Executing the Rosenbergs : Death and Diplomacy in a Cold War World, Hardback Book

Executing the Rosenbergs : Death and Diplomacy in a Cold War World Hardback


In New York in 1950, FBI agents arrested Julius and Ethel Rosenberg for conspiracy to commit espionage, an affair FBI J.

Edgar Hoover labeled the "crime of the century." After three years of appeals they were executed, making them the only American civilians put to death for conspiracy to commit espionage and turning their two sons into orphans. The Harry Truman administration charged the couple based on the assumptions that the Rosenbergs need to be heldaccountable for giving atomic bomb technology to the Soviets. The Rosenberg case tested the limits of the federal government's new Cold War propaganda apparatus. Both the Harry Truman and Dwight Eisenhower administrations struggled to sell the guilt of the two spies and use the case to sell democracy and freedom overseas.

However, citizens around the world did not always agree with the United States' execution of the Rosenbergs, which diminished the standing of the country in the eyes of the world, particularly so soon after the death of Stalin and theremoval of the face of evil global Communism. In this first book, Lori Clune uses newly discovered State Department documents to demonstrate dissent to the Rosenberg decision from 80 cities in 48 countries in the early 1950s. American diplomats overseas observed and reported protests, petitions, letters of support, and newspaper editorials back to the State Department, along with policy recommendations. This project tells a new narrative of the Rosenbergs by transcending questions of guilt and innocence, adding a transnational componentto the story and weaving the case into the Korean War, the death of Stalin, and the Cold War more broadly. While the Rosenbergs have been the subject of endless debate and discussion for half a century, this book offers an original approach to the topic, one that will no doubt add fodder to thepolitically passionate and provide a significant case study for those interested in the US relationship with the world.


  • Format: Hardback
  • Pages: 280 pages, 20 ills
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press Inc
  • Publication Date:
  • Category: History of the Americas
  • ISBN: 9780190265885


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