Caught this exchange in the car yesterday on C-SPAN radio’s rebroadcast of Fox News Sunday. The Cold War apparently was just one long self-righteous Soviet suicide.
CHRIS WALLACE: But let’s look, for instance, at the 1980s and the Reagan build-up, because I have a copy here of a press release that John Kerry, the Senate campaign in 1984, put out, in which he said he wants to cancel the MX missile, he wants to cancel the B-1 bomber, he wants to cancel Star Wars. Now, we have a lot of more perspective now than we did then. But it turned out those were precisely the weapons that helped defeat the Soviet Union and led to the end of the Cold War. I mean, at a critical point in the 1980s, John Kerry, wasn’t he wrong on the national security and what the central issue was at the time?
DICK GEPHARDT: Well, I don’t want to back and debate what was going on in the 1980s…
WALLACE: But it does speak to his judgment, sir.
GEPHARDT: Well, the truth is the Soviets defeated themselves. Even without the MX missile, we…
WALLACE: But don’t you think it was under pressure from the U.S.?
GEPHARDT: Well, it certainly was under pressure from the U.S. But their main problem was their economy fell apart because they had a bad system that decayed them from within. I don’t think you can argue that if we hadn’t had the MX missile, we would not have been able to defeat the Soviets. We were way ahead of them in most of the ’80s. But the point I’m trying to make is: John Kerry has consistently, from his days in Vietnam, been a patriot, supported this country, fought for his country, has had good defense policies supporting weapons systems that would keep our people safe. And he’s done the same in the fight against terrorism.