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Dean Rusk

Rusk, Dean (David Dean Rusk), 1909–94, U.S. secretary of state (1961–69), b. Cherokee co., Ga. After teaching (1934–40) and serving in World War II, he entered (1946) the Dept. of State. In 1950 he became assistant secretary of state for Far Eastern Affairs and played a major role in the U.S. decision to take military action in the Korean War. After serving (1952–61) as president of the Rockefeller Foundation, Rusk became (1961) secretary of state in President John F. Kennedy's cabinet and continued to hold the post under President Lyndon B. Johnson. He supported economic aid to underdeveloped nations, low tariffs to encourage world trade, and the 1963 nuclear test ban treaty with the Soviet Union. A firm believer in the use of military force to prevent Communist expansion, Rusk strongly defended the Vietnam War. Following his retirement from public service, he taught international law at the Univ. of Georgia (1970–84).

See The Winds of Freedom, selections from his speeches, ed. by E. K. Lindley (1963).

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

See more Encyclopedia articles on: U.S. History: Biographies


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