Fox Nation takes a closer look at Ronald Reagan’s ‘Star Wars’

As the U.S. scrambles to solve rising tensions between Russia and Ukraine, Fox Nation looks back on how former President Ronald Reagan bravely worked to establish peace and see an end to the Cold War.  

Fox Nation’s documentary, “Ronald Reagan’s Star Wars,” explores the negotiation tactics of the former president in a world where many feared nuclear war. 

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When President Reagan came into office, the Soviet Union had tens of thousands of nuclear weapons. 

The world powers abided by the doctrine of MAD, or mutually assured destruction, Former White House speechwriter Peter Robinson explained. This meant that “if one side launched a first strike, the other side would have enough nuclear weapons to launch a devastating second strike,” killing millions of innocent people.  

Reagan, who deeply respected life after saving 79 people as a lifeguard, sought another alternative. 

“All of us working with him knew Ronald Reagan as a hard-liner, both in policy and in defense issues.” Ken Adelman, Reagan’s Arms Control director, told Fox Nation. “The dirty, little secret was that he was a nuclear abolitionist. He wanted to eliminate all nuclear weapons.”  

The turning point came after Reagan’s assassination attempt, when he felt he was saved to solve this world crisis.  

Scientist Edward Teller told the president about a strategic defense as an option to protect the country from incoming ballistic missiles. Reagan ran with the idea, delivering a speech in an attempt to share “a vision of the future that offers hope.” 

“I call upon the scientific community in our country, those who gave us nuclear weapons, to turn their great talents now to the cause of mankind and world peace, to give us the means of rendering these nuclear weapons impotent and obsolete,” he said on March 30, 1983. 

The speech, which the cabinet was made aware of only briefly before it took place, shocked the defense and scientific community. Many mocked the idea, calling it “Star Wars.” However, the Soviet Union was rattled by Reagan’s confidence. 

“Reagan was willing obviously to sit down with the Soviets, but he was… just as willing to stand up to the Soviets.”

A second turning point occurred when Mikhail Gorbachev proposed a meeting between the powers. Negotiators stayed up all night after the leader had many proposals to reduce nuclear weapons.  

Gorbachev tried to trap Reagan by asking the U.S. to limit the strategic defense initiative to laboratory testing and no deployment. 

That is when Reagan walked out of the meeting, standing up for what he believed in. 

“Reagan was willing obviously to sit down with the Soviets, but he was… just as willing to stand up to the Soviets,” Adelman explained. 

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In 1987, Gorbachev signed the INF agreement and the leaders worked to eliminate a whole class of nuclear weapons. 

Reagan’s hard work led to great success. Not long after, the Berlin Wall was torn down, Europe was reunified, and the Soviet Union disintegrated, resulting in a new era of peace. 

To learn more of the full story, sign up today on Fox Nation and watch ‘Ronald Reagan’s Star Wars.’ 

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