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Ronald Reagan and Yuri Andropov

Ronald Reagan and Yuri Andropov
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Alfred Leslie, born 20 Oct 1927
Ronald Wilson Reagan, 6 Feb 1911 - 5 Jun 2004
Yuri Vladimirovich Andropov, 15 Jun 1914 - 9 Feb 1984
Oil on canvas
Sight: 152.1 x 136.5 x 3.8cm (59 7/8 x 53 3/4 x 1 1/2")
Frame: 159.4 x 144.8 x 7.9cm (62 3/4 x 57 x 3 1/8")
Credit Line
National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution; gift of Time magazine
Restrictions & Rights
© Alfred Leslie
Object number
Exhibition Label
In 1983, as tensions mounted between the two superpowers, disarmament talks halted, and the arms race intensified. In January 1984, Time bestowed its “Man of the Year” award on the two men it held accountable for this escalation, President Ronald Reagan and Soviet General Secretary Yuri Andropov. Reagan blamed the Soviets, “the focus of evil in the modern world.” Their recent placement of powerful missiles in Europe and the downing of a civilian South Korean plane confirmed for him that Soviet leaders viewed détente as “a one-way street . . . to pursue its own aims . . . to commit any crime, to lie, to cheat.” Reagan believed not in coexistence but in winning the Cold War. He told a Notre Dame graduating class, “The West won’t contain Communism, it will transcend Communism . . . dismiss it as some bizarre chapter in human history whose last pages are even now being written.”
Data Source
National Portrait Gallery
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