Expanding the Frontiers: Superpower Intervention in the Cold War

By Karen A. Feste | Go to book overview

Acknowledgments

This book is an outgrowth of a project on domestic instability and superpower intervention that has received generous funding from the Ford Foundation and the Pew Charitable Trust from 1986 to 1991. The original focus of interest around this topic began in the climate of the mid-1980s, when distinctive patterns of intervcntionary behavior could be easily found: The United States was active in Central America and the Soviet Union was deeply involved in Afghanistan. What level of understanding of the foreign policy goals of each superpower accounted for these acts of intervention? What might the future hold with respect to continued involvement in this Way? Investigating possible answers to these questions by searching through the traditional literature dealing with intervention proved to be somewhat less than satisfactory, partially because these materials are not theoretically rich, and partially because past approaches have not shown great sensitivity to canons of scientific scholarship. Considerable spadework was necessary to transcend these shortcomings and to get beyond the conservative defense and the liberal critique arguments about inherent value of interventions in general. One of the objectives in this project was to uncover the overall picture of Cold War intervention practice, to discern both the longer trends and the short, dramatic events associated with this aspect of international relations.

As director of this multifaceted research enterprise, I have benefited enormously from the steady interest and involvement of numerous scholars scattered far afield. Closer to home, the work associated with developing the framework for analyzing superpower intervention described in these pages can be truly considered a team effort from the Graduate School of International Studies at the University of Denver. Specific recognition, however,

-xiii-

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