Quantcast
Connect with us

Gorbachev: Bush 41 called Reagan ‘extreme,’ said GOP supporters ‘blockheads’

Published

on

Vice President George H. W. Bush confided in Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev that he believed Ronald Reagan was an “extreme conservative” supported by “blockheads and dummies,” the former Soviet leader claims.

“In 1987, after my first visit to the United States, Vice President Bush accompanied me to the airport, and told me: ‘Reagan is a conservative. An extreme conservative. All the blockheads and dummies are for him, and when he says that something is necessary, they trust him. But if some Democrat had proposed what Reagan did, with you, they might not have trusted him,'” Gorbachev said in an interview with The Nation.

Gorbachev added that he had been informed that, following their first summit in 1985, Reagan reportedly described his Soviet counterpart as a “die-hard Bolshevik” — this despite the fact that Gorbachev would soon come to be known as a reformer who opened up the Soviet Union politically and ushered in an era of co-operation between east and west.

It’s no surprise that there were tensions between Reagan and the elder Bush. In 1980, the two politicians ran aggressive campaign against each other to secure the Republican nomination for president. During that campaign, Bush famously described Reagan’s economic policies as “voodoo economics.” Many historians believe Reagan picked Bush as his running mate after the primaries because of Bush’s popularity with some segments of the Republican electorate.

In his interview, Gorbachev had praise for Reagan, commending the president for coming to agreements with the Soviet Union on nuclear arms reductions despite large policy differences between the two countries, and some personal animosity between the two leaders.

ADVERTISEMENT

By telling you this, I simply want to give Reagan the credit he deserves. I found dealing with him very difficult. The first time we met, in 1985, after we had talked, my people asked me what I thought of him. “A real dinosaur,” I replied. And about me Reagan said, “Gorbachev is a diehard Bolshevik!”

And yet these two people came to historic agreements, because some things must be above ideological convictions. No matter how hard it was for us and no matter how much Reagan and I argued in Geneva in 1985, nevertheless in our appeal to the peoples of the world we wrote: “Nuclear war is inadmissible, and in it there can be no victors.” And in 1986, in Reykjavik, we even agreed that nuclear weapons should be abolished. This conception speaks to the maturity of the leaders on both sides, not only Reagan but people in the West generally, who reached the correct conclusion that we had to put an end to the Cold War.

As the Cold War fizzled in the late 1980s, observers gave Gorbachev credit for reducing tensions between the east and west, but as time went on, many historians began to give credit to Reagan’s foreign policy for forcing the Soviet Union to back down from the nuclear brink. Many historians argue Reagan’s Strategic Defense Initiative, or “Star Wars,” forced the Soviet Union into bankruptcy by keeping them chasing an arms race they could no longer afford.

ADVERTISEMENT

But, in his interview, Gorbachev argued that principle, rather than balance sheets, motivated his transformation of the Soviet economy and society.

Sometimes people ask me why I began perestroika. Were the causes basically domestic or foreign? The domestic reasons were undoubtedly the main ones, but the danger of nuclear war was so serious that it was a no less significant factor. Something had to be done before we destroyed each other. Therefore the big changes that occurred with me and Reagan had tremendous importance. But also that George H.W. Bush, who succeeded Reagan, decided to continue the process. And in December 1989, at our meeting in Malta, Bush and I declared that we were no longer enemies or adversaries.

Gorbachev also noted that, three years ago, he received a five-minute standing ovation from a US Midwest audience when he called for an “American perestroika” to reform the US’s economic and social policies. He has since reiterated that call.

ADVERTISEMENT

Read Nation’s full report at this link


Report typos and corrections to [email protected].
READ COMMENTS - JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Continue Reading

Breaking Banner

Melania’s ‘shameful’ complicity in Trump’s agenda slammed by women activists from her home country

Published

on

Melania Trump has been known for very little in her own right. Aside from her widely-panned "Be Best" anti-cyberbullying initiative, she is mostly notable only as a staunch defender of Trump's agenda and behavior, backing him up on everything from Birtherism to abuse of migrant children.

It's a major disappointment to women's activists in her native country of Slovenia, reports The Daily Beast. Several of them were hoping that Melania would be a strong voice on the world stage in her own right, and are frustrated that she has acted as nothing more than a mouthpiece for the president.

Continue Reading

Breaking Banner

GOP strategist delivers devastating analysis of Trump’s ‘Make America White Again’ agenda on CNN

Published

on

Republican strategist Tara Setmayer on Tuesday delivered a brutal analysis of President Donald Trump's strategy to win reelection, which she dubbed "Make America White Again."

During a panel discussion on Trump ramping up his racist attacks on four Democratic women of color, Setmayer argued that appealing solely to angry white voters was the only hope he had of winning in 2020.

"It's 'Make America White Again,' according to the president of the United States, because everyone in the country is not welcome," she said. "If you have a difference of opinion, you're not welcome."

She then went on to document all the ways Trump is uniquely unfit to judge who does and does not belong in the United States.

Continue Reading
 

Breaking Banner

Trump raked over the coals by WSJ for ‘politically stupid’ racist comments debacle

Published

on

In a brutally blunt column from the conservative editorial board of the Wall Street Journal, the editors scolded Donald Trump for being "politically stupid" by wading into a dispute between factions within the Democratic Party that has blown up in his face.

Under a headline reading, "Defining Politics Down," the editorial seemed less concerned with Trump's racist attacks and more with the fact that he has made his racism front and center as the country gears up for the 2020 election.

Continue Reading
 
 
 

Copyright © 2019 Raw Story Media, Inc. PO Box 21050, Washington, D.C. 20009 | Masthead | Privacy Policy | For corrections or concerns, please email [email protected]

close-image