Lecciones de la Guerra Fría para George W. Bush

El Presidente Bush hizo hace poco una analogía entre la lucha actual en contra del violento terrorismo jihadi y la Guerra Fría. Tiene razón en una cosa: las olas del terrorismo tienden a ser generacionales. Desgraciadamente, al igual que la Guerra Fría, la "guerra contra el terrorismo" será probablemente cuestión de décadas, no de años.

Pero Bush olvidó otra lección implícita en su analogía: la importancia de utilizar el poder suave de la cultura. La Guerra Fría se ganó mediante una combinación de fuerza militar, que disuadió la agresión soviética, y del poder atractivo de la cultura y las ideas occidentales. Cuando cayó el muro de Berlín en 1989, lo que lo derribó fueron los martillos y buldózers, no la artillería. Lamentablemente Bush no ha aprendido esta lección.

Los intercambios académicos y científicos de la Guerra Fría desempeñaron un papel significativo para aumentar el poder suave estadounidense. Si bien algunos escépticos temían que los científicos soviéticos y los agentes de la KGB se robaran la tecnología estadounidense, no se daban cuenta de que los visitantes se llevaban ideas políticas junto con los secretos científicos. Muchos de esos científicos se convirtieron en propulsores importantes de los derechos humanos y la liberalización en la URSS.

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