‘The Conference on Security and Cooperation in Europe: A Reappraisal’

Nature :Contributions

Auteur(s)Angela Romano

Titre‘The Conference on Security and Cooperation in Europe: A Reappraisal’

Directeur de l'ouvrageCraig Daigle, Artemy Kalinovsky

Titre de l'ouvrageThe Routledge Handbook of the Cold War

Ville d'éditionLondon and New York

Maison d'éditionRoutledge




This invited chapter offers a reapprisal of the Helsinki CSCE. It argues that the CSCE and the Final Act, far from being a seal on détente, constituted a step in the process of setting relations in Europe to a new pattern beyond the Cold War. This is evident in the content of the Final Act and the approach underpinning it, which is analysed in the first part. It is also the result of the proactive and, ultimately, determinant role played by the EEC member states (“the Nine”), the neutral and non-aligned countries (N+N), and independently acting Romania in shaping the content of the Final Act. Major actors’ goals and actions at the CSCE are analysed in the second part and show a neat difference between superpowers’ approach and some European countries’ visions of continental relations. Indeed, the most immediate result of the CSCE, crystallized in the ensuing process, was the shift “from détente in Europe to European détente”, the former being a superpower tool for stabilising the continent, while the latter a long-term policy aimed at overcoming the Cold War.

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