GCSE History, Edexcel A syllabus, International Relations, Section 6 - Why Did The Cold War End? The leaders of the United States and the Soviet Union, Richard Nixon and Leonid Brezhnev, hoped to forge a new relationship between East and West. This created the idea that the threat of 'mutually assured destruction' would discourage a nuclear war. Nixon recognized the need for a new foreign policy without abandoning the logic of containment (preventing hostile influences from expanding). Lastly, Nixon sought to replace American military commitments with financial and military aid. © 2021 A&E Television Networks, LLC. When Eisenhower took office, he removed U.S. troops from Korea and began a buildup of America's nuclear arsenal in place of conventional weapons and ground forces. credit-by-exam regardless of age or education level. credit by exam that is accepted by over 1,500 colleges and universities. Not sure what college you want to attend yet? First, the U.S. had overextended itself in Vietnam, and the nation was exhausted from war. Relations cooled again with the Soviet invasion of … The first Strategic Arms Limitation Talks Agreement (SALT I) was signed on May 26th, 1972 after considerable discussions between the United States and the Soviet Union beginning in November of 1969. This video explains detente - the period in the 1960s and 60's when there was a thaw in the Cold War and the US and USSR seemed to be cooperating. It was designed to relax tensions with the Soviet Union, reduce nuclear arsenals, and limit military commitments. Nixon's policy of détente - a French word meaning 'release from tensions' - marked a crossroads in American foreign policy and a timely commitment to reduce U.S.-Soviet tensions. Summit III, in June 1974, was the least productive; by then, the salt talks had ground to a halt, several commercial agreements had been blocked in Congress because of Soviet treatment of Jews, and the Watergate investigation was approaching a climax. Détente is generally understood as a relaxation of international tension. Previous administrations had struggled with how best to manage U.S.-Soviet tensions. By the end of the seventies this détente was over for several reasons. To learn more, visit our Earning Credit Page. https://www.history.com/topics/cold-war/detente. In July 1971, he secretly sent Secretary of State Henry Kissinger to China on a diplomatic mission, following up with a visit of his own in February 1972 to meet with Premier Zhou Enlai and Chairman Mao Zedong. Another treaty, SALT II, was discussed but never ratified by the US. - Definition & Country Members, Effects of the Vietnam War on American Policy, Biological and Biomedical first two years of college and save thousands off your degree. In June 1948, the simmering tensions between the Soviet Union ...read more, After World War II, the Allies partitioned the defeated Germany into a Soviet-occupied zone, an American-occupied zone, a British-occupied zone and a French-occupied zone. He and Brezhnev signed seven agreements covering the prevention of accidental military clashes; arms control, as recommended by the recent Strategic Arms Limitation Talks (salt); cooperative research in a variety of areas, including space exploration; and expanded commerce. Détente did not start in the Cold War, it began in the late 1890s, when the diplomatic relations between the United Kingdom and France became warmer ending almost a millennium of perpetual suspicion and hostilities. All Rights Reserved. Another reason for détente was the growing industrial and economic might of countries in Asia, Africa, and the Middle East. All rights reserved. Detente. When Kennedy took office, he opted for a 'flexible response'. Détente (pronounced day-tont) is a word that means less tension and a better relationship between two countries.. The most fundamental of these was each side's interpretation of the definition and purpose of détente. Created by. and career path that can help you find the school that's right for you. However, there are many conceptions and characteristics of détente: superpower détente (such as ‘Nixinger's, Leonid Brezhnev's or Mao Zedong/ Zhou Enlai's détente), European détente (such as Charles de Gaulle's détente and Willy Brandt's Ostpolitik) and, to a lesser extent, small powers' détente. Détente (a French word meaning release from tension) is the name given to a period of improved relations between the United States and the Soviet Union that began tentatively in … An 'American lake' in the 1950s, a battlefield for influence in the Cold War of the 1960s, and an increasingly important political arena for the oil-rich Gulf States in the 1970s, the Mediterranean offers a focal point around which the major themes and narratives of Cold War history were constructed. From the late 1960s to the late 1970s, the Cold War was highlighted by a period known as “détente” – a welcome easing of tensions between the United States and the Soviet Union. The period was characterized by the signing of treaties such as SALT I and the Helsinki Accords. Cold War, by CNN Perspectives. Fourth, Nixon wanted Europe to assume a larger role in its own defense. She was also fearful of what the USA had done in nuclear weapons. Study.com has thousands of articles about every The two leaders signed several agreements, but the two most important were the Strategic Arms Limitation Treaty (SALT 1) and Anti-Ballistic Treaty (ABM), which collectively limited the size, range, and number of launching sites of nuclear weapons. Detente, period of the easing of Cold War tensions between the United States and the Soviet Union from 1967 to 1979. In response, Kennedy created Special Forces units for small-scale ground operations. Relations cooled again following the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan. Incredibly, Nixon had pulled off what no U.S. president had done in over twenty years. just create an account. Match. Eric Foner and John A. Garraty, Editors. There is still ongoing debate among historians as to how successful the détente period was in achieving peace. Select a subject to preview related courses: Nixon's China strategy worked, and the Soviet Union reached out to Nixon. The era was a time of increased trade and cooperation with the Soviet Union and the signing of the Strategic Arms Limitation Talks (SALT) treaties. Subscribe for fascinating stories connecting the past to the present. … Détente was characterized by warm personal relationships between US president Richard Nixon (1969–1974) and Soviet leader Leonid Brezhnev (1964–1982). The salt treaty was approved by Congress later that summer, as was a three-year agreement on the sale of grain to the Soviets. Detente Facts - 2: During the 1960s and the 1970s, there were signs of a thawing of relationships between the United States and the Soviet Union in the ongoing Cold War (1945 - 1991). The West German chancellor, Willy Brandt, adopted his Ostpolitik policy, which accepted the division of Germany and endorsed the status quo arrangement. willcrisp. Détente and Deterrence in the Cold War Nelson. But if you see something that doesn't look right, click here to contact us! Several newly independent nations, such as India, had adopted a policy of non-alignment; also, the China-Soviet feud further illustrated the diversity even within the communist world. Détente marked a shift in Cold War policy under President Nixon. On May 22 Nixon became the first U.S. president to visit Moscow. . While their ideological and economic systems rendered them incompatible, both acknowledged the need for negotiation, compromise and working together. The Soviet Union and its affiliated Communist nations in Eastern Europe founded a rival alliance, the Warsaw Pact, ...read more, Nikita Khrushchev (1894-1971) led the Soviet Union during the height of the Cold War, serving as premier from 1958 to 1964. Quiz & Worksheet - Détente in the Cold War, Over 83,000 lessons in all major subjects, {{courseNav.course.mDynamicIntFields.lessonCount}}, The Cold War: Definition, Causes & Early Events, United States Involvement in the Korean War: Causes and Effects, The Vietnam War: Causes, Conflicts & Effects, Muslim and Hindu Conflict in India and the Partition of India and Pakistan, Mohandas Gandhi: Beliefs, Accomplishments & Assassination, Who was Jawaharlal Nehru? As a case in point, it culminated in the Korean War. Copyright © 1991 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Second, the Soviet Union had reached nuclear parity, or equality, with the U.S. in nuclear weapons, and it became too dangerous to continue this rigid standoff. Create your account, Already registered? Détente, period of the easing of Cold War tensions between the U.S. and the Soviet Union from 1967 to 1979. Both countries stood to gain if trade could be increased and the danger of nuclear warfare reduced. 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