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Germany

Vladimir Putin’s Stasi ID: A Press Sensation and Its Historical Reality

Recently, a press sensation began in Germany and spread across the globe when an identification card from the East German Ministry of State Security (MfS, or Stasi) was found in the Stasi Records Archive with the name and picture of the Russian President Vladimir Putin.

(On a personal note, I did not find the ID card, despite some early press reports to the contrary.)

It has been a well-known fact that Putin served from 1985 to 1990 as a KGB officer in Dresden; now, some journalists decided, he had worked for the Stasi as well!

North Korea and the Stasi Archives

East German Stasi files from the 1980s paint a contradictory picture of ideological discord and solidarity, while also revealing North Korea’s reactions to a rapidly changing world

When looking over the existing research on North Korean history, one will discover a relatively low number of studies dealing with the 1980s, especially in the Western literature.

From Plowshares to Swords: The United States’ Shift from Nuclear to Conventional Deterrence

The Cuban Missile Crisis almost drove the world into thermonuclear war. However, the Berlin Crisis of 1961 redefined the United States’ strategy of deterrence by emphasizing US conventional forces over nuclear weapons. This new approach to deterrence helped address the balance of power between the United States and the Soviet Union, but at the cost of a military-industrial complex that became permanently established within the United States’ political economy. 

Alexander Schalck-Golodkowski: East Germany's Back-channel Negotiator and Hard Currency Fundraiser

Alexander Schalck-Golodkowski was one of the pivotal political figures in Communist East Germany, the former German Democratic Republic (GDR). Erich Honecker’s negotiator in a variety of important talks with the Federal Republic of Germany, Schalck served as Undersecretary of State in the GDR’s Ministry of Foreign Trade. In addition, he was head of the GDR’s Kommerzielle Koordinierung (Koko), a secret commercial enterprise whose main goal was to bring foreign currency to the GDR.

Austria, German Unification, and European Integration: A Brief Historical Background

To download this Working Paper, please click here.

CWIHP Working Paper 86

Austria, German Unification, and European Integration: A Brief Historical Background

Michael Gehler and Maximilian Graf
March 2018

West Germany's Secret Nuclear Assistance to Iran

West Germany was willing to secretly export sensitive nuclear technology 

Demolition on Karl Marx Square: Cultural Barbarism and the People’s State in 1968

It has been presumed that East Germans were passive after their failed 1953 Uprising. More recent scholarship has even claimed that they enjoyed a People’s State, in which Communist leaders sought to satisfy their everyday needs.

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