A Constructed Peace: The Making of the European Settlement, 1945-1963

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Princeton University Press, 1999 - History - 424 pages
2 Reviews

People still think of the Cold War as a simple two-sided conflict, a kind of gigantic arm wrestle on a global scale," writes Marc Trachtenberg, "but this view fails to grasp the essence of what was really going on." America and Russia were both willing to live with the status quo in Europe. What then could have generated the kind of conflict that might have led to a nuclear holocaust? This is the great puzzle of the Cold War, and in this book, the product of nearly twenty years of work, Trachtenberg tries to solve it.

The answer, he says, has to do with the German question, especially with the German nuclear question. These issues lay at the heart of the Cold War, and a relatively stable peace took shape only when they were resolved. The book develops this argument by telling a story--a complex story involving many issues of detail, but focusing always on the central question of how a stable international system came into being during the Cold War period. A Constructed Peace will be of interest not just to students of the Cold War, but to people concerned with the problem of war and peace, and in particular with the question of how a stable international order can be constructed, even in our own day.

  

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User Review  - jcvogan1 - LibraryThing

Argues that the fundamental issue in the Cold War was the German Question. Shows how it took from 1945 until 1963 to arrive at the working arrangement that Germany would be divided, with West Berlin ... Read full review

A constructed peace: the making of the European settlement, 1945-1963

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

The launch of the Euro, the potential deployment of U.S. troops in Kosovo, and NATO's 50th anniversary highlight the stability sweepstakes in Europe. Trachtenberg (history, Univ. of Pennsylvania), a ... Read full review

Contents

A Spheres of Influence Peace?
3
Toward the Rubicon
34
The Test of Strength
66
The Making of the NATO System
95
Eisenhower and Nuclear Sharing
146
An Alliance in Disarray
201
The Politics of the Berlin Crisis 19581960
251
Kennedy NATO and Berlin
283
A Settlement Takes Shape
352
SOURCES AND BIBLIOGRAPHY
403
INDEX
419
Copyright

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About the author (1999)

Marc Trachtenberg is professor of political science at the University of California, Los Angeles. His books include "A Constructed Peace" and "The Craft of International History" (both Princeton).

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