The reagan years
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The Reagan Years. 1981-89. Ronald Reagan: President, 1981-89 Casper Weinberger: Secretary of Defense, 1981-87. A harder stance towards the U.S.S.R. Reagan administration placed competition and possibility of war with Soviet Union at center of its defense & foreign policy.

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A harder stance towards the u s s r
A harder stance towards the U.S.S.R.

  • Reagan administration placed competition and possibility of war with Soviet Union at center of its defense & foreign policy.

    • Pursued large build-up of U.S military forces

    • Took a more active stance towards combating Communist insurgencies.

Reagan doctrine
Reagan Doctrine

  • Called for helping anti-Communist movements around the globe. Examples:

    • Nicaragua: aid for the contras (anti-Sandinista guerillas).

    • Afghanistan: aid for mujaheddin tribesmen.

    • Angola: aid for UNITA

Increased defense spending
Increased defense spending

  • Military budgets increased for six straight years (FY1980-85).

  • Reagan Administration spent about $2.4 trillion.

  • Defense budgets rose to $290-300 billion annually.

Money spent on
Money spent on…

  • Maintenance, training, and compensation.

  • New weapons systems.

    • B-1 bomber

    • Trident II missile

    • MX missile

    • new ships

Strategic defense initiative
Strategic Defense Initiative

  • Announced March 1983.

  • a/k/a “Star Wars”

  • Sought to develop a system to destroy incoming missiles

Other effects
Other effects…

  • 1980-86: U.S. national debt doubled.

    • Debt service payments tripled.

  • Waste & fraud in defense procurement reaches alarming levels.

    • $400-$500 for a hammer?

Arms control strategic arms reduction talks start
Arms control: Strategic Arms Reduction Talks (START)

  • U.S.-U.S.S.R. negotiations from 1981-91.

  • Almost produce an agreement during Reagan-Gorbachev meeting at Reykjavik, Iceland, 1986.

    • Summit fails on issue of SDI

  • START talks produce treaty in 1991

Reagan nato
Reagan & NATO

  • U.S.: Gets allies to continue deployment of Pershing II & GLCM’s, and to spend more for defense.

    • Army and USAF get NATO to adopt “AirLand Battle” as common doctrine to for defeating a Warsaw Pact invasion.

  • Allies: push U.S. on negotiations to reduce theater nuclear and conventional forces.

December 1987 inf treaty
December 1987: INF Treaty

  • U.S. & U.S.S.R. agreed to eliminate all their intermediate-range (300-3,400 mile) ground-launched ballistic and cruise missiles.

  • Included provisions for on-site inspections.

  • All such missiles and related equipment destroyed by May 1991.

U s involvement in latin america
U.S. involvement in Latin America

  • El Salvador: American aid and advisors sent to help the government

    • Fighting the Frente Martí Liberación Nacional (FMLN) since 1979.

  • Nicaragua: Began helping groups opposed to the Sandinista regime (contras).

October 1983 grenada
October 1983:Grenada

  • Soldiers from U.S. and Caribbean nations invade.

    • Follows a coup

    • Concern about expanding Cuban and Soviet influence.

    • Anxiety regarding U.S. medical students.

Problems in the middle east
Problems in the Middle East

  • Israel & Lebanon

  • Muammar Gaddafi & terrorism

  • The Persian Gulf

1982 israel invades lebanon
1982: Israel invades Lebanon

  • Goal to drive out Palestinian groups.

  • U.S. sent Marine expeditionary unit to help enforce a ceasefire.

  • October 23: truck bomb blows up the Marine barracks

    • 220 soldiers die, 241 total.

Terrorist incidents on the rise
Terrorist incidents on the rise

  • Attacks & hijackings double, 1983-85.

    • Led to 1,000 U.S. casualties

  • Most famous incident: 1985 hijacking of the Achille Lauro

    • After event, US Navy jets force down plane carrying hijackers to Tunisia.

1986 u s libyan tensions rise
1986: U.S.-Libyan tensions rise

  • Naval incidents.

  • West Berlin bombing tied to Gaddafi.

  • Reagan orders bombing of Tripoli and Benghazi.

    • Mostly military targets destroyed, 200 casualties.

Problems in the persian gulf
Problems in the Persian Gulf

  • Iran: fundamentalist Islamic state, hostile to U.S. interests.

    • Funding terrorist movements.

  • Region large producer of oil.

1980 88 iran iraq war
1980-88: Iran-Iraq War

  • Iraq received more foreign assistance, including official U.S. aid.

  • Both sides attacked Gulf shipping.

U s looks to saudi arabia as a regional ally
U.S. looks to Saudi Arabia as a regional ally.

  • Saudis had influence over other Mid-East nations, and indirectly over Palestinians.

    • supported mujaheddin in Afghanistan

  • Spent money to buy American arms, and allowed U.S. to build bases on Saudi soil.

Attacks on gulf shipping rise
Attacks on Gulf shipping rise.

  • 1987-88: U.S. Navy deploys to Gulf and Red Sea to protect tanker shipping.

    • Destroys Iranian gunboats and other vessels, missile sites, and attacks bases.

    • Iran responds with mine laying.

  • Worst U.S. goof: shooting down an Iranian airliner.

U s s stark
U.S.S. Stark

  • U.S. frigate fired upon by an Iraqi fighter.

    • Resulted in 37 deaths.

Second term problems for the reagan administration
Second-term problems for the Reagan Administration

  • Budget and debt issues.

  • Congressional opposition.

  • Lax oversight of subordinates leads to political crisis.

Iran contra affair
Iran-Contra Affair

  • Administration officials arrange secret arms sales to Iran, some proceeds diverted to contras.

  • Hope to release hostages in Lebanon, influence Hezbollah.

  • Violated U.S. law that prohibited arms sales to the contras, and Administration’s own stated policy not to negotiate with terrorists.

Changes in the soviet union
Changes in the Soviet Union

  • Mikhail Gorbachev: General Secretary of the Communist Party, 1985-91.

    • Sought better relations with the West

    • Pursued internal reforms (perestroїka,glasnost).

Gorbachev foreign policy highlights
Gorbachev: Foreign Policy Highlights

  • 1986, meets with Reagan in Reykjavik, Iceland. Though fails in near term, ultimately leads to:

    • INF Treaty, 1987

    • START Treaty, 1991

  • 1988, announces U.S.S.R.:

    • Will pull troops out of Afghanistan.

    • Will allow Eastern bloc countries to determine affairs.

    • Will unilaterally begin reducing conventional forces in Europe.