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they will be able to recall that during Stalin's leadership views by both sides in this circle where the representatives Com. Khrushchev more than once extolled Stalin and the of the two parties have been meeting is very useful for policy he was then carrying out of struggling with counter- mutual understanding, for gradually finding a common revolutionary elements.

language, for searching out a way to eliminate disagreeCom. Khrushchev constantly praised Stalin, calling ments and strengthen cohesion. For that reason we him “a close friend and comrade-in-arms of Lenin," "a consider that it serves as a good start...our delegation is very great genius, teacher, great leader of humanity," "a introducing a proposal temporarily to adjourn the current great marshal of victories,” “a friend of peoples in his meeting; the representatives of the CCP and the CPSU, simplicity," "one's own father” (rodnoi otets) and so on both sides, can continue their meeting at another time. The and so on.

time and place of the next meeting will be set through a On 6 June 1937 in his report at the 5th party confer- consultation between the Central Committees of our two ence of the Moscow oblast', Com. Khrushchev said: "Our parties... party will mercilessly crush the band of betrayers and

Our delegation once again expresses the sincere hope traitors, will wipe all the Trotskyist-rightist carrion from of our party that we and you will not spare our efforts the face of the earth... The guarantee is the unshakable towards an all-around, repeated, and most careful discusleadership of our CC, the unshakable leadership of our sion of the disagreements existing between our parties. If great leader, Com. Stalin... We will annihilate our enemies a single meeting is not enough for this, it is possible to without a trace to the last one and will scatter their ashes in hold a second meeting, and if two meetings do not suffice, the wind.”

a third can be held... Later, for example on 8 June 1938, while speaking at the 4th party conference of the Kiev oblast', Com.

20 July Khrushchev said: “Yakiry, balitskie, liubchenki, zatomskie" (Ed. note: Famous purge victims) and other

Suslov. We will give you an answer tomorrow... bastards wanted to bring Polish nobles (Pol'she pany) to

Deng Xiaoping. In conclusion I would like to say a the Ukraine, wanted to bring German fascists, landowners few words. and capitalists here... We have destroyed quite a few

However great the disagreements between us may be, enemies, but not all. For that reason one must keep one's we hope that we can gradually find the way to eliminate eyes open. We must firmly remember the words of Com. those disagreements, since unity between us is too Stalin, that as long as capitalist encirclement exists, they important. will send spies and provocateurs (diversanty) to us...

Despite the fact that in the course of the discussion Frankly speaking, on the issue of criticism and self- both our sides have stated more than a few views with criticism you are inferior to Stalin. Having made mistakes, which the other side does not agree, and despite the fact

, Stalin sometimes still practiced self-criticism. For

that you have said that our words are not pleasant to the instance, Stalin gave some mistaken advice relating to the ear, and that we have also said that your words are not Chinese revolution. After the victory of the Chinese pleasant to the ear, despite all of this, our current meeting revolution, he recognized his mistakes before Chinese will serve as a good start. Moreover, we have agreed with comrades and friends. And how are you acting? You you to publish a communiqué on the continuation of our know well that you slough off (svalivaete) all of your meetings. We consider this a good thing. mistakes onto others and ascribe all successes to yourself... We have come to the agreement that it is necessary to

Suslov. Our delegation states a decisive protest continue our meetings and that the time and place of the against the distortion, falsification and slanders made in next meeting will be agreed by the Central Committees of relation to the leadership of our party and to Com. N.S. our parties. Khrushchev, against our party and the decisions of its

Here I would like to express in passing the following Congresses.

hope of ours: if your delegation, if the CC of the CPSU The delegation of the CPSU also states its protest agrees, then we would like to invite the delegation of the against the sort of propaganda that has begun in the last CPSU to Beijing for the continuation of the meeting. That few days on Peking radio. We consider that the entire issue, of course, could be agreed upon separately. responsibility for these actions rests with the leadership of Suslov. This is also a question for discussion between the CCP...

our Central Committees. Finished (vse). Will I see you Deng Xiaoping. Com. Suslov has expressed some (later) today? sort of protest. If we are talking about protest, then we

Deng Xiaoping. At six? have an even greater basis for voicing even more pro

Suslov. Yes, at six. tests...

