How can we interpret the use of history by decision-makers in debates on contemporary international conflicts? So far, the established theoretical conceptualisations in International Relations have been dominated by individualistic arguments. However, sociological scholarship on collective memory has demonstrated the intersubjective existence of social frameworks governing which histories can actually be mobilised in discourse, and in which functions. Furthermore, this scholarship has also emphasized the importance of intersubjective representations of the meaning and of the relationship to History. Consequently, we can presume the existence of specific “regimes of historicity” that will influence the ways in which individual actors perceive History as a legitimate source of useful and applicable lessons for the present. These two arguments are examined via a semi-qualitative corpus analysis, based on the debates prompted by the Kosovo Crisis in French, German, and U.S. newspapers. This analysis confirms that actors indeed refer more often to events that have had an important impact on national history. Furthermore, a qualitative analysis of references to the First World War and to the Vietnam War also shows that actors in different national contexts use history differently: In the U.S., decision-makers but also journalists and experts seem much more willing to draw usable lessons from the past than in France and in Germany. This may confirm the existence of a specific regime of historicity, shaped by a belief in the structural continuity of history, a belief that might be linked to the foreign policy identity of the U.S.