Feature

Today in history: Nixon goes to Moscow

He was the first sitting president to visit the Soviet capital

May 22, 1872: President Ulysses S. Grant signed the Amnesty Act, restoring full civil rights to all but about 500 Confederate sympathizers.

May 22, 1947: Fearing the spread of Soviet communism, the Truman Doctrine was passed by Congress, sending economic and military aid to Greece and Turkey.

May 22, 1964: In a speech at the University of Michigan, President Lyndon Johnson unveiled his plans for a "Great Society." He said its goal was to end poverty and racial injustice in the United States.

LBJ's first public reference to the Great Society took place during a speech at Ohio University in Athens on May 7, 1964. "With your courage and with your compassion and your desire," he said, "we will build the Great Society. It is a Society where no child will go unfed, and no youngster will go unschooled."

Johnson's Great Society was ambitious — and expensive. It encompassed, among other things, civil rights, an expanded war on poverty, new education programs, Medicare and Medicaid, and cultural endeavors such as the National Endowment for the Arts and National Endowment for the Humanities.

May 22, 1972: Richard Nixon arrived in Moscow, becoming the first sitting president to visit the Soviet capital. But not the first to visit the Soviet Union itself: Franklin Roosevelt visited Yalta in 1945 for he famous Yalta Conference with British Prime Minister Winston Churchill and Soviet Premier Josef Stalin.

May 22, 1977: In a commencement address at Notre Dame, President Carter said the U.S. has an "inordinate fear of communism," and says his foreign policy will emphasize human rights.

Quote of the day

"As the term of my relief from this place [Washington] approaches, its drudgery becomes more nauseating and intolerable." — Thomas Jefferson

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