SFA historian notes George H.W. Bush’s character contributed to his post-Cold War diplomacy

SFA historian notes George H.W. Bush’s character contributed to his post-Cold War diplomacy

NACOGDOCHES, TX (KTRE) - Following today’s burial of former President George H. W. Bush, attention will turn to his legacy.

Historians will see Bush’s handling of the post-Cold War era won’t be ignored.

In 1999 Bush visited Stephen F. Austin State University to commemorate the college’s 75th anniversary. It was a decade after the fall of the Berlin Wall. Bush wanted listeners to hear his adamant stand on American behavior in the midst of post-Cold War.

This is what he told East Texans.

"And to me there is no choice about what our role should be in post-Cold War era. We should lead with principle. We should stay engaged in global affairs and work with our allies and set a clear direction as to the kind of world we want to live in."

SFA historian Dr. Jere Jackson helped arrange the Bush visit. The scholar in European and German history points out that Bush inherited the post-Cold War era.

"He didn't know the Cold War was going to end on his watch. He chose that as a topic because it would be of universal interest."

Historians note Bush’s methodical approach.

“He thought that the end of the Cold War should be a reorganization of the way you do business in the world, and so Europe ... and Eastern Europe, in particular ... profited from his prudence.”

A lot has been said this week about Bush’s sense of humor and the desire to make people from all walks of life comfortable in his presence, qualities that make a diplomat.

"That's where the character and the personality of the man unite together to produce something that was wonderful for the nation."

With the Cold War long over, Bush returned to Texas soil. His character led him to his last resting spot.

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