Project and Site News
|Closing Ranks or Drifting Apart? The Warsaw Pact on Thin Ice (1961–1969)
Building on original archival research and our large online holdings, this new E-dossier by Laurien Crump of Utrecht University questions conventional wisdoms about the history of the Warsaw Pact. Crump documents the attempts by the smaller Pact countries to assert themselves from Soviet dominance inside the alliance. By contextualising the crises and internal disagreements that the WP was confronted with from 1961–69, she succeeds in showing that the WP was much more than a transmission belt of the Soviet Union.
8 Jun 2011
|India and the Soviet Bloc, 1971-1989
In his third collection on Indo-Soviet relations under Stalin, Andreas Hilger draws on new documentation from the Archive of the Parties and Mass Organizations of the Former GDR (SAPMO) to analyze the close relations between India and the Soviet Bloc from the early 1970s to the end of the Cold War. See also the other PHP collections on India's role during the Cold War.
3 Feb 2011
|Spying on the West : Soviet-Bulgarian Scientific Intelligence Cooperation
Adding to the PHP's compilation on intelligence issues, this new collection by long-time PHP-affiliate Jordan Baev details Soviet-Bulgarian collaboration on collecting scientific and technological intelligence. It is based on formerly top-secret Bulgarian intelligence documents made available to the public for the first time.
25 Jan 2011
|The Middle East and Transatlantic Relations
This new publication entitled 'European-American Relations and the Middle East' and edited by Daniel Möckli and Victor Mauer of the Center for Security Studies at ETH Zurich, analyses how, why, and to what extent European and US roles, interests, threat perceptions, and policy attitudes in the Middle East have changed, relating to both the region as a whole and the two main issues analysed: Gulf Security and the Arab-Israeli Conflict.
12 Nov 2010
|Submarine Intrusions in Swedish Waters During the 1980s
Following previous PHP-supported research on the controversial subject of submarine incursions in Swedish waters during the 1970s and 1980s (see here and here), Bengt Gustafsson, the former General and Supreme Commander of the Swedish Armed Forces, once again reviews the evidence. Drawing on previously unused sources as well as technical expertise, Gustaffson argues in this PHP E-Dossier that Soviet responsibility for these incursions can now be safely assumed.
21 Sep 2010
|Uncovering the Sources of Nuclear Behavior
The Center for Security Studies, in association with the PHP, held an international conference on the historical dimensions of nuclear proliferation on 18-20 June 2010 in Zurich. The conference aimed to create a better understanding of the incentives and disincentives determining the nuclear behavior of states. See the conference programme.
18-20 Jun 2010
|Globalizing De Gaulle
This new volume edited by former PHP team members Christian Nuenlist and Anna Locher, together with Garret Martin, offers 13 articles on different aspects of de Gaulle's global policies. Both multi-polar in its outlook and multi-archival, the new volume integrates previously neglected regions, actors and topics with more familiar aspects of France's foreign relations. The book has been published in the Harvard Cold War Studies Book Series.
13 June 2010
| Poland in the Warsaw Pact, 1955-1989
This new PHP collection covers Poland's status inside the Warsaw Pact. Authored by Wanda Jarząbek, the documentary illustrates the changing attitudes of the Polish government towards the organization and Warsaw's various attempts to introduce political and institutional reforms. It is based on documents from the Polish Archives of New Records, the Archive of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Institute of National Remebrance.
28 Apr 2010
|Relations between India and the Soviet Bloc: The Romanian Perspective
Complementing a recent PHP collection on Indian contacts to Eastern European allies of the Soviet Union, this document collection by Petre Opriş examines the unique relationship between Romania and India. These records from the Central Historical National Archives (CHNA) give insights into Romanian efforts to establish a special position towards India. They also document Bucharest's attempts to alleviate the effects of the Sino-Soviet split on the Indian Communist movement.
27 Apr 2010
|NATO, de Gaulle, and the Future of the Alliance, 1963-1966
Drawing on recently declassified European and North American sources, former PHP team coordinator Dr Anna Locher examines the crisis of the Western alliance which evolved in view of the Gaullist challenge.
17 Mar 2010
|Secret Official Histories of India's Wars
Starting in 1983, the History Division of the Ministry of Defence of India was assigned the task of composing official histories of India's recent wars. These reports are officially still classified but have been leaked to the press. The PHP website now offers versions of the three internal reports on the 1962, 1965 and 1971 wars.
15 Mar 2010
|The Soviet Union and Indonesia During the First Postwar Decade
In this latest addition to the growing PHP focus on the Global Cold War, Ragna Boden analyzes early contacts between Indonesian Communists and their Soviet counterparts and the subsequent establishment of diplomatic relations between Moscow and Jakarta. Her essay is accompanied by documentary evidence from the Russian State Archive of Socio-Political History (RGASPI).
1 Sep 2009
|India-Soviet Bloc relations: Bulgaria
Complementing recent PHP collections on Indo-Soviet relations, this e-documentary by Jordan Baev explores bilateral relations between Bulgaria and India as well as the latter's position on major foreign policy issues. These records from the Bulgarian Central State Archive (TsDA) will be complemented by evidence from Romanian and Hungarian archives in the near future.
6 May 2009
|Indo-Soviet Relations: the View from India
In this latest PHP documentary, Surjit Mansingh argues that Nehru and Khrushchev managed to establish a mutually beneficial relationship despite their contrasting views on international affairs. Her essay is accompanied by selected documents from the National Archives of India and the Nehru Memorial Museum & Library.