Already two weeks have gone by since our meeting [Source : SAPMO Barch JIV 2/207 698, pp. 187-330 (in began. At the meeting both sides exchanged their views. Russian); obtained by Vladislav Zubok; translated by Benjamin Although as of yet it has been difficult to attain a unity of

Aldrich-Moodie.) both sides' views right away, still, a frank exposition of

Cold War Endpoints?: Beginning the Debate

by David Wolff

hronology and periodization are the bread and butter of the historical profession, so it is no

Usurprise to see the proper dating of the beginning

and the end of the Cold War under discussion. 1945 is often favored, for how could a cold war be an age's dominant feature, while a hot war was still going on? Churchill's Fulton speech is also mentioned as an important turning point, but so is the Marshall Plan, the Cominform, the Truman Doctrine, the Soviet bomb, NSC68, the Lublin Poles and the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact. Clearly this discussion will go on for a long time. 1

Similar disagreements are also evident regarding the end of the Cold War. As we approach 1999 and the activities planned to commemorate the tenth anniversary of Berlin Wall and Iron Curtain collapse, we will certainly hear more on this topic. Although 1989, like 1945 at the beginning, has many commonsensical advantages to recommend it, different causal emphases in analyzing the end of the Cold War will produce different chronologies. If Gorbachev's appointment as General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union was the beginning of the end, then 1985 looms large. If the Reagan build-up and Star Wars drove the Soviets to bankruptcy and despair, then the early 1980s grow in importance. Specialists who give primacy in their analytical priorities to either the fall of Leninism or the rise of nationalism are likely to pick the 1991 demise of the Soviet Union.

This section of CWIHP Bulletin 10 begins with a remarkable essay by the director of the National Security Archive, Thomas S. Blanton, with accompanying Russian documents. It seems that on Christmas Eve 1989, with state authority crumbling in Romania and the Ceausescus only a day away from the firing squad, the United States proposed that the Russians send a peacekeeping mission to the area. The Russian Deputy Foreign Minister I. Aboimov, in refusing the offer, made a “Christmas gift" of the Brezhnev doctrine to the American ambassador Jack F. Matlock, Jr. This seems to have been the first direct American request for increased Soviet military activity in Eastern Europe since 1945. As such, it represented a sea change in comparison with the fears and concerns of the Cold War era. Of course, what was a key moment of mutual self-recognition for the superpowers was relatively insignificant in Romania's end of Cold War, since no Soviet troops were actually sent.

As this final comment makes clear, the Cold War ended differently in different places, since the historical chronologies of countries and regions overlap and diverge. In the second part of this section, Tsuyoshi Hasegawa introduces new archival evidence on Soviet-Japanese

relations in the late Cold War period that suggest that in Asia the endpoint may not yet have been reached. This implies that this relatively neglected field has much to offer as we refine analytical tools for the study of the Cold War. Unfortunately, until recently, little documentation was available. The working group transcripts are a remarkable study in Soviet-Japanese stalemate, one of the great “givens" of late twentieth-century history. Change is more exciting to study, but enduring continuities are no less important. The tit for tat back and forth of the diplomatic dialogue demonstrates one of the more arcane uses of history, too. Of course, the American role in the ties between the US's most important economic “partner," Japan, and its most important security "concern,” Russia, has also been understudied, although a National Security Archive initiative on US-Japanese security relations run by Robert Wampler has recently begun to remedy that situation.

