Sources Of The Cold War

Main focus is the rivalry between the U.S. and the Soviet Union (USSR).

USSR=Union of Soviet Socialist Republics

Here is a listing of which Republics the USSR included:
Russia by far the major part of the USSR.

Hot war==actual shooting
Cold war==hostility but either no actual shooting or war through surrogates


Containment of Soviets became the cornerstone of American foreign policy.

Video: Policy of Containment (1/10)

George F. Kennan

Kennan and Containment (US State Department)

1. Kennan's "Long telegram" 1946

a. American diplomat in Moscow.

b. Soviet fanaticism made even a temporary understanding impossible.

c. His report played into a growing belief among American officials that only toughness would work with the Soviets.

2. Kennan's "Mr. X" article.

a. The article, titled the Sources of Soviet Conduct and based on the "long telegram," was published in the prestigious Foreign Affairs magazine.

b. Author (Kennan) advocated a policy of firm containment of the Soviets.

c. "Confront the Soviets with unalterable counterforce at every point where they show signs of encroaching on the interests of a peaceful and stable world."

Churchill's "Iron Curtain" speech (1946)

1. Warned that a Soviet "iron curtain" had cut off Eastern European countries from the West.

2. Called for an Anglo–American partnership to resist the communist menace.

Truman Doctrine (1947)

Video: Truman Doctrine and Marshall Plan (2/10)

The Truman Doctrine, 1947 (US State Department)

1. British had no money to continue to help Greece and Turkey.

2. British claimed that Communists threatened both countries.

3. Congress approved $400 million economic aid to Greece & Turkey.

4. Truman doctrine: "U.S. policy to support free peoples who are resisting attempted takeover by (a) armed minorities or (b) outside pressure."

Marshall Plan (1948)

Marshall Plan, 1948 (US State Department)

1. War damage and dislocation in Europe invited communist influence:

a. Food was scarce; workers were demoralized; winter of 1947 was the worst in 50 years.

b. Communist voting strength was growing in France and Italy

2. U.S. offered economic aid to all European countries (including Soviets)

3. Soviets declined: fearing aid might defeat their control of Eastern Europe

4. U.S. gave $17 billion in aid over four years.

5. That aid helped rebuild Europe. It was also good for American business.

Israel Became a Separate Country

UN Votes to Partition Palestine (On This Day, Finding Dulcinea)

Creation of Israel, 1948 (US State Department)

Berlin blockade and airlift (1948–49)

Video: Berlin Airlift and Formation of NATO (3/10)

The Berlin Airlift, 1948–1949 (US State Department)

1. Soviets blocked land access to Berlin.

2. U.S. airlifted food and fuel for 2 million West Berliners.

3. Flights of 1,000 planes a day (every 3 minutes) for ten months.

4. Soviets finally called off blockade.

North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) (1949)

North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), 1949 (US State Department)

1. Established to defend Europe against a Soviet invasion.
2. U.S. foreign policy change: not since French–American alliance (1778)
3. Members pledged to treat an attack against one as an attack on all.
4. Dwight Eisenhower named initial NATO commander.
5. Four U.S. divisions stationed in Europe to evidence American support.
6. Soviets later formed Warsaw Pact in response.


Anti–communist hysteria

Named for Republican Senator from Wisconsin Joseph McCarthy (R-Wisconsin)

Video: McCarthyism (8/10)

Here are some of the key names and major events associated with McCarthyism:

1. J.Edgar Hoover (head of the FBI): fear of internal subversion by Communist spies became intertwined with fear of external attack by the Soviet Union.

2. Spy revelations gave people cause to be alarmed

Video: Red Scare and House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC) (6/10)

3. People began pointing accusing fingers at each other.

To harass or persecute (someone) on account of known or suspected communist sympathies.

4. "Hollywood Ten" (screenwriters and directors) jailed for contempt of Congress.

They refused to provide names of alleged Communists.

Others were blacklisted—even if only accused.

Those who did provide names (Elia Kazan) suffer to this day

5. Schoolteachers had to take loyalty oaths and were fired if they refused.

6. Alger Hiss case (1950)

Video: Alger Hiss Case and the Rosenbergs (7/10)

Hiss accused by Whittaker Chambers of being a Communist spy.

Role of House of Representatives Committee on Un–American Activities (Richard Nixon a member).

7. Julius and Ethel Rosenberg

They were executed (1953) for having supposedly spied for the Soviet Union.

8. Downfall of McCarthy

a. Eisenhower's reluctance to confront McCarthy.

b. Televised hearings: Army–McCarthy.

Reconstruction of Japan

Role of U.S. in controlling postwar Japan (Douglas MacArthur)

To help contain communism in Asia, we eventually built up Japan.

Japan turned into a formidable economic competitor.

