# Reagan's role in the fall of russia?

Discussion in 'History' started by fadingCaptain, Jun 8, 2004.

1. ### thecurly1Registered Senior Member

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The USSR was not floated by high oil prices, it led to the nation's demise. Historial Nial Ferguson says as much in his book Virtual History.

Saddam would have surely invaded Kuwait, under Soviet protection (lets remember that the Soviets armed him to the hilt, much further than the US or France ever did) and sold them cheap oil. If he didn't sell cheap oil to them, he would have undercut OPEC, crippled the cartel and then boosted prices. Either way he would have jimmied with the price of oil to make his Kuwait seizure well worth it.

I said the USSR could have survived, I'm not entirely sure it would have. Gorbechev and Reagan were crucial to its demise, without one, the other would have not worked.

The Soviets could have withstood a fumbling economy (corrupt yes, terminal, not in 1979) and probably got back on their feet if not forced into the arms race and a costly Afghan campaign (in military, economic and political capital) by President Reagan.

To think that the USSR would have collapsed regardless of American or Soviet leadership is to put far too much faith in historical trends.

Lets remember that the USSR was first and formost a police state. Secondly it was not prevy to the problems that even subtle changes in the US economy create in our political structure at home. Once politics is removed from the equation the Soviets are left with purely economic concerns. Stalinist states can and have existed in advanced states of decay for decades, just look at North Korea for the most extreme example.

The Soviets could have limbered along, if not drastically improved their situation, gobbling nations up and creating higher tension between East and West than existed in the 1970s. Detente would have seen to further Soviet aggression before someone woke up in the alternate past I'm talking about.

The economy was bad, but it certainly had enough food to feed its people. And if they started starving, so what? Stalin had massive famines and managed to throw the Soviet military into every corner of the world, not to mention the doctorine even further. The USSR would have gladly let its own people starve to advance its cause.

Either the Soviets would have gotten a whole lot bigger before dying, tensions could have went into the future where at some point there could have very well been another Cuban Missile Crisis type of situation (one that didn't turn out as well as the last) or the West could have been so weak and run amok by ultra-leftist parties that it decided to co-habitate or pretty much surrendure to the USSR.

The Cold War was more than East-West tensions (as I'm sure you know), it was really, truly communisms tyranny over 100s of millions in Eastern Europe and throughout the Asia. The war could only end when the Soviets did, otherwise the world would have been "half slave and half free." Hardly an acceptable situation for self respecting patriots and advocates of human liberty.

3. ### thecurly1Registered Senior Member

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1,024
I would be remiss if I didn't address US support for dictators to keep out communism. I came back off reading some Slate articles just to type this one.

Hardly, if ever, in foreign policy is the decision between good and bad. Most times it is between bad and worse. Such was the case throughout the Cold War, WWII and even our War on Terror.

During WWII we had to bunk with Joe Stalin to defeat Hitler. Ideally both tyrants would have killed each other in a perfect Cat's game of nation-states, but alas, such things could not happen. Hitler was the greater threat, so we swallowed the bitter pill that was the USSR.

Similarily we installed dictatorships in Central America (Ike 'n' the fruit company) as well as other places, like Iran for instance. We figured this would be better than having a soft democracy that would fall or was already leaning towards communism, or an all-out Marxist government to begin with.

At the point where the USSR and communism were dependent on vast control of human and physical capital to run, it was imperative that we deny them as much of it as possible.

Were the men we installed perfect? No, they were sons of bitches. But as FDR or Churchill once remarked, speaking about a leader, "He's our son of a bitch."

Such unfortunate decisions allowed us to be blind to the already corrupt and oppressive regimes existing in the Middle East that promised to sell us cheap oil (for the most part) and to keep the communists out. We didn't install the 23 Arab dictators, but none of them ever got our attention to have them removed, so long as they abided by their agreements.

What we did, however, pales in comparison to what communism and the Soviet Uniond did to BILLIONS over 75 years. On the whole the world is better off for what the US did during the Cold War, no doubt about it in my mind. That will incense and anger many, but it is the truth.

5. ### UndecidedBannedBanned

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4,731
The USSR was not floated by high oil prices, it led to the nation's demise. Historial Nial Ferguson says as much in his book Virtual History.

Do you see the connection, I surely do. Most historians would agree with that assessment, oil propped up the Soviet Union. Your “Virtual History” whatever is crap.

