Book Reviews: Ronald Reagan’s Victory over Berlin Wall and Communism

Book Reviews:

Ronald Reagan’s Victory over Berlin Wall and Communism

Reagan’s War

Peter Schweizer

The Epic story of his forty-year struggle and final triumph over communism

keyUnderstanding Reagan’s struggle and final triumph over communism involves more than debating the past or deciding who gets the credit. It provides us with wisdom and hope for the struggles of today and tomorrow. Reagan’s hope that we be guided not by fear but by courage and moral clarity is as apt today as it was during the height of the Cold War. ~Peter Schweizer, Reagan’s War

reagans-warReagan’s War is the story of Ronald Reagan’s journey as an anti-communist, from his early days as an actor to his years in the White House. Challenging popular misconceptions of Reagan as an empty suit who played only a passive role in the demise of eth Soviet Union, Peter Schweizer details Reagan’s decades-long battle against communism.

Bringing to light previously secret information obtained from archives in the United States, Germany, Poland, Hungary, and Russia—including Reagan’s KGB file—Schweizer offers a compelling case that Reagan personally mapped out and directed his war against communism, often disagreeing with experts and advisers, who tended to seek co-existence with tyranny rather than victory for freedom, which they called “detente”, and engaged in endless secret meetings with the Soviets. Jimmy Carter carried on secret meetings with Castro.

Despite constant attacks from the media and establishment politicians, Reagan remained firm and steadfast. He was his own man.

Reinforced by his own spiritual resolve, Ronald Reagan had a brilliant, 3-prong strategy for defeating the Soviet empire:

1) Drain them  economically by escalating the arms race so they could not keep up with the powerful capitalistic economic engine with their failed socialist agenda

2) The Strategic Defense Initiative protected the United States from Russian missile attacks

3) Lend economic and moral support to the captive nations of the empire

Reagan rebuked detente. His Cold War policy was: “We win and they lose.”

Brezhnev Army in Civilian Clothing

Brezhnev secretly used Soviet soldiers to advance his cause. Brezhnev called them the “internationalists,” young, specially trained men who would disguise themselves as teachers, doctors, and agricultural experts. They were an army in waiting, and when they were needed, they would don foreign military uniforms, use Soviet military equipment painted with insignias of another country, and join the myriad of civil wars that were ravaging the developing countries. [Schweizer, 79]

The Hand of God

quote-chronicles7When Ronald Reagan was sworn in as President, he stood stiffly, with his right arm raised. His left hand rested on his mother’s Bible, opened to the seventh chapter, fourteenth verse of Second Chronicles:

                 “If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.”

Reagan believed that the Soviets were using fear of the bomb to manipulate the West psychologically, and he was determined not to blink. “The ultimate determinant in the struggle now going on for the world will not be bombs and rockets,” he said, “but a test of wills and ideas—a trial of spiritual resolve.”

 

On March 30, 1981, just two months after his inauguration, Ronald Reagan was leaving the Washington Hilton Hotel on a cool afternoon after having given a speech to the Business Trades Council of the AFL-CIO.

reagan-quote-appeasement                Reagan turned answer a reporter when all of a sudden, there was a Pop. Pop. Pop.

                Lodged under his left arm was a .22 caliber bullet which was designed to explode on impact. It was one of six that had been fired by a deranged young gunman named John Hinckley Jr. One of the shots had ricocheted off the bulletproof limo before penetrating Reagan’s chest muscles.

At 3:24 p.m., doctors were operating to remove the bullet.

Referring to Reagan’s tremendous physical strength, which had given him the confidence to overcome physical threats in Hollywood and Sacramento, one doctor reported, “I have never in my life seen a chest like that on a man his age.”

Reagan had long believed that each individual has a divine purpose in life. He had been spared an assassin’s bullet.  “I have decided that whatever time I have left is left for Him,” he said.

If every person is given a divine purpose, as Reagan believed, he knew what his was to be. He had battled communism close to forty years now. What could be more abhorrent to God than a system that denies God?

Only ten days before the attempt on his life, Reagan had given a speech in Washington on the false hope of communism as compared with real faith in God.  “the crisis of the Western world, Whittaker Chambers reminded us, exists to the degree in which it is indifferent to God.”

reagannosurvive-without-God                “Evil is powerless if the good are unafraid,” he continued. Now was the time for “renewing our spiritual strength. Only by building a wall of such spiritual resolve can we, as a free people, hope to protect our own heritage and make it someday the birthright of all men.”

In keeping with that policy, Reagan secured the release of many dissidents in oppressed nations.

A  Special Mission for America

He had also believed for some time that not only individuals but some nations are part of a “divine plan.” Since the 1950s he had voiced his belief that America had such a mission, and he always expressed it in terms of demonstrating an “abiding love of freedom and a special kind of courage.” [129-137]

After the collapse of the empire, Reagan took no credit.

berlinwallreagan                Since the end of the Cold Warm a debate has raged about how it ended. One person who never got wrapped up in this debate was Ronald Reagan. One of the last items to be removed from his Oval Office desk in January 1989 was a small sign that read: “It’s surprising what you can accomplish when no one is concerned about who gets the credit.”

Understanding Reagan’s struggle and final triumph over communism involves more than debating the past or deciding who gets the credit. It provides us with wisdom and hope for the struggles of today and tomorrow. Reagan’s hope that we be guided not by fear but by courage and moral clarity is as apt today as it was during the height of the Cold War. [284-285]

Advertisements

Leave a Comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s