People's Republic of China (PRC) (1949)

The Chinese Revolution of 1949 (US State Department)

1. Chinese Civil War (1945-1949)
War between the forces of Mao Tse-Tung's Commuists and our World War II ally, Chang Kai-Shek.

2. Mao Tse-Tung's Communists won. Establishment of the People's Republic of China (1949).

3. Chang Kai-Shek and his supporters were forced to leave mainland China and move to the island of Taiwan (formerly called Formosa).

4. The Communist victory had a major influence on American politics.

Republicans criticized Democrats for the "loss" of China to the Communists.

A defeat for containment.

Korean War (1950-1953)

The Korean War, 1950–1953 (US State Department)

Video: Start of Korean War (4/10)

Video: MacArthur Dismissed and Korean Armistice (5/10)

Here is a summary of the specific events during the war:

1. North Korea attacked across 38th parallel into South Korea (25 June 1950)

2. President Truman, determined to "contain" communism, committed U.S. forces to battle.

General Douglas MacArthur Named Commander of UN Forces in Korea.

3. Pusan perimeter

a. North Koreans advanced all the way to southern tip of South Korea.
b. America feared an Asian "Dunkirk"

4. Inchon invasion.

Douglas MacArthur reversed initial tide of the war.

5. U.S. moved to 38th parallel, thereby recovering all of South Korea.

6. U.S. decided to take North Korea, too. Moved north of 38th parallel.

7. U.S. forces pushed to the Yalu River (North Korea's border with PRC)

8. Chinese troops entered the Korean War.

9. U.S. embarrassed militarily, particularly at the Chosin Reservoir

10. MacArthur now looked like a chump.

11. Civilian control of the military became a hot issue.

12. MacArthur: wanted to expand the war to the Chinese mainland; use nuclear weapons

13. Truman: wanted to keep conflict limited; not risk Soviet entry and a possible World War Three

14. President Truman fired General MacArthur

15. War's results. U.S. casualties: 34,000 dead.

16. Sometimes called the "Forgotten War": frustrating; no clear victory.

17. Issues today: U.S. troops in South Korea; North Korea threat to peace

Sputnik (1957) (during presidency of Dwight Eisenhower)

Sputnik, 1957 (US State Department)

Soviets launched a satellite that scared America and put them ahead (temporarily) in the space race.

U–2 incident (1960) (during presidency of Dwight Eisenhower)

Video: U-2 Incident (10/10)

U-2 Overflights and the Capture of Francis Gary Powers, 1960 (US State Department)

U–2 spy plane carrying high–powered cameras crashed 1,200 miles inside the Soviet Union.

After denying presence of such a spy plane, President Eisenhower (Ike) accepted the blame.

1960 Presidential Election

Nixon and Kennedy Hold First Ever Presidential Debate

Kennedy won the election.

Peace Corps (begun by President John F. Kennedy)

Video: Peace Corps

Alliance for Progress and Peace Corps, 1961–1969 (US State Department)

Berlin Wall (August 1961) (during the Kennedy presidency)

The Berlin Crisis, 1958–1961 (US State Department)

Soviets built a wall to keep people from fleeing East Berlin.

President Kennedy's Speech at the Berlin Wall (June 1963)

President Kennedy Declares “Ich bin ein Berliner”

Cuba and Castro

1. Fidel Castro ousted American–backed dictator Fulgencio Batista (1959)

Castro takes power (1 January 1959)

Batista Flees Cuba and Castro Takes Power

2. Castro's Cuba became an ally of the Soviet Union.

3. America freaked. President Eisenhower (Ike) broke diplomatic relations with Cuba.

Eisenhower Places Embargo on Exports to Cuba

4. Ike ordered CIA to use Cuban exiles to try to overthrow Castro.

Bay of Pigs invasion (April 1961)

The Bay of Pigs Invasion and its Aftermath, April 1961–October 1962 (US State Department)

Video: Cuba and the Bay of Pigs

1. Kennedy approved the Eisenhower-initiated plan to topple Castro.

2. The 1,500 man invasion force was unsuccessful.

3. No uprising against Castro occurred.

4. Kennedy took all the blame. His poll ratings went up! Kennedy in his first Hundred Days.

Cuban missile crisis (October 1962)

The Cuban Missile Crisis, October 1962 (US State Department)

1. Soviet's secretly installed offensive missiles in Cuba.

2. Kennedy (JFK) learned from his mistakes earlier at Bay of Pigs. Laid out a range of options.

3. JFK chose a naval blockade (quarantine) of Cuba.

4. Soviets ships eventually turned back before they got to U.S blockade.


Jim Crow laws (Segregation)

Video: What were the Jim Crow laws? (3:13)

Plessy versus Ferguson (1896)

Supreme Court decision

Separate but equal is ok.

