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The Cold War and American Society

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1 The Cold War and American Society
How did the Cold War change Americans’ lives? Chapter Intro 3

2 Big Ideas Struggles for Rights In the early part of the Cold War, the fear of communism led to a hunt for spies and to intolerance and suspicion of people with radical ideas in the United States. Section 3-Main Idea

3 A New Scare Public accusations and trials followed in the wake of fears of communism and spies. Section 3

4 A New Scare (cont.) The Red Scare began in September 1945 when Igor Gouzenko revealed a massive effort by the Soviet Union to infiltrate organizations and government agencies in Canada and the United States, with the goal of obtaining information about the atomic bomb. However, the search for spies escalated into a general fear of Communist subversion. Section 3

5 A New Scare (cont.) Soviet quick development of atomic bomb in 1949 shocks most Americans. Project Verona would later confirmed extensive Soviet spying and an ongoing effort to steal nuclear weapons. The FBI arrested Julius and Ethel Rosenberg and Ethel Rosenberg and charged them with heading a Soviet spy ring. They were executed for espionage in 1953. Section 3

6 A New Scare (cont.) In early 1947, the president established a loyalty review program, to screen federal employees. Instead of calming public suspicion, the program seemed to confirm fears that Communists had infiltrated the government. FBI director J. Edgar Hoover urged the House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC) to hold public hearings on Communist subversion. Section 3

7 A New Scare (cont.) One of HUAC’s first hearings in 1947 focused on the film industry as a powerful cultural force that Communists might manipulate to spread their ideas and influence. In 1950 a pamphlet called Red Channels was published, listing 151 blacklisted actors, directors, broadcasters, and screenwriters. These filmmakers were then unable to get work. Section 3

8 A New Scare (cont.) Following the federal government’s example, many state and local governments, universities, businesses, unions, churches, and private organizations began their own efforts to find Communists. Section 3

9 McCarthyism Senator Joseph R. McCarthy used the fear of communism to increase his own power and destroy the reputations of many people. Section 3

10 McCarthyism (cont.) Senator Joseph R. McCarthy proclaimed that 205 men in the State Department were proclaimed Communists. He distributed a booklet called “The Party of Betrayal,” which accused Democratic party leaders of corruption and of protecting Communists. Section 3

11 McCarthyism (cont.) After Republicans won control of Congress in 1952, McCarthy became chairman of the Senate subcommittee on investigations. McCarthy turned the investigation into a public witch hunt—his tactics became known as McCarthyism. Section 3

12 McCarthyism (cont.) After six weeks of televised hearings, Joseph Welch, the army’s lawyer, confronted McCarthy about his cruel treatment of people during the trials. Later that year, the Senate passed a vote of censure against McCarthy. He remained in the Senate, but lost all influence. Section 3

13 This slide is intentionally blank.
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