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Liberalisation of the foreign policy course

Since the mid-50-s a positive shift in international situation had been foreshadowed: actually for the first time after the Second World War leaders of the most powerful countries including the Soviet Union began to discuss current international problems together. The first meeting of this series was Geneva 18-23 July 1955 get-together of Great Britain, France and USA leaders.

When the Western leaders demanded that the USSR carried out a policy of democratisation in the countries of East Europe, the USSR appeared with offers targeted to propaganda effect. For instance, the USSR suggested to materialise the Treaty of Ñollective Security without any preliminary consultations. Naturally, the suggestion was rejected in the West-European capitals.

In attempt to demonstrate the competence of the suggestion, Soviet government ventured to a partial unilateral disarmament. In August of 1955 the USSR Supreme Soviet adopted a decision about one-sided 640 000 people reduction of the Army. Other socialist countries ventured to one-sided reductions also.

In 1957 the USSR made a number of suggestions in UN about a cessation in nuclear weapon tests; about accepting obligations not to use nuclear or thermonuclear weapons; about the USSR, the USA, China Armies manpower reduction down to 2 500 000 people and then down to 1500 000 people; about liquidation military bases on foreign territories. In 1958 the USSR stopped nuclear weapons tests one-sided, awaiting similar steps from the West countries.

In the second half of the 50-s and the first half of 60-s relations between the USSR and other countries grew better: with Turkey, Iran, Japan (with which in 1956 a declaration was signed about belligerency ceasing and diplomatic relations restoration. Approximately at the same time two-sided negotiations were held with Great Britain and France. In 1958 an agreement with the USA was signed about co-operation in the fields of culture and economics, about exchange groups of scientists, culture personalities etc. Relations with Yugoslavia normalised.

The USSR policy in East-European socialist countries remained practically the same get-tough one as it was previously. In September-October of 1956 Hungarian government made an attempt to get rid of the tough dependence from the USSR, to restore democracy in "Western" variant. They announced that they were going to leave the Warsaw Pact Organisation and to cease allied relations with the USSR.

Another serious crisis were German events of 1961. According to the Potsdam Peace Agreements, the city of Berlin, as well as the whole Germany, was divided into three occupational zones: of the USSR, USA and Great Britain. In 1949 the USSR zone became a part of German Democratic Republic and simultaneously its capital. The zones of the USA and Great Britain formed West Berlin, a territory, actually controlled from FRG.

Right after the "Berlin crisis" "the Missile Crisis" (Havana) followed, that put the world on the edge of global catastrophe, as the USSR and the USA were very close to thermonuclear war. "The Missile Crisis" was the culmination in the process of sharpening relations between nations in the period of "Cold War". After that event a slow and unsteady process of improvement of relations between socialist and capitalist countries began.

In the second part of the 50-s and early 60-s complex problems in relations between China and Albania became apparent. Sharpening of the relations between the USSR and China led to collapse of "one and undivided" socialist camp, created by Stalin after the Second World War.

As direct USSR-USA confrontation was subsiding, concealed struggle between them in the countries of the "Third World" began. In the 50-s many Asian colonial countries obtained independence, in early 60-s that process began in African countries, too. The USSR, as well as the USA wanted to have their own trust, "one of the lads" in the governments of those countries, in order control in some way or other the foreign and internal affair courses. Economic and military assistance was being rendered from both sides.

In late 50-s and early 60-s there was a situation, when communist movement in many countries was close to seizure of power. Only massive aid from the side of the USA, Great Britain and other countries made it possible for the ruling regimes to stabilise the situation. The USSR urged to tune up diplomatic relations with some developing countries. The most stable links were set up with India and Indonesia. The relations with Burma, Cambodia, NepNep were rather good also.

The Soviet Union often used the fact of setting-up fast diplomatic and economic relations with developing countries for weakening influence of former colonial countries and for creation a favourable situation for coming a communist or a "close-to-communist" regime to power.

In the Middle East the problems were no less complicated. By late 40-s, early 50-s most of the Arabian countries had made a clean sweep of colonial dependency. The USSR supported Arabian countries in political, economic and military area. Especially large-scale aid was received by the United Arabian Republic (construction of Asuan Dam). The USSR openly rendered an assistance to Egypt in 1956 during England, France and Israel aggression because of Suez Canal nationalisation. In the long run England, France and Israel withdrew their troops from Egypt. The war of 1956 strengthened the USSR position in the Middle East. Since that time the USSR's influence onto countries of the Third World began to mount.

1960 was the year of gaining freedom by 17 African countries, but the USSR practically wasn't prepared for active actions on African continent. The USSR influence there was limited by political declarations and by recognising new independent countries.

All in all by the mid-60-s a certain stabilisation of the post-war world had occurred. An important step was made towards limitation of nuclear weapons race, that had among other things an important ecological meaning. On August 5, 1963 Agreement about nuclear tests in atmosphere, space and water prohibiting was signed

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