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Apocalypse ManagementEisenhower and the Discourse of National Insecurity$
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Ira Chernus

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780804758079

Published to Stanford Scholarship Online: June 2013

DOI: 10.11126/stanford/9780804758079.001.0001

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Ideological Foundations

Ideological Foundations

(p.17) Chapter 1 Ideological Foundations
Apocalypse Management
Stanford University Press

This chapter demonstrates that President Dwight Eisenhower was actively supporting the comparatively united and logical set of ideas of apocalypse management at the outset of his presidency. The apocalyptic framework contributed to the shaping of his private language in the White House during his first months in office, as his grand strategy was being developed. Communism and national bankruptcy were both derivatives of the highest danger in Eisenhower's hierarchy of threats to national existence. Policymaking entailed identifying the most efficient ways to limit the multifaceted threat over the “long haul.” The discursive confusion was the greatest threat of all for Eisenhower, whose highest priority was to have a distinctly defined junction of threats and responses. His first State of the Union address framed uncertainty on the hope for peace in the nation.

Keywords:   apocalypse management, Dwight Eisenhower, presidency, White House, communism, national bankruptcy, threats, discursive confusion, peace

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