The Soviet Union and Its Successors



For the greater part of the post-Second World War period international relations were dominated by the East-West conflict, the struggle between the two superpowers, the United States and the Soviet Union. In that struggle human rights have played a role of considerable importance, especially since the signing of the Helsinki agreements of 1975 until the demise of the Soviet Union in 1991. Indeed, if one wants to understand world politics for the greater part of the twentieth century, the study of the foreign policy of the Soviet Union — as well as that of the United States — is indispensable. Although most of this is now a matter of the past, it is a still very recent past. Much of what is happening in Central and Eastern Europe can only be understood if one is aware of the major changes that have taken place very recently in political life in general in that part of the world, including in the area of human rights. That is why this book about the role of human rights in foreign policy contains a chapter on the foreign policy of what used to be the Soviet Union and its successors.


Foreign Policy Universal Declaration National Sovereignty Political Prisoner Party Secretary 
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Copyright information

© Peter R. Baehr 1994

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Leiden University and Utrecht UniversityThe Netherlands
  2. 2.Netherlands Institute of Human RightsThe Netherlands

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