Australian Left Review
More Cold War
Are we facing a new Cold War? The blusterings and sabre rattlings of the Reagan Administration together with its sinister activities in the Central America would indicate that we are already in one. But what about the Russians? Do they also have their nuclear hawkes and their worst-case theorists? The balance of the world’s forces has substantially altered since the 1950s. The People’s Republic of China, a wild card in the world power game, is now a major nuclear power. The nonaligned movement has developed and expanded its influence and the antiwar movement seems to be riding the crest of a popular wave of concern. But the existence of an increasing number of volatile smaller states possessing nuclear capacity means that the Cold War of the 1980s could be more unstable and menacing than the sterile power plays of the 1950’s. In this article a controversial argument is put forward that the policies of both the U.S.S.R. and the U.S.A. is determined by self-interest as interpreted by their social and military elites.