The Cold WarEvents and Outcomes Though the world was thankful that World War II had come to a close, tensions ran high during the Cold War. There were “hot spots” (a place where fighting could break out at any time) in many parts of the world. Why was it so difficult to have peace?
As Winston Churchill said, “An iron curtain has descended across Europe.” What did he mean by that?
Let’s take a look at some of the major events that were part of THE COLD WAR.
The Communist Revolution in China For centuries, China was ruled by emperors who preferred to keep China in isolation. This could be difficult as European nations imperialized and forced China into trade. In the 20th century, a new challenge faced China: communism. Two strong men saw different visions of China. Chiang Kai-shek believed in democracy and freedom; Mao Zedong thought that China could only be powerful if China became a hard-line communist country.
Two leaders with very different ideas General Chiang Kai-shek (believed in democracy) Mao Zedong (a communist)
The People’s Republic of China (a very confused name!) was formed in 1949 when Chiang Kai-shek fled to the island of Taiwan and the communists took over China. Taiwan became a democracy under Chiang’s elected presidency. The people of mainland China were not so fortunate.
Mao Zedong declared that he had absolute power and formed revolutionary groups called the “Red Guard.” These groups rode through the countryside destroying the “Old Four.” (old ideas, old culture, old customs, old habits) A new China had been born.
In 1958, Mao Zedong launched the Great Leap Forward which is a 5-year economic plan for China. Existing collective farms were combined into huge communes – 30,000 people living and working together. The result of the Great Leap Forward was widespread hunger and starvation.
Mao Zedong made melting down of all metal to build up their steel supply a priority and was neglecting harvestingcausing millions to starve. People living on a commune putting on Mao Zedong buttons
Mao Zedong died in 1976 after 27 years of communist rule. Though a new communist leader, Deng Xiopeng, followed, this leader was more open to western ways. He introduced the “Four Modernizations” – new policies in industry, culture, science, and technology. After a visit to China by our President Nixon, China and the U.S. established diplomatic relations. Sadly, in 1989, the world watched as pro-democracy students staged a protest in Tiananmen Square in Beijing. The world was horrified as the Chinese government brought in tanks to deal with these students. It is not known how many Chinese students were killed, but some estimates run into the thousands.
Deng Xiopeng, the communist leader who followed Mao. Mao Zedong and President Nixon http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AGJoaHr2QdM Tiananmen Square A memorial to a bicycle that was run over by the tanks. This memorial is in Poland. “Tank Man” (his identity unknown) stood up to the approaching tanks. It is believed he was killed. “Tank Man” in the back left corner.
The Communist Revolution in China When - 1949 after 20 years civil war Who was involved? • Mao Zedong – a communist • Chiang Kai-shek – wanted democracy US President? Richard Nixon What did the US do? NOTHING (what US doctrine does this go against?!) Who won? Mao Zedong What was the outcome? China becomes a communist country, Chiang Kai-shek flees to Taiwan
Korea After WWII, Korea was a divided nation. The Soviets controlled the northern part and the U.S. controlled the southern part. What kind of governments did each set up? Why was this area a hot spot?
Fighting on the streets of Seoul, South Korea He’s back…General MacArthur Chinese infantrymen Americans bomb factories in North Korea The Korean War Memorial was dedicated In 1995 in Wash, DC. Civilians in front of an M-46 tank
In July of 1953, the Korean War ended, in which over 54,000 Americans died.
Korea is still divided today. South Korean troops patrol along the DMZ.
The Korean War When? 1950-1953 Who? Communist North Korean (supported by China) invaded Democratic South Korea (supported by U.S.) US Presidents? Truman and Eisenhower What did the US do? MacArthur led US troops but was fired by Truman for wanting to drop another atomic bomb. Who won? No one What was the outcome? Korea remains divided on the 38th parallel (North Korea still communist and South Korea is democratic)
The Space Race In 1957, Nikita Khrushchev (the new leader of the Soviet Union after Stalin died), surprised the world by launching the first space satellite, Sputnik 1. It was unmanned. The world was frightened when it was seen circling the Earth. Why? Sputnik 1 stayed in space about three months. It was never a threat to the world, but it carried out scientific experiments and gathered much data. It burned up upon re-entry to the Earth’s atmosphere. The Soviet Union was extremely proud of Sputnik 1.
