The American Promise, Combined Volume: Chapter 29 Flashcards

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Nikita Khrushchev (BHATIA)

Soviet primer during the Cold War. He is known for having represented the USSR's ideas in meetings with United States leaders, such as the Kitchen Debate in 1959.

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Fidel Castro (ROSS)

Fidel Castro was a Communist-friendly leader of Cuba during the Cold War Era. He overthrew Fulgencio Batista in 1959 to become dictator. Though Cuba was not communist, Castro signed trade agreements with the Soviet Union. Because of their communist association, the U.S. broke dilomatic and trade relations in Cuba.

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Ho Chi Minh (BHATIA)

Vietnamese leader who helped to take the French control out of Vietnam. While he was Communist, many Vietnamese considered him national hero and had there been a national election, would have probably elected him as a leader. Chi Minh was also looking for the unionization of Vietnam.

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Robert McNamara (BHATIA)

Robert McNamara was a Secretary of Defense under President Kennedy. McNamara helped President Kennedy during the war and influenced many of his actions during the war. For example, McNamara and other advisers of Kennedy were advocating for a bombing campaign on Northern Vietnam and Kennedy had accepted.

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Robert F. Kennedy (ROSS)

Brother of President John F. Kennedy, Bobby Kennedy served as Attorney General under his brother. Bobby Kennedy was one of the hopefuls for the 1968 election and provided America with hope with his push for desegregation and election regulation for blacks. Shocking the nation, Kennedy was assassinated in June of 1968 by Sirhan Sirhan.

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Eugene McCarthy (BHATIA)

An antiwar candidate who stood for president, Eugene McCarthy's refusal to share the podium with Hubert H. Humphry started a separation in Democratic party.

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George C. Wallace (BHATIA)

George C. Wallace was former governor of Alabama and a strict segregation. At the time of the election, Wallace was a part of the American Independent Party which was a strong third party at the time. Even though he belonged to this party, Wallace appealed to those who weren't for reforms and the rebellions going on at this time.

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Henry Kissinger (BHATIA)

Henry Kissinger was a National Security Adviser to President Nixon. Nixon and Kissinger worked together on foreign policy issues such as Soviet-China hostility.

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Mao Zedong (BHATIA)

Mao Zedong was the Communist leader of China. He lead China in a time when the Soviet Union and China were facing conflicts with the Soviet Union. Presidnt Nixon opened foreign policy to China along with Europe, and the USSR in hopes they could solve their conflicts by working on Common issues.

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Bay of Pigs Invasion (ROSS)

The Bay of Pigs was an attempted invasion of Cuba by CIA-trained Cuban refugees in April of 1961. The invasion had the goal of overthrowing Fidel Castro. The invasion ultimately failed because Kennedy refused air support. Kennedy took responsibility for the failure of the invasion, and it was an embarrassment to the U.S.

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Apollo Program (BHATIA)

The Apollo program was authorized in order to contradict the Soviet achievement of send a human to orbit the Earth and taking astronauts to the moon. In 1969, American astronauts succeeded in landing on the moon.

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Berlin Wall (ROSS)

Because of the mass exodus of East Germans to West Germany, in 1961 the communist government of East Germany erected a wall to stop to immigration Westward. The Berlin wall "fell" in 1989.

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Alliance for Progress (ROSS)

The Alliance for Progress was like a Marshall Plan for Latin America. Started in 1961, its purpose was to provide economic relief to Latin America to resist communism. To those who supported it, the outcome of the alliance was disappointing and wasn't nearly as successful as the Marshall Plan.

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Provides economic development and humanitarium assitance oversees. Established in 1961 by Kennedy This type of program started in 1947 with Marshall Plan. Its objective is to counter the appeal of Communism and to alleviate poverty.

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Peace Corps (VEERAMANI)

The Peace Corps was JFK's idea to recruit young men and women to work in developing countries. After studying the country's language and culture, the members of the Peace Corps traveled to the country to work with the people, opening school, providing basic health care, and helping with agriculture, nutrition , and small businesses.

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Intercontinental ballistic missle. Its huge range (3,500 miles)and great speed made it very destructive. The Soviet Union and the United States developed ICMs during the Cold War. Its deployment was government by MAD.

