The unravelling of the Cold War settlement

Daniel Deudney, G. John Ikenberry

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

45 Scopus citations


Twenty years ago, as the Cold War was being ushered to a close, American and Russian leaders crafted a settlement with principles and arrangements intended to constitute a great-power peace as well as to extend the liberal international order. Today, the promise these arrangements once held now seems distant. For both sides, relations are now marked by a sense of grievance, disappointment and dashed expectations. The new administration of President Barack Obama sees the repair of the relationship with Russia as a major foreign-policy objective, and is ambitiously attempting to reset it and place it on a more positive footing. Already this new policy has provoked a chorus of condemnation that the United States is appeasing Russia and sacrificing both its national interests and the interests of democratic allies in Eastern Europe and the former Soviet region. In reality, the Obama policy is a move toward recovering some of America's most successful foreign-policy approaches that reached a zenith at the end of the Cold War under the later Reagan administration and the George H.W. Bush administration.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)39-62
Number of pages24
Issue number6
StatePublished - 2009

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Political Science and International Relations


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