President Harry Truman inherited an American foreign policy in bankruptcy. The American people's dream of world peace turned into a nightmare of atomic bombs. The foundation of the United Nations had been laid on the gamble that the Soviet Union, Great Britain, China, France and the United States could be trusted not to attempt to extend their control over independent people. The essential fact of the Second World War was that the American, British and French democracies, for their self preservation, became the allies of a Communist totalitarian state against two fascist totalitarian states. Human life is very largely controlled by customs, and when a form of behavior has become a long-established custom it is not lightly abandoned. One of the long-established customs that have helped men to survive has been the custom of excluding murder as a method of deciding disputes within a family.