Black leaders: Booker T. Washington and W.E.B. DuBois

Their legacies represent differing approaches within the civil rights movement.

Video: Why Booker T. Washington and W.E.B.DuBois matter (Mr. Betts class) (3:25)

1. Booker T. Washington (1856-1915)

Son of a slave woman and a white man.

Atlanta Compromise (1895): Known for major speech
Blacks should not yet push for political or social equality
Blacks should work hard and show themselves worthy
Blacks should accommodate (temporarily) to white society

2. W.E.B. DuBois (1868-1963)

First African American to earn a Ph.D. from Harvard.
He disagreed with Booker T. Washington
DuBois wanted blacks to be more aggressive and militant
Wanted to educate the top 10% of blacks ("talented tenth")
Demonstrate blacks could compete effectively with whites.
Helped form the NAACP in 1909.


Post World War II. Returning black veterans unwilling to accept second–class status back home.

Racial desegregation of the armed forces (July 1948)

By executive order of President Harry Truman.


Brown v. Board of Education (Supreme Court decision)

Overturned the decision in Plessy v. Ferguson (1896)

"Separate facilities are inherently unequal" and therefore unconstitutional.

Argued by Thurgood Marshall on behalf of the NAACP.

Brown v. Board of Education (PBS' The Supreme Court) (4:53)

Kenneth Clark's "doll" test

How an experiment with dolls helped lead to school integration


Emmett Till's Murder (28 August 1955)

Murder in Mississippi of a young black teenager from Chicago for having insulted a white women.

Video: Moments in Civil Rights history (3:33)
14-year-old Emmett Till Abducted and Murdered in Mississippi Delta


Montgomery, Alabama, Bus Boycott (Rosa Parks)

Rosa Parks arrested on 1 December 1955

Video: Moments in Civil Rights History (2:21)
Rosa Parks Arrested for Violating Segregation Laws

Martin Luther King will lead the Montgomery Improvement Association
That group will sponsor the bus boycott


Southern Manifesto

Document signed by 100 Southern members of Congress.

They said they would not obey the Brown versus Board of Education decision.

White Citizens' Councils

Video: Class and the White Citizen's Councils

Citizen's Councils brought economic power to bear.on African-Americans


Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC)

Grouping of African-American pastors.

Little Rock Central High School

Central High School desegregated.
Governor Orville Faubus.
Nine black students.
President Eisenhower sent 101st Airborne.

Video: Moments in Civil Rights History (2:41)
September 27, 1958: Little Rock Schools Close Rather Than Integrate

Arkansas National Guard Bars “Little Rock Nine” From School



MLK and his wife spent a month in India studying Gandhi's non–violence.

Video: MLK and Gandhi



Greensboro Lunch Counter Sit-in

First sit-in took place in Greensboro, North Carolina

Greensboro Four:
Four African-American freshman (Joseph McNeil, Franklin McCain, Ezell Blair Jr., and David Richmond) at North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University.

Decided to sit in at a Woolworth's lunch counter and request service.

Video: Moments in Civil Rights history (2:41)
Martin Luther King Arrested in Atlanta Sit-In Protest

Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee (SNCC)

Video: SNCC's legacy: A civil rights history (5:56)

(SNCC—pronounced "snick).
Established to coordinate sit–ins across the south.

Nashville sit-ins

Video: American Freedom Stories: John Lewis (1:56)

Video: The question Diane Nash Asked the Memphis Mayor To End Desegregation (3:56)

MLK jailed (October).

During the 1960 presidential election campaign, concern expressed by both JFK and Robert Kennedy for the arrest and prison sentence of Martin Luther King, Jr., earned Kennedy the black vote.


Freedom Rides

A group of black and white persons set out by bus from Washington, D.C. to New Orleans to test the "whites only" facilities of southern interstate bus terminals.

Video: Moments in Civil Rights history (3:57)
Dec. 5, 1960 - Public Bus Segregation Ruled Unconstitutional, Freedom Rides Continue

Video: Freedom Riders: The Young Witness (Anniston) (4:51)

Interview with white Freedom Rider Jim Zwerg


University of Mississippi Desegregated

James Meredith desegregated the University of Mississippi.

Video: Moments in Civil Rights history (2:21)
October 1, 1962 - James Meredith Integrates Ole Miss

James Meredith Graduates From Ole Miss


Project "C" [Confrontation] in Birmingham

Birmingham, Alabama (called "Bombingham" by civil rights workers, due to so many unsolved bombings).

1. "Letter from a Birmingham Jail"

Written by MLK while in jail.

Response to an ad from white pastors telling him that he was stirring up too much trouble.

Video: Letter from Birmingham Jail (5:39)

2. Birmingham Children's march

Police dogs and fire hoses. TV coverage shocked America.

