US response to the Cold War.

US response to the Cold War.

The view after World War II is that US was facing expansionist, communist enemy, not so much different than Nazi Germany. This was the impression that Harry Truman and his successors wanted to make to the American public. If we don’t contain this enemy, it will be just like Hitler. We know what happened in Munich and if we give in to the tyranny, we will going to pay for it later. This was the attitude in the 1950s and, in addition to domestic politics, if you do not contain something, you are going to have a bigger problem later.

Having said that, I can’t emphasize enough in this class, what Vietnam did to the American psyche. This war really took away a lot of the American spirit. For sure Vietnam did something to the Democratic Party was split into parts. They argue and argue, the Republican Party (like R. Nixon) could called them soft on communism and they didn’t have the defense. And that’s why George McGovern in 1972 lost 49 states to 1 (he won Massachusetts). John McGovern claimed that America is being a dangerous power in a similar way as the Soviet Union. He was talking about legalizing abortion, drugs. He lost in every south states. It used to be almost impossible for the Democratic Party to lose the South, because it was the party of the Civil War, of the Confederation. Republicans was the party of Abraham Lincoln. Before 1964 South would never, ever vote for Republicans. There was a term called yellow dog Democrat, it means that South would rather vote for Yellow Dog, before they would vote for Republican. Vietnam swung Democrats to the left. They sounded like unpatriotic. Democrats lost all control over how Americans think, especially in foreign policy.

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