During the years 1948 until the early 1970s there was a sense that the United States and the Soviet Union were poised for War.
Both sides squared off, racing to surpass the other.
As the years passed, anyone with a fully operational brain would realise that there would be no direct war between the U.S. and the U.S.S.R.
Sure, play games in meaningless places like Korea and Vietnam, but not where it mattered.
The actual value of the Cold War was that for both societies needed to be as advanced as possible. This meant they had to insure the brightest and the best of their citizens were able to achieve.
If that meant free education, up to University, that is what it meant.
If it meant particular child rearing practices, curing diseases, insuring vaccinations, dealing with proper nutrition, that is what it meant.