yalta agreement

Established United Nations
5 Security Council Members
US, Britain, France, Soviet Union, and China
Free elections in Eastern Europe for countries Russia conquered during the war

Yalta Conference
Fears concerning another depression

What will keep us out
Home building

Strongest boom in American history

New fear Communism - A Second Red Scare

Post-War America

Proposals did not achieve their stated goals
Increased the power & reach of federal govt.

Reduced suffering of many people
Increased the power & reach of federal govt.

Was the Great Society a Success?

Kennedy was assassinated on November 22nd, 1963 in Dallas, Texas
Lee Harvey Oswald

The Assassination of John F. Kennedy
3 weeks later, on May 5, 1961, Alan Shepard became the first American in Space. He did not orbit the earth, but he did pilot his aircraft in space.

1 year later, American John Glenn became the first American to orbit the Earth.

Space Race
April 12, 1961 the USSR launched Yuri Gagarin into orbit – the 1st human in space and first “Cosmonaut” (Russian and Greek for “sailor of the Universe”)
Shocked and embarrassed the U.S.

Space Race

Soviets agree to turn ships around if:
US ends quarantine
US would not ever invade Cuba
US would later remove missiles from Turkey

Cuban Missile Crisis
The ensuing crisis lasted 13 days
October 16th – 28th
What were JFK’s options?
Air Attack

What would you do?

Cuban Missile Crisis

Television now dominated Radio
News coverage expanded
CBS and NBC were the original big stations
The TV would prove to be a powerful medium of communication, capable of swaying public opinion
Coverage of the Civil Rights movement helped end racial segregation
Presidents are elected based on appearance rather than substance

TV News
Church membership rose
1954 – “under God” added to the Pledge
1956 – “In God We Trust” added to coins
The Soviet Union promoted State Atheism, the U.S. was determined to the be the exact opposite.

The use of the pledge soared in public schools
Returning to Religion
Levitt created many suburbs
Suburbs created a demand for infrastructure
Cars, Roads,
Schools for children
More water, sewage, power grids

Interstate Highway Act 1956
42,500 miles of highway to be created
Called the National Interstate and Defense Highways Act
Eisenhower's original vision was for the interstate to be used for strategic transportation of troops and supplies
New wider and direct routes built across the U.S.
It changed population patterns, allowed for the growth of suburbia, and cemented the U.S. dependence on the automobile

The Freeway
Housing market died during the depression
Soldiers came home to a severe housing shortage
William Levitt developed a new type of housing
Mass produced
Very fast, four-room homes
Complete with a kitchen
$7,990 in 1947
Built in New York, Jersey, and Penn.
Called Levittowns

Birth of Suburbia
Because of the Great Depression before the war, there was a fear about the employment status of soldiers when they returned during demobilization
Industries would not be making war materials at the rate they had during the War - so employment would go down.
1944 GI Bill is passed to help returning soldiers
1 year unemployment for WW2 vets
Loans for education, homes, and businesses
Men became more educated and got jobs
The stimulus of money caused a housing boom

GI Bill

Ethel and Julius Rosenberg
Minor activists in the American Communist Party
Implemented when Klaus Fuchs (German Physicist) admitted giving information to the Soviets about the atomic bomb

The Rosenbergs (1953)
McCarthy launched a huge smear campaign
2,000 people lost their government jobs, despite the lack of evidence

Between April and June 1954 - the McCarthy Hearings took place
broadcast on TV & Radio to a national audience

In 1954 he attacked the US Army to "expose" Communist infiltration of the military
After this, his support declined
McCarthy died in 1957 powerless

Wisconsin Senator

Used America's post war fears of Communism as a campaign issue

Accused Truman of being soft on Communism and that Communists had infiltrated the State Department

Feb. 1950 – Claimed he had 205 names
All worked in the State Department
All were supposed Communists
If you opposed him…
You were either soft on Communism
Or a Communist

Senator Joseph McCarthy
France had difficulty maintaining control in Vietnam
US supported France based on the Domino Theory
If one country falls, so could the region

Vietnam in Trouble
SEATO = Southeast Asia Treaty Organization
Planned by John Foster Dulles
Attempt to keep Asian nations from becoming Communist
More concerned with stability than democracy
Monarchies and some totalitarian governments were allowed to exist
These governments were ruthless and corrupt, but they weren't Communist

