The Churchill-Eisenhower Correspondence, 1953-1955; Reagan And Thatcher

In This Review

The Churchill-Eisenhower Correspondence, 1953-1955

Edited by Peter G. Boyle
University of North Carolina Press, 1990
230 pp. $24.95

Reagan And Thatcher

By Geoffrey Smith
Norton, 1991
285 pp.

Two radically different perspectives on the "special relationship" between Washington and London that now seems to have finally ended with the advent of John Major and George Bush. Churchill and Eisenhower came to know each other intimately during World War II. But after Stalin's death Eisenhower, the new president under the influence of John Foster Dulles, resisted Churchill's efforts to open a line to the new leaders in Moscow. Their correspondence documents the carefully couched debate that Churchill finally lost. The book by Smith, a columnist for the London Times, describes the surprisingly close relationship between two leaders who scarcely knew each other, but became political allies on most issues. While the relationship was more troubled than popularly supposed, on one issue-"doing business" with Gorbachev-Thatcher succeeded where Churchill failed, in engineering a "subtle but fundamental shift" in the president's attitude toward the Soviet Union.

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