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

In the years 195360, President Eisenhowers cold war diplomacy was based on confrontation rather than coexistence. How far do you agree with this view?

Extracts from this document...


?In the years 1953?60, President Eisenhower?s cold war diplomacy was based on confrontation rather than coexistence.? How far do you agree with this view? In the years 1953-1960 it can be argued that President Eisenhower?s cold war diplomacy was based on confrontation. Confrontational foreign policy, covert operations of the CIA and the aggressive build-up of nuclear arms seemingly confirm this interpretation. However, the equally hostile Soviet build-up of arms and provocative military action within Eastern Europe highlight the unstable international context that characterised Eisenhower?s presidency; whilst his support of improving superpower relations through ?summit diplomacy? suggest Eisenhower was more interested in ensuring coexistence than confrontation. Therefore, Eisenhower?s cold war diplomacy was a measured and necessary response to a volatile cold war climate and thus was inevitably based on measured confrontation. With the election of Eisenhower as US president in 1952, US foreign policy became increasingly confrontational towards the Soviet Union. ...read more.


service in 1955 on 24 hour alert, this meant the US could deliver a nuclear weapon with 1000 times the destructive capability of the A-bomb on the Soviet Union in only a couple of hours. In addition, the Atlas and Minutemen ICBM?s and Polaris SLBM?s had come into service by 1959, the US could now strike the USSR from grounded nuclear bunkers. The destructive capabilities of America?s nuclear arsenal, in conjunction with nuclear ?brinkmanship? and ?massive retaliation? is clear evidence that Eisenhower?s presidency was particularly confrontational towards the Soviet Union. However, it can also be argued that the actions of the USA during the arms race were an attempt to maintain parity with the Soviet Union and thus deter a potential nuclear strike. Despite the rhetoric of ?peaceful coexistence? the Soviet Union developed its own H-Bomb by August 1953, developed its intercontinental bomber the ?Tu20 Bear? by 1956, started the ?space race? by launching the satellite ?Sputnik? in October 1956 and developed the first ICBM in May 1957. ...read more.


Nevertheless the Paris Peace Accords in 1960 abruptly ended when Khrushchev stormed out following revelations of a successful shooting down of a U2 spy plane over Russia. Despite the undercurrent of distrust and suspicion which persisted between the superpowers, Eisenhower took great efforts to improve superpower relations and therefore his Presidency can be seen to be characterised more by coexistence rather than confrontation. In conclusion, President Eisenhower?s cold war diplomacy was an attempt to ensure coexistence between the superpowers with the use of confrontational diplomacy. Eisenhower?s ?face to face diplomacy? achieved a ?thawing? in relations between the superpowers, whilst the actions of the Soviets in Eastern Europe showed the rhetoric of ?massive retaliation? was more threat than fact. The build-up of arms was in response to both popular opinion and the Soviet nuclear threat. Although the covert operations of the CIA highlights a particularly reckless element of Eisenhower?s policy making. Overall however, the confrontational policy of Eisenhower was measured and an attempt to ensure coexistence through aggressive deterrent. ...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. How far was the USSR responsible for the outbreak of the Cold War?

    America, on the other hand, emerged from the War with an economic boom and they used this superiority to influence Western European countries. There was a series of menacing speeches and claims made by prominent Western figures which greatly influenced the USA in its attitude, at the same time provoking the USSR and accusing them.

  2. Superpower Relations 1945-90

    The invasion became known as the Prague Spring. o After the Czech invasion, Brezhnev said that if a communist country started to go back towards capitalism, other communist countries would take action to stop it. This became known as the Brezhnev Doctrine.

  1. The Cold War was a big rivalry that developed after World War II.

    listening devices aimed at USSR" [3, p.269]. According to the map "A 1980's Soviet View" we can see that USSR was surrounded by American's naval bases - Norway in the North- West, Britain, West Germany and France in the West, Greece and Turkey in the South-West, Iran in the North,

  2. The Thirty Years War was a war over religion rather than politics. Do you ...

    H.G Koenigsberger argues that the rebellion was 'resistance by a privileged group for both political and religious reasons to an aggressive, centralizing monarchy'5. The argument that fighting commenced due in part to the perceived increasing political power of Ferdinand II is supported by Bonny who argues that Ferdinand and his

  1. This graduation paper is about U.S. - Soviet relations in Cold War period. Our ...

    an informal "anti-imperial" alliance between the United States and the Soviet Union. A spirit of cooperation prevailed, with the wartime leaders agreeing that the Big Four would have the power to police any postwar settlements (clearly consistent with Stalin's commitment to a "sphere of influence" approach), reaffirming plans for a

  2. The Prelude to the 1975 War and the Cairo Agreement.

    As the war intensified members of the LAA began to realize that they had been played and used by the PLO and so the LAA shrank from approximately 3,000-4,000 troops in March 1976 to a few hundred by the end of the year by the end of the year and

  1. How far did peaceful coexistence ease Cold War tensions between the Soviet Union and ...

    on its own; therefore, with this notion in mind, the Soviets saw negotiation and conciliation where necessary as a better way to deal with the West than with aggression. This is perhaps why the Soviet Union finally pushed Kim Il Sung, the North Korean leader, to agree to a ceasefire

  2. Superpower Relations and the Thaw in the Cold War

    keen to not allow the other to exert its influence over the region * Israel was established as an independent country in 1948 with the British withdraw from Palestine * British troops were withdrawn from Egypt in 1955 despite continued Ango-French ownership of the Suez Canal * The developing hostility

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