"Today's conservatives have conjured a mythic Reagan who never compromised with America's enemies and never shrank from a fight. But the real Reagan did both those things, often," says Peter Beinart. After his polemic The Failure of the American Jewish Establishment, Beinart takes on the myth of Ronald Reagan constructed by conservatives. From South America, to Israel, to the Soviet Union, Reagan consistently took a more peaceful path than conservatives want to recognize: "Reagan was terrified of war. He took office eager to vanquish Nicaragua's Sandinista government and its rebel allies in El Salvador...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.'"