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In the 1970s the strained relations between America and the Soviet Union began to ease. This was called détente. But did tensions really decrease? Watch this video to find out more.


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Key points

  • In the early 1970s, America and the Soviet Union tried to co-operate to avoid conflict. This policy was known as Détente.
  • America and the Soviet Union signed the SALT1 Treaty, to limit their missiles and bombers.
  • The Helsinki Agreement recognised Soviet control over Eastern Europe.
  • 1971 - the American table tennis team played in China. This became known as Ping pong diplomacy.
  • 1972 - Richard Nixon visited China.
  • Despite all this, neither America or the Soviets kept to the SALT1 treaty, and the Helsinki Agreement actually reinforced the iron curtain.

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