Why did I love this book?
It’s hard to overstate just how influential Marc Trachtenberg’s A Constructed Peace, and really all of his writing, has been on my thinking. I constantly return to its pages and find fresh insights each time. I’m drawn in by the writing style, but the substance is even more impressive. The book—examining British, French, Soviet, West German, and U.S. policy—was what first opened my eyes to the centrality of Germany and debates on nuclear control in the origins and evolution of the Cold War. U.S. efforts to offset the Soviet challenge and reduce the U.S. continental commitment by reviving West Germany and then essentially providing it with nuclear weapons contributed to some of the Cold War’s most dangerous crises.