1961 The world was stunned again when the Soviets sent the first man into space. Yuri Gagarin was a cosmonaut who spent 108 minutes in space and went into the history books as a hero. How do you think the United States felt about this?
1962 President John F. Kennedy responded to the Soviet Union’s head start in the space race with a promise that the United States would land a human on the moon by the end of the 1960s. With eight years left in the decade, the race was on! Before that, John Glenn became the first American to go into space. John Glenn’s first trip into space lasted 4 hr, 55 min, 23 seconds. He returned to Earth a hero just as Yuri Gagarin had.
1969 It cost the U.S. $33 billion and the lives of some astronauts involved in terrible accidents, but the U.S. won the “Space Race” in 1969. Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin walked on the moon. Neil Armstrong Neil Armstrong, Michael Collins, Buzz Aldrin
July 20, 1969 “That’s one small step for (a) man, one giant leap for mankind.” – Neil Armstrong
The Space Race When? 1957-1969 Who was involved? • U.S. • U.S.S.R. US Presidents: Eisenhower, Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon What did the US do? We changed a lot of policies b/c we were not happy about the USSR beating us. Who won? USA What was the outcome? First in space – USSR First on the moon – USA
Vietnam Vietnam is an Asian country that was ruled by the French for many years. A communist leader named Ho Chi Minh took control and kicked the French from his country. Vietnam was divided on the 17th parallel; North Vietnam was led by Ho Chi Minh, and South Vietnam became a democracy and received money and weapons from the United States. Can you spell d-o-m-i-n-o t-h-e-o-r-y?
American troops Looking for North Vietnamese soldiers U.S. pilots Bombing N. Vietnam American troops U.S. Navy Seals POW Navy LT John McCain Vietnam Veteran’s Memorial in Wash, DC
The Vietnam War When? 1965-1973 Who was involved? • North Vietnam (supplied by China and USSR) • South Vietnam (supported by the US) US Presidents: Johnson, Nixon What did the US do? After losing 58,000 soldiers, US withdraws in 1973 Who won? North Vietnam What was the outcome? Vietnam became a communist country (is still communist today)
The Cuban Missile Crisis Cuba, an island just 90 miles off the coast of Florida, was (and still is!) led by communist dictator Fidel Castro. In 1962, Castro permitted Premier Khrushchev of the Soviet Union to put long-range nuclear missiles in Cuba. U.S. spy planes took pictures of these missiles. President Kennedy demanded these missiles be removed from the Western hemisphere. When Khrushchev refused, the U.S. put a blockade around Cuba. The Cuban Missile Crisis had begun.
Three leaders Premier Nikita Khrushchev President John F. Kennedy President Fidel Castro
As the two superpowers grew closer to nuclear war, the world held its breath for thirteen days. Finally, Kennedy and Khrushchev reached an agreement and missiles were removed from Cuba. A world on the verge of nuclear war could breathe again. Khrushchev was removed from power in 1964 by the communist party. By the way, how did we get those pictures that proved to President Kennedy that Soviet missiles were in Cuba? Hmmm…..
The pictures were taken by Major Rudy Anderson, an Air Force pilot who was flying a U-2 spy plane. These pictures proved that nuclear weapons were in Cuba. While returning to take more photos, Major Anderson was shot down and killed by the Cubans. His bravery and invaluable efforts earned him a Purple Heart and many other awards. We should all be proud of Major Anderson. Why, you ask?
Major Anderson is from Greenville, SC, attended Greenville High and graduated from Clemson University. A similar U-2 aircraft in Cleveland Park Major Anderson graduated from Clemson Univ. Major Anderson is buried at Woodlawn Cemetary in Greenville, SC
The Cuban Missile Crisis When? October 1962 lasting 13 days Who was involved? • US • USSR • Cuba US President: John F. Kennedy What did the US do? Kennedy demanded the weapons be removed. After days of tense dialog, Khrushchev did so and avoided nuclear war. Who won? US What was the outcome? The USSR removed nuclear weapons from Cuba.