The Reagan Reversal: Foreign Policy and the End of the Cold War

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University of Missouri Press, Mar 1, 2000 - History - 176 pages
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It is often assumed that Ronald Reagan's administration was reactive in bringing about the end of the cold war, that it was Mikhail Gorbachev's "new thinking" and congenial personality that led the administration to abandon its hard- line approach toward Moscow. In The Reagan Reversal, now available in paperback, Beth A. Fischer convincingly demonstrates that President Reagan actually began seeking a rapprochement with the Kremlin fifteen months before Gorbachev took office. She shows that Reagan, known for his long-standing antipathy toward communism, suddenly began calling for "dialogue, cooperation, and understanding" between the superpowers. This well-written and concise study challenges the conventional wisdom about the president himself and reveals that Reagan was, at times, the driving force behind United States-Soviet policy.

  

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Contents

Introduction
1
Americas Soviet Policy 19811985
16
Public Opinion and Foreign Policy Making The Impact of the 1984 Presidential Election
51
The Passive President Reagans Advisers and the Change in US Soviet Policy
69
The Reagan Reversal The Case for LeaderDriven Policy Change
102
Conclusions
144
Bibliography
157
Index
169
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About the author (2000)

Beth A. Fischer is Assistant Professor of Political Science at the University of Toronto and is coauthor of The Constitution and American Foreign Policy.

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