11 Feb 2009
|Indo-Soviet Relations in the Khrushchev Years
Complementing his work on Indo-Soviet relations under Stalin, Andreas Hilger now offers an interpretation of the succeeding period. He maintains that the difficulties of the Stalin years characterized the Khrushchev years as well. Hilger's essay is based on documentary evidence from the Russian State Archive of Contemporary History (RGANI), the Archive of the Parties and Mass Organizations of the Former GDR (SAPMO), and the Political Archives of the German Foreign Office.
11 Feb 2009
|Two new partners join the PHP
The PHP is pleased to announce the addition of two new partners to its network, the Graduate Institute, Geneva and the David Davies Memorial Institute of International Studies, Aberystwyth. PHP partners contribute to research, conference organization and collections published on the PHP website. The new partners will add scope to the network and to the PHP’s expanding focus on cooperative security.
17 Nov 2008
|Indo-Soviet Relations during the Stalin Years
In this latest PHP collection, Andreas Hilger offers insights into Soviet thinking on India and the triangle India, Pakistan and China as well as into the conflicts within the Communist Party of India in the late Stalin years. His essay is accompanied by documentary evidence from the Russian State Archive of Socio-Political History (RGASPI).
2 Sep 2008
| Updated PHP Bibliography
The PHP Bibliography on the Cold War Alliances has been expanded and updated to include books and articles up to summer 2008. Navigation was made easier and the complete bibliography is now also available for download in pdf format.
2 Sep 2008
|New Routledge/CSS Volume Explores the Development of European Security
In this offspring of a CSS conference, Origins of the European Security System: The Helsinki Process Revisited, 1965-1975 (Routledge), edited by Andreas Wenger, Vojtech Mastny and Christian Nuenlist, 13 researchers examine topics on the superpowers and détente; economic and military security; and Eastern, Western and neutral CSCE strategies.
11 Aug 2008
|NATO and the Warsaw Pact: Intrabloc Conflicts,
Edited Volume Resulting from PHP Conference
Edited by Mary Ann Heiss and S. Victor Papacosma, NATO and the Warsaw Pact: Intrabloc Conflicts (Kent State) contains 14 contributions focusing on disagreements and clashes within alliances rather than between blocs. PHP coordinator Vojtech Mastny, as well as other PHP affiliates, contribute their research on a range of topics, including Sino-Soviet relations and southern tier conflicts.
23 Jul 2008
|NEH Grant Allows for New Translations of PHP Documents
The two-year Collaborative Research Grant obtained by PHP affiliate Douglas Selvage from the National Endowment for the Humanities in 2007 has thus far, at "half-time", resulted in translations of over 300 pages of original documents. By July 2009, over 1,500 pages will have been translated from Bulgarian, Czech, German, Hungarian, Polish, Romanian and Russian.
22 Jul 2008
| The Soviet Threat to Sweden during the Cold War
While continental Europe was the strategic area central to all planning for military confrontation in Europe during the Cold War, the Soviet Union also attached importance to the Nordic region given the latter’s flank position and NATO’s sea communications across the Atlantic. The documented essay by Bengt Gustafsson, former Supreme Commander of the Swedish Armed Forces, revisits Soviet thinking and details Moscow’s plans regarding Sweden and Scandinavia altogether.
25 Feb 2008
|Military Planning for European Theater Conflict in the Cold War
The PHP makes available the transcript of an oral history conference on planning for war in Europe in the Zürcher Beiträge series of the Center for Security Studies at ETH Zurich. The event, held in Stockholm in 2006, was co-sponsored by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, the Swedish National Defense College, the Netherlands Institute of Military History, and the PHP. Edited by Jan Hoffenaar and Christopher Findlay, the volume is available online in full-text and can be ordered as a hard copy.
20 Dec 2007
|The GDR in the Warsaw Pact
In this e-documentary, PHP affiliate and CWIHP scholar Bernd Schaefer offers a comprehensive account of the role East Germany played in the Soviet bloc. Discussing Berlin's singular relations with Moscow and the Warsaw Pact at large, Schaefer's examination includes the set up and features of the Nationale Volksarmee, Berlin's position in the crisis situations of 1968 and 1980/81, and the GDR defense industry. The analysis draws on previously unpublished primary sources and oral history interviews.
27 Nov 2007
|Politico-Military Assessments of the Northern Flank, 1975-1989
In August 2007, an oral history conference on the Cold War in the European Northern Theater brought together former military and civil leaders from the US, the UK, Russia, Sweden, Finland, and Norway in Bodoe, Norway. Read the conference report and take a look at the pictures.
6 Nov 2007
|The CSCE / OSCE Experience: A Model for Today’s World?
In line with its long-standing interest in the evolution of the Conference for Security and Co-operation in Europe (CSCE), the PHP makes available material of a February 2007 oral-history conference held in Vienna that focused on the role of neutrals and non-aligned. The proceedings include statements by former CSCE delegation members Jaakk
3 Oct 2007
|Planning the Unthinkable: Czechoslovak War Plans, 1950–1990
The publication at hand, prepared by historian and PHP affiliate Petr Luňák, includes 14 original documents from the Central Military Archives in Prague. They deal with the military planning of the Czechoslovak People’s Army (ČSLA) between 1950 and 1990. The records, including war plans rather than operational plans or war games, reveal the strategic thinking in the Warsaw Pact. The documents are particularly valuable as no Soviet military plans have become available to date. The volume furthermore contains an essay by Luňák, providing the necessary historical context, and interviews with ČSLA generals conducted by historian Karel Sieber in 2002–2004 in the framework of the Parallel History Project.
