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Austria's International Position after the End of the Cold War

Günter Bischof
Ferdinand Karlhofer


Of Dwarfs and Giants from Cold War Mediator to Bad Boy of Europe Austria and the U.S. in the Transatlantic Arena (1990-2013)

Günter Bischof

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During the Cold War Austria was the superpowers’ “darling” of sorts and saw itself playing a “special role” between East and West. As a Cold War neutral it played a crucial role as a mediator and “bridge builder” between East and West. Vienna was the site of important summit meetings (Kennedy-Khrushchev in 1961, Carter – Brezhnev in 1979), and longrunning arms control conferences (Conventional Force Reduction Talks), as well as becoming the third host (with New York and Geneva) of important United Nations agencies like the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). Austria was an important player among the Neutral & Non-Aligned states in the preparation and execution of the Conference of Security and Cooperation in Europe, culminating in the Helsinki meeting in 1975 and cementing détente in Europe, and its follow-up meetings. After the end of the four-power postwar occupation (1945-1955), U.S. – Austrian relations “normalized.” Politically, Washington respected Austrian neutrality s...

© innsbruck university press, 2013

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