approach to arms control, what Kennedy had called arming to parley. Unfortunately, Reagan has had far less success than Kennedy in obtaining arms control agreements or in convincing his critics that the two-track strategy includes sincerity about arms control itself.
Regardless of who is president, episodes like the Lebanon peacekeeping force seem to indicate that the United States--or at least Congress and public opinion-- is no longer willing to pay any price and bear a global burden overseas, even if this reluctance is comparable to Munich. Given this mood, is the Munich myth, in Kennedy's version or in the standard version, still relevant? I believe that it is. Nations, whether or not they be "world powers," will be faced periodically with military and diplomatic crises. In those crises, they have to be militarily prepared, and they may have to express a conviction that an aggressor will go no further if one's own nation is to survive. 46
In conclusion, Kennedy's warnings are still useful, even in a postglobal America. It is true that the continued presence of nuclear weapons raises the stakes of any confrontation, and that nuclear powers must, above all, avoid presenting other nuclear powers with demands that can only be answered by a choice between holocaust and humiliation. But let us also remember, as President Kennedy told us, that honorable negotiation is not appeasement and that peace that can last requires strength.