Maha Haque and John Scalley

Essential Question: How did the peace of Détente affect the global political climate?

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APUSH THEME: Politics and Power

What is it?

  • cooling in hostilities and arms creation
  • 1969 (SALT 1)= beginning of era
  • 1979 (Soviet Intervention in Afghanistan)= end of era

Détente: french word for releasing tension

Why did this occur?

  • both U.S. and U.S.S.R wanted to reduce spending on nuclear weapons
  • due to war effort
  • cuban missle crisis= realization that nuclear war approached
  • needed to prevent nuclear war
  • scared after what happened in Hiroshima
  • 1960- China split from Russia on different path of communism -> U.S. believed detente would keep them seperate
  • temporary calming of tensions

In the USSR?

  • détente was a formal affair
  • May 22, 1972- Nixon is the first US President to visit Moscow
  • long process
  • Strategic Arms Limitations Talks

  • treaties limiting both the number of nuclear weapons
  • antinuclear weapons systems in each country’s arsenal
  • agreeing for both countries to aid each other in space development
  • agreeing for America to sell grain to the USSR
  • signed May 26, 1972


  • began in 1972 because many aspects broken from SALT 1
  • to limit every type of nuclear warhead
  • Jimmy Carter- increase US nuclear arsenal and military power
  • USSR invaded Afghanistan
  • U.S. refused to sign

In China?

  • secretive
  • starts with the fall of China -America did not recognize communist government
  • 1960’s= talks about China isolating nationalists to Taiwan
  • Nixon's visit to China= helped U.S. and Chinese relations
  • worsened relations between China and USSR
  • increased USSR's interest in detente


"Cold War - Detente 1969-1975 3." YouTube. YouTube. Web. 12 Apr. 2015.

"détente." American History. ABC-CLIO, 2015. Web. 10 Apr. 2015.


"Détente." History.com. A&E Television Networks. Web. 10 Apr. 2015.


Fogarty, Richard. "Cold War." American History. ABC-CLIO, 2015. Web. 10 Apr. 2015.


Kennedy, David M., and Thomas Andrew Bailey. The Brief American Pageant: A History of the Republic. 12th ed. Lexington, Mass.: D.C. Heath. Print.

"Strategic Arms Limitations Talks/Treaty (SALT) I and II - 1969–1976 - Milestones - Office of the Historian." Strategic Arms Limitations Talks/Treaty (SALT) I and II - 1969–1976 - Milestones - Office of the Historian. Web. 10 Apr. 2015.