George Kennan was an American diplomat stationed at the United States Embassy in the Soviet Union, during the post-World War II era. In 1946, he wrote an analysis of the post war Soviet Union. In 1947, this analysis, in the form of an article, was anonymously published in an American journal,Foreign Affairs.The article presented the idea that communism must be contained to prevent it’s spread to other nations. This concept ultimately became the foundation for U.S. foreign policy for the next 40 years until the fall of communism.
In the aftermath of WWII, the Cold War began. This was not a war in the same sense as the world wars, instead it was a “battle” over ideologies (democracy versus communism). Each side believed their idea was the best and strove to remake the rest of the world in their image. Ultimately, this would lead to U.S. involvement in two “civil wars” in both Korea and Vietnam. They could be considered “civil wars” because each nation was divided over the ideologies espoused by the U.S. and the U.S.S.R (Russia).
Read the following documents:
“Sources of Soviet Conduct” XXXXXXXXXXLinks to an external site.)
Ronald Reagan's Speech XXXXXXXXXXLinks to an external site.)begin at 54:30
Nixon’s Kitchen Debatedownload
Declaration of Independence of the Democratic Republic of Vietnamdownload
Johnson’s Speech on Vietnam XXXXXXXXXXLinks to an external site.)
Senator John F. Kennedy Conference on Vietnam (1956)download
The New Containment (2016)download
Tonkin Gulf Resolution XXXXXXXXXXLinks to an external site.)
Truman XXXXXXXXXXLinks to an external site.)
As the student reads the selections, they should consider the following:
- What was Kennan’s containment theory and why was it an important aspect of U.S. foreign policy?
- What role did containment theory play in U.S. foreign policy during the Cold War?
- Why or how did containment theory lead to U.S. involvement in both Korea and Vietnam?
- Opinion: Would containment theory provide a viable aspect of U.S. foreign policy in today’s world? Why or why not?
Write a 3-5-page (double-spaced) paper regarding the role of containment theory and U.S. involvement in Korea and Vietnam. Make sure to include information from all provided documents in your analysis. Use quotes or paraphrase to support your arguments.
Include a separate cover page and bibliography
This assignment is worth 100 points which will comprise 35% of the final grade
II. Discussion of Kennan - Defines Cold War Policy
III. Vietnam & Korea - Implementation of the policy
IV. Cold War Policies after Vietnam
V. Legacy - Today.