There was an important difference between Ronald Reagan and Richard Nixon, whose actual policies were quite parallel and not rarely identical. Nixon treated foreign policy as an endeavor with no end, as a set of rhythms to be managed. He dealt with its intricacies and contradictions like school assignments by an especially demanding teacher. He expected America to prevail but in a long, joyless enterprise, perhaps after he left office. Reagan, by contrast, summed up his Cold War strategy to an aide in 1977 in a characteristically optimistic epigram: "We win, they lose." The Nixon style of policymaking was important to restore fluidity to the diplomacy of the Cold War; the Reagan style was indispensable for the diplomacy of ending it.
- Henry Kissinger in World Order