The Chernyaev Centennial

25 May 2021 — National Security Archive

100th Birthday of Anatoly Sergeyevich marked with latest translated excerpt of his “irreplaceable” diary — the year 1981

Architect of “New Thinking,” champion of glasnost, prolific historian, hero of the end of the Cold War, key source for scholars

Even as Polish Solidarity crisis peaked, Brezhnev “apparently never seriously considered” sending in troops

If Sovietologists got to be a “fly on the wall at the Politburo,” nobody would ever believe this fly

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Inside the Gorbachev-Bush “Partnership” on the First Gulf War 1990

10 September 2020 — The National Security Archive

New Documents Show Soviet Leader Scrambling to Stay in Sync with Americans, But Ultimately Aiming for Non-Use of Force

Iraqi Invasion of Kuwait 30 Years Ago Posed First Test for Post-Cold War Superpower Cooperation

Soviet transcripts of Gorbachev conversations with Mitterrand, Cheney, Baker, and Saudis published for the first time in English

Washington, D.C., September 9, 2020 – Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev quickly decided that joint action with the United States was the most important course for the USSR in dealing with Saddam Hussein’s invasion of Kuwait 30 years ago, rather than the long-standing Soviet-Iraq alliance, and built what he explicitly called a “partnership” with the U.S. that was key to the international condemnation of Iraq’s actions, according to declassified Soviet and American documents published today by the National Security Archive.

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National Security Archive Update, May 25, 2010: THE DIARY OF ANATOLY CHERNYAEV, 1990

Fifth Installment of Former Top Soviet Adviser’s Journal Available in English for First Time

For more information, contact:
Svetlana Savranskaya – 202/994-7000

www.nsarchive.org

Washington, DC, May 25, 2010 – Today the National Security Archive publishes its fifth installment of the diary of Anatoly Chernyaev, the man behind some of the most momentous transformations in Soviet foreign policy at the end of the 1980s in his role as Mikhail Gorbachev’s chief foreign policy aide.

In addition to his contributions to perestroika and new thinking, Anatoly Sergeevich Chernyaev was and remains a strong proponent of openness and transparency, providing his diaries and notes to historians trying to understand the end of the Cold War. This section of the diary, covering 1990—a tragic year, according to Chernyaev—is published today in English for the first time.

Visit the Web site of the National Security Archive for more information about today’s posting.

www.nsarchive.org

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THE NATIONAL SECURITY ARCHIVE is an independent non-governmental research institute and library located at The George Washington University in Washington, D.C. The Archive collects and publishes declassified documents acquired through the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). A tax-exempt public charity, the Archive receives no U.S. government funding; its budget is supported by publication royalties and donations from foundations and individuals.

National Security Archive Update, April 30, 2010 HISTORIC DISSIDENT JOURNAL PUBLISHED ONLINE

Original Russian-Language “Problems of Eastern Europe” Connected Soviet, Eastern and Western Publics

New Russia Web Page Features Digitized Soviet Documents On Missile Crisis, Afghanistan, End of Cold War, and Dissidents From National Security Archive Collections

English introduction – www.nsarchive.org/rus

New Russian-language page – www.nsarchive.org/rus/Index.html

Washington, DC, April 30, 2010 – A rare complete series of the historic dissident journal “Problems of Eastern Europe” achieved its first-ever online publication today as part of the new Russian-language Web pages of the National Security Archive, also featuring hundreds of digitized facsimiles of declassified Soviet-era documents on topics such as the Cuban Missile Crisis, the Soviet war in Afghanistan, Mikhail Gorbachev and the end of the Cold War, and dissident movements in the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe.

Introduced on the Archive site by long-time editors Larisa and Frantisek Silnicky, “Problems of Eastern Europe” published throughout the 1980s a wide range of Soviet, Eastern European, and ultimately even Western reformist thinking, in order to make connections between those various publics and overcome the information barriers that especially hindered the development of dissident and oppositionist ideas.