3 Sep 2007
|Embry-Riddle Professor Receives Prestigious National Endowment for the Humanities Grant
Douglas Selvage has received a two-year collaborative research grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) for the translation of 2,370 pages of documents relating to the history of the Warsaw Pact.
20 Aug 2007
|Sweden's Secret Ties to the West
Swedish scholar Robert Dalsjö provides in-depth analysis and documentary proof of the rise and the demise of Sweden’s wartime military cooperation with the West. By comparing the evolution of the preparations with the evolution of the government’s official line on Sweden’s policy during the 1950s and 1960s, he shows that the demise of the preparations was caused by a gradually more dogmatic official line. This made the maintenance of preparations more sensitive and difficult. By the 1970s these preparations were faltering, and by the mid-1980s the remaining plans were destroyed in order to protect a declaratory policy originally meant mainly for public consumption.
Complementing Dalsjö's recent study, Life-Line Lost: The Rise and Fall of "Neutral" Sweden's Secret Reserve Option of Wartime Help from the West (Stockholm: Santérus Academic Press, 2006), the PHP now offers on its website key documents from the crucial period up to the 1960s. These documents have never before been published. We invite you to consult the records, both in their original languages Swedish, Danish, Norwegian and in English translation, at www.php.isn.ethz.ch.
26 Apr 2007
| British Commanders'-in-Chief Mission to the Soviet Forces in Germany (BRIXMIS) : Photographs and Documents
Navigate our new collection on the British Commanders'-in-Chief Mission to the Soviet Forces in Germany (BRIXMIS): Photographs and Documents. Major General Peter Williams, a historian and Russian speaker, provides a fine selection of analyses and memoirs as well as documents, photographs and maps from his four years as a member of BRIXMIS in the 1980s. In addition to some 50 photographs and maps as well as a number of documents, the documentary offers an article on the Robertson-Malinin Agreement, an in-depth essay on BRIXMIS in the 1980s, and a personal account of a detention by Soviet forces in East Germany. Besides, we reproduce an article by Aleksandr V. Furs on military liaison missions. This collection complements the PHP's earlier collection on Western liaison missions in Germany.
10 Apr 2007
|E-Dossier: Die Sowjetunion und die Ereignisse in Ungarn im Herbst 1956
Valeri Vartanov's analysis of the 1956 Hungarian Revolution highlights three stages of escalation and Soviet involvement. Available in Russian and German.
22 Mar 2007
|New Project Website and Name
The Parallel History Project on NATO and the Warsaw Pact (PHP) has a new website and a new name: Parallel History Project on Cooperative Security (PHP). Read more
15 Jan 2007
|Bulgarian Arms Delivery to Third World Countries, 1950-1989
This 100-record documentary, authored by Bulgarian PHP associate Jordan Baev, offers insights into East-East arms trade during the Cold War. It gives a broad survey of the development of Bulgaria's military assistance to developing countries during the Cold War. It reviews Bulgarian military aid and sales delivered to various governments in the Middle East, Asia, Africa, and Latin America as well as to radical political and guerrilla groups in developing countries. Compared with other Warsaw Pact countries, however, Bulgaria played a minor role in delivering arms to Third World countries.
17 Sep 2006
|A Strained Partnership: European-American Relations and the Middle East from Suez to Iraq
Divergent views on the justification and legitimacy of the Iraq War in 2003 have caused a deep rift in transatlantic relations from which the Western Alliance has yet to recover. However, as remarkable as this crisis has been in terms of its intensity and consequences, it merely represents the latest in a whole series of intra-Western controversies over the Middle East. In fact, the issue of how to deal with the Middle East has constituted a major source of European-American tension since the beginnings of the transatlantic partnership in the late 1940s.
The conference brought together historians and political analysts with expertise on particular incidents and topics regarding allied conflict and cooperation over the Middle East. The conference was convened by the Center for Security Studies (CSS), ETH Zurich (Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich) in association with the Parallel History Project on Cooperative Security (PHP).
7-9 Sep 2007
|Warsaw Pact Exercises during the Cuban Missile Crisis
Romanian historian Petre Opriş examines two early military exercises of the Warsaw Pact, conducted shortly before the Cuban Missile Crisis. The documents from the Romanian Military Archives (AMR) reveal striking weaknesses in interoperability. Opriş argues that the Baltic-Oder military exercise was characterized by a poor military command due to the long distances between the allied troops. Opriş concludes that there was no direct connection between this and a second military exercise carried out in Romania and the Cuban Missile Crisis of October 1962. Soviet leaders even avoided an overlapping of the exercises in order not to provoke the West.
31 Aug 2006
|New PHP Project Brochure
Reflecting the PHP's expanded research focus, the project's many publication achievements, and its growing network of affiliates, the PHP brochure has been updated and revamped.