Video: American Freedom Stories: Children's Crusade of 1963 (4:12)

Video: Moments in Civil Rights history (2:39)
Protesting Black Children Assaulted and Arrested in Birmingham, AL

3. Sheriff "Bull Connor of Birmingham

Bull Connor was the poster boy white-racist type Sheriff.

4. JFK TV speech

He was afraid of losing votes of white southern Democrats.

He finally spoke out: "Civil rights is a moral issue."

Medgar Evers murdered

Evers was the Mississippi head of the NAACP.

American Freedom Stories: (3:10)

March on Washington

March on Washington consisted of 60,000 whites and 190,00 blacks.
Video: 53rd Anniversary of the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom (2:54)

Video: King Leads the March on Washington (3:21)

MLK "I Have a Dream Speech"

One of the great speeches in U.S. history.
Delivered as part of the program during a March on Washington (60,000 whites and 190,00 blacks).

Sixteenth Street Baptist Church bombing

Bomb exploded during Sunday School, killing four teenage black girls.

The Sunday school lesson for that morning was "A Love that Forgives."

American Freedom Stories: Bombing of the 16th Street Baptist Church (3:16)

Four Girls Killed in Birmingham Church Bombing

John F. Kennedy assassinated

New President: Lyndon B. Johnson


Freedom Summer: voter registration and freedom schools

Local black leaders aided by white students from elite colleges.
Whites in the South saw this activity as "invasion" by outside agitators.

Mississippi in Black and White: Freedom Summer 50 Years Later (2:39)

Voter registration

No real power for blacks until they could vote. But risked their lives if they went through with the process.

1965 Alabama literacy test

Murder in Mississippi (21 June 1964)

Two white (Andrew Goodman and Michael Schwerner) and one black (James Chaney) civil rights workers were murdered in Mississippi.

Video: Moments in Civil Rights history (2:49)
August 4, 1964: Bodies of Murdered Civil Rights Workers Found in Mississippi

Three Civil Rights Workers in Mississippi Go Missing

Civil Rights Act (1 July 1964)

Johnson signs Civil Rights Act ( This Day in History | 7/2/1964)

The Civil Rights Act prohibited racial discrimination in employment and education and outlawed racial segregation in public places such as schools, buses, parks and swimming pools.

Video: Civil Rights Act Passed - 1964 | Today in History | 19 June (3:09)

MLK won the Nobel Peace Prize.

Video: Martin Luther King Wins the Nobel Peace Prize (1:09)

Martin Luther King: The Nobel Prize for Peace (Museum of the Bible) (1:04)



a. "Bloody Sunday"

Selma (New York Times) Check out this front page of New York Times

Video: Moments in Civil Rights history (3:56)
March 7, 1965 - Bloody Sunday

Video: American Freedom Stories: Bloody Sunday (4:04)

b. Selma to Montgomery march

Video: American Freedom Stories: March from Selma to Montgomery (4:11)

Encyclopedia of Alabama: Selma to Montgomery March

LBJ speech

Asks Joint Session of Congress for Voting Rights legislation.
Ends speech with "we shall overcome."
His southern friends appalled at his sellout.

Video: LBJ -- We Shall Overcome (0:53)

Voting Rights Act of 1965

The Voting Rights Act of 1965 set strict rules for protecting the right of African Americans to
vote–that have since been used to enforce equal rights for women as well as all minorities.

Video (2:56)

Watts Riots

Video: Watts Riots - 1965 | Today in History | 11 Aug (2:48)

Video: Moments in Civil Rights history (3:44)
August 17, 1965: Days of Riots End in Watts


Black power

Militant black leaders gained prominence in SNCC, questioned Martin Luther King's philosophy of nonviolence, and forced white members to leave the organization.

Black Panther Party

Founded in California.
Major figures: Eldridge Cleaver, Huey Newton, and Bobby Seale.
Advocated violent confrontation with whites.

Video: 5 Things To Know About The Black Panthers (2:08)


Context: Tet Offensive in Vietnam (February)

Assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr. (April: in Memphis)

Martin Luther King's Last Speech: "I've Been To The Mountaintop"

Video:Moments in Civil Rights history (2:33)
Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Assassinated

Assassination of Robert F. Kennedy (June: in Los Angeles)

Senator Robert F. Kennedy Assassinated

Black Power Salute at Mexico City Olympics

Who: Tommie Smith and John Carlos

Video: Moments in Civil Rights history (2:45)
October 16, 1968 - U.S. Olympic Sprinters Protest Racial Inequality

U.S. Athletes Tommie Smith and John Carlos Give Black Power Salute on Olympic Podium

Hispanic School Protests in Los Angeles

Key name: Sal Castro

Video: Sal Castro and the 1968 East LA Walkouts (15:19)

Movie: Walkout