The John Foster Dulles Era – April 15, 1959 – Past Daily Reference Room
. . . or click on the link here for Audio Player – CBS Radio – The Dulles Era – April 15, 1959 – Gordon Skene Sound Collection
On April 15, 1959 it was announced that Secretary of State John Foster Dulles was stepping down. The terminal Cancer he’d been diagnosed with was taking its toll, and Dulles would be dead a little over a month later.
The announcement of his departure came as a shock to many, including President Eisenhower who had come to depend on his guidance in the area of Cold War diplomacy. Others were relieved that the era of Dulles had now come to an end.
As a staunch anti-communist, Dulles helped shape a Foreign Policy which reflected his opposition and aggressive point of view, and many claimed it was that aggressive policy which laid the groundwork for our later involvement in Vietnam and many other soon-to-become hotspots throughout the world in the 1960s and beyond.
As a recap of his tenure in office, CBS Radio offered a look back at his career, offering insights and issues which came to define the 1950s and to label our Cold War Policy as The Dulles Era.
Fascinating listening and an interesting introduction to a pivotal character in our world view during the 1950s, and one which has come back to haunt on more than one occasion.
Here is that complete broadcast from April 15, 1959.