chapter  5
26 Pages

Soviet Assessments of West Germany, 1987-1989

WithRobbin F. Laird

This chapter discusses the evolution of Soviet assessments of West German developments in the 1987-1989 periods. It describes Soviet assessments only through the summer of 1989 and stops short of making judgments about Soviet perspectives during the year of the unification process or concerning the Revolution of 1989. Soviet assessments during the 1987-1989 periods focused upon West Germany as a country in transition from traditional thinking to a more dynamic reassessment of what was possible in European and East-West affairs. Notably, the central role of West Germany within the European construction process was especially significant to Russian analysts. West Germany was viewed by the Soviets during the 1970s as the key European state for the Soviet Union as the latter tried to construct a detente system within Europe. Soviet analysts focused on the direct confrontation between the United States and West Germany over the follow-on-to-Lance issue.