7 Jul 2006
|New Research Area: Soviet Military Mapping of Ireland During the Cold War
Desmond Travers (Col. Ret'd., Irish Army) documents Soviet cartographic activity in Ireland during the Cold War and reveals new insights into the extent of Moscow's geo-strategic interests. Assessing the quality of the Soviet maps, he seeks to answer the question whether the Soviet Union copied Irish Ordonance Survey maps. Although Soviet satellite technology may have been of poorer standard than the of the West during the 1960s and 1970s, the Soviet maps under discussion were unquestionably superior to many foreign military maps of pervious periods. Map indexes of various series also indicate the level of Soviet mapping of the entire Northern and of certain regions of the Southern Hemisphere.
4 May 2006
|Records of the Meetings of the Warsaw Pact Deputy Foreign Ministers, 1964-1989
The collection of the documents of the Warsaw Pact deputy foreign ministers from 1964 to 1989 is the result of a several-year-long joint research project of PHP and the Cold War History Research Center in Budapest (www.coldwar.hu). The documents have been collected from several collections in the Hungarian National Archives including the different leading bodies of the Hungarian Socialist Workers' Party and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The collection of reports on the meetings of Warsaw Pact deputy foreign ministers is closely related to another collection that is posted on the website of PHP, the Records of the Committee of Ministers of Foreign Affairs (CMFA). The present collection contains the relevant documents of 40 meetings of deputy foreign ministers. The meetings of deputy foreign ministers proved to be the most frequent and in many ways the most effective coordination forum in the Warsaw Pact. The collection of the meetings of deputy foreign ministers significantly contributes to the better understanding of the structure, the mechanism and the overall history of foreign policy coordination in the Warsaw Pact as well as to the general history of the Cold War.
5 Sep 2005
|Western Military Missions in Potsdam, 1946-1990
The Military Liaison Missions (MLM) of the United States, Great Britain and France played an important role through comprehensive collection of information to obtain realistic situation reports about the presumed military adversary. Permanent surveillance of indications on heightened tensions and the GSFG's and the East German Army's (NVA) order of battle, provided military leaders of western countries with comparatively reliable information on potential of, and ‘activities' by, the presumable adversary stationed on the GDR territory of observation. Rising importance was attributed to these western activities during tension periods like, for example, in the second Berlin crisis (1958-1963), the invasion of Czechoslovakia in 1968, or in the context of unrests in the People's Republic of Poland at the beginning of the 1980s. Though MLM naturally were not capable of making contributions to the analysis of Soviet intentions, they nevertheless figured until 1990 as an important component of western allies' early-warning systems against a potential Soviet conventional surprise attack in Central Europe.
1 Jul /
8 Jul 2005
|GDR Military Intelligence
In cooperation with the Bundesarchiv-Militärarchiv in Freiburg i.Br., the PHP published on its website Finding Aids (Findbuch) on GDR military intelligence between 1957 until 1990. Photocopies of the documents can be ordered from the Bundesarchiv-Militärarchiv. Despite the destruction of records in 1990, the inventory of "Verwaltung Aufklärung" (Military Intelligence) covers about 2'800 volumes that are made accessible with these Finding Aids. The documents on military planning (Militärische Bestimmung), command, finance, and the agency's organisation convey an excellent insight into the inner life of the GDR intelligence service. Far the biggest part of the volumes cover the outcomes of intelligence that are summarized in special reports as well as daily, weakly, and monthly reports. Sample documents may be downloaded directly from the Parallel History Project's website.
1 Jul 2005
|The Cold War History of Sino-Soviet Relations
Thanks to the declassification of relevant documents in eastern European countries and the succession of publications of material from Chinese historical archives, the investigation of Sino-Soviet relations proved to be one of the most striking subjects. The change in Sino-Soviet relations to a considerable extent decided the fate of the socialist camp, and directly influenced and changed the political setup of the world in the Cold War era: the signing of the Sino-Soviet Treaty of Alliance in the early 1950s ultimately shaped the direction of the US Far East strategy, leading the Cold War spreading from Europe to Asia; the split between China and the Soviet Union eventually led to the easing and normalization of Sino-US relations, with the consequence of China withdrawing from the Cold War marked by Soviet-US confrontation. In this sense, discussions on Sino-Soviet relations are one of the most interesting subjects for research in Cold War history, and such research has been very fruitful in recent years. The Parallel History Projects invites you to read seven articles by authors from China and Japan. All these articles have made use of historical archives and documents, concentrating on one particular issue or event. To a considerable extent they reflect the level of research on the history of Sino-Soviet relations in eastern Asia.
30 Jun 2005
|Journey of the Chief of Intelligence Directorate to France and the Federal Republic of Germany, 2-15 July 1966 (5 August 1966)
The report details the aim, itinerary, and costs of a unique two-week reconnaissance trip of the Czechoslovak military to explore and film the area of the planned main thrust of the Czechoslovak Front - i.e. the Nuremberg - Stuttgart - Strasbourg - Épinal - Dijon line.
18 May 2005
|A Cardboard Castle? An Inside History of the Warsaw Pact, 1955-1991
This volume is the ﬁrst to gather in one place a comprehensive documentary record of the elusive and controversial history of the Soviet-led Cold War alliance from the inside. The product of a multi-year research effort, the book brings together formerly secret records from the archives of every member-state of the communist military grouping. Top-level communications between the alliance's leaders, verbatim transcripts of multilateral summit meetings, and lively discussions inside the various party politburos are among the many previously unavailable materials in this collection. Topics covered in depth include the evolution of the pact from stage prop to fullﬂedged military alliance; the surprisingly dynamic relations between Moscow and the other capitals of the “fraternal countries,” particularly during times of crisis when the Kremlin was pulled in different directions by allies espousing more aggressive or cautious points of view; the upheavals in Eastern Europe in 1953, 1956, 1968 and 1980–81; and the turmoil—this time induced by the Soviet leadership itself—of the late 1980s, which led to the virtually simultaneous vanishing of the Cold War and the Eastern alliance.
