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Dealing with the Devil: East Germany, Detente, and Ostpolitik, 1969-1973 (New Cold War History)


Dealing with the Devil: East Germany, Detente, and Ostpolitik, 1969-1973 (New Cold War History) Cover

ISBN13: 9780807849156
ISBN10: 0807849154
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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Using new archival sources--including previously secret documents of the East German secret police and Communist Party--M. E. Sarotte goes behind the scenes of Cold War Germany during the era of d©tente, as East and West tried negotiation instead of confrontation to settle their differences. In Dealing with the Devil, she explores the motives of the German Democratic Republic and its Soviet backers in responding to both the d©tente initiatives, or Ostpolitik, of West Germany and the foreign policy of the United States under President Nixon.

Sarotte focuses on both public and secret contacts between the two halves of the German nation during Brandt's chancellorship, exposing the cynical artifices constructed by negotiators on both sides. Her analysis also details much of the superpower maneuvering in the era of d©tente, since German concerns were ever present in the minds of leaders in Washington and Moscow, and reveals the startling degree to which concern over China shaped European politics during this time. More generally, Dealing with the Devil presents an illuminating case study of how the relationship between center and periphery functioned in the Cold War Soviet empire.

About the Author

Professor M. E. Sarotte teaches history at the University of Notre Dame.

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Average customer rating based on 1 comment:

rw.rynerson, June 6, 2006 (view all comments by rw.rynerson)
M. E. Sarotte has organized some of the vast amount of material on the complex negotiations betweeen the two Germanies, the Four Powers, miscellaneous other European states, Vietnam and China that has become available from the archives of the former German Democratic Republic (East Germany) and other sources and presents it in a readable and convincing form.

I'm pleased, because I had thought for years that the period 1969-73 was a risk-filled turning point in the Cold War that had been neglected by journalists and historians, perhaps because there were so few compelling visual images. Now this period has the first book that it deserves.

Many writers were too personally engaged with one side or the other, or with their dislike of Nixon or Kissinger or the Germans or the French or the Soviets, etc. to be able to do a credible job. Sarotte writes calmly and backs up her statements with documents. She also is candid where key information (usually from Western sources) has still not been released.

This book is not for people who want to see pictures of tanks facing each other, but rather for people who are interested in how the world sometimes works. For example, she shows how the Soviet leaders' fears of China fed into their decisions to deal on issues surrounding Berlin and Germany. She also acknowledges the risks that each negotiating country had to consider.

It will be a requirement for some years to come in the library of anyone trying to figure out the Cold War. It would be valuable for anyone who has to engage in complex negotiations involving multiple interests.


(Reviewer served in the U.S. Army's Berlin Brigade during these negotiations. The Berlin Brigades of the Western allies were in the middle of things if the negotiating process went badly.)
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Product Details

Sarotte, M. E.
University of North Carolina Press
Sarotte, M. E.
Chapel Hill
International Relations
Europe - Eastern
Europe - Germany
Eastern Europe
International Relations - General
Eastern Europe - General
Modern - 20th Century
Germany (East) Politics and government.
Politics-United States Foreign Policy
Edition Description:
New Cold War History (Paperback)
Series Volume:
bk. 2
Publication Date:
April 2001
Grade Level:
, 16 illus., 4 maps
9.25 x 6.13 in

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Related Subjects

» History and Social Science » Europe » Germany » Modern Germany
» History and Social Science » Politics » United States » Foreign Policy
» History and Social Science » World History » 1650 to Present
» History and Social Science » World History » Eastern Europe
» History and Social Science » World History » Germany » General

Dealing with the Devil: East Germany, Detente, and Ostpolitik, 1969-1973 (New Cold War History) New Trade Paper
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Product details 320 pages University of North Carolina Press - English 9780807849156 Reviews:
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