James W. Peterson
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Jacek Lubecki
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Communism and late communism
From forced convergence to divergence
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Convergence with Stalinist expections characterized the political experiences of all four states in the immediate period after the post-Second World War transition to communist political patterns. However, divergence from Moscow-led communist directives took place in Poland in 1956 and 1980, in Hungary in 1956, and in Czechoslovakia in 1968. Post-Stalinism in the four East-Central European countries took the form of both unrest under the directives from Moscow and the efforts of top political leaders to conform with the policy positions emanating from the East. Warsaw Pact invasions stifled innovation in all three communist era states but raised expectations in the underground for change in a future and better day. Their communist era resistances to control by Moscow were futile in the short term but important in the long-run in laying a foundation for the return to self-autonomy after 1989.

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Defense policies of East-Central European countries after 1989

Creating stability in a time of uncertainty


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