The Korean War has often been a controversial subject. Some say that an all-out war with China would have brought Russia into the conflict, creating WWIII. Others say that if we had done it right and hit hard, Communist powers would have backed off. No one can know for sure. It has been many years since the Korean War and Communism is still a threat. Perhaps, by looking back at the past, we can find the answers to problems today.
I. Beginning of Containment
Seeing how containment was the major policy during the Korean War, that will be our focus of study.
To understand containment, let us look at its origins. The idea of containment was used first in the Civil War, although the term itself was not yet introduced. The idea was to isolate …show more content…
policy of containment had its first recognized use in the Korean War, where it was used by President Harry S. Truman to prevent a possible all-out war with China, Russia, and maybe even the world. You see, China had promised men and supplies to North Korea if they needed it. This meant that China would be fighting American forces which could lead to war not only with China, but also their ally, Russia, possibly sparking WWIII. When Truman asked MacArthur about this possibility, MacArthur shrugged it off. His predictions proved to be incorrect. As U.N. Forces advanced north of the 38th parallel, they found themselves facing Chinese forces. MacArthur wanted to start the war with China, Truman was against this. Douglas MacArthur stated, “It seems strangely difficult for some to realize that here in Asia is where the communist conspirators have elected to make their play for global conquest, and that we have joined the issue thus raised on the battlefield; that here we fight Europe 's war with arms while the diplomats there still fight it with words; that if we lose the war to communism in Asia the fall of Europe is inevitable, win it and Europe most probably would avoid war and yet preserve freedom. As you pointed out, we must win. There is no substitute for victory.” Truman was in favor of containment, simply keeping North Korea north of the 38th parallel. Seeing this, MacArthur overstepped his bounds and openly criticized the President. Truman promptly had him removed. During this time there were other alternatives preferred by different politicians in Washington. Isolationism, detente(a form of friendliness that just ignores the problem), and rollback, which was what MacArthur favored. Truman though widely unpopular for his removal of MacArthur, stuck firmly to his decision and his policy of containment. Still today, this choice is in questioned. We don 't know for sure if China would have continued its support. All we know is what decisions were made. I
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Unfortunately, Truman accomplished this objective through command, by means of formal power, and resultantly MacArthur was ousted. Later on, this action was proved to be a costly to Truman. Before the joint session of Congress, MacArthur came back to homeland to ticker tape parades and gave a famous address to thunderous applause. Truman’s decision was criticized by almost all walks of life in the United States. He used command, not persuasion, which invited a public wrath and
President Harry Truman was “terrified that a third World War was about to begin” (as he wrote in his journal), if the Allies (UN forces and US) kept fighting North Korea and China. General MacArthur believed otherwise. Mac Arthur thought that the Allies could win against the Communists. President Truman’s decision to fire General Douglas MacArthur was unjustified.
The Cuban Missile Crisis demonstrated the United States’ use of the policy of containment because the United States issued a quarantine of Cuba and also entered in diplomatic talks with the Soviet Union to try to halt the conflict. However the Cuban Missile Crisis also demonstrated how containment was not successful because despite how friendly the two leaders of the Soviet Union and the United States became Cuba still became a communist
Post World War II America was one of the most militarily active periods in American history, having been involved in three wars, spanning roughly from 1947 to 1992, in order to stop the spread of communism. Overall, the United States permanently broke its previous isolationist policy in an attempt to promote democracy throughout the world; however, the wars proved to have serious negative effects on America. America was impacted by the military involvement in the Cold War, the Vietnam War, and the Korean War. Shortly after the end of World War II, America and Russia, the two super world powers emerging from the war, divided various parts of Eurasia—namely Germany and Korea—between themselves. Following America’s decision to maintain world
Three examples of U.S. containment during the Cold War were Berlin airlift, Korean War , and Cuban missile crisis. Containment is proved to work for the three reasons above. One example of containment was the Berlin airlift (1948-1949) The blockade is built surrounding west Berlin.
“Why and in what ways did the United States change its foreign policy from 1918-1953?” Since World War I, the united states had always had a problem with forcing its foreign policy. Throughout the past 100 years, the foreign policy has changed depending on public opinion and what was going on in other parts of the world. One of the largest changes in the foreign policy occurred from the end of World War I (1918) up until the ending of the Korean War (1953). Essentially the U.S foreign policy evolved from isolationist “prevention of war” to interventionism “protective containment of communism”.
