Miller Center

George F. Kennan and the Foreign Policy Making Process

Speaker: Wilson D Miscamble, CSC
Date: March 17, 1994

Wilson Miscamble, an author of a book on George Kennan, discusses Kennan?s foreign policy strategy between 1947 and 1950. Miscamble first stresses the importance of studying Kennan and then moves to explaining the policy or lack thereof under President Truman. He continues to describe Kennan?s role in various programs such as the Truman Doctrine, German Unification, the Marshall Plan, the NSC, and a variety of others. His descriptions of Kennan?s policy proposals concern a variety of countries, from Europe, Asia and the Middle East. Miscamble concludes by explaining that while some of Kennan?s policies were adapted, he continually objected to the aggressive use of American military forces throughout the Cold War. During the questioning session Miscamble answers inquiries concerning the long telegram, the Mr. X-article, Kennan?s education and training, Truman?s stance on the military, Kennan?s predictions about the Soviet Union, and comparisons between Kissinger and Kennan.

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