Center Sees Summit As Strategic Miscalculation On Par With Yalta

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The Center for Security Policy today issued a critical assessment of the just-concluded Washington summit. The Center believes that George Bush’s over-investment in political, economic and security terms in Mikhail Gorbachev represents the worst strategic miscalculation at a presidential summit since Yalta.

In a new paper, entitled The Washington Summit: The Worst Strategic Miscalculation Since Yalta, the Center examines the specific misconceptions and adverse practical implications of President Bush’s drive to support the current Soviet leader, come what may. Issues addressed include:

  • the Bush Administration’s alignment of U.S. interests with Gorbachev and against those committed to urgent democratic and market economic reform in the USSR;
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  • the consequences of abandoning the leverage offered by the trade agreement to help support the Lithuanians and others increasingly experiencing Gorbachev’s repression;
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  • the risks of making concessions to "lock-in" Gorbachev’s agreement to arms control pacts that are, on balance, neither verifiable nor in the U.S. security interest; and
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  • the significant danger that, with the Bush Administration’s encouragement, Germany may serve as the new capital and technology base for a revitalized Soviet threat.

 

According to Frank J. Gaffney, Jr., the Center’s director, "Not since Franklin Roosevelt at the 1945 Yalta summit took at face value Joseph Stalin’s pledge to permit genuinely free elections in Eastern Europe — as part of a managed transition to a new post-war order — has a greater leap of faith been taken by a U.S. president on behalf of a Soviet leader. This paper identifies the risks associated with such a miscalculation and suggests an alternative approach more likely to produce long-term stability and international peace."

The Center’s analysis provides the sort of informed criticism of the Bush Administration’s performance at the summit, which, according to today’s Washington Post, the Administration feels it has yet to receive.

Copies of The Washington Summit may be obtained by contacting the Center.

Center for Security Policy

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