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Truman Doctrines Essay

During the Cold War, most U. S. presidents came up with policies also known as “doctrines” to help remember who stood for what. In this report I will be summarizing a situation that required U. S. diplomatic efforts during President Harry Truman time; explicate the diplomatic doctrine the president followed; describing the effects of this diplomatic efforts for the U. S. and other countries; assess the advantages and disadvantages of the particular doctrine that followed.

In February 1947, the British government informed the United States that it could no longer furnish the economic and military assistance it had been providing to Greece and Turkey since the end of WWII. The Truman administration believed that both nations were threatened by communism and it jumped at the chance to take a tough stand against the Soviet Union. In Greece, force has been battling the Greek royal government since the end of WWII. In Turkey, the Soviets were demanding some manner of control over the Dardanelles, territory from which Turkey was able to dominate the strategies waterways from the Black Sea to the Mediterranean.

On March 12, 1947 Truman appear before a group of Congress to make his case. He declared the world faced a chance in the years to come. Nations could adapt a way of life “based upon the will of the majority” and minority forcibly imposed upon the majority. ” He proposed the Truman Doctrine which provided political, military, and economic assistance to all democratic nations under threat from external or internal authoritarian forces. It effectively reoriented U. S. foreign policy, away from its usual standpoint of withdrawal from regional conflicts not directly involving the U. S. , to one of possible intervention in far away conflicts.

He began by outlining the situation in Greece and Turkey, “Assistance is imperative if Greece is to survive as a free nation, they must have assistance if it is to become a self-sufficient and self-respecting democracy. ” Greece and Turkey will fall to communism without help. Truman requested that Congress provide $400 million worth of aid to both Greece and Turkey to support the dispatch of American civilian and military personnel and equipment to the region.

Congress granted it. This became known as the Military Assistance Program. It ultimately led to NATO. Many historians say the Truman Doctrine marked the American policy of “containment. ” The most famous passage from Truman’s speech: “I believe that it must be the policy of the U. S. to support free peoples who are resisting attempted subjugation by armed minorities or by outside pressure. ” They ideas of this speech informed the communism that they can keep what it had got but Truman would not let it grow anymore.

Houghton Mifflin says “that Truman Doctrine expanded the nation’s role in checking the spread of communism. ” This interpretation basically presumes that the U. S. was in the right. As a result of Truman’s presentation of the global threat of Communism led to an anti-Communist Hysteria which was to end in the “Red Scare” of the 1950s. It also convinced the Soviets in Russia that Americas was a threat to Soviets Communism, and it substantially provoked the Cold War for the 30 years.


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