1987: The year of disarmament

Jul 25, 2018

Akten zur Auswärtigen Politik der Bundesrepublik Deutschland
[Documents on the Foreign Policy of the Federal Republic of Germany]


Editing work by Tim Szatkowski, Tim Geiger and Jens Jost Hofmann. Senior Editor: Ilse Dorothee Pautsch

Commissioned by the Federal Foreign Office, edited by the Institute for Contemporary History
General Editor: Andreas Wirsching; Co-Editors: Hélène Miard-Delacroix and Gregor Schöllgen

8 December 1987 was a milestone in disarmament. The INF Treaty abolished a weapons category for the first time – medium-range nuclear missiles that had been the subject of fierce disputes in the course of the NATO Double-Track Decision. This breakthrough in relations between the East and West had a major impact on the “front state” that was the Federal Republic, as many of the 381 documents published here for the first time demonstrate. The visits of Federal President Richard von Weizsäcker to Moscow and SED General Secretary Erich Honecker to Bonn became watershed moments in Eastern European and German policy. Other stories making headlines that year included “Kremlin pilot” Mathias Rust, Klaus Barbie’s trial in Lyon, the actions against the Colonia Dignidad in Chile and kidnapping cases in Lebanon.