Saddam would have surely invaded Kuwait, under Soviet protection (lets remember that the Soviets armed him to the hilt, much further than the US or France ever did) and sold them cheap oil. If he didn't sell cheap oil to them, he would have undercut OPEC, crippled the cartel and then boosted prices. Either way he would have jimmied with the price of oil to make his Kuwait seizure well worth it.

Wow, I never knew you knew you know so little. Why would the USSR want the Iraqi’s to take over Kuwait, and threaten nuclear war with the West? Secondly why didn’t the USSR protect Saddam in 1991 then? Thirdly if anything the USSR would have wanted the Iraqi’s to cut production so that prices go up so they get more money. Why would the USSR want Iraqi oil? Why didn’t Iraq just stop producing altogether same effect? Really, what are you trying to do here? Are we attempting to make a point?

I said the USSR could have survived, I'm not entirely sure it would have. Gorbechev and Reagan were crucial to its demise, without one, the other would have not worked.

So you are honestly telling me that the USSR would be stronger today if it wasn’t for Reagan? This is bred out of ignorance on Soviet history, and American exceptionalism. Your unsubstantiated nonsense indicates as such.
The Soviets could have withstood a fumbling economy (corrupt yes, terminal, not in 1979) and probably got back on their feet if not forced into the arms race and a costly Afghan campaign (in military, economic and political capital) by President Reagan.

Ok how is that possible? Would the USSR be able to survive a depression? The decline of the Soviet Union was terminal by the mid-70’s it could not be reformed. Why do you think Gorbachev changed so much, why do you think the USSR collapsed? Why do you think the USSR was unable to afford her military after 1986? Think about it please.

To think that the USSR would have collapsed regardless of American or Soviet leadership is to put far too much faith in historical trends.

The USSR would have collapsed irregardless of leader; it would have collapsed of its own accord. The difference would have been that the collapse would have been much more violent and much more dangerous then it proved to be.

Lets remember that the USSR was first and formost a police state. Secondly it was not prevy to the problems that even subtle changes in the US economy create in our political structure at home. Once politics is removed from the equation the Soviets are left with purely economic concerns. Stalinist states can and have existed in advanced states of decay for decades, just look at North Korea for the most extreme example.

Difference is that North Korea doesn’t have to deal with any nationalism other then her own, she doesn’t have any satellite states to take care of, she doesn’t have 22 million km2 worth of land to take of, a massive war in Afghanistan, etc. The comparison btwn North Korea and the USSR is a very weak one indeed. In order for the apparatus to work you need funds, and without any hard currency the system collapsed.

The Soviets could have limbered along, if not drastically improved their situation, gobbling nations up and creating higher tension between East and West than existed in the 1970s.

At what cost? You think that these things don’t have massive effects at home? The USSR was suffering with Afghanistan; can you imagine even more powerful countries? The only way the USSR would have improved her situation is if the Chinese joined her side, otherwise it was fruitless.

The economy was bad, but it certainly had enough food to feed its people. And if they started starving, so what? Stalin had massive famines and managed to throw the Soviet military into every corner of the world, not to mention the doctorine even further. The USSR would have gladly let its own people starve to advance its cause.

Why are we talking Stalin here? His political legacy was just that a legacy. Stalin is irrelevant when you are dealing with the Soviet Union in the 80’s. If they started to starve a revolution would easily start, the Absolutist monarchs of France learned the hard way to not pay attention to the starving masses. I am suggesting that the USSR’s collapse would have been much more violent, but nevertheless a decline.

The Cold War was more than East-West tensions (as I'm sure you know), it was really, truly communisms tyranny over 100s of millions in Eastern Europe and throughout the Asia.

Don’t shame the term communism, Stalinism is the correct doctrine. Communism was never implemented.

Hardly an acceptable situation for self respecting patriots and advocates of human liberty.

Too at least 3 democracies were overthrown by the US, free…my ass.

7. ### thecurly1Registered Senior Member

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1,024
I'm just throwing out possibilities, honestly.

You blew off the oil price thing by just bashing my source, and not refuting it with any facts. My facts have been gleemed from a best-selling and well-respected Oxford historian, something I don't take likely.

Moreover there's a slew of documents at Cold War International History Project that shows the Soviets fear of an arms race with the West for the exact reason it did destroy them.

Such ad hominem attacks don't further your argument or piss me off so I would hope we would avoid such things in the future.

