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Cold War


  • Russians' Disapproval of Gorbachev Shouldn't Dominate How He is Remembered

    by Walter G. Moss

    The combination of post-Soviet hardship, resurgent nationalism, and the destructiveness of the Ukraine war have led many Americans to embrace Russians' dim view of Mikhail Gorbachev. A historian of Russia says the leader had his faults, but his furtherance of humane values has been underrated. 



  • Gorbachev Became a Hero to the West Through Massive Failure

    by Erik Loomis

    Americans need to evaluate Gorbachev outside of their own nationalist perspective, despite feeling that the end of the Cold War was a good thing. The people he affected most see him as a failure. 



  • Gorbachev Never Understood What He Set in Motion

    by Anne Applebaum

    Sometimes seen as a visionary reformer, Gorbachev may have started the USSR's economic death spiral by restricting the sale of vodka to increase worker productivity. 



  • Gorbachev's Greatness Was in His Failure

    by Tom Nichols

    Gorbachev's personal decency made him the wrong man for his chosen task of saving Soviet Communism from collapse; today his reputation is far higher in the west than in the former USSR. 



  • Gorbachev's Vacuum: His Legacy and Russia's Wars

    by Michael Kimmage

    The last Soviet leader failed to intuit the ultimate consequences of the changes he unleashed, from the collapse of the USSR to the revival of Russian imperialsm. 



  • At 75, the CIA is Back to Battling the Kremlin

    The common objectives and concerns that engaged the Central Intelligence Agency at its 1947 founding are familiar to the intelligence community today, showing the continuity of American involvement in other nations' affairs. 


  • Is Biden Prepared to Adopt a Truly Progressive Foreign Policy?

    by Leon Fink

    Protecting the so-called Liberal World Order these days puts great emphasis on preserving “order” but very little on what “liberal” can or should mean. The administration risks fumbling an opportunity to connect with new foreign leadership on labor, environment, immigration, and other issues beyond security and the drug war.


  • The Rising "Pink Tide" in Latin America Shows the Need for US Policy to Adapt

    by Aileen T. Teague

    Colombia has historically been a conservative firewall in Latin America, anchoring American policy on the hemispheric drug war and development policy. The election of that nation's first leftist leader, along with the rise of Chinese influence, signals the need for American policy to change. 


  • 1968: A Year of Dashed Hopes

    by Walter G. Moss

    While people seek to confront life's challenges with hope and courage and banish fear and doubt, some years, like 1968, don't make that easy. 



  • Has the "Duck and Cover" World Returned

    by Tom Engelhardt

    The generation that came of age during the Cold War may have insight on the return of the nuclear threat, but "duck and cover" won't cut it. 



  • Who Gets to Be American?

    by Jonna Perrillo

    Johann Tschinkel, a Nazi scientist, was recruited by the United States after the war. His reflections on his educational experiences in Germany and those of his children in segregated American schools, offer a warning about the efforts to control the social studies curriculum today. 



  • When Communism was Queer

    by Samuel Huneke

    American commentators have used the repression of gay life in states like Cuba to discredit socialism. The history of communist approaches to sexuality is more complex, as in the former East Germany. 



  • East Berlin Stories: Gay Espionage in Cold War Berlin

    by Samuel Huneke

    The East German Stasi recruited gay Beriners as informants both because they believed they posed a security threat and because the secret police had difficulty penetrating the secrecy of gay social networks in the city. 



  • Can Intelligence (or History) Predict How Far Putin Might Go?

    by Calder Walton

    Despite the image of individual operatives, assembling reliable intelligence about Putin's invasion plans is a product of multiple coordinated capabilities, just like it was at the height of the cold war.