Engaging the Evil Empire


In this episode of Horns of a Dilemma, Will Inboden, executive director of the Clements Center at the University of Texas at Austin, sits down with Simon Miles, assistant professor at the Sanford School of Public Policy at Duke University, to discuss his book, Engaging the Evil Empire: Washington, Moscow, and the Beginning of the End of the Cold War. In his book, Miles asserts that the beginning of the thawing of relations between the United States and the Soviet Union, usually attributed to the relationship between President Ronald Reagan and General Secretary Mikhail Gorbachev, actually had its roots in the period of 1980 to 1985 under previous Soviet leaders, such as Yuri Andropov and Leonid Brezhnev. Miles talks about the effort on the part of both the Soviet Union and the United States to find opportunities for meaningful diplomatic interaction that laid the groundwork for thawing, even at a time when the Cold War was at its height.