Harry S Truman became U.S. President when President Roosevelt died in 1945. He was responsible for dropping the atomic bombs on Japan and ending World War II. Truman initiated the Marshall Plan to rebuild Europe after the war.
Communists took control of China after a struggle that started before World War II and renamed the country the People's Republic of China. It was called Red China by the United States to indicate they were Communists.
Richard Nixon was a member of the House of Representatives from California when he became involved in the trial of Alger Hiss, who was accused of being a Communist and a spy. Nixon presented evidence that help prove Hiss guilty in 1950. This advanced Nixon's political career, and he soon ran for the Senate and won. Nixon later became Vice-President under President Dwight Eisenhower. Years later, he became President of the United States.
North Korea / South Korea
In 1950, North Korea attacked South Korea, starting the Korean War. The United Nations entered the war to defend South Korea. The Soviet Union made the mistake of walking out on the U.N. vote, allowing the measure to pass. Since declaring war was not acceptable without the approval of Congress, President Harry S. Truman declared the fighting a "police action" to allow the entry of American troops. The war resulted in a stalemate, and Korea is still divided to this day.
The Rosenbergs were a husband and wife who were arrested and executed for selling secrets of the atomic bomb to the Soviet Union.
The hydrogen bomb was developed under the guidance of Dr. Edward Teller. It was many times more powerful than an atomic bomb and in fact required an atomic bomb to detonate. The United States exploded the first H-bomb and a few years later the Soviet Union then exploded their version of the bomb.
Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower had been Supreme Commander in the World War II fight against the Nazis. He later became a popular president of the United States. "I like Ike" was the motto of his followers.
Joseph Stalin was the dictator of the Soviet Union. He was a harsh leader who had millions of his people executed or sent to labor camps in Siberia. On his way to political power, he changed his name to Stalin, which means "steel" in Russian.
Georgy Malenkov was a Soviet politician and Communist Party leader, and a close collaborator of Joseph Stalin. He briefly became leader of the USSR (March 1953-February 1955) after Stalin's death.
Dien Bien Phu falls
The French lose control over Indo-China—now known as Vietnam—with the fall of the city Dien Bien Phu
Nikita Khrushchev emerged as a leader in the Soviet Union after the death of dictator Josef Stalin. In 1956, he advocated reform and indirectly criticized Stalin and his methods. He became the Premier of the Soviet Union from 1958 to 1974.
Sputnik was the name of the first orbiting satellite sent into space by the USSR. Turmoil over its launch in the United States initiated the race for supremacy in space.