Richard Nixon Hall of Fame Or Hall of Shame
“We must understand that détente is not a love fest. It is an understanding between nations that have opposite purposes, but which share common interests, including the avoidance of a nuclear war. Such an understanding can work—that is, restrain aggression and deter war—only as long as the potential aggressor is made to recognize that neither aggression nor war will be profitable.” Richard Nixon
“I am not a crook.” Richard Nixon
Hall of Fame or Hall of Shame? How should history treat Nixon?
Containment VS Policy begun by President Truman Based on the “domino theory” that if one state falls to communism that surrounding states in a region would soon follow in a domino effect. Communism to be kept from gaining any more territory than it already have Justified U.S. intervention into an area—Korea/Vietnam Détente Comes from French word meaning “relaxation” Diplomatic definition—relaxation of tensions between rival countries 1970’s meaning—relaxation of tensions between U.S., USSR, and China for diplomatic relations and the re-establishment of trade Foreign Policy during the Cold War
Timeline for Détente—China • 1970—Lifted trade and travel restrictions to China • 1971—“Ping Pong Diplomacy”-American Ping Pong team invited to China; first Americans to go to China since 1949 • 1971—Held secret negotiations between Kissinger and Chinese leaders to plan Nixon’s trip to China • 1972—Nixon and wife made historic 8 day visit to China opening the doors to diplomatic relations and future trade agreements • 1979—People’s Republic of China formally recognized by the United States
Short Term Effects ofDétente with China • Trade opened up between U.S. and China • Better relations between U.S. and China allowed U.S. to use the rift between China and the Soviet Union as an advantage • Caused Soviet Union to be more open to accepting détente
Timeline for Détente—Soviet Union • 1972—American-Soviet Summit making Nixon the first American president to visit the Soviet Union • 1972—Signed the first Strategic Arms Limitation Treaty (SALT I) to limit nuclear arms and agreed to increased trade and exchange of scientific information • 1973—Soviet leader, Brezhnev, visited US • 1975—Helsinki Pact signed agreeing to accept post WWII boundaries in Europe and agreed to promote human rights
Short Term Effects ofDétente with Soviet Union • Trade discussions between U.S. and the Soviet Union took place. • President Nixon visited the Soviet Union and Soviet leader, Brezhnev, visited the United States in a spirit of friendship.
CHINA 1975—South Vietnam fell to Communist North Vietnam 1989—Human rights violations not stopped in China with protest in Tiananmen Square massacre Trade continued to expand with China and U.S. SOVIET UNION 1974 -Human rights violations not stopped in Soviet Union with expulsion and imprisonment of intellectuals 1976—Cold War tensions returned especially after Soviet Union invaded Afghanistan and future presidents (Carter & Reagan) took different approaches with regards to trade and arms reduction 1991—Arms race continued until the Soviet economy collapsed trying to keep up with the US After Détente
Watergate • Scandal caused by break-in and subsequent cover-up of the Democratic National Committee (DMC) headquarters during Nixon’s re-election campaign of 1972 • Eventually led to the resignation of President Nixon
1972—Five Nixon supporters attempted to obtain Democratic campaign information and place wiretaps on phones 1972—Media discovered burglars paid for by Committee for Re-election of the President 1972—Nixon denied knowledge of break-in and was re-elected by a landslide vote 1973—During trial of the “five” burglars, testimony given implicated Nixon; later revealed that Nixon had taped all conversations in president’s office taped 1973—Nixon taken to court to force him to release tapes 1973—Nixon’s VP, Spiro Agnew resigned in disgrace over bribes taken before he became Vice-President 1974—Nixon lost case in Supreme Court and had to release tapes; Example: one tape implicated Nixon when he ordered CIA to stop FBI from investigating break-in 1974—House Judiciary Committee voted to impeach Nixon 1974—August 9, Nixon resigned and Ford (appointed to replace Agnew) became President Timeline in Watergate Scandal
“The scandal...a fundamental discrediting of respect for the presidency…a new skepticism about politics, in general, which every American feels today.” Alexander Haig, former Nixon aide “Watergate was probably a good thing for the country; it was a good, sobering lesson. Accountability to the law applies to everyone.” Bob Woodward, reporter for the Washington Post Quotes about Effects of Watergate
Exit Slip Although Nixon _______________________, he deserves to be in the Hall of _______________ for these three reasons: (Explain your thinking)