Educational Exchange as a Cold War Weapon: American Influence on Danish Journalists after World War II

  • Anders Bo Rasmussen University of Southern Denmark, Odense


American President Harry S. Truman called the Cold War a “struggle for the minds of men,” and assigned journalists an important role in the conflict. The American administration’s strategy was to influence young people and opinion leaders in countries deemed important during the Cold War in the hope that their views would trickle down to the broader population. This article analyzes transnational flows of people and knowledge between the United States and Denmark after World War II. Through an examination of archival material, the study finds that the U.S. Department of State, via the American Embassy in Copenhagen, consciously attempted to shape Danish journalists’ view of America directly and indirectly. The article finds that American officials were very skilled at picking future opinion and media leaders for educational exchange and thereby provided them with a deeper understanding of U. S. affairs.