Who's to say that the Soviets would have cleared Saddam to invade Kuwait? He was soverign and could have acted on his own, but certainly he might have very well made a deal with the USSR for protection or a veto at the Security Council should he invade Kuwait. This would only be the logical outgrowth of a relationship that spanned at least a decade and in our present timeline went well until Gulf War II.

For the sake of argument let's say Saddam never invaded Kuwait. Oil prices reach amazing lows (compared with the 1980s) during the 1990s. Without Reagan and Gorby the USSR would have survived until then, benefited from the cheap oil and POSSIBLY reformed its economy. I'm not saying this is definate, but probable.

The economy was not terminal in the 1970s otherwise the Soviets would have came forward to cut arms, and not invaded Afghanistan. They were quite happy not holding their side up during detente so long as they were strong. Once Reagan came in and ended that silly experiement with detente, the Soviets actually acted like they were the ones using detente.

Funny how that worked.

I have serious reservations about someone that doesn't want communism shamed and his ability for objectivity on an argument over the Cold War. To think that the leaders of communism--and not the doctorine itself--were evil is to completely be ignorant of human freedom, dignity and its soul.

Stalin was a horrible machination of a political and economic system that was evil. Without communism Stalin would have been nothing, the reverse cannot be said. (Read: Mao and Castro for starters.)

If you read my last post, which you conviently ignored during your rebuttal, you would see that I faulted the United States for overthrowing regimes. Although I will reiterate it was the best course of action given the state of world affairs vis a vis the USSR.

Do not, however, begin to equivicate the US overthrow of a few countries to the subjugation of hundreds of millions in Eastern Europe, the inumerable attrocities that the Soviet Union committed inside its own boarders as well as outside.

I will repeat again: What we did, however, pales in comparison to what communism and the Soviet Uniond did to BILLIONS over 75 years. On the whole the world is better off for what the US did during the Cold War, no doubt about it in my mind. That will incense and anger many, but it is the truth.

8. ### 15ofthe1935 year old virginRegistered Senior Member

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1,588
Indeed it does. What's your question?

Methinks some of you get bogged down in semantics around here. We're not discussing ideologies. We're talking about realities and Stalin, Castro, Mao, etc. are the realities. Find me an honest communist ideologue and I'll show you your head in a sack because you're a sucker.

My advice: Don't ever travel if you're that gullible.

9. ### UndecidedBannedBanned

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4,731
You blew off the oil price thing by just bashing my source, and not refuting it with any facts.

Read again Einstein, what the hell do you think I quoted? Read what was in the quote! The facts are in the pudding…

Moreover there's a slew of documents at Cold War International History Project that shows the Soviets fear of an arms race with the West for the exact reason it did destroy them.

Mind showing them to me? Of course the Soviets were scared of the arms race with the west, but that doesn’t negate anything I wrote. I personally never denied that the Soviets were scared of a further arms race, one of the major reasons why is because they couldn’t afford to expand anymore. That is the whole point of my argumentation; the USSR was a military power and nothing more. They didn’t sell anything but oil to states with hard currency, their system was woefully inefficient and if Gorbachev didn’t come along the USSR would have collapsed in a much more dangerous manner.

Such ad hominem attacks don't further your argument or piss me off so I would hope we would avoid such things in the future.

My ad hom attacks were not meant to do either, they were merely showing that you have large mostly unsubstantiated arguments. Your obvious inability to read my statements clearly show this.

Who's to say that the Soviets would have cleared Saddam to invade Kuwait? He was soverign and could have acted on his own, but certainly he might have very well made a deal with the USSR for protection or a veto at the Security Council should he invade Kuwait.

Firstly what is the point of even arguing this? Let’s look at what happened, the USSR was asking the West for loans so it could survive, do you think they are going to veto a US resolution? He might, he may, he x, he y, using this logic he may have used the bomb. You are discussing things that have NO relevance to the discussion at hand. Instead you are wasting all of our time with imaginative nonsense.

This would only be the logical outgrowth of a relationship that spanned at least a decade and in our present timeline went well until Gulf War II.

Actually no it’s not, and the logical outgrowth of the 80’s showed that the USSR become a meek power, asking for assistance from the West, begging to join GATT.

The economy was not terminal in the 1970s otherwise the Soviets would have came forward to cut arms, and not invaded Afghanistan.

OK now I know for sure you cannot read, read my quote please. The Soviet economy was declining in the 70’s and 80’s do you actually deny this fact? Do you understand how the Soviet economy works? It is propped up by GOSPLAN and if that can’t make the industrial society grow what will? If you will:

GDP (1979-91)

’79- $1.7 trillion 91-$1. 8 trillion

This is growth?

