Hot Spots in the Cold War will examine the origins and outcomes of America’s involvement in Korea and Vietnam, with a particular emphasis on the contributions and experiences of New York veterans. In addition, the exhibition will also explore the domestic impact of the Cold War from the pervise fear of global nuclear warfare to the debates and protests that divided the national at the height of the war in Vietnam.
Hot Spots in the Cold War will provide a general narrative of the causes and course of each war, broadly examing America's political and military response within the context of the Cold War and a policy of containment of the spread of communism. Interwoven within this framework, the exhibition will also evaluate the American Cold War mentality and present the social and political effects of the wars at home, including the Red Scare of the 1950's, the actions of the House Un-American Activities Committee, Civil Defense initiatives, the reaction to the draft and the evolution of the countercultural movement of the 1060's.
Most significantly, perhaps, Hot Spots in the Cold War will seek to tell the story of the wars in Korea and Vietnam through the eyes of New York veterans and the realities of their wartime experiences. Using oral histories from the more than 2,000 interviews collected by the New York State Military Museum, the exhibition will highlight individual men and women who served in Korea and Vietnam, providing a summary of their service with select quotes to illuminate and personalize subjects and themes within the exhibition.