Kennedy's "New Frontier" Spirit
, the youngest president to take office, assembled one of the youngest
cabinets, including his brother Robert Kennedy
, the Attorney General, who planned to re-
form the priorities of the FBI. Kennedy's new challenge of a "
patriotic pulses. He proposed the
, an army of idealistic and mostly youthful
volunteers to bring American skills to underdeveloped countries.
The New Frontier at Home
Southern Democrats and Republicans despised the president's New Frontier plan.
Kennedy had campaigned on the theme of
revitalizing the economy
after the recessions
of the Eisenhower years. To do this, the president tried to curb
, he ne-
gotiated a noninflationary wage agreement with the
. When the steel in-
dustry announced significant price increases, promoting inflation, President Kennedy
erupted in wrath, causing the industry to lower its prices. Kennedy rejected the advice of
those who wished greater government spending and instead chose to stimulate the eco-
also proposed a multibillion-dollar plan to land an American on the moon.
Rumblings in Europe
President Kennedy met with Soviet leader Khrushchev
making numerous threats, the Soviets finally acted. In
, the Soviets began to
, which was designed to stop the large population drain from
East Germany to West Germany through Berlin.
was prospering after the Marshall Plan aid and the growth of the
, the free-trade area later called the European Union. Focusing on Western
Europe, Kennedy secured passage of the
Trade Expansion Act
, authorizing tar-
iff cuts of up to 50% to promote trade with Common Market countries.
American policymakers were dedicated to an economically and militarily united "Atlantic
Community" with the United States the dominant partner.
, Charles de Gaulle
, was suspicious of American intentions in Europe
and in 1963, vetoed British application for Common Market membership, fearing that the
British "special relationship" with the United States would allow the U.S. to indirectly
control European affairs.
Foreign Flare-ups and "Flexible Response"
, the African
received its independence from Belgium and immediately
exploded in violence. The U.N. sent in troops while the United States paid for it.
gained its independence from France and it, too erupted in violence.
Kennedy, avoiding sending troops, sought diplomatic means in the Geneva conference in
, which imposed a
Defense Secretary Robert McNamara