Stalemate: The Cold War

Stalemate: The Cold War

Part 5
Season 1  |  Episode 5  |  The History Channel  |  September 28, 2018

As the 1960s began, a generation was growing to adulthood which had known only the cold war. In those early years of the 1960s there was an idealistic hope. John F Kennedy had been elected as president and he talked of the torch being passed to a new generation. There were hopes that he would break the cold war deadlock and bring an end to the conflict. These hopes were dashed when he engaged in a stand-off with Nikita Khrushchev over Russian nuclear bases being built in Cuba. Kennedy was not the kind of man to back down and a tense few days ensued with the world waiting to see who would give in first. In the end, both sides gave a little; Russian returned its missiles to the Soviet Union and the US removed their missiles from Turkey. But the damage had been done and by the end of the decade both leaders would be gone; one deposed by his own parliament and the other killed by a sniper's bullet. The end of the decade was a dark time for peace. The nuclear club grew with the explosion of Chinese and French nuclear weapons, and conflicts in far away places like Egypt, Israel and Vietnam led the American people to question their country's involvement in wars that were happening in places that they had never seen and didn't care about.

As the 1960s began, a generation was growing to adulthood which had known only the cold war. In those early years of the 1960s there was an idealistic hope. John F Kennedy had been elected as president and he talked of the torch being passed to a new generation. There were hopes that he would break the cold war deadlock and bring an end to the conflict. These hopes were dashed when he engaged in a stand-off with Nikita Khrushchev over Russian nuclear bases being built in Cuba. Kennedy was not the kind of man to back down and a tense few days ensued with the world waiting to see who would give in first. In the end, both sides gave a little; Russian returned its missiles to the Soviet Union and the US removed their missiles from Turkey. But the damage had been done and by the end of the decade both leaders would be gone; one deposed by his own parliament and the other killed by a sniper's bullet. The end of the decade was a dark time for peace. The nuclear club grew with the explosion of Chinese and French nuclear weapons, and conflicts in far away places like Egypt, Israel and Vietnam led the American people to question their country's involvement in wars that were happening in places that they had never seen and didn't care about.

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