Funny how that worked.

It worked in the sense that it speeded up the collapse of the Soviet Union, I have never denied this. But that doesn’t mean that Reagan actually ended the Soviet Union, the USSR was moribund by the mid 70’s, she was not growing economically. That’s why it’s called Soviet stagnation.

I have serious reservations about someone that doesn't want communism shamed and his ability for objectivity on an argument over the Cold War. To think that the leaders of communism--and not the doctorine itself--were evil is to completely be ignorant of human freedom, dignity and its soul.

You sir are now dealing with ad homs, so the hypocrites come out and play. Secondly your overt ignorance of what communism is, is clearly shown in the preceding paragraph. Communism was shammed by the Soviet experiment and any real communist would tell you as much. I suggest you learn what communism is before you get an intellectual slap in the face, comprende?

Stalin was a horrible machination of a political and economic system that was evil. Without communism Stalin would have been nothing, the reverse cannot be said. (Read: Mao and Castro for starters.)

Actually Stalin did not employ communist doctrine, he was doing almost everything Marx said not to do. He was antithetical to the concept of Marx. Where was species life in the USSR? Did the alienation stop? Were people free of currency, of government, no. Again refrain from speaking about something you obviously know VERY little about.

Although I will reiterate it was the best course of action given the state of world affairs vis a vis the USSR.

That seems to be ironic isn’t it? The best course of action was to kill up to three million Vietnamese, to install the Shah of Iran who killed and tortured unto thousands, 30,000 disappeared persons in Argentina, supporting Saddam Hussein, the list does go on. For the US to say she fought for freedom is ignorant and disingenuous at best.

Do not, however, begin to equivicate the US overthrow of a few countries to the subjugation of hundreds of millions in Eastern Europe, the inumerable attrocities that the Soviet Union committed inside its own boarders as well as outside.

Who the hell do you think you are talking to me in such a fashion? Learn your position boy, secondly the subjugation of millions under US influence and control, denying the people of Chile, Guatemala, and Iran of their right to self-determination is the same sin committed by the Soviet Union in Eastern Europe. The US has committed atrocities as well, do you think otherwise?

What we did, however, pales in comparison to what communism and the Soviet Uniond did to BILLIONS over 75 years. On the whole the world is better off for what the US did during the Cold War, no doubt about it in my mind. That will incense and anger many, but it is the truth.

Hopefully one day you will learn how to spell correctly, secondly what the US did was antithetical to her own self-proclaimed motives for fighting the USSR. You are so intellectually inept to state that because the USSR did more bad things you are angels? The sins of others do not absolve your own child. The collapse of the USSR was a good thing for the world in retrospect, but it was of the Soviet Unions’ own doing.

10. ### thecurly1Registered Senior Member

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1,024
I stand corrected on oil. Touche.

The website link is there for you to discover, I've made my case.

That was not an ad homeinem attack saying that I doubt your objectivity. It was just that, a doubt.

You've made a very compelling case against Reagan's role in the demise of the Soviet Union. I never believed that it was impossible for the Soviets to survive without Reagan, however Reagan did speed up, quite considerably the death of the USSR. Without which its entirely possible that the Cold War could have ended up differently, one more mistake that could have led to nuclear war is quite plausable.

Your hatred of the US blinds you to the fact that I never, never obsolved the US of sins during the Cold War. I've said as much twice in just as many posts. Don't take an attitude with me on "who the hell do you think you are talking to me" bullshit. I have the right just as much as anyone else on sciforums to debate with you. You are not holier than thou and I suggest you quit acting like it.

First and formost the United States was making sure it did not die. That's what the Cold War was being fought for, freedom and democracy were secondary to self-preservation. In pursuit of self-preservation the US implanted dictatorial regimes instead of communist ones. Perfect? No. Better than the communist alternative, no matter how popular? Yes.

Well we agree that the collapse of the USSR was good for the world.

Overall this was a pleasent debate, one which changed my mind (somewhat) on Reagan's roll in the Soviet downfall. You've clarified my waining believe that the USSR was already imploding.

I honestly enjoyed it.

11. ### UndecidedBannedBanned

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4,731
That was not an ad homeinem attack saying that I doubt your objectivity. It was just that, a doubt.

It was an ad hom attack period, motives mean nothing.