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Cuban Missile Crisis (ROSS)

In October 1962, an American spy plane discovered that the Soviets were planting missile sites in Cuba. Kennedy blockaded Cuba in response and demanded that all the missiles be removed. Kennedy threatened the Soviets by declaring that any missile attack on the U.S. would result in retaliation against the U.S.S.R. The Soviets and the U.S. came to an agreement; the Soviets removed their missiles form Cuba and the U.S. removed theirs from Turkey. Led to the Nuclear Test Ban, which involved an agreement between the U.S., the Soviet, and Britain not to do any nuclear testing in the atmosphere or underwater.

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Vietcong (PENG)

Guerilla force that opposed the brutal and harsh rule of Diem in South Vietnam. The initiative of this indigenous force came from within, not from Soviet Union of China. In 1960, comunist North Vietnam established the National LIberation Front that used the VIetcong to infiltrate the South Vietnaese government. Ho Chi Minh reinforced and supplied the Vietcong. The Vietcong's guerilla war against South VIetnam and the United States was successful.

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Ho Chi Minh Trail (PENG)

A former trail system extending from northern to southern Vietnam that was opened in 1959. The trail also ran through Laos and Cambodia. It became the major militay supply route for comunist North Vietnamese troops and the Vietcong (National Liberation Front) during the Vietnam War and the main route for the North Vietnamese invasion of SOuth Vietnam in 1975.

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Gulf of Tonkin Resolution (ROSS)

In 1964, the North Vietnamese fired on American boats in the Gulf of Tonkin. Congress allowed President Johnson to use military force in Vietnam because of the threat. Johnson retaliated against the Viet Cong with bombings of the North and group troops later.

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Established in 1948, the OAS reconstituted the Pan-American Union, was was originally established in 1890 to promote cooperation among Latin American countries and the United States by settling various commerical and judicial issues. The OAS promotes economic, military, and cultural cooperation among the independent states of the Western Hemisphere. Its goals are to maintain peace, solidarity, and justice in the Western Hemisphere; prevent intervention in the region by any outside state; foster economic development; and defend the sovereignty of its nations. Cuba was suspened from OAS during the COld War due to its pro-Soviet/communist leanings.

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Students for a Democratic Society was founded in 1960 at the University of Michigan. This left group promoted "participatory democracy."In 1965, during the Cold War, a mass of students organized a national march in proteset to U.S. involvement in the Vietnam War. Afterwards, this group became more militant and organized sit-ins to protest defense-related research for the war in universities. Their violent protests on college campuses captured national attention.

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Tet Offensive (ROSS)

In January, 1986, North Vietnam violated a truce that no fighting would happen on the New Year. The North Vietnamese attacked cities all throughout South Vietnam. Despite their aggressive surprise attack, the North Vietnamese and the Viet Cong actually lost. The attack surprised the United States and made people realize that what they were being told about how we were winning the war wasn't true and created skepticism towards the gov't.

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The first round of talks and agreements of the Strategic Arms Limitation Treaty involving the United States and the SOviet Union commenced in Finland in 1969. SALT I led to the Anti-Ballistic Missle Treaty, which froze the number of strategic ballistic missile launchers at existing levels and required both countries to limit the number of sites protected by an anti-ballistic missile (ABM) system. This established an interim agreement betweeen the two superpowers and somewhat impoved their relationship (as nuclear weapons were becoming too expensive to upkeep).

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detente (PENG)

French for "loosening." Refers to the easing of tensions between the U.S. and USSR during the Nixon administration. Nixon focused on issues of common concern, such as arms control, trade, and stability. SALT and the limitation of AMBs (antiballistic missiles) was one of the most significant resolutions that prevented either nation from striking with its immense nuclear power. The post-World War II boundaries were also recognized with the Soviet's promise to recognize human rights and fundamental freedoms. Increased trade, reduced nuclear warfare dangers, and cooperative research eased tensions. Nixon's visit to China also prompted the Soviets' interest in detente.

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Weapon designed to destroy ballistic missiles. These systems were sought during the nuclear arms race when unstoppable ballistic missles heightened dangers. SALT limited the ABMs of the SOviet Union and the United States to two each so that niether nation could build so secure an ABM defense against a nuclear attack that it would risk a first strike.

