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  •  1968- Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty: powers with nuclear weapons agreed not to give any other countries nuclear technology.
  • 1971- The US table tennis team played in China.
  • 1971- The US dropped its veto and allowed China to join the United Nations.
  • 1972- The US President Nixon visited China.
  • 1972- Russia and America signed the SALT1 Treaty(Strategic Arms Limitation Talks) agreeing to limit their anti-ballistic missiles and bombers.
  • 1975- The Helsinki Agreement recognised Soviet control over Eastern Europe, concluded a trade agreement, and Russia promised to respect human rights.
  • 1975- Russian and American spacecraft docked in space.
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Detente- Causes

  • America was shocked by the Vietnam War and wanted to stay out of world affairs. There was also a vociferous CND movement in the West.
  • The arms race was very expensive for both superpowers.
  • The price of oil rocketed in the 1970s, and both superpowers experienced economic problems.

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Detente- Limitations

  • The Non-Proliferation Treaty did not stop other countries developing nuclear weapons (eg China, and perhaps South Africa and Israel).
  • Neither Russia or America kept to the SALT1 agreement. Neither side reduced their conventional weapons. Further talks were much less successful and a SALT2 Treaty in 1979 added little.
  • In the Arab-Israeli War of 1973, America supported Israel, and Russia supported Egypt and Syria.
  • The Helsinki Agreement achieved nothing - it confirmed the Iron Curtain and Russia ignored its promises about human rights.
  • Table tennis and space meetings were just one-off propaganda stunts.
  • Brezhnev said that Communists would still try to destroy capitalism. Some historians suggest that Nixon only went to China to drive a wedge between Russia and China
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