Marking the 50th anniversary of the signing of the Warsaw Treaty in 1955, the Cold War International History Project held a conference with U.S. and European historians on May 26-27, in conjunction with the Kennan Institute, the Militärgeschichtliches Forschungsamt (MGFA) and the Harvard Project on Cold War Studies. Participants reassessed the history of the Warsaw Pact in light of emerging evidence from East European and Russian archives. Although established as a defensive alliance against the West, the Warsaw Pact ended up being a coercive tool against its own members. New evidence from East European archives offers a detailed picture of the inner workings of the Communist alliance. Documents are available in the CWIHP Virtual Archive at

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