Conversations with History: Institute of International Studies, UC Berkeley

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The Collapse of the Soviet Union and the End of the Cold War: A Diplomat Looks Back; Conversation with Jack Matlock, 2/13/97 by Harry Kreisler

This interview is part of the Institute's "Conversations with History" series, and uses Internet technology to share with the public Berkeley's distinction as a global forum for ideas. Archival photos are courtesy of Mr. Matlock.

Welcome to a "Conversation on International Affairs." I'm Harry Kreisler of the Institute of International Studies. Our guest today is Ambassador Jack Matlock. Ambassador Matlock served four tours at the American Embassy in the Soviet Union before taking up his present position as George F. Kennan Professor at the Institute for Advanced Study at Princeton. Ambassador Matlock was the last U.S. ambassador to the Soviet Union.

  1. Background ... studying language and literature ... developing a rapport with the culture and the people ... choosing diplomatic service
  2. George Kennan and the "X" Article
  3. Reagan Policies toward the Soviet Union ... a consistent policy ... Reagan's immunity to criticism from the right
  4. The End of the Cold War, the Collapse of Communism, and the Fall of the Soviet Union ... ending the Cold War ... protecting human rights ... Alexander Yakovlev and the end of the class struggle ... encouraging freedom over independence
  5. Common Interests ... national interests ... ending the arms race ... economic interests
  6. Gorbachev ... undermining the Communist Party ... failure in economic reform ... the use of force ... mishandling Yeltsin
  7. Evaluating U.S. Policy: Past, Present, and Future ... Strategic Defense Initiative ... implications of the Chernobyl disaster for Soviet nuclear policy ... bringing Russia into the European security system
  8. The Weimar Analogy
  9. The Work of Diplomacy ... knowing the culture ... understanding the needs at home ... avoiding confrontation ... timing
  10. Advice to Students

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