Who Started The Policy Of Detente During The Cold War?


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Christopher Adam Profile
In 1955-56 Dwight D. Eisenhower's administration moved away from confrontation and to a new politics of negotiation, when it came to its dealings with Khrushchev's Soviet Union. According to a few historians—for example, Csaba Bekes, of the Wilson Centre's Cold War Institute—this served as the prelude for the Helsinki Accord of 1975, which codified non-intervention in international affairs, specifically forbade armed intervention and recognized the borders of Europe as they had been drawn up at the end of the Second World War, as well as acknowledged Soviet domination in the Baltic states.

Eisenhower's policy after 1955 is best characterized by Détente—even though his administration's rhetoric often indicated otherwise. The Soviet Union also chose to pursue détente under Premiership of Malenkov (between 1953-55) because the emphasis on heavy industry and arms productions was now becoming a burden on the economy, as the necessary capital was being diverted from agriculture and consumer goods. Thus pursuing a policy of détente was seen as economically beneficial by the Soviets by the mid 1950s.

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