The PHP has posted all of the original documents of the book A Cardboard Castle? An Inside History of the Warsaw Pact, 1955-1991, ed. Vojtech Mastny and Malcolm Byrne (Budapest: CEU Press, 2005), in their native languages, and in full on the project's web site.
6 May 2005
|Submarine Incursions into Swedish Waters
In the early hours of October 28, 1981, the Swedes discovered a Soviet submarine which had run aground deep into the archipelago close to their main naval base in Karlskrona on the Baltic Sea. The incident, known as the "Whiskey on the Rocks" in allusion to the NATO designation of the vessel's class, resulted in a tug of war over the terms of the Swedish inspection of the submarine and interrogation of its crew before their release to the acutely embarrassed Soviet authorities. The inadequacy of Moscow's explanations seemed to corroborate beyond reasonable doubt also the identity of other mysterious submarines periodically detected in Swedish waters both before and after "Whiskey" hit the rocks.
While Soviet responsibility for these and other violations of Swedish sovereignty has been generally taken for granted outside of Sweden, in the country itself the identification of the culprit has been an agonizing exercise. As late as two decades after the 1981 incident and a decade after the end of the Cold War, the submarine incursions became a subject of a heated, yet strangely inconclusive debate in Sweden as it navigates its transition from a dogmatic to a pragmatic concept of neutrality. The larger questions that have been raised - and not raised - in the debate have prompted the PHP to introduce this surprisingly complex subject matter to the readers of its website.
8 Apr /
17 May 2005
|War on Tito's Yugoslavia? The Hungarian Army in Early Cold War Soviet Strategies
László Ritter’s penetrating and meticulously documented study is another of the PHP publications that overturn conventional wisdom about some of the key issues of the Cold War. It provides the latest, and most authoritative, word about Stalin’s intentions in his confrontation with Tito’s Yugoslavia and the danger of a military conflict in the Balkans in the early nineteen-fifties.
In tackling this intriguing subject, Ritter demonstrates how much can be learned about Soviet military plans, which are still kept out of sight in the Russian defense ministry archives, by using the more readily accessible, if incomplete, records of Moscow’s erstwhile allies, in this instance particularly Hungary.
The demolished thesis is that which maintains that Stalin had been planning to attack Yugoslavia and was only prevented from doing so by the forceful U.S. reaction to the communist aggression in Korea. The documentation found by Ritter and published here presents convincing evidence that contingency plans the Hungarian army prepared under Soviet auspices in the event of a military confrontation with Yugoslavia were defensive rather than offensive. This conclusion adds support to the evidence found by PHP researchers in other countries of the former Soviet bloc that shows Stalin’s strategy in the early years of the Cold War as being defensive rather than offensive.
18 Feb 2005
|New Document Collection: Insights into Soviet-Czechoslovak Military Planning in Cold War Era
The second in the series of oral history interviews with former Warsaw Pact generals, the Czechoslovak collection published here highlights some of the significant differences among the alliance’s member states as well as their military. Unlike Poland, the largest of Moscow’s involuntary allies as well as the one with the most pronounced anti-Soviet tradition, Czechoslovakia was a smaller, but strategically most exposed country, whose historical traditions had been most consistently pro-Russian and pro-Soviet. The primary value of the interviews is in the light they throw on Czechoslovakia’s role in Soviet military planning prior to 1968, when its army was assigned to bear the brunt of any confrontation with NATO because of the absence from its territory of Soviet or other Warsaw Pact troops. The interviews make for fascinating reading. Unlike their Polish counterparts, most of the Czechoslovak generals were willing to speak without inhibitions about the secret operational plans to which they had been privy.
3 Feb 2005
|New Collection: China and Eastern Europe, 1960s-1980s
Complementing the material for the international conference on China and Eastern Europe in the 1960s-80s, which the project co-organized in Beijing in late March 2004, the PHP now offers on its website the proceedings of the conference in Chinese as well as in English. The English version, co-edited by Xiaoyuan Liu and Vojtech Mastny, was published in print in November 2004 by the Center for Security Studies as volume 72 in its “Zürcher Beiträge zur Sicherheitspolitik und Konfliktforschung” series. The proceedings will allow specialists and an interested wider public to follow the fascinating roundtable
discussion of former diplomats and scholars. The main results of the conference are summarized in Vojtech Mastny’s conference report, which as part of the document collection illuminates the security implications of the US-Chinese rapprochement, China’s policies toward the Warsaw Pact and NATO, Soviet perceptions of China as an ally of the West, bilateral relations between China and the member states of the Warsaw Pact other that the Soviet Union, and Sino-Albanian relations during the 1960s-1980s.
1 Dec 2004
|Cold War News: Open Letter on Access to Mongolian Archives
Join in the important effort to further actual steps in the direction of opening up the state archives in Ulaanbaatar - by signing Sergey S. Radchenko’s open letter to the Mongolian Prime Minister.Read Sergey S. Radchenko's review of shortcomings and recommendations for reform. Please email your signature to S.S.Radchenko (at) lse.ac.uk.
