Romanian and East German Policies in the Third World: Comparing the Strategies of Ceausescu and Honecker

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This book is a unique comparison of the Third World policies of the two East European regimes that were most active in the South during the 1970s and 1980s. The study examines why Romania's and East Germany's high activity levels in the South cannot be explained away as mere surrogacy for Moscow, and shows that those attempts represented the particular agendas of Honecker and Ceausescu in their efforts to alter their ties with the Soviet Union. Barnett concludes that Romania and East Germany saw opportunities in the Third World in the 1970s to forge strong diplomatic and security profiles within the Warsaw Pact's overall presence. Romania sought to lessen its economic and ideological dependence on the Soviet Union by expanding its trade ties and political relations with the Third World. In the case of East Germany, detente opened up new opportunities for relations with West Germany that were both lucrative in terms of trade and dangerous in terms of ideological pollution. Scholars of the Soviet bloc will find this book of interest.