I never believed that it was impossible for the Soviets to survive without Reagan, however Reagan did speed up, quite considerably the death of the USSR.

That’s what everyone here has been saying, I can tell you did not read the whole thread, and that makes me quite angry because this whole nonsense could have been avoided. My suggestion is read before you utter.

Your hatred of the US blinds you to the fact that I never, never obsolved the US of sins during the Cold War.

I don’t hate the US, I am merely relaying to you the shit the US has stirred in the world, sorry if the truth is being anti-American but I am going to stop if you believe I am anti-American. You did try to absolve the sins of the United States in this memorable passage:

Do not, however, begin to equivicate the US overthrow of a few countries to the subjugation of hundreds of millions in Eastern Europe, the inumerable attrocities that the Soviet Union committed inside its own boarders as well as outside.

Firstly you call them a few countries as if they don’t count, that is ignorance and arrogance is a sweet package. Secondly you honestly believed the US did not do the same shit in “a few countries” that the Soviets did in Eastern Europe? Sorry if you are ignorant of the facts but don’t barf them on me. Learn before you talk, its simple.

Don't take an attitude with me on

And you are? You are going to do? After I dealt this intellectual destruction of you, I don’t fear you at all.

"who the hell do you think you are talking to me" bullshit. I have the right just as much as anyone else on sciforums to debate with you. You are not holier than thou and I suggest you quit acting like it.

The arrogance you extolled deserves reciprocity, Do not, however, begin to equivicate the US overthrow… Who do you think you are telling me to not compare things? Firstly I compare because I am right, I don’t write nonsense and depend on others to make my arguments like yours truly, secondly who do you think you are here? You can debate with me, and I debate with everyone no probs, but when I get arrogant and ignorant shnots coming at me dictating my arguments, you deserve a bit of disrespect and intellectual destruction to get you into shape. I am a very nice person when I am treated with the respect that every sciformer deserves. Learn your place.

That's what the Cold War was being fought for, freedom and democracy were secondary to self-preservation. In pursuit of self-preservation the US implanted dictatorial regimes instead of communist ones. Perfect? No. Better than the communist alternative, no matter how popular? Yes.

Thus you weren’t fighting for freedom, you were fighting for self-interest. This is a strikingly different tone from before where all the bull shit about America saving the world. I would suggest otherwise, I would much rather live in Soviet sponsored Cuba then American propped Saudi Arabia or Iran, would you disagree? Your obviously undernourished mind on the subject on American policy, and her impacts greatly distorts the reality, and your inability to understand communism has been duly noted.

12. ### bandwidthbanditRegistered Senior Member

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55
I think it's fair to say that a lot of people and events contributed to the end of the Cold war. It was not just one thing or person. Reagan put pressure on the Soviets by forcing them to choose between an arms race they couldn't afford or negotiation. The Solidarity movement in Poland, supported by the Pope and the Catholic church, pushed the Soviets towards opening up their society and bringing down the Iron Curtain. Gorbachev was smart enough to see the writing on the wall and push for reform inside the Soviet Union. He was also wise enough to not try to go out in blaze of glory or succumb to Soviet fears about a US premptive strike. I think it was a combination of the right people at right time that let things play out the way they did. If you change any part of the mix it could have turned out a lot differently. Everybody involved took a great amount of risk to make things turn out peacefully.

13. ### thecurly1Registered Senior Member

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1,024
Yet again I said on the whole the world was better off. You've ignored that point twice now. Self-preservation trumps all other motives for fighting and living in this case.

Moreover I wasn't pointing a verbal finger at you and saying, you better not fucking equivicate. I did however say you should not equivicate. There's a world of difference in meaning and tone between the two.

This condecending tone that runs through all of your posts does not further your cause. Luckily I'm mature enough to not believe that it invalidates your argument, unlike many others.

A few countries is a numerical quantification of how much the US did. I'm not saying they didn't count, read again my two or three mentions of US "sins" in the Cold War. However to believe that the Soviet's crimes some how make them less worse or equal to the United States (which I'm not saying you said) would be wrong. I'm doing an equal accounting of both sides in this case, or at least trying to.

Don't play this tit-for-tat thing either. I was perfectly respectful until you started with your on the stump sermon about how you're sooooooooooo much better. Please.

I do not have an inability to understand communsim. Maybe in its utopian on paper form, but not in the real world. It subjugates people by robbing them of free will and personal responsibility, not to mention economic freedom. It is an evil system for its simple machinations on the world and the men who ran each communist nation during and after the 20th century.

