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10. The End of Détente and the Second Cold War
About this Lecture
In this module, we think about the development of the Cold War in the second half of the 1970s and early 1980s, a period in which the period of détente comes to an end and tensions between the US and Soviet Union begin to ratchet up once again. In particular, we think about: (i) whether there was in fact a clear break in hostilities in the 1970s, considering some of the events of the early- to mid-1970s; (ii) Carter’s initial attempts to continue détente, including: his focus on human rights, his campaign promises to reduce defence spending, and his signing of SALT-II; (iii) Carter’s undermining of détente, including: his above-inflation increases in defence spending and the establishment of a rapid reaction force in the Middle East; (iv) the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan; (v) the Iranian Revolution; (vi) the Nicaraguan Revolution; and (vii) the Intelligence Oversight Act.
In this course, Dr Thomas Tunstall Allcock (University of Manchester) provides an introduction to the Cold War, 1947-91, the period of geopolitical tension between the Soviet Union and its satellite states (the Eastern Bloc) and the United States and its allies (the Western Block). In the first module, we provide an introduction to the topic as a whole, considering how we should actually define the Cold War, and its diplomatic, economic and ideological dimensions. In the second and third modules, we think about the origins of the Cold War, before turning in the fourth module to consider the importance of the Korean War (1950-53) on the conflict. In the fifth module, we think about the domestic impact of the Cold War, before turning in the sixth module to consider how the Cold War began to incorporate tensions in Africa, Asia and South America to become an increasingly global conflict. In the seventh module, we consider the importance of the Cuban Missile Crisis (1962) to the development of the Cold War, before turning in the eighth module to the most important conflict of them all – Vietnam (1955-75). In the ninth module, we consider the development of the war between 1968-75, a period of easing tensions between the US and Soviet Union known as Detente, before turning in the tenth module to the ratcheting up of tensions during the presidency of Jimmy Carter (1977-81). Finally, in the eleventh module, we think about how the Cold War came to an end.
Dr Tom Tunstall Allcock is a lecturer in American history at the University of Manchester. His research focuses on U.S. foreign policy during the Cold War, with particular interests in U.S.-Latin American relations, presidential history and diplomacy, and the cultural history of the Cold War.
Cite this Lecture
Tunstall Allcock, T. (2020, February 05). Cold War – Overview, 1945-1991 - The End of Détente and the Second Cold War [Video]. MASSOLIT. https://www.massolit.io/courses/the-cold-war-1945-1991/the-end-of-detente-and-the-second-cold-war
Tunstall Allcock, T. "Cold War – Overview, 1945-1991 – The End of Détente and the Second Cold War." MASSOLIT, uploaded by MASSOLIT, 05 Feb 2020, https://www.massolit.io/courses/the-cold-war-1945-1991/the-end-of-detente-and-the-second-cold-war