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Gorbachev's export of Perestroika to Eastern EuropeDemocratisation reconsidered$
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Helen Hardman

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780719079788

Published to Manchester Scholarship Online: January 2014

DOI: 10.7228/manchester/9780719079788.001.0001

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Keeping the ‘Outer Empire’ in Step with the CPSU: Gorbachev's Policy of Fraternal Party Alignment via the NPC 1987–88

Keeping the ‘Outer Empire’ in Step with the CPSU: Gorbachev's Policy of Fraternal Party Alignment via the NPC 1987–88

Chapter:
(p.108) 4 Keeping the ‘Outer Empire’ in Step with the CPSU: Gorbachev's Policy of Fraternal Party Alignment via the NPC 1987–88
Source:
Gorbachev's export of Perestroika to Eastern Europe
Author(s):

Helen Hardman

Publisher:
Manchester University Press
DOI:10.7228/manchester/9780719079788.003.0005

This chapter outlines how Gorbachev encouraged the fraternal regimes of CEE to convene their respective conferences, so that these parties would align with CPSU perestroika and establish party unity as factionalism grew. By shedding new light on the role of the conference in Gorbachev's controlled liberalisation strategy, the chapter demonstrates that Gorbachev expected the fraternal parties to adopt this policy in the spirit of ‘socialist internationalism’. Archival documents suggest that Gorbachev intended to maintain the Soviet Union's ‘outer empire’ under proposed quasi-market conditions rather than democratisation and the severing of Soviet ties with these states. At the domestic level, the fraternal conferences were designed as a show of solidarity for Gorbachev's perestroika, and leadership renewal in these states was to cement perestroika in the fraternal parties. This process of modernisation was intended to make the one-party state more efficient and improve its image, both at home and abroad, which would in turn increase its appeal with the aim of preserving the socialist model.

Keywords:   Brezhnev Doctrine, Warsaw Pact, Warsaw Treaty Organisation, Council for Mutual Economic Assistance (CMEA), Soviet Union foreign relations with Eastern Europe, Soviet Union economic relations with Eastern Europe

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