|Type||Independence treaty / Peace treaty|
|Drafted||13 February 1990|
|Signed||12 September 1990|
|Location||Moscow, Russian SFSR, Soviet Union|
|Effective||15 March 1991|
The Treaty on the Final Settlement with Respect to Germany (German : Vertrag über die abschließende Regelung in Bezug auf Deutschland ), or the Two Plus Four Agreement (German : Zwei-plus-Vier-Vertrag; short: German Treaty), was negotiated in 1990 between the Federal Republic of Germany and the German Democratic Republic (the eponymous Two), and the Four Powers which occupied Germany at the end of World War II in Europe: France, the Soviet Union, the United Kingdom, and the United States. In the treaty, the Four Powers renounced all rights they held in Germany, allowing a reunited Germany to become fully sovereign the following year. At the same time, the two German states (later confirmed by a unified Germany) agreed to confirm their acceptance of the existing border with Poland, and accepted that the borders of Germany after unification would correspond only to the territories then administered by West and East Germany, with the exclusion and renunciation of any other territorial claims (e.g., to the Kaliningrad Oblast).
On 2 August 1945, the Potsdam Agreement, promulgated at the end of the Potsdam Conference, among other things agreed on the initial terms under which the Allies of World War II would govern Germany. A provisional German–Polish border known as the Oder–Neisse line awarded, in theory within the context of that "provisional border", most of Germany's eastern provinces to Poland and the Soviet Union. The German population of these areas were either expelled or killed. Those agreements reached were provisional and the agreement stipulated that the situation would be finalised by "a peace settlement for Germany to be accepted by the Government of Germany when a government adequate for the purpose is established" (Potsdam Agreement 1.3.1). Parts of those above-mentioned agreements were burdened with controversy from several sources e.g., Churchill's comment about "stuffing the Polish goose too full" (of German lands). The overall "German Question" became one of the salient and crucial issues of the long-running Cold War, and until it ended in the late 1980s, little progress had been made in the establishment of a single government of Germany adequate for the purpose of agreeing to a final settlement. This meant that in some respects (largely, but not only, technical), Germany did not have full national sovereignty. 42–43:
Several developments in 1989 and 1990, collectively termed Die Wende and the Peaceful Revolution, led to the fall of the Berlin Wall and the collapse of the SED in the German Democratic Republic (GDR or East Germany). In the 18 March 1990 national election in the GDR an electoral alliance of parties that favored German reunification via article 23 of the Basic Law for the Federal Republic of Germany won a plurality. 229–232 :211–214 To achieve unity and full sovereignty, both German states were willing to accept the terms of the Potsdam Agreement that affected Germany. On 31 August 1990, the FRG and GDR signed the Unification Treaty, which describes the manner and specifics of the GDR's accession to the Federal Republic. It was then possible for all international parties to negotiate a final settlement.:
The Treaty on the Final Settlement with Respect to Germany was signed in Moscow, Soviet Union, on 12 September 1990, 363 and paved the way for German reunification on 3 October 1990. Under the terms of the treaty, the Four Powers renounced all rights they formerly held in Germany, including those regarding the city of Berlin. Upon deposit of the last instrument of ratification, united Germany became fully sovereign on 15 March 1991.:
The treaty allows Germany to make and belong to alliances, without any foreign influence in its politics. All Soviet forces were to leave Germany by the end of 1994. Before the Soviets withdrew, Germany would only deploy territorial defense units not integrated into the alliance structures. German forces in the rest of Germany were assigned to areas where Soviet troops were stationed. After the Soviets withdrew, the Germans could freely deploy troops in those areas, with the exception of nuclear weapons. For the duration of the Soviet presence, Allied troops would remain stationed in Berlin upon Germany's request.
Germany undertook to reduce its armed forces to no more than 370,000 personnel, no more than 345,000 of whom were to be in the Army and the Air Force. These limits would commence at the time that the Treaty on Conventional Armed Forces in Europe would enter into force, and the treaty also took note that it was expected that the other participants in the negotiations would "render their contribution to enhancing security and stability in Europe, including measures to limit personnel strengths".Germany also reaffirmed its renunciation of the manufacture, possession of, and control over nuclear, biological, and chemical weapons, and in particular, that the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty would continue to apply in full to the unified Germany (the Federal Republic of Germany). No foreign armed forces, nuclear weapons, or the carriers for nuclear weapons would be stationed or deployed in six states (the area of Berlin and the former East Germany), making them a permanent Nuclear-Weapon-Free Zone. The German Army could deploy conventional weapons systems with nonconventional capabilities, provided that they were equipped and designed for a purely conventional role. Germany also agreed to use military force only in accordance with the United Nations Charter.
Another of the treaty's important provisions was Germany's confirmation of the by now internationally recognised border with Poland, and other territorial changes in Germany that had taken place since 1945, preventing any future claims to lost territory east of the Oder-Neisse line (see also Former eastern territories of Germany). The treaty defined the territory of a 'united Germany' as being the territory of East Germany, West Germany and Berlin, prohibiting Germany from making any future territorial claims. Germany also agreed to sign a separate treaty with Poland reaffirming the present common border, binding under international law, effectively relinquishing these territories to Poland. This was done on 14 November 1990 with the signing of the German-Polish Border Treaty. [ citation needed ] from territories outside the territories of East Germany, West Germany and Berlin (although Germany is permitted to maintain research stations in Antarctica; at present it has ten).Furthermore, the Federal Republic was required by the treaty to amend its Basic Law so as to be constitutionally prohibited from accepting any application for incorporation into Germany
Although the treaty was signed by West and East Germany as separate sovereign states, it was subsequently ratified by united Germany (the Federal Republic of Germany).
