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The Political History of American Food AidAn Uneasy Benevolence$
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Barry Riley

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780190228873

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2017

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190228873.001.0001

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Harry Truman, European Hunger, and the Cold War

Harry Truman, European Hunger, and the Cold War

Chapter:
(p.106) 7 Harry Truman, European Hunger, and the Cold War
Source:
The Political History of American Food Aid
Author(s):

Barry Riley

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/oso/9780190228873.003.0008

Harry Truman was the hugely unpopular, embattled, pugnacious American president as World War II ended. He faced nationwide strikes, consumer unhappiness with continued price controls, and a Republican Party sensing a vulnerable Democrat in the White House. Abroad, his problems were, if anything, bigger: Soviet threats to Greece and Turkey, communist parties in Western Europe verging on political power, continued economic weakness, deepening hunger in many parts of the world. This chapter describes how Truman sought—with considerable success—to deal with these threats. With the Truman Doctrine and the Point 4 program, considerable help from the deeply conservative ex-president Herbert Hoover, and grudging financing from Congress, Truman found ways to weaken the communist threat in Europe. In the process, he succeeded in providing enough food relief to nearly end the threat of famine in Europe. The last hurdle was finding a way to spur European economic recovery.

Keywords:   Truman, communism, Truman Doctrine, Hoover, European hunger, food relief, Kennan, Long Telegram, Iron Curtain, Churchill

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