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Cambodian Invasion (PENG)

In 1969, Nixon secretly began a ferocious air war in Cambodia seeking to knock out North Vietnamese sanctuaries. In 1970, Nixon ordered a joint U.S.-ARVN invasion of Cambodia to support a new, pro-Western Combodian government installed through a military coup and to show the enemy that the U.S. was serious about its commitment in Vietnam. He defended his move by ephasizing the importance of U.S. credibility and strength. His order provoked outrage. The Cambodian Invasion made Vietnam "Nixon's War."
Nixon abused his presidential power by taking extreme measures to deceive the public and silence his critics. Even worse, the Cambodian Invasion failed to break the will of North Vietnam and resulted in Communist Cambodia.

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Kent State Shootings (PENG)

Kent State University students protested the Vietnam War on May 7, 1970. They were against Nixon's decision to send troops to invade Cambodia to strike against suspected guerrillas. AFter a fire burned down
the university Reserve Officers' Training Corps (ROTC) building, national guardsmen shot tear gas at the protestors and opened fire, killing four students and injuring nine. This violent demonstration symbolized the countrie's deep division over the Vietnam War and the conservative backlash.

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My Lai Massacre (PENG)

During the court-martial of Lieutenant William Calley in 1970, Americans learned that in March 1968, Calley's company had killed every inhabitant of the hamlet of My Lai (about 400 villagers). American troops on a search-and-destroy mission against the hamlet did not find Vietcong there, yet they still killed hundred of innocent civilians. The military had covered up the atrocity for over a year until journalists finally exposed it. This added to the growing disillusionment with the war.

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Pentagon Papers case (PENG)

The Pentagon Papers were secret documents that described the U.S. role in Indochina from World War II to 1968. Ellsberg, an associate in this project who was opposed to the U.S. participation in the Vietnam War,leaked details from the study to the press. In June 1971 The New York Times began publishing the material. In opposition, the gov't lawyers wanted to halt publication citing national security. However, the U.S. Supreme Court considered this a violation of the freedom of press and the documents were published widely. This fueled debate over the country's Vietnam policy, heightened disillusionment with the war, and cast doubts on the gov't's credibility.

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War Powers Act (PENG)

Law passed in November 1973 that required the president to report to Congress within forty-eight hours of deploying military forces abroad. If Congress faileld to endorse the president's action within sixty days, the troops would have to be withdrawn. Though this was a measure to prevent "future Vietnam's," the new law did little to despel the public's distrust of and disillusionment with the government.

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Third World (ROSS)

Third World was a term created during the Cold War to describe countries who were not in line with capitalism and NATO (First World) or communism and the Soviet Union (Second World).

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guerilla warfare (PENG)

FIghting carried out by an irregular military force usually organized into small, highly mobile groups that disperse and conduct small-scale operations over an indefinite period of time. It is often effective against opponents who have greater material resources. The strength of this form of warfare is its resilience.The Vietcong used guerrilla warfare and was successful in defeating South VIetnam and the United States.

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colonialism (VEERAMANI)

Colonialism was a policy by which European nations explored and 'colonized' (conquered and settled) different areas of the world, usually outside of Europe.

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wars of national liberation


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Iron Curtain (PENG)

A metaphor coined by Winston CHurchill during hs commencement address in Fulton, Missouri in 1946 to refer to the political, ideological, and military barriers that separated Soviet-controlled Eastern Europe from the rest of Europe and the West following World War II. During the COld War, Khrushchev was concerned about the massive exodus of East Germans into WEst Berlin. To stop this flow of escapees from behind the iron curtain, he erected the Berlin Wall between East and West Berlin.

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A strong feeling of devotion and loyalty toward one nation over others. Nationalism encourages the promotion of the nation's common culture, language, and customs. It also involves aspirations for national independence over foreign domination. During the Cold War, the United States prioritized anti-communism over nationalism. Because it also equated nationalism with anti-communism, it instilled dictatorial rule in third world countries.

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Agent Orange (PENG)

Agent Orange is a herbicide containing dioxin, a highly toxic compound, that was used in the Vietnam War to destroy the Vietcong's forest cover and food supply. The U.S. Air Force sprayed more than 40 million pounds of Agent Orange over 5 million acres of forest in both Vietnam and Cambodia. The defoliant also caused birth defects and such serious illnesses as cancer, adult-onset diabetes, liver failure, and chloracne. This affected both Southeast Asians and American soldiers.


