10 of History's Boldest Presidential Promises

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1983: Ronald Reagan

Strategic Defense Initiative:

“I call upon the scientific community in our country, those who gave us nuclear weapons, to turn their great talents now to the cause of mankind and world peace, to give us the means of rendering these nuclear weapons impotent and obsolete.”

In 1983 Reagan introduced the Strategic Defense Initiative, known as the SDI, whose purpose was to protect the U.S. from strategic nuclear ballistic missiles through the use of ground and space based systems. Although Reagan believed the program could make nuclear war impossible, many disbelieved its technology was feasible, dubbing SDI "Star Wars.", The Soviets; however, did become concerned about the effects of the program, leading many to believe it helped bring about a quicker end to the Cold War.



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