1 Dec 2004
|New Document Collection: Secret Warfare: Operation Gladio and NATO's Stay-Behind Armies
As has become publicly known since 1990, stay-behind armies covered all of Western Europe and operated under different code names, such as Gladio in Italy, Absalon in Denmark, P26 in Switzerland, ROC in Norway, I&O in the Netherlands, and SDRA8 in Belgium. The so-called Allied Clandestine committee (ACC) and the Clandestine Planning Committee (CPC), linked to NATO's Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe (SHAPE), coordinated the stay-behind networks on an international level. These armies served the dual purpose during the Cold War - preparing for a communist Soviet invasion and occupation of Western Europe, and for an “emergency situation”. Learn more about the matter in the introduction by Daniele Ganser, Senior Researcher at the Center for Security Studies at ETH Zurich.
29 Nov 2004
|The Secret GDR Journal Militaerwesen, 1964-89
In cooperation with the Bundesarchiv-Militärarchiv in Freiburg i.Br., the PHP published the tables of content and sample articles from "Militärwesen," the formerly secret East German equivalent to Voennaya mysl', on its website. Photocopies of the articles can be ordered from the Bundesarchiv-Militärarchiv. The articles in Militärwesen convey an excellent insight into Warsaw Pact military thinking. Researchers will find articles on the ideological work in the armed forces, on the role of the armed forces, on the perception of the Western opponents, on security policy, on doctrine and strategy, including nuclear strategy, on military technology and equipment, on operations by all branches of the armed forces, on exercises conducted by Warsaw Pact and NATO forces, and on reconnaissance and intelligence activities conducted by GDR and NATO forces in the vicinity of the GDR.
29 Oct 2004
|New subsection: COLD WAR NEWS
On its entry page, the PHP will feature selected cold war news which might be of interest to the PHP community. If you would like to announce a conference or any other news related with cold war history in general, please submit your suggestion to the php-team.
15 Oct 2004
|SIXTH ANNUAL WORKSHOP HELD
The Parallel History Project on NATO and the Warsaw Pact held its Sixth Annual Workshop in Urbino, Italy, on 1-2 October 2004. It was hosted by the Urbino unit of the Machiavelli Center for Cold War Studies (CIMA), the PHP's Italian partner. Over twenty project affiliates from academia and archives - representatives from throughout Europe, the US, and China - reported about the state of document declassification and Cold War research in their respective countries. In devising future project activities, major emphasis was placed on two conferences planned for 2005: the symposium on intelligence (Oslo, April 2005) and the conferences on the CSCE (Zurich, September 2005).
2 Oct 2004
|CALL FOR PEOPLE: "Looking into the Annual Review
Procedure of NATO"
Dr. Ine Megens from the University of Groningen is planning to launch an international working group for the study of NATO's Annual Review, the yearly examination of military requirements of the alliance and political and economic capabilities of the member states. Scholars interested in joining forces to investigate this hardly explored research topic may wish to learn more about the project on the link above or contact Ine Megens, Department of History, University of Groningen, The Netherlands, c.m.megens (at) let.rug.nl.
2 Oct 2004
|New Subsection in Research: Book Reviews
In order to alert our audience to recent scholarly literature on the history of the cold war alliances, a new subsection featuring book reviews has been added to the PHP website's research section. At the same time, the section has been slightly reorganized. Please suggest any further book reviews on NATO or Warsaw Pact history to the php-team.
26 Jul 2004
|The Future Tasks of the Alliance: NATO's Harmel Report, 1966/67
In cooperation with the NATO Archives, the PHP online collection of over 350 records is dedicated to a significant moment in NATO history, with its impact both on NATO and the development of détente. In his essay, Andreas Wenger from the Center for Security Studies at ETH Zurich sheds light on the historical significance of the process. The files are the first subject files in the NATO Archives to have undergone the process of declassification and public disclosure. They are comprised of varied material, including bilateral correspondence and national opinions. These national documents had to undergo individual review for disclosure according to national law. The collection also marks a milestone for the PHP. Since its beginnings, the project has cared for a “balanced” approach toward the history of the cold war alliances, and with the Harmel collection now publishes its second major collection on NATO.
5 Jul 2004
|Vastly Enhanced Website Subsection: Cold War Alliances Bibliography
As a service to our community, the PHP has fundamentally revised and enlarged its cold war alliances bibliography. Check it out and suggest further titles to the php-team.
15 Jun 2004
|New Subsection: Conferences
To account for the increasing conference activities within the PHP network, the project website now features a new subsection on conferences. Here, you now find information on upcoming and previous events (previously located under NEWS) as well as all available conference reports.
1 Jun 2004
|Site Redesign in Process
As the first step of a redesign of its website, the PHP now offers a navigation bar which allows to reach subpages more easily. You now have the possibility to access individual collections, news, events and other sections with just one mouse click. Please report any missing links to the php-team.
5 May 2004
|Romania in the Warsaw Pact
With 31 documents and a substantive introduction added to the PHP collection on Romania and the Warsaw Pact, 1955-89, the updated collection in depth analyzes Romania's emancipation from the Warsaw Pact. Dennis Deletant of the University College in London and Mihail E. Ionescu of the Bucharest Institute for Political Studies of Defense and Military History introduce the records.