Both the Romanian and Soviet-Japanese revelations fall among that group of cases where the availability of East-bloc evidence has outpaced the more systematic and expansive declassification process in the West. Up until 1968-69, the opening of Western holdings has followed the thirty-year rule, for most classes of documents, to outnumber the East-bloc counterparts. Starting from 1969, the reverse is, by and large, true with the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) offering sole recourse.2 If Blanton's FOIA fails, the Matlock instructions and conversation will only emerge from the American vault in the year 2014. The fact that Blanton was able to corroborate the Russian documents with Matlock's recollections points out one of the distinguishing characteristics of Cold War studies and contemporary history, in general — the importance of oral history. When combined with and tempered by documents, these two genres of testimony are most revealing. 3

Keeping this in mind, perhaps there ought to be a mechanism to accelerate release of documents deemed crucial to the learning of historical lessons from the recent past, at least for already non-existent East European regimes whose archives are open, and before the surviving participants leave us for good. These are, after all, the lessons with deepest and most immediate bearing on the present.

If the Cold War ended at different times in different places, then it is entirely possible that it is not quite over yet in some places. This is a statement of great practical import for the Cold War International History Project and all scholars associated in the endeavor of excavating the Cold War. Wherever the documents are least accessible, some strain of ongoing Cold War mentality is probably


still present. In this sense, the archival openness work of CWIHP, through relations with scholarly and archival authorities in many countries, indirectly measures the Cold War's lasting legacy. Success in obtaining documentation on a given topic is the ultimate proof that that moment of Cold War can finally be made into history, one more thread in the new international history of the twentieth century.

connection with a major CWIHP-sponsored international conference, scheduled for late 1998. The Yugoslavia section of this Bulletin has a first installment from the Stalin project. Additional conversations with Stalin will go up on the CWIHP website ( cwihp.si.edu ) in the course of 1998. 2

Russian archives are an exception on the East-bloc side with post1969 documents emerging only in special cases. On the American side, extensive declassifications have taken place on certain post1969 topics due to the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) suits that generated the National Security Archive's foreign policy series. These include: Afghanistan, 1973-80; El Salvador, 1977-84; Iran, 1977-80; Iran-Contra Affair, 1983-88; Nicaragua, 1978-1990; Phillipines, 1965-86; South Africa, 1962-89; US Nuclear NonProliferation, 1945-91. 3 For an insightful discussion and demonstration of "critical oral history” with reference to the Cuban Missile Crisis, see James Blight and David Welch, On the Brink (New York, 1989).

| One of the few things that all of these events have in common is that Stalin's thoughts on them were decisive in shaping Soviet policies viewed simultaneously as international actions and reactions. In order to broaden and deepen this discussion of Cold War origins, CWIHP has begun a project on "I.V. Stalin as a Cold War Statesman.” Transcripts and memcons of Stalin's meetings with foreign leaders are being collected for future publication and research in

When did the Cold War End?

by Thomas Blanton

hen the Cold War memorial rises on the Mall in Washington D.C., what exactly will be the date

VV carved therein as the end of the Cold War?

Ambassador Robert Hutchings writes that “Americans of an earlier generation knew when V-E Day and V-J Day were; there were dates on the calendar marking victory in Europe and victory over Japan in 1945. But the Cold War ended on no certain date; it lacked finality.... The end of the Cold War thus evoked among the American public little sense of purpose fulfilled—and even less of responsibility for the tasks of postwar construction."|

Other commentators have picked the obvious candidate—25 December 1991, when the Soviet Union ceased to exist.2 Yet this date is far too neat, since by any rational measure the Cold War was already over by then. Well before December 1991, the Cold War featured many symbolic and substantive markers of its demise. Among these, and on the basis of new archival evidence from Soviet files, this article nominates Christmas Eve 1989— when a hitherto somewhat obscure U.S.-Soviet meeting in Moscow discussed the violent revolution then taking place in Romania—as a strong contender for the title of Cold War finale.

