One of the hallmarks of Truman’s philosophy as a leader was the importance of international cooperation. This was not the notion of the current administration in which Bush believes that international cooperation means that other countries do what the United States says, but rather a true coming-together of sovereign equals as Goldman (viz. 117) suggests.
One of the first important acts of Truman’s presidency was to make the final arrangements for the meeting to draft the charter for the United Nations, quickly followed by a meeting with other Allied leaders so that they could collectively decide Germany’s fate. Truman was a man who believed that America could not act alone on the world stage. He understood that Communists were important actors on the world stage and could not simply be stamped out: He would have understood that American Communists were connected to an important political moment.
One cannot help but wonder if Truman has stayed in the White House whether the United States would have been less likely to have become drawn into the Korean War and then the War in Vietnam. What might have succeeded in cooling down the tensions between the Soviet Union and the United States was a president feared because it was known that he would engage in nuclear war and yet also known as someone eager to come to the international bargaining table. Both wars, of course (just as much as red-baiting) arose from a fundamental fear of Communism).
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