(Washington, D.C.): The Center for Security Policy marked the fiftieth anniversary of the notorious Hitler-Stalin Non-Aggression Pact by releasing a report entitled, Fifty Years of Tyranny: The Intolerable Legacy of the Nazi-Soviet Agreements of August 1939. This report addresses the insidious consequences of the non-aggression accord — both those experienced immediately and those that continue today. It also calls attention to a less publicized agreement, signed four days earlier, that governed economic relations between Nazi Germany and the USSR and underwrote their collusive aggression against democracies.
"The Non-Aggression Pact and its secret protocol have wrought intolerable suffering, most especially on the peoples of Europe — suffering that has not ended even in the so-called era of ‘New Thinking’ in the USSR," said Frank J. Gaffney, Jr., the Center’s Director. "Among other things, these agreements made it possible for the Soviet Union to occupy and, ultimately, to annex the Baltic states. They laid the groundwork for the Soviets’ ongoing, forcible domination of Eastern Europe. While the Soviet leadership has, at last, acknowledged that these agreements were illegal and immoral, they have neither repudiated them nor taken steps to return the occupied nations to the status quo ante.
Gaffney added, "Western governments should immediately join those in the East bloc calling on a newly-appointed Soviet commission chaired by Alexander Yakovlev, a key advisor to President Mikhail Gorbachev, to disclose the full extent of the Nazi-Soviet collaboration and formally to renounce these odious agreements and the subjugation of free peoples they made possible."
"It is interesting to note," said Roger W. Robinson, Jr., a member of the Center’s Board of Advisors, "that the technical structure of current West German-Soviet trade is similar to that of 1939. A generous flow of manufactured goods, technology and easy credit is going east from the Federal Republic to the Soviet Union in exchange for Soviet raw materials, particularly energy resources."
"Moreover," Robinson observed, "some important details of this bilateral financial relationship are kept secret. Full transparency and data disclosure of these commercial and credit transactions are now required so that the Western democracies can coordinate the selective use of economic and financial leverage to press for real reform and transformation of the East bloc societies to a path of democracy and free markets."