Without the United States’ military and economic involvement, Britain would not have survived the Second World War in recognisable form; without such involvement during the Cold War, western Europe may not have survived the Soviet challenge. After the Second World War, despite history and the internal pressures for isolationism and unilateralism, the US played a major role in making the world systems.
American ﬁnancial power relaunched western Europe. Its engagement throughout the Cold War protected that area and ensured the eventual freedom of central and eastern Europe, including Russia itself. All Europeans therefore have much for which to thank the US. But, as the advertisements say, past performance is no guarantee for the future, and as regards the Washington-London relationship, performance has by no means always been positive.