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President Reagan’s courage as a leader, skill as a diplomat, and his willingness to confront communism around the world played a major role in ending the domination of the Soviet Union. He developed and applied with constant purpose a strategy not simply to contain communism, but to end it, and he achieved this goal across much of the globe. Ronald Reagan entered the White House determined to restore the strength of the U.S. military. He insisted on military might not for its own sake, but to discourage threats to American interests, defend freedom around the world, and bring the Soviet Union to the bargaining table. So in January 1983, 40 years ago this month, he faced the press, holding a news conference to clarify his position on Strategic Arms Reduction. In this podcast, we’ll focus on his resolve to clearly define, in his words, what his intentions were. To provide context, the leader of the Soviet Union at the time was Yuri Andropov…Gorbachev would not enter the scene for over two years. Also, this News Conference preceded his Evil Empire Speech AND his speech on SDI – his Strategic Defense Initiative – by two months.
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