Detente

In: Historical Events

Submitted By theabdab
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The two world superpowers, after a series of confrontations (1956-62), restructured their CW strategies towards a policy of a relaxation of tensions, formally known as Detente. Detente was used as an easing of the strained relations btwn the US and the Union of Soviets Socialists Republic, from 1969 until D fell in 1980. D was an alternative to the previous US policies of containment and rollback, and the USSR’s policies of Stalinisation and peaceful coexistence, set out to open a window of opportunity in the attempt to reduce International tensions. The supporters of D believed it was a policy beneficial to both sides of the CW ensuring world peace, whereas detractors believe D only showed weakness of the US, allowing the USSR to continue with the CW and increase its influence over different parts of the world. In order to evaluate whether D was effective it must be closely observed.The period of 1956-62 saw a series of events which continued to raise greater anxiety between the USA and the USSR. The Hungarian Revolution 1956 and the Berlin Crisis 1961 were two events which triggered the rising anxiety and tension which was felt between many countries. However, it was the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962, reaching only seconds to midnight on the Doomsday Clock, which highlighted the danger of superpower confrontation and the possible result of nuclear war. US President Kennedy’s threat to use nuclear missiles against the Soviet Union if their bases in Cuba were not withdrawn caused fear across the world. The development of the nuclear arms race saw in 69 the USSR had matched the nuclear capability of the US for Mutually Assured Destruction (MAD). The SU overcame the gap that forced their retreat in the Cuban Missile Crisis. This posed an immense threat of an expensive nuclear war. The superpowers now needed a sensible middle ground to be met, and this ground would be…...

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