Llewellyn Thompson Telegram to Dean Rusk, May 27, 1961
By: Llewellyn Thompson
Date: May 27, 1961
Source: Thompson, Llewellyn. Telegram to Dean Rusk, May 27, 1961. The National Security Archive, George Washington University. Available online at http://www.gwu.edu/~nsarchiv/nsa/publications/berlin_crisis... ; website home page: http://www.gwu.edu/~nsarchiv/ (accessed April 2, 2003).
About the Author: Llewellyn Thompson (1904–1972) was born in Las Animas, Colorado. In 1929, after graduating from the University of Colorado, he entered the U.S. Foreign Service. In 1941, he was dispatched to Moscow and witnessed firsthand the Nazi siege. From 1957 to 1962 and from 1966 to 1969, he was the U.S. ambassador to the Soviet Union, serving presidents Dwight D. Eisenhower (served 1953–1961), John F. Kennedy (served 1961–1963), Lyndon B. Johnson (served 1963–1969), and Richard M. Nixon (served 1969–1974).
Maxwell Taylor Memorandum to Lyman L. Lemnitzer, September 19, 1961
By: Maxwell D. Taylor
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The Port Huron Statement of the Students for a Democratic Society
By: Tom Hayden and Students for a Democratic Society
Date: June 1962
Source: Hayden, Tom, and Students for a Democratic Society. The Port Huron Statement of the Students for a Democratic Society. New York: Students for a Democratic Society, 1962. Available online at http://coursesa.matrix.msu.edu/~hst306/documents/huron.html (accessed April 2, 2003).
About the Author: Tom Hayden (1939–), born in Royal Oak, Michigan, is one of the best-known student radicals of the 1960s. He was the cofounder of Students for a Democratic Society (SDS). In the 1980s, Hayden decided to change the United States from within the political system. In 1982, he was elected to the California Assembly. Ten years later, he was elected to the state senate. He served until 1999, when he had to step down because of the California senate's term-limit regulations.
The 1960s witnessed the first active student movement since the 1930s. In part, this movement was attributable to the demographic patterns following World War II (1939–1945) and the rise of the baby boomer generation. In 1940, only 15 percent of all youth between the ages of eighteen and twenty-one attended...
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"U-2 Photography of Soviet MRBM Site in Cuba, October 1962"
By: Strategic Air Command
Date: October 1962
Source: Strategic Air Command. "U-2 Photography of Soviet MRBM site in Cuba, October 1962." October 1962. Available online at http://www.cia.gov/csi/studies/winter98-99/page14.gif. Reproduced in Orlov, Alexander. "A 'Hot' Front in the Cold War: the U-2 Program-A Russian Office Remembers." Studies in Intelligence, Winter 1998–1999. Available online at http://www.cia.gov/csi/studies/winter98-99/art02.html (accessed April 10, 2003).
About the Organization: In 1946, after a sweeping reorganization of the U.S. Army Air Forces, the Strategic Air Command (SAC) was created. Its mission was to conduct long-range offensive operations, including maximum-range reconnaissance, in any part of the world. During the Cold War, SAC was in charge of the nation's vast nuclear arsenal. In 1992, with the demise of the Soviet Union, SAC was disbanded.
In January 1959, after a six-year war of liberation, a revolutionary movement led by Fidel Castro toppled the government of General Fulgencio Batista, a brutal Latin American dictator in Cuba. Although...
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"The Desolate Year"
By: Monsanto Chemical Company
Date: October 1962
Source: Monsanto Chemical Company. "The Desolate Year." Monsanto Magazine, October 1962.
About the Organization: In 1901, the chemist John Francis Queeny founded the Monsanto Chemical Company. Headquartered near St. Louis, Missouri, the company soon became a leading manufacturer of industrial chemicals. Since 1940, the company has consistently ranked among the top ten chemical companies in the United States. Among its most controversial products was dichlorodiphenyl trichloroethane (DDT), a powerful and effective insecticide.
Public health experts regard DDT as the greatest life-saving chemical ever developed. One consequence of its success is that it became the most widely applied chemical in human history. DDT is effective because unlike other pesticides it destroys hundreds of different types of insects over a prolonged period of time.
It saved the lives of countless American soldiers during World War II (1939–1945) by clearing South Pacific islands of malaria-causing insects. After the war, this "atom bomb of insecticides" was made available to civilian populations throughout the world. In the United States, DDT was widely used by...
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"Smoker on the Street Largely Defiant"
By: Douglas Robinson
Date: January 12, 1964
Source: Robinson, Douglas. "Smoker in the Street Largely Defiant." The New York Times, January 12, 1964.
About the Author: Luther Terry (1911–1985) was born in Red Level, Alabama. In 1935, he graduated from Tulane University with a doctorate in medicine. Besides being an expert in cardiovascular clinical investigation, Terry was also a faculty member at Washington University, the University of Texas, and Johns Hopkins Medical School. He also served as the U.S. surgeon general and the assistant director of the National Heart Institute.
