Ghana’s Relations with the Great Powers, 1964–1966: Ghana and the Cold War

By Graeme S. Mount.

Published by The Global Studies Journal

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

Having achieved independence in 1957, Ghana was a possible role model or precedent setter for other black African countries, none others of which achieved independence until 1960 or later. Kwame Nkrumah, who led his country to independence and served as its first president, is today regarded by Ghanaians as a national hero, but Ghanaian historians agree that he had serious shortcomings, including the capacity to spend money foolishly and to behave arbitrarily. Lyndon Johnson’s government was justifiably concerned at Nkrumah’s growing friendship with Communist countries, including the Soviet Union, the People’s Republic of China, and Cuba. It pondered various courses of action: feigned indifference, reductions in foreign aid, and a coup d’etat. Each presented difficulties. The problem resolved itself when the Ghanaian army ousted Nkrumah in February 1966 as he traveled to Hanoi as a self-appointed mediator between the Johnson administration and Ho Chi Minh. The new Ghanaian government was so supportive of US foreign policy that many suspected US involvement in the coup, but evidence for that is lacking.

Keywords: Ghana, Africa, Cold War, United States, Soviet Union, China

Global Studies Journal, Volume 5, Issue 3, pp.1-10. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 260.533KB).

Prof. Graeme S. Mount

Professor Emeritus, Department of History, Political Division, Laurentian University, Sudbury, Ontario, Canada

In 1969, Professor Mount completed his Ph.D. in History at the University of Toronto and began to teach History at Laurentian University, Sudbury, Ontario. In 2005 he retired as Professor Emeritus. Books include An Introduction to Canadian-American Relations (Toronto: Methuen, 1984; second edition Toronto: Nelson, 1989); Invisible and Inaudible In Washington: US-Canadian Relations during the Cold War (Vancouver: UBC Press, 1999); The Caribbean Basin: An International History (London and New York: Routledge, 1998); The Diplomacy of War: The Case of Korea (Montreal: Black Rose Press, 2004); 895 Days That Changed the World: The Presidency Of Gerald R. Ford (Montreal: Black Rose Press, 2006). He served as an Associate Editor of The Encyclopedia on US-Latin American Relations (Washington: Congressional Quarterly Press, 2012). In 2010 at this organization’s Busan Conference, he presented a paper on Australia’s Embassy in North Korea (1975), subsequently published in the Global Studies Journal.

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