Post-World War II relations between the Soviet Union and the United States have been marked by profound mutual distrust and potentially catastrophic rivalry. Both states have, for the most part, forsaken meaningful efforts to reduce the threat of war, choosing instead to augment their separate military means to defend and promote their respective (to large extent hegemonic) interests. Each, with the help of their allies, seeks to destabilize the geopolitical position of the other; each applies a wide array of overt and clandestine policies to keep the other in check—particularly in the Third World, where each, both intentionally and unintentionally, confuses genuine self-determinist movements with some conspiracy in support of the other.