Tobacco is a plant that is indigenous to North and South America. It is believed that tobacco began growing in the Americas in 6000 B.C. It is also believed that in 1 B.C. pre-Columbian Americans began to use tobacco for smoking and chewing. In October 1492, American Indians gave Christopher Columbus tobacco leaves for a present. Afterward, sailors brought the weed back to Europe where they, like the American Indians, believed that tobacco was a cure-all for everything from toothaches to cancer.
By 1612, tobacco for pipe smoking, chewing, and snuffing was in such demand in Europe that it became colonial...
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"The Great Society"
By: Lyndon B. Johnson
Date: May 22, 1964
Source: Johnson, Lyndon B. "The Great Society." May 22, 1964. Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States: Lyndon B. Johnson, 1963–64. Vol. 1. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1964, 704–707. Reproduced in CNN Cold War Historical Documents. Available online at ; website home page: http://www.cnn.com/SPECIALS/cold.war/ (accessed April 2, 2003).
About the Author: Lyndon B. Johnson (1908-1973) was born near Stonewall, Texas. After a brief stint at teaching, Johnson was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 1935 and two years later to the U.S. Senate. In 1954, he was named majority leader, the most powerful member of the Senate. Following the assassination of John F. Kennedy (served 1961–1963), Johnson was sworn in as the thirty-sixth president (served 1963–1969). He won reelection in 1964, but chose not to run in 1968.
In 1937, Franklin D. Roosevelt (served 1933–1945) estimated that 33 percent of the nation was "ill-housed, ill-clad, ill-nourished." To help alleviate suffering, Congress enacted a welfare program that made payments to widows with children. By 1956, the number of...
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"Report of the President's Commission on the Assassination of President Kennedy"
By: Earl Warren
Date: September 1964
Source: Warren, Earl. "Report of the President's Commission on the Assassination of President Kennedy." President's Commission on the Assassination of President Kennedy, September 1964. Available online at ; website homepage: http://www.jfk-assassination.de/ (accessed April 2, 2003).
About the Author: Earl Warren (1891–1974) was born and raised in California. He was the governor of California from 1943 to 1953. That same year, President Dwight D. Eisenhower (served 1953–1961) appointed him chief justice of the U.S. Supreme Court. The Warren Court was most famous for issuing the 1954 decision Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka, which unanimously ruled that school segregation was unconstitutional. He retired from the bench in 1969.
Unlike the vast majority of twentieth century Irish Catholics, John F. Kennedy had a privileged upbringing. His father, Joseph, was a millionaire businessman who served as President Franklin D. Roosevelt's (served 1933–1945) head of the Securities and Exchange Commission and as the U.S. ambassador to Great Britain. After the death of John's older brother Joe, Joseph groomed John for the...
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"Aggression from the North"
By: Dean Rusk
Date: February 27, 1965
Source: Rusk, Dean. "Aggression from the North." State Department White Paper on Vietnam, February 27, 1965. Reproduced in CNN Cold War Historical Documents. Available online at ; website home page: http://www.cnn.com/SPECIALS/cold.war/ (accessed April 2, 2003).
About the Author: Dean Rusk (1909–1994) was born in Cherokee County, Georgia. In 1940, the Rhodes Scholar entered the army as an infantry captain and rose to the rank of colonel. In 1946, he joined the State Department and was appointed assistant secretary of state for Far Eastern affairs in 1950. In 1961, President Lyndon B. Johnson (served 1963–1969) appointed him secretary of state. From 1970 to 1984, he served as a professor of international law at the University of Georgia.
For centuries, the Indochinese peninsula, which rounds the southeastern corner of Asia, had been subjected to foreign occupation. At the end of the nineteenth century, the part of peninsula now known as Vietnam was a French colony. In 1940, when Japan invaded Vietnam, it left the French administration intact. When Japan surrendered in 1945, France reasserted its claim over Vietnam....
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Martin Luther King, Jr
"I Have a Dream"
By: Martin Luther King, Jr.
Date: August 28, 1963
Source: King, Martin Luther, Jr. "I Have a Dream." Address delivered at the Lincoln Memorial, Washington, D.C., August 28, 1963. Transcript available online at http://www.stanford.edu/group/King/publications/speeches/ad... ; website home page: http://www.stanford.edu/group/King (accessed July 30, 2003).
"The American Dream"
By: Martin Luther King, Jr.
Date: July 4, 1965
Source: King, Martin Luther, Jr. "The American Dream." July 4, 1965. In A Knock at Midnight: Inspiration From the Great Sermons of Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr. Clayborne Carson and Peter Holloran, eds. New York: IPM/ Warner Books, 1998. Available online at http://www.stanford.edu/group/King/sermons/650704_the_ameri... ; website homepage: http://www.stanford.edu/group/King (accessed April 2, 2003)....
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Federal Role in Traffic Safety: Hearings Before the Senate Subcommittee on Executive Reorganization of the Committee on Government Operations
By: Ralph Nader
Date: February 1966
Source: Nader, Ralph. Testimony to the U.S. Senate Subcommittee on Executive Reorganization of the Committee on Government Operations. Federal Role in Traffic Safety: Hearings Before the Senate Subcommittee on Executive Reorganization of the Committee on Government Operations. 89th Congress, 2nd session, February 1966, 1265–1270.