The Cold War was a time when The United States not only secured it’s place as an influencer of international affairs, but explored its new standing as a rival to other world leaders. Immediately following World War 2, The USSR and America’s relationship began to dissolve as fundamental differences in basic beliefs for government and military organization became clear, and without a common enemy to unite the two, tension and conflict would separate the superpowers for almost 45 years. The policy of containment, The Truman Doctrine, and NSC-68 would each play a pivotal role in the Unites States stretching its hand of democracy into foreign lands, and using military force against the regimes that began to stand in freedom’s way. Beginning in 1946, the Policy of Containment was proposed by George Kennan in a document now titled, The Long Telegram. He presented his hopes that the United States would attempt to keep communism and regimes within their current borders.
The idea of containment was that countries tend to jump over to being communist when they are facing an economical crisis, so to prevent the communist idea from spreading we needed to help countries economies. Congress approved Truman’s suggested amount of $17 billion over the course of four years to help out Great Britain, France, West Germany, Italy, the Netherlands and Belgium. This strategy for preventing communism did work very well, and was very successful in what the U.S. was trying to do. Even though all of that money and planning did what was needed and did prevent this communist
The attack comes without warning and President Harry Truman, with the help of the United Nations, vows to defend democratic South Korea. The Containment Policy stated that the US would support any nation that are being oppressed by communism and cannot protect themselves from it. This became America’s major reason to intervene in the Korean War. However, the policy of containment came under attack due casualties and economic issues that the policy created. One of the major effects that over extended the powers of American foreign policy is that it gave the US a reason to interfere with any war they wanted as long as it involved communism.
Truman’s Policy of “Containment” was made in March 1947.Truman’s Policy had economic, cultural, and political aspects. The Political aspect of his policy was the Truman Doctrine which said that the United States of America would support free peoples who are resisting subjugation by armed minorities or by outside forces or pressures. The cultural aspect of this doctrine was the freedom and choice government versus totalitarian and no choice government, so pretty much, you never got to choose anything and you were forced to do the things that the Soviet Union wanted you to do. Then lastly the economic aspect of this doctrine was the Marshall Plan which said that it would prevent countries from falling to communists and it would aid the Americans. The Marshall Plan also gave $17 billion to 16 countries(not the soviet union).
The United States stayed in the war the entire time with South Korea. Yet the spread of Communism was slowing down on its own in Korea, so there was no need to be involved in the Korean War. This is evidenced in the book The 2nd Infantry Division Vol. III, which notes that “Chinese Communists that were helping in the North slowed down.” When Truman heard about the Chinese involvement and the slowing of the communist moment through his generals, he was ecstatic.
Containment was used by the United States so they could prevent communism spreading and was used towards the Guatemalans, Greece, Turkey, and Cuba during the cold war. In which was successful in stopping communism from spreading but did require people being killed or be put in jail which is bad because they got punished for something they believed on. This happened around 1954 because at that time they were fighting the cold war so they had to come with a quick and effective way to stop communism from spreading and containment was the solution. Containment was a big step for the Unites states, they were to intimidate the Soviet Union.
South Korea didn’t want to be a contribution to communism, where North Korea believed that communism was the solution to all problems. This invasion caused and all out war the involved many other countries like Russia and the US. As stated in “Document C”, Russia’s job was to help North Korea and promote their communists government, where the US was there to help South Korea promote their capitalism. Several years after continuously fighting on whether Korea should have a communist or capitalists government, the war finally ended. The country is still divided today and North Korea still remains communists leaving the US failing to stop communism.
Truman wouldn’t let this slide so he sent in the navy to create a blockade between China and Taiwan. The United Nations discussed the matter and they sent in peacekeeping troops, but it was mainly the troops of the U.S in South Korea. All the troops were led by one general known as Douglas MacArthur (49-50) In the beginning of the war, North Korea had a distinctive advantage because they captured Seoul, the South Korean capital.
Due to limited resources, interference in other regions, even if covered by the Truman Doctrine, was considered undesirable because China and Palestine were less important than the restoration of Europe. In addition, at this time, the Truman Administration is moving away from the doctrine of containing communism and moving on to a strategy of containing the Soviet Union. This was also part of the strategy in