16 Apr 2004
|Superpower under Pressure: Zhukov's Secret Speech in 1957
Svend Aage Christensen and Frede P. Jensen (Danish Institute for International Affairs, DIIS) analyse two CIA Information Reports about Soviet Minister of Defense Marshal Georgii K. Zhukov from March and April 1957, which were released under the CIA Historical Review program. These reports exemplify in a concise way the military-political discourse of the Khrushchev years with its shifts between deterrence, bluff, reassurance, planning considerations and internal discussion. The report of 29 March 1957 can be seen as the only authoritative statement known at the time about Soviet considerations from around 1957 about developing a capacity to reach the English Channel in a pre-emptive strike already on the second day of a war, which means in reality a key element in the Soviet war planning of the period. The authors compare a reliable summary and a KGB propaganda version of a speech Zhukov gave to the Soviet military elite in East Germany during a visit in March 1957.
7 Jan 2004
|Before Vienna: Khrushchev's Meeting in Smolenice in June 1961
Another insight into Soviet thinking during the Khrushchev years has been added to the PHP collection on "The 1961 Berlin Crisis and Soviet Preparations for War in Europe". Please read, in English translation, the fascinating notes on Khrushchev's meeting with leading representatives of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Czechoslovakia and the Government of the CSSR in Smolenice, near Bratislava, on 1 June 1961. This unique account of Khrushchev's estimates and intentions on the eve of his meeting with Kennedy in Vienna (3-4 June 1961) has thus far only been published in Russian and Czech.
4 Dec 2003
|East German Spy Reports Reveal NATO War Plans
Stasi spies in NATO obtained actual war plans of the alliance, yet East
German and Soviet leaders saw these essentially defensive plans as a
cover for a forthcoming first strike - a fear that peaked in the "war
scare" of 1983. Obtained by the PHP from the archives of former East Germany's security agency (Stasi), the documents show that most of NATO's closely guarded secrets were an open book for the communist spies. The Soviet Union was thus able to learn of its adversary's plans in the event of a war in Europe, including the 1981 war plan of the United States V. Army Corps, reproduced on the website in German translation. The spies also snatched detailed technical information about the West's latest military technology, such as the Pershing-II intermediate-range missile.
The collection is introduced by Bernd Schaefer, a scholar at the German Historical Institute in Washington, who evaluates the documents, and by PHP Coordinator Vojtech Mastny, who relates them to the "Able Archer" incident.
7 Nov 2003
|Richest Trove of Warsaw Pact Documents Published
In two new online document collections, the PHP encourages a fresh look at the history of the Warsaw Pact: 1) More than 3,000 pages of documents inform about the multilateral meetings of the Warsaw Pact party leaders from 1956 to 1990. Over the last two years, the PHP has already published the records of the meetings of the foreign and defense ministers of the Warsaw Pact. 2) In his documentation on Hungary's role in the Warsaw Pact from 1954 to 1989, Csaba Békés, Senior Research Fellow at the renowned 1956 Institute in Budapest, discusses the impact of a small member within the Eastern alliance.
7 Oct 2003
|Brezhnev's Crimea Meetings in the 1970s
The new PHP collection sheds light on the "off the record" meetings in the Crimea that were held in the 1970s. Drawing on records from the Bulgarian Central State Archive, the collection reveals insights both on the few multilateral gatherings, particularly the one of 1973, and the later bilateral meetings between Leonid Brezhnev and Bulgarian party leader and head of state Todor Zhivkov. Jordan Baev, the PHP's Bulgarian associate and coordinator of the Cold War History Research Group-Bulgaria, introduces the records.
14 Aug 2003
|Romania in the Warsaw Pact, 1956-1981
The new PHP's collection traces the gradual emancipation of Romania from the Warsaw Pact by reflecting Bucharest's increasingly autonomous foreign policy. Dennis Deletant of the University College in London and Mihail E. Ionescu of the Bucharest Institute for Political Studies of Defense and Military History introduce the records.
18 Feb 2003
|The Warsaw Pact's Political Consultative Committee
From the creation of the Warsaw Pact to the Budapest reforms - the PHP has updated its online documentary on the Warsaw Pact's Political Consultative Committee up to 1969. A wealth of pertinent records from archives in Germany, Hungary, Romania, and the Czech Republic illuminate the history and decisions of the alliance's most important committee through its tenth meeting. In short editorial notes, PHP coordinator Vojetch Mastny introduces every meeting.
24 Jan 2003
|Submarine Incursions in Swedish Waters
The PHP's published a research controversy on the subject of Submarine Incursions in Swedish Waters in the 1980s. Center piece of the controversy is a government report by Swedish diplomat Rolf Ekéus; its findings include the view that that neither the Soviet Union nor the member states of the Western alliance can be excluded as possible violators of Swedish waters. This position is contested by PHP affiliate Krister Wahlbäck, who in his comment critically discusses approach, argument and conclusions of the report. The collection furthermore includes a rejoinder by Rolf Ekéus and a comment by Tom Nichols of the United States Naval College in Newport. An introductory essay by PHP coordinator Vojtech Mastny is preceding the controversy, pointing out inter alia the differences between political practitioners and historians in assessing the recent past.
