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  • In the mid 1950s, much of the direct battle between the US and the Soviet Union was not through contact, but non-contact, namely not allowing anything that represented the other to enter the country. As such, the Soviet regime banned something they thought was uniquely American: jazz music. But the new Soviet leader, Nikita Khrushchev, wanted to show the world that his country was not as repressive as many in the west believed. So he hosted the World Youth Festival in Moscow in 1957, inviting youth from around the world to have a basically western styled party. This opened the floodgates of Soviet youth being exposed to western trappings, including jazz music, which he could not suppress in its entirety following. Over the subsequent few years, this would lead to greater contact between the Soviet and US political leaders - much of it through sanctioned nationalistic trade shows - culminating in a propaganda war over of all things the washing machine. Another battleground was the space race, which was seen as synonymous to the arms race. On earth, two emerging areas were also becoming battlegrounds. One was Africa, where a plethora of newly independent countries were looking for financial support and guidance from the two superpowers. The other was Latin America, first specifically in Guatemala, where the United Fruit Company, an American company controlling commercial trade in Guatemala through the export of bananas, launched a Madison Avenue developed publicity campaign to show its newly elected government as being Communist, even though its policies were not Communist but rather anti-United Fruit. Although this campaign would succeed, it would lead to two anti-Imperialist revolutionaries, Ernesto 'Che' Guevara and Fidel Castro, being able to seize control of the government in Cuba. Castro was not Communist but Nationalist, which many Americans believe to be one in the same. Because of the deterioration of relations between Castro and the US, Castro turned to the Soviet Union for support, when Cuba truly became a Communist country. This battleground contained perhaps the tensest days of the Cold War, most specifically the Cuban Missile Crisis. And a traditional battleground re-emerged when the Soviet regime restricted travel between east and west with the sudden and surprise erection of the Berlin Wall.



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