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By Sarah B. Snyder

Of the main urgent questions dealing with overseas historians at the present time are how and why the chilly conflict ended. Human Rights Activism and the top of the chilly battle explores how, within the aftermath of the signing of the Helsinki ultimate Act in 1975, a transnational community of activists devoted to human rights within the Soviet Union and jap Europe made the subject a vital point in East-West international relations. for that reason, human rights ultimately turned an enormous part of chilly warfare international relations and a significant part of détente. Sarah B. Snyder demonstrates how this community stimulated either Western and jap governments to pursue regulations that fostered the increase of geared up dissent in jap Europe, freedom of flow for East Germans, and better human rights practices within the Soviet Union - all components in spite of everything of the chilly battle.

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Additional info for Human Rights Activism and the End of the Cold War: A Transnational History of the Helsinki Network (Human Rights in History)

Example text

For example, some American policymakers identified the potential for propaganda victories and even some Soviet concessions during the negotiations on freer movement, although there were hesitations about pursuing such an assertive approach on a 12 13 14 15 16 December 15, 1971, DEF 1 EUR, 12/1/71, Box 1707, Subject and Numeric Files, 1970–73, Political and Defense, General Records of the Department of State, Record Group 59, National Archives, College Park, Maryland (hereafter RG 59). Memorandum, Livingston to Kissinger, July 19, 1972, Folder 1, Box 830, Name File, NSC Files, NPMP.

Over time Soviet assent to respect human rights and fundamental freedoms, to adhere to provisions governing East–West contacts, and to review progress toward Helsinki implementation in two years’ time, all had far-reaching influence on politics and society in Eastern Europe. Kissinger’s lack of interest may have diminished the agreement’s impact in the early years of the Helsinki process by implying the Soviets would not need to adhere to the terms of the agreement. Numerous challenges, however, in the form of Eastern dissidence and activist politicians challenged Soviet assumptions, transforming the Helsinki process into a force for change in Europe.

Bennett and K. A. , Documents on British Policy Overseas: The Conference on Security and Cooperation in Europe, 1972–1975 Series III: Volume II (London: The Stationery Office, 1997) (hereafter DBPO). The Western Organizations Department was the primary group working on CSCE issues for the British government. S. Mission NATO to SecState, April 8, 1972, MBFR-CSCE Backup Book, Part 3, Box 482, President’s Trip Files, NSC Files, NPMP. A British document suggested that NATO had decided to withhold judgment until after the MPT, implying if the results were not satisfactory they would not yet be committed to the conference.

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