Dangerous US Policy in East Asia
by Ivan Eland, August 07, 2013
The problem is that the Cold War U.S. containment policy toward the Soviet Union is perceived to have toppled the communist government there; subsequently, this “successful” containment policy has been quietly shifted toward a post-communist China. Even if containment was the major factor in toppling the Soviet Union – a dubious proposition given the extensive economic rot in that country – no one ever asks if the same result could have been achieved with far less cost in American lives and money using a “containment-lite” policy. For security purposes, given that many empires fall from overextension and thus financial decline, wouldn’t it have been better during the Cold War to let the Soviet Union take over and incur the costs of administering, assisting, and policing backwater economic basket cases such as South Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, Angola, Nicaragua, El Salvador, Afghanistan, etc. and instead concentrate U.S. efforts on preserving the key economic and technologically advanced areas of Western Europe and Japan? Thus, the economically challenged USSR might have collapsed much sooner.