Eisenhower wanted to monitor Soviet Nuclear power
Spy planes flew over the U.S.S.R. constantly
U-2 plane shot down in Russia in May 1960
Initially the U.S. denied it was us,said it was a weather plane
Kruschev revealed photos of Francis Gary Powers the captured pilot
US embarrassed, admitted to the flight
Kruschev decided he could not trust Eisenhower
Walked out of the Paris summit
a meeting to tone down the Cold War

U-2 Incident
Eisenhower promised "massive retaliation" in case of invasion of Europe
MAD = Mutually Assured Destruction - form of deterrence
Eisenhower wanted to build nukes
Built up Air Force and nuclear weapon supplie – air force to drop bombs
Army and Navy downsized
This also kicked off an internal military conflict over funding
policy which threatened nuclear war or meant going to the brink without going over the edge
the constant threat of nuclear war created a rather 'tense' environment on the U.S. homefront

Mutually Assured Destruction (MAD)
Stalin died in 1953
Nikita Khrushchev took over in 1956
Did not like Stalin
Made some overtures for peace
Unwilling to relax Communism

Threat of Soviet Invasion into Europe loomed
Stalin Dies

Korean War

Korea existed as a Japanese colony since 1910
After World War II – US and Soviets split the country, agreed to administer the country
There was supposed to be a free election as soon as possible
This fell through
The U.S. backed right wing political party led by Syngman Rhee and the Soviet backed left wing party led by Kim Il-sung objected and quickly organized their own countries
both bent on unifying Korea in their design

Nationalists vs. Communists
Chiang Kai-shek vs. Mao Zedong
US funded the Nationalists
U.S. Actually helped fund both during WWII against the Japanese
Nationalists lost and fled to Taiwan
People’s Republic of China created in 1949
U.S. support of the Nationalists earned the enmity of the Chinese Communists
Mao aligned China with Russia
U.S. refused to recognize the PRC, they continued to acknowledge the Taiwan government as the real China
U.S. strategists believe the creation of a Communist state in Asia changed the balance of power in Asia

Chinese Civil War
Outside of Europe, there was the threat of Communism's expansion into Asia
US helped rebuild Japan
Douglas MacArthur oversaw the rebuilding
"The Last Shogun"
Japanese embraced peace and democracy and baseball

Containment Ideals Spread
Truman asks the NSC for advice
NSC, CIA, DOD all created right after WW2
NSC-68 – Keep the Nuclear edge
Make more and make them better

Hydrogen bomb is tested in November of 1952
Soviets follow in 1953

National Security Council
Coined by George Kennen
Foreign Policy Diplomat
Became a key foreign policy program of the U.S. until the downfall of the Soviet Union in 1991
Must stop the spread of Communism
First applied to Europe
Later to the Middle East, Asia, Latin America, and Africa
In doing so, America altered it's usually stance of neutrality and non-intervention to a world protector against Communism

Truman was in charge now
“Bossed the whole meeting”
Angry that Stalin did not allow free elections


The Cold War
Khrushchev built the Berlin Wall in 1961
Needed to stop the mass exodus of citizens living in East Berlin from going to West Berlin
Kennedy said the wall is “a hell of a lot better than a war”

The 2nd Berlin Crisis and the Wall
Increased defense spending to highest levels
Proposed the idea of “Flexible Response”
Ability to deter all wars, not just nuclear like Eisenhower proposed

Kennedy – A Cold Warrior
Senator John F. Kennedy vs. Richard Nixon
Kennedy wins in a close election

1960 Election
Alan Freed
Form of popular music, characterized by heavy rhythms and simple melodies, that developed from rhythm and blues in the 1950s
Rock ‘n’ Roll
Women worked in factories during WWII and found new independence
After the war, a myth developed which depicted women as the ideal "house wife."
Leave it to Beaver -
television show

The Feminine Mystique
Written by Betty Friedan
Sparked second-wave of feminism
Many women actually not happy being
a housewife

2nd Red Scare
President Truman worried about spies
House Un-American Activities Committee
Sought out spies

The Cold War at Home
Dwight D. Eisenhower

1952, 1956

North had the early advantage

MacArthur countered and staged an amphibious landing at Inchon

Allies took Seoul two weeks later

Despite Chinese warnings, troops invaded the North and reached the Chinese border
General MacArthur wanted the war extended into China
Truman disagreed, urged caution

Korean War
September 1949
Scientists detect a rise in radioactivity in the air
What they detected was that the Soviets detonated their own A-Bomb
How would the US respond?

Nuclear Stalemate
How was Germany divided?

