Dwight D. Eisenhower (1890–1969) was a celebrated American army general and the thirty-fourth president of the United States. Born in Texas and educated at West Point, Eisenhower served domestically during World War I. In the 1920s and 1930s, he was assigned to various posts in the Panama Canal Zone, Washington, DC, France, and the Philippines. Upon US entry into World War II, Eisenhower worked to develop a strategy for Allied forces in Europe. After a series of promotions, he was made supreme commander of the Allied Expeditionary Force in December 1943. In 1944, he planned and executed the successful invasion of Normandy and within a year had led the Allies to victory.

In 1952, Eisenhower, still a popular war hero, successfully ran for president on the Republican ticket with Richard Nixon as his running mate. Eisenhower’s first term saw the negotiation of an armistice in Korea, the Army-McCarthy hearings, the ruling in Brown v. Board of Education, and the creation of the International Atomic Energy Agency and the Southeast Asia Treaty Organization. Eisenhower was re-elected in 1956. In early 1957 he successfully advocated the adoption of the Eisenhower Doctrine. That same year, the Civil Rights Act of 1957 was passed and the Soviet-launched Sputnik satellite orbited the earth. In 1959, Eisenhower welcomed Soviet premier Nikita Khrushchev to the United States. The potential diplomatic breakthrough was quashed by the Soviet discovery of an American reconnaissance plane over the USSR. Cold War tension escalated as Eisenhower prepared to leave office and his administration ended US diplomatic relations with Cuba in January 1961.

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