Collapse of Detente

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  • Created on: 17-05-14 10:05
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The Breakdown of Detente
1) Human Rights
· Jimmy Carter- elected in Nov 1976/office in Jan 1977
· His foreign policy had a particular focus on human rights- "focal point for deep
concern about human beings all over the world"
· Republicans dislike this- question its importance
· USSR's Basket 3 agreement at Helsinki: Human rights and freedom of
· Carter- "not going to ignore Soviet abuse of human rights"
· Issues:
· Helsinki Watch Groups- difficult to operate, including arrests and
imprisonment, even committing them to psychiatric hospitals
· Plight of refuseniks- Russian Jews, who wanted to leave to practice their faith
in US, denied this right (supposed to have freedom of movement)
· Collision course- Carter wants to focus on human rights and the USSR want to
ignore them
· Brezhnev- saw human rights as a domestic issue and felt the US was
· Jan 1977- Inaugural Address
· Wanted the world to be safer
· Went ahead with SALT II talks
· Started with Ford
· Problem- negotiated under Republican Ford
· Carter= wanted to place his own stamp on it and change the agreement
· Tried to have "deep cuts" in number of nuclear weapons
· USSR problem: felt threatened- impact more on the USSR then USA- so it felt
more of a sneaky trick to them
· Gramyko- "Deep and shady manoeuvre"- Carter's deep cuts
· USSR: Backfire Bomber 1977 & SS 20s developed
· USA: Developed MX and neutron bomb (ultimate capitalist weapon)
· SALT I expired in 1977
· USA continued using SALT I agreements
· Vienna Summit, 1979 SALT II signed
· But never ratified by the Senate
· Because the Soviets invaded Afghanistan in 1979
· Compromise- both wanted to continue
· Minimal restrictions on future development
· Therefore, both sides free to continue the Cold War

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Carter increased defence spending- feeling threatened as he criticised for
being "soft on communism" and needs to prove himself
· USSR placed SS 20s in Eastern Europe
· Strengthened NATO- Cruise and Pershing sent to Western Europe
· Europe becoming unstable again
· Jan 1980 SALT II was withdrawn from the Senate by Carter
China Card Part 2
· Mao died late 1970s (1976)
· Ford visits in 1975
· New leader- Deng Xiaoping
· Wanted closer political and economic ties with USA
· US…read more

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The Rise of Right
· The Right wing's opinion of detente not being beneficial gaining momentum
· Confirmed by election of Thatcher in 1979
· And election of Reagan in 1980/1
· Both v right wing politicians who disliked detente…read more


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