Detente worked because the United States and USSR were not that different overall politically. The people supported the peace movements. There has been a theory circulating in universities for quite awhile that the United States and Soviet Union immediately faced off after World War 2 precisely because they were so similar, and not different. Ultimately, this similarity would lead to the downfall of one or the other, but not both simultaneously. There is no saying that the Soviet Union mingled with closed command economy throughout the 50s and 60s but they moved into a capitalist model by the 70s and 80s but could not keep up with US military production. While the US had promised under the 60s, 70s, and 80s, to reduce the arms race with the Soviet Union, it actually kept building non-stop. Partly because of Vietnam and partly because of anti-Soviet sentiment. Really, as PEOPLE, how different were we to the Soviets? Both countries still operate command economy. Russia had a quick collapse because it ceded its sphere of influence and gave up its empire quickly. If the U.S. economy fails there will be massive resistance to this.
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