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First look at International Relations 1953-1962

 

Did International Relations improve or deteriorate during this period? That is the question you must try to answer in this talk.

Below are a couple of first looks at the two sides (not exhaustive) A case can be made out for both .....

Many see the climax of worsening relations to be 1961/2 with Berlin and Cuba....others see the progression from 1954 as positive. They would even argue that the Berlin Wall, for instance, made relations clearer and therefore easier......

 

Getting better:

For many, the death of Stalin (1953) had heralded a new era and in 1954, the Geneva talks witnessed the end of hostilities in both Korea and Indochina. In 1954, Eisenhower announced that the main fight against communism in the future would be economic and not military. In what Foster Dulles called the "New Look" policy, the US defence policy would be based on a "great capacity to retaliate.." In other words, he was making an adjustment to the policy of Containment. In 1955, Khrushchev was talking of "Coexistence" and, following the initiative of GB, he met with Eisenhower in Geneva in what was to be the first of many "summits". There, Eisenhower offered the "Open Skies" policy........

 

 

Getting worse:

1954 Pactomania

1950s Arms Race, Space Race U2s

1956 Hungarian uprising and Soviet invasion

Continuing disagreement over Berlin

1960 Gary Powers & Breakdown of Paris summit

1961 Bay of Pigs

1961 Berlin Wall

1962 Cuban Missile Crisis

 

 

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