About the Author: Ralph Nader (1934–) was born in Winsted, Connecticut. In 1955, after graduating from Princeton University, he attended Harvard Law School. While still in school, he became interested in cases involving automobile injuries, so much so that he wrote the article "The Safe Car You Can't Buy." In 1963, he quit his private practice and with one suitcase hitchhiked to Washington, D.C.
In October 1959, General Motors (GM), responding to the growing popularity of the economical German-made Volkswagen Beetle in the United States, began designing the Chevrolet Corvair. The car was a first for Chevrolet because it was powered by an air-cooled, six-cylinder engine. The engine was referred to as a "flat six" because the cylinders were horizontally configured instead of the typical V design. Not only was the engine design unique, but...
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Three Years in Mississippi
By: James Meredith
Source: Meredith, James. Three Years in Mississippi. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1966, 209–214.
About the Author: James Meredith (1933–), the grandson of a slave, grew up on an eighty-four-acre farm near Kosciusko, Mississippi. From 1951 to 1960, he served in the U.S. Air Force and rose to the rank of staff sergeant. In 1961, he graduated from the all-black Jackson State University. In 1962, Meredith, feeling a personal responsibility to overturn White Supremacy, became the first African American to enroll at the 114-year old, all-white University of Mississippi.
In the wake of the Civil War (1861–1865), Radical Republicans abolished slavery in the Thirteenth Amendment and advanced the ideal of racial equality in the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments. For much of the next century, this moral crusade lapsed into apathy. It was not until the Montgomery bus boycott and the emergence of Martin Luther King, Jr., in 1955 that the civil rights movement breathed life into the moribund constitutional promises.
In November 1956, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld a lower court ruling in Browder vs. Gayle, in which it declared that...
(The entire section is 3441 words.)
By: Robert S. McNamara
Date: September 18, 1967
Source: McNamara, Robert S. "Mutual Deterrence." September 18, 1967. Reproduced in CNN Cold War Historical Documents. Available online at ; website home page: http://www.cnn.com/SPECIALS/cold.war/ (accessed April 2, 2003).
About the Author: Robert S. McNamara (1916–), born in San Francisco, California, earned a master's in business administration from Harvard University. McNamara served in the military during World War II (1939–1945) as a supply and management expert. In 1946 he joined Ford Motor Company as an efficiency expert. By 1960 he was president of Ford. In 1961, McNamara was appointed Secretary of Defense. Serving until 1968, Secretary McNamara oversaw much of the United States' early involvement in the Vietnam War (1964–75). From 1968 until 1981, McNamara was president of the World Bank internationl development agency. Subsequent to this he served on corporate boards and wrote extensively on foreign policy.
During the Cold War years, President Dwight D. Eisenhower (served 1953–1961) and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) anticipated Soviet conventional forces rushing through the Fulda Gap,...
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Codes of Conduct and the My Lai Massacre
"Nine Rules"; "The Enemy in Your Hands"; "Guidance for Commanders in Vietnam"
Codes of conduct
By: Military Assistance Command, Vietnam
Date: September 1967
Source: Military Assistance Command, Vietnam. "Nine Rules," "The Enemy in Your Hands," and "Guidance for Commanders in Vietnam." September 1967. Available online at http://www.law.umkc.edu/faculty/projects/ftrials/mylai/myl_... ; website home page: http://www.law.umkc.edu/faculty/projects/ftrials/ftrials.htm (accessed April 2, 2003).
About the Organization: The Military Assistance Command, Vietnam (MACV) was established in February 1962. Originally, its presence in Vietnam was to be short-lived, departing once the Vietcong (VC) rebellion was defeated. As the American presence in South Vietnam increased, however, so too did MACV's responsibilities. MACV controlled all U.S. military operations, coordinated U.S. intelligence operations, and assisted South Vietnam to maintain internal security.
In 1967, the United States was in the midst of an undeclared war in Southeast Asia. At issue was...
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"President Lyndon B. Johnson's Address to the Nation Announcing Steps to Limit the War in Vietnam and Reporting His Decision Not to Seek Reelection"
By: Lyndon B. Johnson
Date: March 31, 1968
Source: Johnson. Lyndon B. "President Lyndon B. Johnson's Address to the Nation Announcing Steps to Limit the War in Vietnam and Reporting His Decision Not to Seek Reelection." March 31, 1968. In Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States: Lyndon B. Johnson, 1968–69. Vol. 1. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1970.
About the Author: Lyndon B. Johnson (1908–1973) was born near Stonewall, Texas. In 1930, he earned a degree from South West Texas State Teachers College. After teaching English in Houston, he worked as a congressional staffer in Washington, D.C. In 1937, he was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives. In 1955, his Senate colleagues elected him majority leader, the most powerful member of the Senate. In 1960, he was elected vice president of the United States, and later served as president.
In the 1964 election, Lyndon B. Johnson ran against Senator Barry Goldwater from Arizona. A hawkish anti-communist, Goldwater once joked about tossing a nuclear bomb into the Kremlin's bathroom. During the campaign, Johnson, running as the peace candidate, said, "We are not going to send American boys nine or ten thousand miles away from...
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