Margaret Thatcher: Russia

She’s ruled by a dictatorship of patient, far-sighted determined men who are rapidly making their country the foremost naval and military power in the world. They are not doing this solely for the sake of self-defence. A huge, largely land-locked country like Russia does not need to build the most powerful navy in the world just to guard its own frontiers. No. The Russians are bent on world dominance, and they are rapidly acquiring the means to become the most powerful imperial nation the world has seen. The men in the Soviet politburo don’t have to worry about the ebb and flow of public opinion. They put guns before butter, while we put just about everything before guns. They know that they are a super power in only one sense — the military sense. They are a failure in human and economic terms.

~ Margaret Thatcher (1976)

In response to this speech, the Soviet Army newspaper Red Star labelled Thatcher “the Iron Lady”. Intended as an insult, Thatcher welcomed the moniker that would stick for the remainder of her political career.