President Reagan, the Cold War and The Day After. As prompted by this week's episode of The Americans -- a TV series about KGB spies living in Washington during the 1980s -- we revisit the evening of November 20,1983 when ABC aired a ghastly prime-time movie about nuclear annihilation. Watched by over 100 million Americans, The Day After stunned the world and provoked a wide range of partisan reactions. We review the Cold War in context and survey the responses of William F. Buckley, George Will, Carl Sagan and Ronald Reagan himself, who had noted in his diary that the program left him "greatly depressed." With the benefit of historical hindsight, we suggest there is much to be commended about President Reagan's leadership through those tense and uncertain times. And we ask: Are our present-day foreign policy establishments equally equipped in prudence? With music and listener calls.
May 15, 2016