The Economic Diplomacy ofOstpolitik,

The Economic Diplomacy ofOstpolitik,: Origins of NATO's Energy Dilemma

Werner D. Lippert
Copyright Date: 2011
Edition: NED - New edition, 1
Published by: Berghahn Books
Pages: 260
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  • Book Info
    The Economic Diplomacy ofOstpolitik,
    Book Description:

    Despite the consensus that economic diplomacy played a crucial role in ending the Cold War, very little research has been done on the economic diplomacy during the crucial decades of the 1970s and 1980s. This book fills the gap by exploring the complex interweaving of East-West political and economic diplomacies in the pursuit of detente. The focus on German chancellor Willy Brandt's Ostpolitik reveals how its success was rooted in the usage of energy trade and high tech exchanges with the Soviet Union. His policies and visions are contrasted with those of U.S. President Richard Nixon and the Realpolitik of Henry Kissinger. The ultimate failure to coordinate these rivaling detente policies, and the resulting divide on how to deal with the Soviet Union, left NATO with an energy dilemma between American and European partners-one that has resurfaced in the 21st century with Russia's politicization of energy trade. This book is essential for anyone interested in exploring the interface of international diplomacy, economic interest, and alliance cohesion.

    eISBN: 978-1-84545-574-3
    Subjects: History, Political Science

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-vi)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. vii-vii)
  3. Figures
    (pp. viii-viii)
  4. Acknowledgements
    (pp. ix-ix)
  5. Abbreviations
    (pp. x-x)
  6. Prelude
    (pp. xi-xviii)

    On the first day of February 1970, at the Kaiserhof Hotel in Essen, Soviet Trade Minister Nikolai S. Patolichev and West German Economics Minister Karl Schiller signed a triangular trade deal agreement of hitherto unheard-of proportions. Three separate treaties between the Soviet Union, the German steel industry, and a German bank consortium constituted the first natural gas pipeline deal. In the speeches following its signing, Schiller described this deal as a significant milestone in Soviet-German economic relations that should give rise to the resumption of a lively East-West trade relationship—a trade relationship, he pointed out, that went back to...

  7. 1 Détente, Trade, and the Alliance
    (pp. 1-21)

    The ambiguous and malleable term “détente” would not be coined for another few years, yet the initial sentiment could be attributed to U.S. Secretary of State John Foster Dulles when he suggested that West German Chancellor Konrad Adenauer be more amenable to the East.¹ The previously inconceivable concept of a rapprochement with the East had become a political possibility. America, gripped by fear of global nuclear war, sought to deescalate potential conflicts wherever possible. Even when Vice President Richard Nixon and Soviet General Secretary Nikita Khrushchev argued over the durability of the home appliances produced in their respective countries, it...

  8. 2 Of Honeymoons and Idealism (1968–1970)
    (pp. 22-61)

    Richard M. Nixon, returning in 1967 from a five-year hiatus from politics, recognized the unhappiness over the state of the transatlantic alliance in Western Europe, albeit as a temporary, not as a structural, development. Focused on the “ABJ” (Anything But Johnson) vote, Nixon’s main criticism of the Johnson administration focused on the conduct of the Vietnam War but also condemned Johnson’s ignorance of the needs of the Western European allies. Nixon advocated his own style of détente with three main components: an honorable exit from Vietnam, a strengthening of the Western alliance, and a curtailment of the Soviet expansion of...

  9. 3 Westhandel and the Alliance (1970–1972)
    (pp. 62-100)

    Even when one considers the divisive effect of selective détente within the Warsaw Pact, theOsthandelledger for the Soviet Union is, on balance, more positive than negative. Historian Keith Nelson has convincingly argued that it was economic exhaustion that drove the Soviet Union to pursue the more conciliatory policy of détente.¹ As such, the economic benefits ofOsthandelwere exactly what the Soviet leadership desired. Other historians, such as Mikhail Heller and Aleksandr Nekrich, add a political component to the equation, allowing the Soviet leadership to maintain credibility by supplementing moribound agricultural performance with purchases of Western foodstuffs at...

  10. 4 The Origins of NATO’s Energy Dilemma (1972–1974)
    (pp. 101-136)

    The summer of 1972 was the heyday of Brandt’sOstpolitik, when he appeared to have achieved what he promised to do in his inaugural address: strike the perfect balance between reaching out to the East and retaining Western support. For the remainder of Brandt’s tenure, though, it would be Nixon’s détente strategies that determined East-West relations. Brezhnev recognized the revisionist element inOstpolitik, especially as it undermined the status quo within the Eastern alliance. To Brandt, recognizing the status quo was not the same as being resigned to it; rather,Ostpolitikwas a means to a peaceful change.¹ Nixon’s offer...

  11. 5 Helsinki and the Fall of Détente (1975–1982)
    (pp. 137-172)

    The conflict within the Western alliance was not immediately apparent as the transition to a new U.S. President brought a temporary reprieve. In fact, Ford (and by now Kissinger, as well) was quite open to similar agreements. Unfortunately, Senator Jackson had in the meantime succeeded in amending the 1974 trade bill by linking it to emigration controls with the Jackson-Vanik amendment. Under the trade bill signed into law by President Ford on 3 January 1975, any country that was to receive MFN status would have to allow free emigration of its citizens. As Kissinger reported during a Ford cabinet meeting...

  12. 6 Conclusion: A Permanent Energy Dilemma for the West?
    (pp. 173-183)

    Willy Brandt resigned as German chancellor on 6 May 1974, ostensibly over the Guillaume spy affair. Nixon’s relief over Brandt’s replacement with the more pro-Western Chancellor Helmut Schmidt was in fact short-lived. Almost three months to the day, on 9 August 1974, Richard M. Nixon resigned from his presidency. His resignation was as scandalous as Brandt’s, one outcome of the looming impeachment process. In a strange sense of serendipity both men’s lives paralleled in that they were born the same year, assumed the leadership of their respective countries in the same year, and now had resigned in disgrace the same...

  13. Notes
    (pp. 184-223)
  14. Bibliography
    (pp. 224-230)
  15. Index
    (pp. 231-238)