Science fiction set in the future always reflects its author's present. Thus it becomes dated while remaining futuristic and, if it becomes classic, then it is also timeless. Homer and Wells are never out of date.
Cold War-influenced sf anticipated war or dictatorship. Take twelve timelines -
Heinlein's Future History: a World Federation Space Patrol preventing nuclear war;
Heinlein's Farnham's Freehold: nuclear war followed by a slave-owning society;
Asimov's future history: a radioactive Earth presumably caused by near future nuclear war, although later explained differently;
Anderson's Psychotechnic History: World War III followed by a UN world government;
Anderson's Maurai History: the Judgment War followed by the Maurai Federation;
Blish's Cities In Flight: Cold Peace, Fall of the West, Bureaucratic State;
Blish's A Case Of Conscience: UN government of a Shelter society;
Pournelle's CoDominium History: US-USSR CoDominium followed by the Great Patriotic Wars;
Stirling's Draka History: Final War followed by the Draka Final Society with extrasolar opposition;
Anderson's Technic History: not Cold War but interplanetary exploration;
Niven's Known Space History: not Cold War but interplanetary exploration;
who wrote this one?: collapse of the USSR in 1989.
World War III and space travel were two kinds of fictional future and both are represented here. The global reclamation in progress during Anderson's first Technic History story reminds us of the efforts of the UN world government in his earlier Psychotechnic History.
Future historians, Wells, Stapledon and their successors, may begin in the pedestrian present but then soar -
Heinlein: after dictatorship, revolution and further unrest, the first mature human civilization;
Asimov: Galactic Empire;
Blish: two interstellar civilizations, then the creation of new universes;
Anderson (Psychotechnic): Solar Union, Stellar Union, Galactic civilization (I have accepted the concluding story as part of the series although it is contested);
Pournelle: two Empires of Man and First Contact with the Moties.
In Pournelle's series, military conflict is not escaped but exported!
The present blogger has:
accepted SM Stirling as a successor of Anderson;
enjoyed Pournelle's King David's Spaceship as a future historical novel similar to several such works by Anderson;
invested in a copy of The Prince by Pournelle and Stirling.
Pournelle's future history has three parts:
the Second Empire.
I need to read Anderson's contribution to War World but right now The Prince is in front of me and has prompted this post. I will make a start on the first Pournelle-Stirling novel and find out whether it inspires any thoughts to be recorded here.