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Which of the following generalizations about Cold War relations is best supported by...

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kelly721 | Student, Grade 11 | eNotes Newbie

Posted April 19, 2011 at 1:26 PM via web

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Which of the following generalizations about Cold War relations is best supported by these 4 comments?

Words of Cold Warriors

 

Force is the only thing the Russians understand, Stalin showed what he was after...the Russians were planning world conquest -Harry S. Truman July 1945

There are only two ways: peaceful coexistance, or the most destructive war in history. There is no third way - Nikita Khrushchev. 1956

I am not going to be the president who saw Southeast Asia go the way China went - U.S. President Lyndon B. Johnson, 1964

The Soviet Union is an evil empire with which talks are fruitless. Soviet leaders reserve unto themselves the right to commit any crime, to lie, to cheat -Ronald Reagan, 1980

 

The four speakers' comments support the generalization that during the Cold War,

A. Soviet leaders generally pursued foreign policy initiatives that encouraged nuclear disarmament

B. Perceptions by individual leaders ofeten determined foreign policy decisions that affected superpower relations

C. Leaders often took hard-line positions to encourage the intervention of supranational organizations

D. American leaders were less likely to view foreign policy in terms of black and white alternatives than were Soviet leaders

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pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted April 19, 2011 at 1:33 PM (Answer #1)

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The most plausible of these answers is definitely B.  A and D do not make sense and C is possible, but does not seem at all likely if you know much about the Cold War in general.

First of all, when you have three quotes from US presidents and only one from a Soviet, you can't say that all four quotes support any sort of generalization about what Soviet leaders did.  After all, 3 of the 4 quotes have nothing to do with Soviet leaders.

As far as D goes, calling the Soviet Union an evil empire sounds pretty black and white to me.

For C, only 3 of the 4 are truly hardline statements so C is not that good of an answer.  Furthermore, during the Cold War it is not as if either the US or the USSR wanted the UN or any other such body to intervene in its affairs.

So B is the best answer because these quotes seem to imply that the way that the leaders perceived the world affected their actions.

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