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Johnson's administration: Policies and threats - Essay Example

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Johnson’s Administration: Policies and threats Author’s Name Institution President Johnson Lyndon took office in late 1963. This was after the assassination of J.F. Kennedy. Johnson considered it his duty and obligation to the electorate to continue the foreign policies of J…
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Download file to see previous pages Kennedy allowed the National Security Council (NSC) structure to atrophy, and Johnson enabled the continuation of this process. Johnson operated outside the advisory structure of the NSC in foreign policy matters. Johnson viewed the NSC as a source of leaks to the media. For the national security advice, the president administration depended upon the National Security Advisor (NSA). So as to affirm Kennedy’s commitments, he approved a national security agency memorandum (NSAM 273), which directed the government to support South Vietnam. In 1964, he approved OPLAN 34A-64, which called for stepped up covert operations and infiltration of North Vietnam (Halper, 1971). During his tenure, there were persistent complains of his management of foreign policies. In 1966, the department of foreign affairs instituted “country directors” in various geographic bureaus so as to maintain chiefs of mission and their embassies. These “country directors” designed and communicated foreign and other policies. In the same year, Johnson instituted the Secretary of State to be responsible for the overall coordination, direction and supervision of overseas activity. Another foreign policy during his regime pertained to the USSR. Johnson had moderate success in the improvement of the relationship between the US and the USSR. Johnson secured a non-proliferation nuclear treaty. He also secured legislation that regulated space research. Further, he was successful in negotiating with the USSR pertaining to the Middle East Six Day War. Later on, the Soviet invaded Czechoslovakia. This was regarded to undo much of his work, and the relationship with the USSR went cold once more (Kattenburg, 1982). The Johnson administration also inherited worldwide obligations as well as a host of problems from his predecessor. His administration faced challenges from the Vietnam, The Dominican Republic, the Panama Crisis and the Middle East (Halper, 1971). Under his administration, there were changes in the foreign policy which facilitated a relationship with the People’s Republic of China and the Soviet Union. However, as the ties with these enemy states became stronger, the bond within the Western Alliance System loosened. This resulted in strains between the USA and the European Allies states. During his administration, Johnson faced both foreign and domestic threats that challenged his administration. The Vietnam War posed the greatest challenge to the Johnson Presidency and also ruined his presidency. Johnson inherited this war from his predecessor and continuously committed the USA to a war against the Northern Vietnam on a large scale (Hunt, 1996). Although the USA committed largely to this war, Johnson did not succeed in compelling North Vietnam. In additional, he faced domestic opposition thus limiting his options in the war. The Vietnam War compounded with two decades of the cold war significantly affected the economy of the USA. This forced the administration to devise new approaches to various issues, for example, the Foreign Aid policies. In 1968, Johnson withdrew the American commitment to the war and made efforts to push for a peaceful settlement of the war (Kattenburg, 1982). In addition to the Vietnam War, the USA faced crisis due to the conflicts in the South Asia and Middle East. The USA struggled to resolve these conflicts with the aim of protecting its interest in the conflicting nations. The Cyprus conflict was the most intractable and volatile conflict ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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