James M. Lindsay

The Water's Edge

Lindsay analyzes the politics shaping U.S. foreign policy and the sustainability of American power.

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Twenty-Fifth Anniversary of the Fall of the Berlin Wall: CFR Symposium

by James M. Lindsay
November 5, 2014

Kissinger and Haass Courtesy Don Pollard


I’ve been blogging this week on great resources on the Cold War to mark Sunday’s twenty-fifth anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall. Yesterday, CFR brought together several Cold War experts to discuss the Cold War’s origins, conduct, and consequences.

The first session tackled the origins of the Cold War. Speakers on the panel included Frank Costigliola, professor of history at University of Connecticut; Melvyn P. Leffler, Edward Stettinius professor of American history at the University of Virginia; and Philip D. Zelikow, White Burkett Miller professor of history at the University of Virginia. Andrew Nagorski, former president and director of public policy at the EastWest Institute, presided over the session.

On the second panel, Graham T. Allison, director of the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at Harvard Kennedy School, Jeremi Suri, Mack Brown distinguished chair for leadership in global affairs at the Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin, and William Taubman, Bertrand and Snell professor of political science at Amherst College, discussed the conduct of the Cold War. Foreign Affairs editor Gideon Rose presided.

The third panel featured speakers from the United States, Russia, and Germany discussing the end of the Cold War: Robert D. Blackwill, Henry A. Kissinger senior fellow for U.S. foreign policy at CFR; Vitaly Churkin, permanent representative of the Russian Federation to the United Nations; and Frank Elbe, former director of German Foreign Minister Hans-Deitrich Genscher’s cabinet. Mary E. Sarotte, visiting professor of government and history at Harvard University, moderated.

In the final session, CFR President Richard N. Haass talked with former Secretary of State Henry A. Kissinger about America in the Cold War, the fall of the Berlin Wall, and current U.S.-Russian relations. It was a terrific discussion.

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