My mind is hardly undernourished. I may have a different take on things, but it is hardly because I'm uneducated on American policy or history in general. Yet again the man, and his positions are dually attacked.

14. ### UndecidedBannedBanned

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4,731
Yet again I said on the whole the world was better off. You've ignored that point twice now.

Didn’t I say that we are better off without the Soviet Union? I strongly suggest you re-read the thread.

Self-preservation trumps all other motives for fighting and living in this case.

I don’t deny that, but the Soviet Union did the same shit you did for essentially the same reasons. You are being categorical in values, which really just don’t exist.

Moreover I wasn't pointing a verbal finger at you and saying, you better not fucking equivicate. I did however say you should not equivocate. There's a world of difference in meaning and tone between the two.

The word difference is not relevant the intention was the same; you wanted to stifle debate. I suggest you learn basic human logic next time, not categorical and subjective semantical value systems.

However to believe that the Soviet's crimes some how make them less worse or equal to the United States (which I'm not saying you said) would be wrong. I'm doing an equal accounting of both sides in this case, or at least trying to.

You were trying in essence to negate the value of those nations by essentially stating: Do not, however, begin to equivicate the US overthrow of a few countries to the subjugation of hundreds of millions in Eastern Europe, inumerable attrocities that the Soviet Union committed inside its own boarders as well as outside.

Why not? I know why because the US’ is to be absolved of the responsibility of the same crimes the Soviets committed against the people of Eastern Europe. It is your arrogance which prevents you from looking at the sins of the United States; I don’t think you are so wiling to admit the failings of US policy internationally (even though you may say you do). Hundreds of millions were subjugated by American policy internationally for the same reasons the Soviets did, self preservation. Soviet crimes are equal to that of the United States, the mere fact that more states and more oppressively (questionably) does not mean that the US is better then the Soviet Union in any way shape or form, a murderer is a murderer. For instance if one kills a child through torture, and sexual assault or killed 30 by merely shooting them with a AK-47, according to your theory of subjective value it is worse to kill the 30 persons. I don’t see a distinction, what I see is that a murderer is a murderer. Irregardless of motives or objectives, we are never use people as a means but always as an end (Kant).

Don't play this tit-for-tat thing either.

Again who do you think you are? This is the arrogance that you can’t see.

I do not have an inability to understand communsim. Maybe in its utopian on paper form, but not in the real world.

That’s exactly why you cannot grasp communism, because it never occurred in “real life”. That’s what I mean, you must understand the process of communism in order for you to understand it in the context of this conversation. I am certain by your inability to differentiate from communism and socialism is laughingly obvious.

It subjugates people by robbing them of free will and personal responsibility, not to mention economic freedom.

Well that’s not the role of communism, again what are you trying to do here? Waste time?

It is an evil system for its simple machinations on the world and the men who ran each communist nation during and after the 20th century.

There is only one evil thing in this world and that’s ignorance, your ignorance of communism as a system is a perfect example of this. Millions around the world believe in the communist system, some here on sci. According to Nietzsche you hate those “evil” leaders because they are separate from your “slave morality”. If God is indeed dead, you are the evil one for not advancing yourself like those men. Communism is by no means an evil, it is supposed to stop the “evil” of exploitation, that seems to have escaped your mental grasp hasn’t it? So tell me, show me where and when communism has existed?

My mind is hardly undernourished. again the man, and his positions are dually attacked.

So you should, until you know what you are talking about, and stop being so categorical and subjective (claiming to be objective) you cannot be taken seriously. After showing you that your former line of argumentation was not only a waste of time, but wrong. Your eventual cognitive surrender will come in due course.

15. ### dixonmasseyValued Senior Member

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2,151
Reagan's role was exactly zero. Soviets were rotten from inside for some time before Reagan. Soviets were unlucky to get weak, no clear vision Gorby as a leader during Reagan's presidency. Had Gorby been strong, no clear vision man, USSR would be still around. Why? Because, soviet population was quite content with existence of the USSR. Local communist party bosses, on the other hand, were eager to get away from Moscow, privatize public property and start living in the capitalist/feudal paradise (they succeeded big time in that). As for Reagan's arms race as soviet's killer, it's total BS. USSR was spending >70% of GDP on army throughout its history. One cannot physically spend much more than that. Chernobyl was 10 times more responsible for USSR's economic woes than all tough Reagan's speeches combined.