Outdated Cold War Analogies Could Lead the West Astray

U.S. President Harry S. Truman, standing at podium, addresses a joint session of Congress in the House Chamber in Washington, D.C., March 12, 1947 (AP Photo).
U.S. President Harry S. Truman, standing at podium, addresses a joint session of Congress in the House Chamber in Washington, D.C., March 12, 1947 (AP Photo).
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Almost exactly 75 years ago, on March 12, 1947, then-President Harry S. Truman, alarmed by Soviet aggression in the Eastern Mediterranean and its efforts to undermine war-ravaged democracies in Western Europe, announced a dramatic reorientation of the United States’ national security policy. Addressing a joint session of Congress, he committed the U.S. to a new global mission to contain the Soviet Union by “support[ing] free peoples who are resisting attempted subjugation by armed minorities or outside pressures.” The speech set off a 15-week frenzy of diplomatic activity that culminated on June 5 with the proposal of the Marshall Plan. This new grand strategy—now known as […]

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