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President Bush Comments on the Relaxation of East German Border Controls

Source

Soon after President George H. W. Bush learned the news that the Berlin Wall had opened allowing East Germans to crossover into West Berlin, his press secretary convened an impromptu press conference in the Oval Office. Bush’s wary responses to reporters’ questions, included in the excerpt below, left an impression that he was less than moved by the historic event. The Washington Post noted... Read More »

President Bush Grants Hungary Most-Favored-Nation Trade Status

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In July 1989, President George H. W. Bush visited Poland and Hungary, the two countries in Eastern Europe in which substantial political and economic reforms seemed most likely to occur first. Pursuing a new US policy he referred to as “beyond containment,” Bush wished to show US support for a movement toward the integration of Eastern Europe into the “community of nations.” During a speech on... Read More »

President Bush's Interview with Polish Journalists

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During the spring of 1989, the leaders of the United States and the Soviet Union, George H. W. Bush and Mikhail Gorbachev, issued contrasting visions for the future of Europe. In a series of speeches during April and May, Bush called for a Europe “whole and free” and envisioned a shift “beyond containment,” the fundamental strategy of preventing Soviet expansion that had guided US strategic... Read More »

President Bush's Remarks at a Symposium on Eastern Europe

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In July 1989, President George H. W. Bush visited Poland and Hungary, the two countries in Eastern Europe in which substantial political and economic reform seemed most likely to occur first. In a series of speeches during the spring, Bush had set out his hope for a Europe “whole and free.” In April, at Hamtramck, Michigan, a suburb of Detroit heavily populated by Polish-Americans, Bush had... Read More »

President Bush's Remarks at the Solidarity Workers Monument

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President George H. W. Bush visited Poland and Hungary in July 1989 after June elections in which Solidarity candidates won 160 of the 161 seats in the Sejm that were available to them and 92 of the 100 seats of the Polish Senate. In addition, many leaders of the Communist Party failed to secure enough votes to be elected to the parliament they had controlled for four decades. Pursuing a new... Read More »

President Bush's Remarks in Warsaw, July 9, 1989

Source

President George H. W. Bush visited Poland and Hungary in July 1989 after June elections in which Solidarity candidates won 160 of the 161 seats in the Sejm that were available to them and 92 of the 100 seats of the Polish Senate. In addition, many leaders of the Communist Party failed to secure enough votes to be elected to the parliament they had controlled for four decades. In the following... Read More »

President Bush's Remarks to the Polish National Assembly

Source

President George H. W. Bush visited Poland and Hungary in July 1989 after June elections in which Solidarity candidates won 160 of the 161 seats in the Sejm that were available to them and 92 of the 100 seats of the Polish Senate. In addition, many leaders of the Communist Party failed to secure enough votes to be elected to the parliament they had controlled for four decades. Pursuing a new... Read More »

President Bush's Statement on the Anniversary of the Berlin Wall

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In May 1989, Hungary began to dismember the barbed wire fences and mines surrounding its border with Austria, prompting the largest exodus of East Germans since August 1961 when East Germany constructed the Berlin Wall to stop the flow of emigrants to the West. Tensions during the summer of 1989 between East and West Germany were at their highest level since 1961, as fleeing East Germans... Read More »

President George H.W. Bush and Solidarity Leader Lech Walesa in Question-and-Answer Session With Reporters Following a Luncheon in Gdansk, 11 July 1989

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The transition to a Solidarity-led government in Poland was closely associated with the introduction of market-oriented economic reforms. Many Poles hoped that this might lead to a dramatic improvement in the country’s economy, not only through the stimulation of domestic growth but also through the attraction of investment and outright financial aid from the West. In this brief exchange with... Read More »

President Reagan Addresses Congress Following the US-Soviet Summit in Geneva

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Ronald Reagan began his presidency in 1981 confident that the policy of détente with the Soviet Union—initiated by Richard Nixon in May 1972 and terminated in January 1980 by Jimmy Carter as a response to the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan—was misguided. During his first three years in office, Reagan substituted a confrontational approach that he mediated occasionally with pragmatic policies.... Read More »

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