The process of carbon-dating the end of the Cold War benefits from having December 1991 as the latest outer limit of the period. Similarly, the literature gives an earliest limit as well. This occurred on 1 June 1988, when then- Vice-President George Bush, on vacation in Kennebunkport, reacted to President Reagan's bouyant May 31 stroll through Red Square in Moscow by telling reporters dourly, “The Cold War's not over."3

By the end of the year, many Cold Warriors disagreed with President-elect Bush. On 7 December 1988, Mikhail Gorbachev made his famous speech at the United Nations, which Sen. Daniel P. Moynihan summed up as follows: "In December 1988, Gorbachev went to the General Assembly

of the United Nations and declared, 'We in no way aspire to be the bearer of ultimate truth.' That has to have been the most astounding statement of surrender in the history of ideological struggle. "4

For other observers of Gorbachev's speech, it was not so much the ideological concessions as the unilateral military cutbacks that most impressed. Retired Gen. Andrew Goodpaster, a former NATO commander and top aide to President Dwight D. Eisenhower, called the cuts “the most significant step since NATO was founded” and said they opened the way to broad military reductions on both sides. 5

The stream of Soviet eulogies for the Cold War continued throughout 1989. In January 1989 in Vienna, for example, Foreign Minister Eduard Shevardnadze greeted the opening of the Conventional Forces in Europe talks by saying that disarmament progress “has shaken the iron curtain, weakened its rusting foundations, pierced new openings, accelerated its corrosion."6 Then, on 6 July 1989, Gorbachev told the Council of Europe in his famous Strasbourg speech that the "common European home .... excludes all possibility of armed confrontation, all possibility of resorting to the threat or use of force, and notably military force employed by one alliance against another, within an alliance, or whatever it might be."7

And on 25 October 1989, as Communist governments began to tumble in Eastern Europe, Gorbachev's spokesman, Gennadii Gerasimov, coined the most memorable phrase of all, when he told reporters with Gorbachev in Helsinki, Finland, that the “Frank Sinatra Doctrine" had replaced the Brezhnev Doctrine for the Soviets, referring to the singer's signature ballad, “I did it my way."8

From the U.S. perspective, the most important signals were not so much the rhetorical flourishes of Gorbachev's “new thinking” (since contradictory rhetoric could be found in the official Soviet press throughout this period),

but the actual shifts in power within the Warsaw Pact. These included the beginning of the "roundtable" discussions in Poland in January-February 1989, which ultimately produced free elections in the summer (swept by Solidarity), and the March 1989 multicandidate elections in the Soviet Union, which put reformers and dissidents, including Andrei Sakharov, into the Congress of People's Deputies. By May 1989, these extraordinary developments led former national security adviser Zbigniew Brzezinski to tell the Washington Post's Don Oberdorfer: “We are quite literally in the early phases of what might be called the postcommunist era.":9

The most public finale of the Cold War, of course, came with the fall of the Berlin Wall on 9 November 1989. In the words of then-deputy national security adviser and future CIA director Robert Gates: “No one who watched on television will ever forget the images of crowds of East and West Germans dancing on top of the Wall, hacking away bits of it for souvenirs, and finally dismantling whole sections with construction machinery. If there ever was a symbolic moment when most of the world thought the Cold War ended, it was that night in Berlin."10

One of Gates' staff at the time, Robert Hutchings of the NSC, puts the date of his “epiphany” a little earlier. "Most of us dealing with these issues in the United States or in Europe had our epiphanies, our moments of realization that the end of Europe's division might actually be at hand—not just as an aspiration for the 1990s but as an imminent reality," Mr. Hutchings writes. “For many it came with the opening of the Berlin Wall on November 9; others may have had premonitions already in early 1989 (although surely not as many as later claimed such prescience). Mine came with the election of Tadeusz Mazowiecki and the early steps taken by his government. The United States was working hard to persuade the Soviet Union that self-determination in Eastern Europe could be achieved in a manner consistent with legitimate Soviet security interests; now, in Poland, the Mazowiecki government was living proof of that contention, offering an early glimmer of what post-Cold War Europe might look like. (To be sure, even the most optimistic scenario for this transition was still being measured in years, not months.)”11

But all of these memorable moments represented initiatives by Gorbachev or by the East Europeans themselves forcing change. Where was the evidence of “new thinking" by the United States?

