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POL 2103 E - Intro to International Relations Global Politics - Joseph Roman - 18 Mar. 05.docx

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Political Science
Mark Salter

POL 2103 E - Intro to International Relations & Global Politics - Joseph Roman - 18 Mar. 05 The Third World & the End of Detente • Third World conflicts & revolutionary waves cited as causes for detente’s unravelling • The revolutionary waves inspired by the Viet Cong’s victory over the USA, encouraging the (misguided) perception of a weakened America • Tensions return in the 1979 with the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan & the Iranian Revolution • The USA fears that it is losing influence in the Persian Gulf region & Operation Cyclone begins - Operation Cyclone: The CIA covertly aids mujahideen forces in Afghanistan to give the USSR its own Vietnam The Second Cold War, 1979-1986 • The annoyncement of the Carter Doctrine - that the US will defend its interests in the Persian Gulf - was an admission that tensions with the USSR were back • The election of Ronald Reagan in 1980 saw him continue where Carter left off • Reagan did propose the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START) in 1982, but the Soviets saw the terms very unfavourably & a timetable was agreed on for further negotiations • Reagan launches the Strategic Defense Initiative (SDI) • SDI was seen threateningly by the Soviets & they withdrew from START, leading to an escalation of the nuclear arms race • Reagan’s March 1983 speech to the National Association of Evangelicals in Orlando, Florida, records him calling the USSR an evil empire & he asserts that the USA needs to escalate an arms race • American aggression in parts of the Third World • The CIA provided covert support to the Contras in Nicaragua • The USSR worries about this aggression & mistakenly shoots down a South Korean passenger airplane, killing all 269 on board Towards the End of the Second Cold War 1. The emergence of Solidarity in Poland in 1980. 2. Brezhnev passes away in Nov. 1982 and is succeeded by Yuri Andropov, who was disinterested in compromising with the USA 3. Andropov passes away 15 months after taking power & is replaced by the ineffective Konstantin Chernenko in Feb. 1984 The End of the Cold War, 1986-1989/1991 • Gorbachev’s rise was a key factor in the end of the Cold War • “New thinking” informed his foreign policy that sought to transform relations with Western Europe & North America given that socialist economies were in shambles & they needed access to technologies to modernize their economies • The main goal, though, was to defuse tensions with the West The seriousness of “New Thinking” • To show that he, Gorbachev, was serious: 1. He Proposed to remove all intermediate range nuclear missiles from Europe 2. The January Proposal aimed to eliminate all nuclear weapons by 2000 3. The Soviets would made a full withdrawal from Afghanistan by 1988 4. He renounced the Brezhnev Doctrine, which limited the sovereignty of the Eastern Bloc countries, & is replaced with the Sinatra Doctrine Gorbachev’s Domestic Policy 1. Perestroika was a programme of economic reform that allowed for private property & foreign trade with the West 2. Glasnost encouraged a political thaw that would lead to increased social & political rights Cold War • New thinking overlapped with glasnost and perestroika to open up a wave of dissent across Eastern Europe • Nationwide Solidarity strikes in Poland in 1988 that led to the first democratically elected, non- communist government in Sept. 1989 • Following a 1988 democracy package, the Hungarian Socialist Party announcing in late Oct. 1989 that Hungary would have elections in 1990 • Hungary takes down its barbed wire border with Austria in August 1989 & annoyances that it would allow East Germans to pass through Hungary to get to West Germany • Czechoslovakia made a second hole in the Iron Curtain in Nov. 1989 • Hungarian & Czechoslovakian actions hasten the fall of the GDR • The Berlin Wall is dismantled in Dec. 1989 & Germany is reunified in Oct. 1990 • Czechoslovakia’s Velvet Revolution in Nov.1989 • With Moscow refraining from action, communist governments in Czechoslovakia, the GDR, Hungary, & Poland give up power • Bulgaria’s government voluntary gives up power in 1990 • Romania was the only communist government not to have given up power peacefully - Other than them, communism fell suddenly and swiftly, though somewhat quietly • The USSR’s satellite countries no longer exist The End of the USSR, 1991 • START is finalized in July 1991 & nuclear weapons remain at parity levels between the USA & the USSR • August Coup in Moscow places Gorbachev under house arrest, but it only lasts 3 days & fails • The socialist republics making up the USSR start to declare independence from Moscow between 2
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