Is American tension with Russia renewing the Cold War?

Former Reagan Administration arms control director Ken Adelman told Fox News National Security Analyst KT McFarland Wednesday that the idea the Cold War is back “diminishes what Ronald Reagan did to win the Cold War.”

Like Adelman, McFarland also served under Ronald Reagan as Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Public Affairs.

“No it’s not the Cold War,” Adelman said. “That Cold War is over and Ronald Reagan won it just the way he said he was going to win it.”

He says there is a clear distinction between the Soviet Union and Russia today.

“Russia is far weaker than the Soviet Union was,” Adelman said. “Their army is one-fourth the size, nuclear arsenals are [smaller], and the Russian economy has [shrunk] and is going down.”

While the Soviet Union was a global threat, Adelman sees Russia as only threatening to its neighbors, especially Ukraine.

He believes the U.S. can influence Russia’s position on Ukraine by instituting tougher economic sanctions and bolstering America’s military presence in the region.  “The sanctions right now are too minimal.”

Adelman, author of “Reagan at Reykjavik: Forty-Eight Hours That Ended the Cold War” says personal relations, like Reagan’s relationship with Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev, are important. He believes President Obama should follow this example when talking with President Vladimir Putin.

Watch the full interview with Ken Adelman above.