Mikhail Gorbechev’s policy of glasnost’ has been one of the most astonishing political innovations of recent Soviet history. Because it has the hallmarks of free speech, and therefore the opening of a closed society, this policy has convinced the West that fundamental changes are taking place in the USSR – changes which also have dramatic foreign policy implications. The general Western impression of glasnost’, however, has been that it is principally a domestic policy designed for purposes of internal reform. But one component of the policy – military glasnost’ – reveals that it has been designed as much for foreign policy as for domestic purposes.
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This article first appeared in the 1990 winter issue of the International Freedom Review published by the International Freedom Foundation.