The Cold War 1945 – 1959

The six-session course will begin with an analysis of the failure of the Yalta Agreement, followed by the Potsdam Conference and the concerns raised there about the Soviet Union taking over all the countries in Eastern Europe. The course will then move to the Cardinal Mindszenty affair and the beginning of the Berlin Airlift, and consider why the latter was so important. The Proxy Wars come next, with discussion of the Korean War and how that war affected the relationship of the United States, the Soviet Union and the People’s Republic of China.

We will then explore in depth the Chinese Civil War (1945-1949) and the loss of French Indo-China to the Vietnamese Nationalists. The last session of the course will address the Cold War in the 1950s and the development of the Strategic Air Command, the reconnaissance of the Soviet Union and China, and the development of the Alert Force. It will also analyze the two missile systems being developed by the Soviet Union and the United States. Finally, we will discuss concerns about communism’s reaching the Western Hemisphere and the changes in Cuba with the coming of Fidel Castro and Che Guevara.


Group Leader: LAWRENCE CLIFFORD
Venue: King's Chapel Parish House
Meets on: Tuesdays 1:00 to 3:00 pm
Starting: 10/4/2022
Sessions: 6
Class Size: 20
Teaching Style: Lecture and discussion
Weekly Preparation: 1 hour
Group Leader Biography:

Lawrence Clifford is a former officer in the United States Air Force, having served for 22 years. He earned his doctorate in clinical and educational psychology from Indiana University and in Soviet Military History from Boston College. Dr. Clifford taught military history and the Vietnam War for over a decade. While in the US Air Force, he served for five years in Vietnam and Southeast Asia, three years in the Mideast, and a similar period of time in Africa and Central America. He is fluent in French, Russian, Spanish, and Arabic.