For the Russian historian Vladislav Zubok, that evidence appeared at Malta, at the Bush-Gorbachev summit in early December 1989. President Bush's restraint, his unwillingness to "dance on the Wall,” so to speak, his reassurance to Gorbachev as superpower-peer, their joint press conference (the first in the history of superpower summitry)—all adds up to the end of the Cold

More support for this view comes from Gorbachev's own statement, which appeared in Pravda on 5 December that “The world is leaving one epoch, the

'Cold War,' and entering a new one.?

"13 Gennadii Gerasimov told reporters after Malta: “We buried the Cold War at the bottom of the Mediterranean Sea."14

But, again, these are the Soviet announcements of the end of the Cold War. For the American announcement, we must turn to Christmas Eve, Sunday, 24 December 1989. Secretary of State James Baker, appearing on NBC Television's "Meet The Press” show, said the United States would not object if the Soviet Union and its Warsaw Pact allies used military force to assist the Romanian revolutionaries who had just deposed the Communist dictator Nicolae Ceausescu.15 Raymond Garthoff describes this statement as “an extraordinary illustration of how rapidly and far the changing situation in Eastern Europe had affected American thinking and U.S. policy toward the Soviet Union.... It would have been hard to find a more striking example reflecting American recognition of the end of the Cold War.”16

For Robert Hutchings, however, Baker's statement was “an unfortunate comment, but one that was not quite as egregious as it seemed."17 According to Hutchings, “The context was this. The day before Baker made his remark, officials of the provisional (Romanian] government appealed to Moscow and the West for help, claiming they were running out of ammunition and feared being overwhelmed by the well-armed Ceausescu loyalists. Responding to this appeal, French Foreign Minister Roland Dumas offered to send a brigade of volunteers and said he would welcome Soviet assistance as well, without specifying whether he meant sending fresh supplies of ammunition or rendering more direct ‘assistance.' It was in response to a question about Dumas's position that Baker made his statement. The desire not to offend his French counterpart may be part of the explanation, but Baker evidently was swayed by the argument that Soviet intervention on the side of pro-democracy forces, in response to their specific appeal for help, would be preferable to seeing the revolution fail and the Ceausescus returned to power.” Hutchings says this was by no means the “dominant view” among U.S. policymakers, and the next day a White House “clarification” of Baker's remarks expressly opposed any Soviet intervention in Romania. 18

But Baker had already sent instructions to Moscow, tasking Ambassador Jack F. Matlock, Jr., to feel out Soviet intentions on Romania. And so, on Christmas Eve, 24 December 1989, with Moscow some eight hours ahead of Washington, Ambassador Matlock went to the Soviet Foreign Ministry and met with Deputy Foreign Minister I. P. Aboimov. According to the Soviet documents attached to this article, Matlock's message—while veiled in diplomatic indirection—was as striking as anything Baker said on TV, amounting to an invitation for the Soviets to intervene in Romania. In 1994, the Foreign Ministry of the Russian Federation declassified and published these selected documents, for the obvious reason that the Soviets come off quite well in the exchange with the Americans. 19 The complete record of Soviet actions and conversations

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remains to be seen.

The key document for this discussion is the final one in the series published by the Foreign Ministry, a 25 December memorandum of conversation written by Deputy Foreign Minister Aboimov of his meeting the day before with Matlock. Since 24 December was a Sunday, presumably Foreign Minister Shevardnadze as well as Secretary General Gorbachev were not to be found at the office, but in their dachas.

Interestingly, Ambassador Matlock's 1995 book on the fall of the Soviet Union does not mention the discussion detailed here in the Soviet notes of the conversation. Only a very indirect hint emerges from the Matlock passage that reads as follows: "After Germany, the most traumatic event in the onetime Soviet bloc for the Communist Party and the KGB was the bloody revolution that took place in Romania at the end of the year. The violence directed at Ceausescu and his family, and members of the hated Securitate secret police, was covered in great detail by the Soviet press, and television did not spare its viewers the scenes of violence. But when the anti-Ceausescu forces invited Soviet intervention to support them, Moscow refused, signaling that the days of military intervention in Eastern Europe—even under conditions the West might have found tolerable-were over.":20