U.S. credibility


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Yankee Imperialism (PENG)

A cry raised in Latin American countries against the United States when it intervened militarily in the region without invitation or consent from those countries. Because the U.S. staged military coups that toppled Latin American governments, Johnson's Latin American policy generated new cried of Yankee imperialism. The failed attempted armed interference at the Bay of Pigs and its interference in the Dominican Republic also evoked memories of Yankee imperialism among Latin Americans.


attrition strategy (PENG)

A military strategy in which one side tries to win a war by wearing down its enemy through continual losses in personnel and equipment. General Westmoreland promoted the strategy of attrition to search out and kill the Vietcong and North Vietnamese regular army since he believed the war against the Vietcong could not be won by traditional land-conquering methods. Because there were battlefronts, American soldiers did not distinguish between military combatants and civilians, killing thousands of innocent lives.

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escalation policy (PENG)

President Kennedy proposed this to gradually escalate the U.S. commitment in Vietnam. This decision was made in response to the deteriorating situation in Vietnam and the dispute at home over whether the United States should make an all-out effort or reduce its involvment. However, by the end of the Vietnam War, the United States spent more than $150 billion dollars and sent 2.6 million young men and women to Vietnam.

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"living room war" (VEERAMANI)

A living room war was a war that was broadcasted through the television on various networks. It "brought the war to the living room". The Vietnam was the first such war.

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Reserve Officers Training Corps programs train students in American colleges and high schools to be officers in the U.S. armed forces. This on top of the unpopularity of the Vietnam War sparked many campus protests, especially from the SDS.

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conscientious objector (VEERAMANI)

A conscientious objector is an individual who chooses not to participate in a war effort due to ethical or religious reasons. More than 170,000 men who were given conscientious objector status in the Vietnam War performed nonmilitary duties in the US or in Vietnam.

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student deferment (BHATIA)

This strategy was used by University Students to escape the draft by means of their college. As long as they were attending a university, they couldn't be drafted into the war.

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hawks vs. doves (PENG)

The Vietnam War deeply divided the country. The hawks charged that the Untied States was fighting with one hand tied behind its back and called for intensification of the war. They advocated an aggressive foreign policy based on military power and basically supported the war. On the other hand, the doves wanted de-escalation or withdrawal. They were tired with the growing numbers of military deaths and U.S. troops in Vietnam and wanted to resolve international conflicts without force.

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Americanization/Vietnamization strategies (PENG)

Americanization refers to the continuously expanding and intensifying US involvement and presence in Vietnam. More US military advisers, troops, weapons, bombs, etc. were used in Vietnam. Vietnamization was proposed by Johnson in 1968 to end the gradual escalation of the war and to instead rely more heavily on the South Vietnamese to achieve non-Communist South Vietnam. President Nixon acted on this by strengthening the ARVN and replacing US forces with the S. Vietnamese soldiers and American technology and bombs.

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1968 Chicago Democratic Convention (BHATIA)

This event took place in Chicago when many protesters and demonstrators fought police to support the peace candidate Eugene McCarthy. After seeing the violence and bloodshed that occured in Chicago, many people were horrified. However, this did not change the outcome of any party's convention.

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Paris Peace Accords (BHATIA)

The Paris Peace Accords, signed in January 27th 1973, was the agreement that the American troops would withdraw from Vietnam, and fighting would stop in Southern Vietnam. Vietnam had to release United States prisoners and Northern Vietnam was allowed to gain their captured land from the war. This agreement made sure that the war was ended peacefully.

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Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder is a mental disorder that commonly affects victims of 'traumatic' events - such as torture, murder, or war. Symptoms are usually recurrent flashbacks of the event, irritability, anxiety, fatigue, forgetfulness, and social withdrawal.

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Vietnam Veterans memorial (PENG)

As the Vietnam War entered the realm of popular culture, its incorporation into the collective experience was symbolized most dramatically in the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington D.C. in 1982. Architect Maya Lin designed this black, V-shaped wall inscribed with the names of thousands of men and women lost in the war.