Thursday, September 15, 2011


September 15, 1959 – Nikita Khrushchev becomes the first Soviet leader to visit the United States.


'Playhouse 90' - "The Plot To Kill Stalin"

Oskar Homolka

From Wikipedia:
Khrushchev was invited to visit the United States, and did so that September, spending thirteen days. Khrushchev arrived in Washington, DC on his first visit to the United States on September 15, 1959. The first visit by a Soviet premier to the United States resulted in an extended media circus. Khrushchev brought his wife, Nina Petrovna, and adult children with him, though it was not usual for Soviet officials to travel with their families. The peripatetic premier visited New York City, Los Angeles, San Francisco (visiting a supermarket), Iowa (visiting Roswell Garst's farm), Pittsburgh, and Washington, concluding with a meeting with US President Eisenhower at Camp David. Khrushchev was supposed to visit Disneyland, but the visit was canceled for security reasons, much to his disgruntlement. He did, however, visit Eleanor Roosevelt at her home in Hyde Park, New York. While visiting Thomas J. Watson, Jr's IBM headquarters, Khrushchev expressed little interest in the computers, but greatly admired the self-service cafeteria, and, on his return, introduced self-service in the Soviet Union.

Khrushchev's US visit resulted in an informal agreement with US president Dwight Eisenhower that there would be no firm deadline over Berlin, but that there would be a four-power summit to try to resolve the issue, and the premier left the US to general good feelings. Khrushchev returned from the US convinced that he had achieved a strong personal relationship with Eisenhower (who in fact was unimpressed by the Soviet leader) and that he could achieve détente with the Americans. He pushed for an immediate summit, but was frustrated by French President Charles de Gaulle, who postponed it until 1960, a year in which Eisenhower was scheduled to pay a return visit to the Soviet Union.


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