Stalin wanted the Allies out of Berlin
Blocked all traffic in and out in June of 1948
Allies responded by supplying Berlin through the air
Known as the "Berlin Airlift"

2.5 million tons of food and fuel
Stalin backed down May 1949

Berlin Crisis
U.N. Atomic Agency
Oversee and inspect atomic countries
US would destroy its stockpile but
after the plan was in effect
Soviets rejected the plan
distrust of United States
distrust of foreign inspections by the U.N.
U.S. then rejected Soviet plan to ban all nuclear weapons
Failure of the plan contributed to a nuclear arms race

Baruch Plan
4 televised debates

Nixon looked bad, but sounded better
Kennedy looked better

Kennedy-Nixon debates changed politics and presidential elections

The Great Debates

What was the Cold War?
A sustained state of political and military
tension between the U.S. and the U.S.S.R.
(Soviet Union) in addition to all their allies
Main discussion was the future of Germany
reparations & zones of occupation

to be taken from Japan
divided on 38th parallel
North - Russia
South - U.S.
The Nuclear Question
The U.S. dropped two atomic bombs on Japan
America had a nuclear monopoly on the world
Why is that dangerous?
What about the danger of other countries developing nukes?
The Baruch Plan sought to answer the nuclear tension
How does the prospect of nuclear war change war?
How does it change society?
In October, U.N. forces took captives that did not speak Korean

Nov. 27, 1950 - 33 Divisions of Chinese soldiers Smashed through American Lines

Army withdrew and established a defense line south of the 38th Parallel
General Matthew Ridgeway replaced General Walker as commander of the 8th Army
Walker died in a vehicle accident
Ridgeway was brilliant, decided to recreate a WWI battlefield scenario and put the Chinese/North Korean forces in a meat grinder
His attack drove the enemy back north of the 38th Parallel
It is estimated the Ridgeway inflicted close to 1 million casualties

Radio DJs like Alan Freed began playing R&B music without informing their white audiences that the music's artists were African-American

Soon, a new music grew out of R&B which combined elements of country and pop - it was a collision of racial cultures. The result - Rock 'n" Roll
No Notes Rock History
There is not a precise date or beginning of Rock 'n' Roll, but it is a Southern phenomenon
no song or group can really get the credit for being first
There are only cornerstones

1940s and 50s mainstream music was preserved for white artists and produced primarily for white audiences
the songs were slow and simple
in reality is was about supply and demand
music represented the tastes of the growing middle class
record companies gave them what they wanted - it made them rich
slowly - R&B worked its way into the white community
Early Cornerstones
In the South
Country Blues
Derived from slave songs and spirituals
Robert Johnson's "Crossroads"
In urban areas throughout the U.S., Jazz and Blues overlapped in a fast rhythm scheme
some refered to these faster beats as "boogie woogie"
Accordingly, new generations of musicians abandoned their predecessors and sped up the pace to something a bit more wild.
Lyrics remained reminiscent of the blues, they were often painful stories.
R&B Hits White Suburbia

Soon R&B records began to show up on jukeboxes and other places white teens hung out
Radio D.J.s, such as Alan Freed, often referred to these new songs as Rock 'n' Roll to hide the fact that the artists were black
Record companies, realizing the demand, were quick to act. They usually re-recorded songs using well known white artists
Ike Turner and "Rocket 88"

In March, 1951, Ike Turner recorded a song called "Rocket 88"
considered by most to be the first Rock 'n' Roll song that brought all elements together.
But it wasn't mainstream.
Mainstream music was still "white artists" performing non-threatening music
R&B mixes with Country

Most white southerners did not care for R&B, or Blues.
Their primary music was country

Elsewhere, things were a bit different. In Chester, PA a Country and Western band began playing a mixture of R&B and Country Swing

They became very popular on the East Coast
One record in 1952 sold 30,000 copies
Then, in 1955, they recorded one more song
Cultures Continue to Merge
R&B grew in acceptance with white audiences but cover versions by artists like Pat Boone still dominated the market
Many thought that Pat Boone was Rock 'n" Roll...then they heard Fats
Challenge. Close your eyes for the next song and see if you can correctly guess the race of the artist.
Many people listening on the radio, did not know that Fats was a black man. Notice the country twang in his voice as he hammers out that rhythm on the piano

After seeing him live, more and more people grew to accept him without the Pat Boone covers. He inspired new artists to record

White audiences could handle that cross in the racial barrier because Fats was very non-threatening
BUT, a new star out of Macon, GA...was
Little Richard wanted to take Fats Domino's sound further with those unique vocals learned in Georgia Gospel choirs.

