Anglo-German relations during the Labour governments 1964–70

NATO strategy, détente and European integration

Author: Terry Macintyre

Speaking at West Point in 1962, Dean Acheson observed that Britain had lost an empire and had still to find a new role. This book explains why, as Britain's Labour government contemplated withdrawal from east of Suez, ministers came to see that Britain's future role would be as a force within Europe and that, to this end, and to gain entry into the European Economic Community, a close relationship with the Federal Republic of Germany would be essential. This account of Anglo-German relations during the 1960s reveals insights into how both governments reacted to a series of complex issues and why, despite differences that might have led to strains, a good understanding was maintained. Its approach brings together material covering NATO strategy, détente and European integration. The main argument of the book is reinforced by material drawn from British and German primary sources covering the period as a whole, from interviews with some of Harold Wilson's key advisers and from newspaper reports, as well as from a wide range of secondary publications. The introduction of material from German sources adds to its authenticity. The book contributes to what we know about Cold War history, and should help to redefine some of the views about the relationship between Britain and Germany during the 1960s.

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