• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Explain the importance of the President, in relation to other factors in the development of changes in foreign policy in the years 1940 to 1960

Extracts from this document...


Explain the importance of the President, in relation to other factors in the development of changes in foreign policy in the years 1940 to 1960 There are many factors leading to the development and change of foreign policy between the years 1940 and 1960. The personalities and actions of the Presidents at the time obviously had a major impact on these policies, but other factors also had an effect on changes to the foreign policy during the years 1940 to 1960. These other factors include the economic state of Europe, pressure from Congress and Stalin and the Cold War. Roosevelt, Truman and Eisenhower were the three Presidents in power between the years 1940-1960. Roosevelt's personality and views certainly affected the way foreign policy changed during these years. Roosevelt was a President with strong beliefs and he was not afraid to carry them out with or without the support of Congress. He was a man who was extremely self-confident, and his views had a major impact on the changes in foreign policy. We see this in his actions towards Britain and aid, more specifically the 'Lend-Lease' program. The US had been following a policy of neutrality but it was obvious Roosevelt's sympathies lay with Britain and France. ...read more.


However, the war with Japan seemed far from over. Truman decided to bomb Hiroshima and Nagasaki resulting in the Japanese Government surrendering and World War 2 to be ended, however moral or immoral the bombings were. These first actions of Truman showed his unsparing attitude from the start of his Presidency. Initially, we can see that the President's character was extraordinarily important in regards to changes in the foreign policy and the ending of the war. However, changes in the foreign policy which followed may not be linked to the President even though they happened under his name and can possibly be tagged to the increasing growth of Communism. The Truman Doctrine was delivered in a speech to Congress on 12th March 1947 and showed the US policy of containment and was delivered as a 'vow to defend the free democracies of Europe'. This was pretty much due to communist expansion as Greece was in the middle of a civil war with the opposite parties being royalist and communists. And Turkey shared a border with Russia. Although, Congress was initially against the idea of support with a strong belief of isolationism still in some parts, after the doctrine, they soon supported Truman and gave him the finances he needed. ...read more.


The final President to take Presidency in this period between 1940 and1960 was Eisenhower. Eisenhower's Presidency was seen to be a relative period of stability and no major changes to foreign policy happened apart from the 'New Look' on the inherited policy of Containment from Truman. It was principally the same policy and its objective was 'to prevent the further expansion of soviet communism outside of the areas where it was already established'. As a President, Eisenhower was not important in the development of changes in foreign policy in the years 1940 to 1960. His only significant change was his threat to use nuclear weapons. He threatened China with nuclear action in an attempt to ending the Korean War. In relation to the factor of Stalin's death and new negotiations from Khrushchev, Eisenhower did not play an important role in development of changes to US foreign policy as he did not help these US-Soviet relations get back on track. In conclusion, the importance of the President's in relation to other factors such as the state of Europe, the Communist threat and Stalin in the development of changes in foreign policy in the years 1940-1960 is insignificant and not important. These other factors contribute to the Presidents decision on changes to foreign policy and therefore they are more important. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level International History, 1945-1991 section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level International History, 1945-1991 essays

  1. American economic foreign policy and the origins of the cold war

    Britain was able to manage the international economy and facilitated world liquidity and trade before World War I by eliminating most barriers to foreign imports and by balancing its massive current account surpluses with capital outflows. However, with the outbreak of the First World War, this system came to an

  2. Evaluate the presidency of Dwight Eisenhower.

    Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr., criticizes President Eisenhower for what he portrays as recklessness in his treatment of nuclear weapons and the central intelligence agency. It is not adequate, as Ambrose's writing would seem to suggest, to judge a persons actions only by there actual outcome.

  1. The Marshall Plan.

    At Princeton, in the face of the recent elections returning Republican party majorities in both houses that were infused with the rhetoric of tax-cutting, economic nationalism, and government downsizing, Marshall reiterated his 1945 calls for Americans to learn from the lessons of past and assume their world responsibilities as citizens of a great power.

  2. American foreign policy - The Truman Doctrine.

    Truman resented the Soviet takeover of Eastern Europe. 5. Hitler had been appeased, which had made him very hard to defeat. Truman did not want to make the same mistake with Stalin. He decided to deal with communism before it got out of control.

  1. The role of foreign policy on democratic transitions in Armenia and Azerbaijan

    Defining democracy and democratization At this time it is necessary to define some of the terminology in order to clarify what is being implied by democracy and democratization. Democracy as a concept has in the past been defined according to its origins and its goals, in other words, as a

  2. Chinese (Prc) Foreign Policy - the Character of PRC’S Foreign Policy

    If they had been there, they could have vetoed it. CHINA'S ROLE IN THE EARLY DEVELOPMENT OF THE CONFLICT: Mao never fully understood the situation, and never truly realised what Stalin's motives were. Stalin believed that if all of Korea were to fall to come under communist control, the US

  1. The Foreign Policy of the Lone Superpower

    the world from going through a Third World War and most of all, from the grips of Communism, an ideology that became prevalent after the world suffered severe poverty after going through two painstaking wars in a span of 31 years.

  2. 3 presidents

    His attempts to bring about peace got him a Nobel peace prize. Roosevelt was also famously renowned for the way he dealt with the Panama Canal situation. The canal was very sought after by Roosevelt. If he acquired the canal, American trading would have become much more sufficient and he would have paved the foundations for future imports and exports.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work