Trying to Have It Both Ways

Reagan's desire for arms control tugs him from a showdown

Ronald Reagan, wimp? Dove? More wishy-washy than (gasp!) Jimmy Carter? Not only were those strange-sounding accusations ringing out last week, they were coming from people who are normally among the President's staunchest supporters. Reagan, they charged, is letting his eagerness for an arms-control deal and a summit with Mikhail Gorbachev prevent him from precipitating a full-scale showdown with the Kremlin over the seizure of Nicholas Daniloff, the American reporter being detained in Moscow on what the U.S. regards as trumped-up espionage charges. Why, they asked, was Reagan being so cautious and pragmatic about not making a firm link between such Soviet...

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