Cold War

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Truman and the Cold War

I. Postwar Domestic Adjustments
A. Initial faltering economy – inflation rises, GDP down, strikes
1. Taft-Hartley Act – put limits on labor unions
a. Outlawed closed shop, labor leaders take non-Communist oath
2. Sold war factories cheaply to private companies
3. G.I. Bill – paid for school for soldiers; home, farm, and small business loans
B. GDP growth lasts next two decades – Americans – 6% of population controlled 40% of earth’s $
1. Middle class doubles, home ownership increases
2. Not touched by war – America dominates ruined global landscape
3. Rising education level, better technology, workforce leaves agriculture
4. Move to suburbs – massive baby boom

II. Civil Rights - war generated new militancy among blacks, generation of college grads
A. 1948 – Truman ends segregation in federal civil service, equality of treatment in military
B. Election of 1948 – Democrats against Truman because of civil rights stance
1. Form Dixiecrats – States Right – nominated Governor Strom Thurmond of S. Carolina
2. Vice-President Henry Wallace enters election for Progressive Party – pro-Soviet platform
3. Harry delivers 300 “give ‘em hell Harry” speeches – Republican Dewey should have won
a. Chicago Tribune ran newspaper – Dewey Defeats Truman – but…farmers, workers, blacks not interested with Republicans

III. Containment in Europe and the Middle East
A. Truman Doctrine - $400 million for Greece and Turkey – help fight Communism
1. Bigger issue – protect any “free peoples” from outside Communist pressure
a. Problem – any tyrant can claim Communist threat and get help
B. Marshall Plan – 1) make capitalism attractive, resist Communism 2) help rebuild Europe
1. $12.5 billion – reverse of Versailles – helps nations rebuild – became economic miracle
C. Berlin crisis – Berlin divided among four allied powers – France, England, Britain, Russia
1. Becomes East and West Berlin – Russia...
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