Let us start with President Reagan's military defense toughness myth: What a joke. Sure...on the ultimate test of hawkdom -- the willingness to send U.S. troops into harm's way -- Reagan was no bird of prey. He launched exactly one land war, against Grenada, whose army totaled 600 men. It lasted two days. And his only air war -- the 1986 bombing of Libya -- was even briefer.... In fact, Reagan was terrified of war. He took office eager to vanquish Nicaragua's Sandinista government and its rebel allies in El Salvador, both of which were backed by Cuba and the Soviet Union. But at an early meeting, when Secretary of State Alexander Haig suggested that achieving this goal might require bombing Cuba, the suggestion "scared the shit out of Ronald Reagan," according to White House aide Michael Deaver. Haig was marginalized, then resigned, and Reagan never seriously considered sending U.S. troops south of the border, despite demands from conservative intellectuals like Norman Podhoretz and William F. Buckley. "Those sons of bitches won't be happy until we have 25,000 troops in Managua," Reagan told chief of staff Kenneth Duberstein near the end of his presidency, "and I'm not going to do it." Think Again: Ronald Reagan - By Peter Beinart | Foreign Policy What? facts are lies now?