The new Russian-language Web pages, compiled and edited by the Archive’s director of Russia Programs, Svetlana Savranskaya, together with technical editor Rinat Bikineyev, also include the most sought-after primary sources in Russian from the Archive’s extensive collections, ranging from the diary of top Gorbachev aide and long-time Central Committee official Anatoly Chernyaev, to the scholarly collection compiled by the late Sergo Mikoyan based on his father Anastas Mikoyan’s experience as a leading Soviet Politburo member, to the specialized collections developed by Archive staff on such topics as the Soviet side of the Cuban Missile Crisis, the Soviet invasion and occupation and withdrawal from Afghanistan, and the surveillance and repression of dissidents such as the Moscow Helsinki Group.

The site also features a new “document of the month,” the original “sovershenno sekretno” (top secret) transcript of the Soviet Politburo discussion 30 years ago of the Afghanistan war, which reads in parts as if lifted from current international debates over progress or the lack thereof in the current U.S. and NATO intervention in Afghanistan.

Today’s publication of primary sources in their original Russian fulfills one of the major goals of the Archive’s Russia and Eurasia Programs, which is to increase public and scholarly access to original sources especially to younger scholars throughout the former Soviet space. In recent weeks, the Russian government has posted online the declassified archive of Soviet documents related to the Katyn massacre of Polish officers by Stalin’s NKVD, Russian President Dmitri Medvedev has endorsed the opening of archives from the Soviet period, and noted Russian expert Dmitri Trenin has called for archival openings as part of a new Russian foreign policy emphasis on cooperative security.

English-language publications of the Archive’s Russia and Eurasia Programs include more than two dozen Electronic Briefing Books of key U.S. and Soviet documents (in translation) covering major Cold war topics and events such as the series of superpower summits featuring Presidents Reagan and Bush with Soviet general secretary Gorbachev, as well as the new book from Central European University Press, “Masterpieces of History: The Peaceful End of the Cold War in Europe, 1989,” edited by Svetlana Savranskaya, Thomas Blanton and Vladislav Zubok.

English introduction – www.nsarchive.org/rus

New Russian-language Web page – www.nsarchive.org/rus/Index.html

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THE NATIONAL SECURITY ARCHIVE is an independent non-governmental research institute and library located at The George Washington University in Washington, D.C. The Archive collects and publishes declassified documents acquired through the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). A tax-exempt public charity, the Archive receives no U.S. government funding; its budget is supported by publication royalties and donations from foundations and individuals.

National Security Archive Update, April 29, 2010: BREAKING DOWN SOVIET MILITARY SECRECY

Archive publishes documents from “The Dead Hand: The Untold Story of the Cold War Arms Race and Its Dangerous Legacy,” the new book by David E. Hoffman, winner of the 2010 Pulitzer Prize for general non-fiction.

For more information, contact:
David E. Hoffman
hoffmand@washpost.com

http://www.nsarchive.org

Washington, DC, April 29, 2010 – Previously unpublished documents from inside the Kremlin shed new light on how Soviet and American scientists breached the walls of Soviet military secrecy in the final years of the Cold War.

The documents were first disclosed in a new book by David E. Hoffman, “The Dead Hand: The Untold Story of the Cold War Arms Race and Its Dangerous Legacy.” The documents are being posted today in English translation by the National Security Archive.

The documents and the book show how a progressive Soviet physicist, Yevgeny Velikhov, challenged the Soviet military and security system, throwing open the doors of glasnost with a series of unprecedented tours of top-secret weapons sites. Velikhov took American scientists, experts and journalists on these tours just as Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev was accelerating his drive to slow the arms race.

These glasnost tours punctured some of the myths and legends of both sides. They showed that the Reagan administration had exaggerated Soviet capabilities and also that the Soviet military machine was not as technologically advanced as had been thought.

The book is based in part on thousands of pages of documents obtained by Hoffman detailing key decisions about the Soviet military-industrial complex and arms control in the 1980s. The documents were collected by Vitaly Katayev, a professional staff member of the Central Committee, and are now deposited at the Hoover Institution at Stanford University. The book is also based on extensive documentation of the final years of the Cold War in the collection of the National Security Archive.

Follow the link below for more information:

http://www.nsarchive.org

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THE NATIONAL SECURITY ARCHIVE is an independent non-governmental research institute and library located at The George Washington University in Washington, D.C. The Archive collects and publishes declassified documents acquired through the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). A tax-exempt public charity, the Archive receives no U.S. government funding; its budget is supported by publication royalties and donations from foundations and individuals.