1 Nov 2002
|China’s relations with the Warsaw Pact under Mao and Khrushchev
Recent evidence from Polish, German and Romanian archives as well as from Chinese periodicals of the time sheds new light on China’s relations with the Warsaw Pact under Mao and Khrushchev. After the peak of Sino-Soviet solidarity at the alliance’s creation in 1955, giving China observer status, Sino-Soviet relations gradually deteriorated. This is manifested in Chinese critique of Khrushchev’s disarmament policy at PCC meetings (1958-1961) as well as in debates on the status of Chinese participation in the alliance and on the Mongolian desire to join the Warsaw Pact (1961-1963). With the Sino-Soviet dispute out in the open after 1963, China’s participation in the alliance was over. Apart from new archival material, the collection includes two essays on Chinese-Soviet military cooperation at the time, representing both Chinese and Russian points of view.
28 Oct 2002
|Polish plans to attack Denmark
In the collection on Polish plans to attack Denmark in case of war in Europe, PHP affiliate Pawel Piotrowski discusses in his essay, originally
published in the Polish weekly 'Wprost', the development of the Polish front as part of the operative planning of the Warsaw Pact since the early 1960s. According to these plans, the use of nuclear weapons against Danish cities was to force a quick Danish withdrawal from an international conflict. Consider also the respective article by journalist Mads Stenstrup in the Danish daily Jyllands-Posten and the tv interview with Danish General and Cold War historian Kjeld G.H. Hillingsøe, likewise added to the PHP website. These add-on's are the result of a joint effort by the PHP and its Danish associate, the Danish Institute of International Affairs (DIIS) in Copenhagen.
11 Oct 2002
|Warsaw Pact Generals in Polish Uniforms
The PHP's first collection dedicated to oral history draws on interviews with high-ranking Polish generals of the cold war period as well as on newly declassified documents in several specialized Polish archives. The interviews shed light on the workings of the Eastern alliance, the relations between Warsaw and the alliance leader Moscow, and the assumptions of casualties during an armed conflict with the West. For key findings of the collection such as the eminent role of the "Polish front" in a planned operation against Denmark in case of a war in Europe, see the Press Release.
18 Sep 2002
|Nuclear Warhead Delivery Systems for the Warsaw Pact, 1961-65
The collection draws on newly declassified documents in the Russian State Archives of Economics and the German Federal Military Archives. It offers insights into the reorganization and modernization of the Soviet bloc's armed forces in view of the Berlin crisis.
11 Sep 2002
|NATO Military Planning and Threat Assessments of the Warsaw Pact
Newly declassified documents from British and U.S. archives reveal NATO's military planning and the alliance's assessments of the threat posed by the Soviet Union and the Warsaw Pact to West European security during the Cold War.
21 May 2002
|Records from the Meetings of the Ministers of Foreign Affairs, 1976-1990
The records obtained from the Czech Foreign Ministry Archives in Prague supplement the PHP's systematic documentation of the Warsaw Pact agencies. The records reveal a considerable diversity of opinion in the alliance, and show that the committee was a means to create and maintain alliance consensus in foreign policy questions. The records are introduced by Anna Locher of the Center of Security Studies and Conflict Research in Zurich.
21 May 2002
|New evidence from Hungarian archives on Soviet bloc war planning
The evidence shows that in 1965, Vienna, Munich, Verona and other European cities were to be "completely destroyed" and that Warsaw Pact forces were prepared to ignore the neutrality of Austria in the event of war. The formerly top secret documents in the original and in English translations are introduced and commented by historians from Hungary, Italy and Austria.
29 Nov 2001
|Documentation from the former East German State Security Service
The documentation sheds new light on the US retaliatory raid on Libya provoked by the 1986 terrorist attack on the "La Belle" discotheque in Berlin. On 13 November 2001, a German court found Libya responsible for the attack. The recently released report was given by Soviet General Koldunov after an on-site inspection in Libya at a confidential briefing of Soviet allies during the session of the Military Council of the Warsaw Pact on 23-25 April 1986.
13 Nov 2001
|Records from the Warsaw Pact's main bodies: The Political Consultative Committee, and the Committee of Ministers of Defense
With its third online documentary collection, the PHP initiates a large-scale publication series with records from the Warsaw Pact's main bodies. Drawing mainly from the German Federal Archives' Freiburg branch, the collection is a result of the PHP's efforts to systematically document the history of both Cold War alliances. The records are introduced in analytical essays by the project's coordinator, Vojtech Mastny, and Christian Nünlist of the Center for Security Studies and Conflict Research in Zurich.
|The collapse of the Warsaw Pact (1985-1991)
In its second online documentary collection, the PHP focusses on the collapse of the Warsaw Pact (1985-1991). Drawing mainly from archives in Bulgaria, the collection deales with late attempts at a Warsaw Pact "perestroika" and the inevitable dissolution of the Eastern alliance. The records are introduced in an analytical essay by Prof. Jordan Baev, coordinator of the Cold War Research Group-Bulgaria.
|The 1964 Warsaw Pact war plan
The establishment of the PHP website attracted worldwide attention. It elicited over 70,000 "hits" during the first four weeks alone. The publication of the 1964 Warsaw Pact war plan prompted a front-page article in the Paris Le Monde, a long analytical article in the Swiss Neue Zürcher Zeitung, as well as reports in Die Presse of Vienna and other journals. It became a media event especially in the Czech Republic, where the document had been discovered in the Central Military Archives by PHP researcher Petr Luňák in February.