Despite his "force," record companies continued to use white artists as cover versions...even though the white artists didn't particular care for the songs.
For someone like Pat Boone who is used to mostly ballads, R&B/Rock 'n' Roll is a bit to edgy
Regardless, DJs continued to play R&B and some record producers pushed to record the new sound
Sam Phillips - Sun Records in Memphis, TN is probably the most infamous of the group
Electric Instruments and Riffs
During the great migration, Mississippi Delta Blues traveled north to Chicago
In order to fill the large venues, they began to electrify the sound
Electric Guitars
Amplified Harmonicas
The result was Chicago Blues
Bo Diddley begins to merge Chicago Blues with Rock 'n' Roll
In 1955 another musician drove up to Chicago from the Deep South, his name was Chuck Berry
he was not interested in old blues or R&B
Berry was more interested in Country/Western
He grew up on he affluent side of town, his father owned a repair shop
Barry might be the first Rock 'n' Roll artist to write song about commercialism
Berry used to confuse people
people heard him on the radio, and listened to the words of his songs...they believed he was white
His guitar was something new; it was part blues, part country, but pure rock 'n' roll.
Berry helped bridge a gap. DJs became adamant about playing the black artists. Some even banned Pat Boone covers. Men like Fats,Little Richard, and Chuck Berry inspired other black musicians to record songs. But eventually, one poor white truck driver form the deep south would change everything.
New Industrial Standards
The U.S. initiates a quarantine around Cuba
The King
Elvis Presley's first record, "That's Alright Mama" took Memphis by storm
He had a voice like no other
Perfectly blended elements of Country and R&B
Sam Phillips found his man to bring R&B to a white audience
Elvis became a vehicle for popularizing black music
he transformed country waltzes into fast beat songs
"Blue Moon of Kentucky" - Bill Monroe vs Elvis
Then there was Elvis's unique style of dancing that caused girls to scream, cry, and collapse
It also caused their parents to gasp and preachers to condemn

By this time, major record companies woke up to the new sound, Rock 'n' Roll.
RCA bought Elvis's record for $35 Thousand and launched him nationally
Elvis hit TV
Elvis was seen as obscene. Ed Sullivan remakered that he would never put that vulgarity on his show. Studios later censored Elvis, showing him on TV form the waist up only. RCA also cleaned Elvis up with smoother music and back-up vocals to make him more "Wholesome."
Elvis was, and is, the undisputed King of Rock 'n' Roll. Wherever Elvis went, so too did the image of Rock 'n' Roll go. If Elvis wanted to be a movie star, which he did, then Rock 'n' Roll went to the movies like never before.
The New Wave
By 1956 Rock 'n' Roll had created a revolution that could not be stopped
teenagers everywhere were going crazy
Record executives still did not understand Rock 'n' Roll
but the understood money and they knew Rock 'n' Roll was huge for business
They opened their doors to new talent.
In Memphis, Sam Phillips found another young artist.

Someone thrown out of Bible College for playing provocative piano with hymns
His name was Jerry Lee Lewis
Brunswick records in New York signed this lanky Texan, who became one of the first in the genre to write, produce and perform his own music.
The Decline
European teenagers were also exhibiting an interest in the new sound
a group of teenagers tore apart of the stage when Bill Hailey played "Rock Around the Clock"
In some cases, uncontrollable violence followed
Rock 'n' Roll had turned America and the Music industry upside down, but by 1958, the tide turned against the sound
The U.S. Government began investigating, willing to go after anything they felt destroyed America's Youth. The gov't began investigating into the "Payolla Scandal"
DJs accepted money to play certain records
Many DJs came under fire although the practice was common and legal
Little Richard gave up the "Devil's Music" and went back to his gospel roots in 1958

2 months after that, Elvis drafted into the army
teenage girls tore a part a recruiting office
the conspiracy here is that the government drafted Elvis to straighten him out

Jerry Lee Lewis got blacklisted for a scandalous marriage
he married his underage cousin
this was not uncommon in rural areas, but he was a national star now and record execs. did not like it

Chuck Berry was arrested for transporting a teenage girl across the state line in 1959
racial discrimination was involved

Buddy Holly helped to fill the void but a plane crash cut his life short

Many DJs, like Alan Freed, were ruined by the Payolla scandal, new DJs were too afraid to be controversial
The decade ended how it started; white, clean cut performers that were within the boundaries of polite entertainment

Rock 'n' Roll died down and the spirit of rebellion softened. BUT...
The groundwork had been laid, things were forever changed. That, was inescapable.
Ultimately, did the Truman Doctrine work in Korea?
Was Communism contained?
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