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MWH Corning.  After WWII, US divided into three worlds: Industrialized nations – US and its allies Communist nations – USSR and its allies Third World.

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Presentation on theme: "MWH Corning.  After WWII, US divided into three worlds: Industrialized nations – US and its allies Communist nations – USSR and its allies Third World."— Presentation transcript:

1 MWH Corning

2  After WWII, US divided into three worlds: Industrialized nations – US and its allies Communist nations – USSR and its allies Third World – developing nations, non-aligned states (mostly in Latin America, Africa and Asia) -> arena for competition between superpowers Some nations wanted to stay out of the “fight” – India, Indonesia  Cold War Weapons – pg 549

3  At end of WWII, Korea became a divided nation  North of 38 th parallel Japanese surrendered to USSR, south of line to US o North of line – communist, south – non communist  June 1950, North Korea surprise attack on the South o Truman follows his policy of containment and aids South Korea which also requests help from the United Nations o 15 nations under command of MacArthur o UN forces push back North Koreans but then China feels threatened and moves into NK pushing back UN and SK forces  July 1953, UN forces and NK sign cease-fire agreement, the demilitarized zone still exists today o South Korea received massive economic aid, initially experienced a series of dictatorships but adopted a democratic constitution in 1987

4  Like Korea, the US involvement in Vietnam came from the policy of containment  Ho Chi Minh (“he who enlightens” aka Uncle Ho) – long time nationalist/communist (these are not exclusive!)  After WWII, Vietnamese nationalists and communists worked together to get rid of the French o During the war the US supported the French o 1954 French surrender to Ho  Guess what happens next? Vietnam is divided into north and south regions (17 th parallel) o North – Ho’s communist forces govern o South – anti-communist gov’t led by Ngo Dinh Diem, supported by US and France o Domino Theory!!

5  Diem ruled as a dictator and opposition to his gov’t grew o Communist guerrillas (Vietcong) gained strength in the South o 1963 SV generals killed Diem, it seemed inevitable that the communists would take over  US Military advisors had been in SV since 1950’s o Gulf of Tonkin August 1964 – Pres Johnson used the incident to ask Congress to authorize him to send US troops to fight in Vietnam o By late 1965 185,000 US troops in Vietnam, US planes bombing N Vietnam

6  US had three problems fighting this war 1. US soldiers were fighting a guerrilla war in unfamiliar jungle terrain. 2. The SV gov’t was very unpopular. 3. Support for Vietcong grew with support of USSR and even China.  Unable to win the ground war, the US turned to massive bombing runs – effects on local population?  By late 1960’s the war was increasingly unpopular in the US, 1969 Pres. Nixon began withdrawal of troops – completed in 1973  By 1975 N Vietnam overran S Vietnam

7  After 1975 the Communists placed tight controls over the South – re-education camps, nationalized industries, renamed Saigon Ho Chi Minh City o Refugees – boat people  Vietnam War – conflict also spilled into Laos and Cambodia  1975 Communist rebels known as the Khmer Rouge set up a brutal gov’t under leadership of Pol Pot o Almost ¼ of population was killed o Vietnamese invaded in 1979 and overthrew Pol Pot, withdrew in 1989 o 1993, Cambodia adopted a democratic constitution under the supervision of the United Nations

8  Gap between the rich and the poor in Latin America, alternating govts between democracy and military dictatorships  US had traditionally established their right to “worry” about what happened to their Latin American neighbors  Nationalists/communists (socialists?) sought out Soviet support – why?  US gov’t supported anti-communist dictators  Example: Cuba

9  In 1950’s Cuba was ruled by Batista who had the US support  Batista was overthrown by a popular revolution in Jan 1959 – led by Fidel Castro  Castro initially had social reforms and economic policies oriented to bringing greater wealth to larger population  Later he suspended elections, jailed/killed opponents, restricted the press  US placed embargo on all trade with Cuba which turned to USSR for economic and military aid

10  In 1960 the CIA began to train anti-Castro exiles  1961 this force invaded Cuba (Bay of Pigs) but was easily rebuffed by Castro’s forces  This failure convinced the new Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev that Latin America was “ripe” for communist expansion  1962 Khrushchev began to build missiles in Cuba, Pres Kennedy demanded that they be removed – Cuba became a “pawn” in Cold War International concern that this show down would lead to a nuclear war Khrushchev agrees to remove missiles if US promises not to invade Cuba Cuba became deeply dependent on USSR – aid ended in 1991

11  Oil rich Middle Eastern nations were very attractive to both superpowers  Examples: Iran (Persia before 1935) – US support of secular gov’t angers religious leaders, Shah overthrown in 1979 by Ayatollah Khomeini who also encouraged other Muslim radicals to overthrow secular gov’ts -> Iran vs. Iraq – USSR supports Iraq, US secretly supports both sides (??) Egypt – takes aid from USSR to build Aswan High Dam

12  Just after WWII Afghanistan was able to be independent of neighboring USSR and the US  In 1950’s the Soviet influence in A. began to increase  Late 1970’s a Muslim revolt threatened to overthrow A.’s communist gov’t -> leads to Soviet invasion in 1979  Soviets got stuck (their “Vietnam”), Afghan rebels were supported by the US gov’t because they considered the Soviets a threat to Middle East oil supplies  By 1989 Soviet Pres Mikhail Gorbachev withdrew forces  1996 the Taliban seized power and established a Islamic gov’t with repressive policies

13  Stalin dies in 1953 and Nikita Khrushchev comes to power – he denounces Stalin (big surprise!)  Control was very tight over “satellite” countries in Eastern Europe  Tension between USSR and China – Soviets assumed that China would follow their lead but of course the Chinese resented this assumption  By 1959 – break between USSR and China

14  By 1970s the US and the Soviet Union finally backed away from the aggressive policies towards détente (reducing tensions)  US wanted to continue to contain the spread of communism however the reality was that a working relationship with the USSR needed to be established – why?  Nixon was first US Pres to visit China Feb 1972 and three months later the USSR SALT talks China the third superpower?

15  Poland – 1980 Strike in shipyard, demanding for recognition of union Solidarity led by Leck Walesa. Eventually in 1989 free elections were held and Walesa became first president.  Hungary – radical reformers took over the Communist Party in 1989 and voted the party out of existence. 1998 – Liberal party won majority of seats and it joined NATO in 1999.  East Germany – closed borders in 1989 and in October huge demonstrations broke out In 1987 Pres Reagan had demanded “Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall.” Nov 1989 Berlin Wall was opened and free movement between East and West resumed. Oct 1990 – West and East Germany reunified.

16  Pres Reagan (1981) took a firm anti-communist position  In 1982 there was a change in Soviet leadership which brought a new policy toward the US and the end of the Cold War Mikhail Gorbachev became new party general secretary, Soviet people welcomed his election and different orientation to the usual politics – wanted social and economic changes 1985 -Glasnost (pg 612) “openness” – free flow of ideas and information – AND perestroika (pg 613) economic restructuring Forces within the Soviet Union pushed for democratic reforms

17  The various nationalities with the USSR wanted their freedom – nationalist groups in Georgia, Chechnya, Ukraine  August 1991 Coup – Boris Yeltsin becomes president, seen as a liberal victory for the forces of reform and democracy within Soviet Union End of Communist Party and break up of Soviet Union – CIS (Commonwealth of Indep. States)


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