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Cold War US Foreign PolicyKey Perspectives$
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Steven Hurst

Print publication date: 2005

Print ISBN-13: 9780748620791

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748620791.001.0001

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(p.9) One Traditionalism
Cold War US Foreign Policy

Steven Hurst

Edinburgh University Press

This chapter analyses the traditional interpretation of US foreign policy during the Cold War. It explains that traditionalism is better understood as an extension of the prevailing pre-World War 2 historiography of American diplomacy. It suggests that as an explanation of US foreign policy, traditionalism is characterised primarily by shallowness and one-dimensionality and that the policy-making process was reduced to the actions of senior government officials guided solely by a handful of key principles, for which they were acting in isolation from all external pressures except perhaps Russian wickedness.

Keywords:   traditionalism, foreign policy, Cold War, American diplomacy, one-dimensionality, policy-making process

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