Compare the language Matlock uses here—"even under conditions the West might have found tolerable" — with the language his Soviet counterpart uses to describe the U.S. approach: “Then Matlock touched on the issue that, apparently, he wanted to raise from the very beginning of the conversation. The Administration, he said, is very interested in knowing if the possibility of military assistance by the Soviet Union to the Romanian National Salvation Front is totally out of question. Matlock suggested (probrosil) the following option: what would the Soviet Union do if an appropriate appeal came from the Front? Simultaneously, the Ambassador hinted at the idea, apparently on instructions from Washington. He let us know that under the present circumstances the military involvement of the Soviet Union in Romanian affairs might not be regarded in the context (podpadat' pod) of 'the Brezhnev doctrine.””

The Soviet diplomat Aboimov quickly refused Matlock's implied invitation: “To this sounding out (zondazh) by the American (Ambassador] I answered completely clearly and unequivocally, presenting our principled position. I declared that we did not visualize, even theoretically, such a scenario. We stand against any interference in the domestic affairs of other states and we intend to pursue this line firmly and without deviations. Thus, the American side may consider that 'the Brezhnev doctrine' is now theirs as our gift.”

This last phrase clearly refers to the American invasion of Panama which had just occurred on 20 December 1989. Some 13,000 U.S. troops had moved overnight into that Central American country to remove its dictator, Manuel Noriega, a long-time U.S. intelligence

asset. The Soviet language here indicates that they believed the U.S. invitation to be at best “stupid,” as Foreign Minister Shevardnadze later told American writers Michael Beschloss and Strobe Talbott, and at worst a provocation intended to put the Soviet Union in a position parallel to that of the U.S. in Panama.

21 The Beschloss and Talbott account, clearly based on their interviews with Shevardnadze, leaves the impression that the Soviet Foreign Minister made his remonstrances directly to Matlock. At least according to the documents at hand (as well as Ambassador Matlock's own memory), this was not the case. Similarly, Aboimov's pointed comment—"Thus, the American side may consider that 'the Brezhnev doctrine' is now theirs as our gift”-differs somewhat from the version provided by Beschloss and Talbott, who have Aboimov saying “with unconcealed bitterness, 'It seems that we've turned the Brezhnev Doctrine over to you!""22

At the heart of Matlock's case to the Soviets was the notion of an “appropriate appeal" from the Romanians for military assistance. According to the Soviet memcon, his question on 24 December couched this in the conditional—what if such an appeal came?—suggesting that no such appeal had yet been made. However, Matlock's memoirs turn the conditional into a past tense: “the antiCeausescu forces invited” and “Moscow refused."23 Likewise, Hutchings' account cites a Romanian appeal on “the day before Baker made his remark,"24 which would have been the day before Matlock's meeting. In contrast, a contemporary account, by Don Oberdorfer in The Washington Post on 25 December quotes “Washington officials” as saying "the only (Romanian] requests as of yesterday (24 December, the day of Matlock's meeting and Baker's TV appearance) were part of a general appeal for medical supplies and other emergency aid."25

The Aboimov memorandum of his meeting with Matlock certainly ranks as the headline document of this small batch, but the other five released by the Russian Foreign Ministry also reward close attention. They include some highly suggestive details on the Romanian situation in December 1989, in two additional categories: First, on the issue of possible Soviet involvement in plotting the fall of Ceausescu; and second, on the actual events in Timisoara and elsewhere in Romania, as expressed in Soviet discussions with the Romanian, Hungarian, and Yugoslav ambassadors to Moscow.

Did the Soviets plot the fall of the dictator Ceausescu? The second document here, of a conversation of Aboimov with the Romanian ambassador I. Bukur (on 21 December) describes specific allegations from Ceausescu, directed to the Soviet charge d'affaires in Bucharest, that the Timisoara protests arose because the Soviet Union and other states, members of the Warsaw Treaty" were involved in "coordinated activities allegedly aimed at the SRR.”

However, the first Russian document published here suggests, but does not prove, that the answer is no, at least


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