What were distinct concerns Americans had in response to threats in the Cold War?

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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I would say that the domino theory is one particular response to the threats manifested in the Cold War.  The fear here is that if one nation in a particular region becomes Communist, it will spread to other neighboring nations and soon the entire region is Communist.  The distinct concerns in the domino theory were a couple.  The first was the worldwide presence of Communism.  Architects and supporters of the domino theory believed Communism to be an evil that must be confronted head on with direct action and at the same time believed developing nations to be weak and susceptible to it.  This concern was brought out in how the response to the domino theory drove foreign policy and American intervention all over the world.  Another concern that is intrinsic to the domino theory is the fundamental stance of fear that is evident in how America saw itself in relation to other nations.  The domino theory's concern of how other nations in the world are is a reflection of Americans own fear of being alone, of being a nation whose philosophy and beliefs are not embraced by the world community in the face of Communism.  In this, I think that American concerns about Communism and themselves could be seen in the domino theory that drove much of American foreign policy in the second half of the last century.

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