For thirty-five years — through seven presidencies — the United States and its allies labored unceasingly to contain Communism around the world. They used a broad range of diplomatic, military, and economic initiatives costing tens of thousands of lives and billions of dollars. They used economic programs like the Marshall Plan, military alliances like NATO and SEATO, direct conflicts like the Korean War and the Vietnam War, indirect engagements like the Bay of Pigs, weapons treaties like SALT I, and covert operations like the attempted assassination of Cuba’s Fidel Castro. And yet, by 1980, Communism was not only alive and seemingly well in the Soviet Union, Eastern Europe, mainland China, Cuba, and North Korea, but had spread to sub-Saharan Africa, Afghanistan, and Nicaragua. Containment was not working. In this podcast, we’ll talk about the President’s Strategic Defense Initiative which became the cornerstone of his plan to protect America. This month at the Reagan Presidential Library, an exhibit opens called Defending America and the Galaxy: SDI and Star Wars featuring genuine artifacts from SDI along with authentic articles from the Star Wars movies.

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