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After the Soviet Union dissolved itself in December 1991, the command unit of the Soviet Group of Soviet Forces in Germany devolved to the Russian Federation. The German government subsequently recognized the Russian Federation's claim to be the successor state of the Soviet Union, including the right to maintain troops in Germany until the end of 1994. However, with post-Soviet Russia facing severe economic hardship, President Boris Yeltsin ordered Russian troop deployment in Germany to be reduced to levels significantly below those permitted in the Treaty. The last Russian troops left Germany at the end of August in 1994, four months before the treaty deadline.
In the first decade of the 21st century, the Bundeswehr underwent a gradual transformation to a fully professional force. By 2011, the year Germany voluntarily suspended conscription, the Bundeswehr had retained fewer than 250,000 active duty personnel – barely two thirds of the country's treaty limit of 370,000.
The treaty has been alleged to have been violated on a number of occasions. Manoeuvres including NATO troops in Trollenhagen, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern in the area of the former East Germany have been questioned. [ verification needed ] Article 5, paragraph 3 of the treaty concerning the area of the former East Germany states: "Foreign armed forces and nuclear weapons or their carriers will not be stationed in that part of Germany or deployed there." In September 2007, France offered Germany joint control over its nuclear arsenal, but the Germans rejected this.
Historian Stephen F. Cohen asserted in 2005 that a commitment was given that NATO would never expand further east,but according to Robert Zoellick, then a US State Department official involved in the Two Plus Four negotiating process, this appears to be a misperception; no formal commitment of the sort was made. On 7 May 2008 the former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev, in an interview with the British newspaper The Daily Telegraph , stated his view that such a commitment had been made:
The Americans promised that NATO wouldn't move beyond the boundaries of Germany after the Cold War but now half of central and eastern Europe are members, so what happened to their promises? It shows they cannot be trusted.
However, in a 2014 interview Gorbachev reversed himself by saying that the topic of "NATO expansion" as such was "not discussed at all", although he maintained that the decision to expand NATO into the east was a "violation of the spirit of the statements and assurances made to us in 1990".
Some argue that such a commitment was not made during the discussions on German reunification.Allegedly, the issue of expanding NATO into Central and Eastern European states was not on the agenda at that time, since all of them were Warsaw Pact members and most still had substantial Soviet military forces stationed on their soil, and Gorbachev "did not even contemplate seeking a provision that would bar any other Warsaw Pact countries from eventually pursuing membership in NATO". This was rebuked by the National Security Archive (a US non-governmental organization) in December 2017, which had looked in the declassified record:
The documents show that multiple national leaders were considering and rejecting Central and Eastern European membership in NATO as of early 1990 and through 1991, that discussions of NATO in the context of German unification negotiations in 1990 were not at all narrowly limited to the status of East German territory, and that subsequent Soviet and Russian complaints about being misled about NATO expansion were founded in written contemporaneous memcons and telcons at the highest levels.
The invocation of the supposed non-expansion pledge to justify Russia's annexation of Crimea has been criticized by NATO.
| Territorial evolution of Germany |
in the 20th century
East Germany, officially the German Democratic Republic, was a state that existed from 1949 to 1990, the period when the eastern portion of Germany was part of the Eastern Bloc during the Cold War. Commonly described as a communist state in English usage, it described itself as a socialist "workers' and peasants' state". It consisted of territory that was administered and occupied by Soviet forces following the end of World War II—the Soviet occupation zone of the Potsdam Agreement, bounded on the east by the Oder–Neisse line. The Soviet zone surrounded West Berlin but did not include it and West Berlin remained outside the jurisdiction of the GDR.
The Potsdam Agreement was the 1 August 1945 agreement between three of the Allies of World War II, the United Kingdom, the United States, and the Soviet Union. It concerned the military occupation and reconstruction of Germany, its borders, and the entire European Theatre of War territory. It also addressed Germany's demilitarisation, reparations, the prosecution of war criminals and the mass expulsion of ethnic Germans from various parts of Europe.
The Warsaw Treaty Organization (WTO), officially the Treaty of Friendship, Cooperation and Mutual Assistance, commonly known as the Warsaw Pact (WP), was a collective defense treaty signed in Warsaw, Poland between the Soviet Union and seven other Eastern Bloc socialist republics of Central and Eastern Europe in May 1955, during the Cold War. The Warsaw Pact was the military complement to the Council for Mutual Economic Assistance (CoMEcon), the regional economic organization for the socialist states of Central and Eastern Europe. The Warsaw Pact was created in reaction to the integration of West Germany into NATO in 1955 per the London and Paris Conferences of 1954.
German reunification was the process in 1990 in which the German Democratic Republic (GDR) became part of the Federal Republic of Germany (FRG) to form the reunited nation of Germany.
As result of Potsdam Agreement by the three main winners on 1 August 1945, Germany was divided between the two global blocs in the East and West with the two very opposite ideologies, one period known as the Division of Germany (1945-1990). Germany was stripped of its war gains. In addition, a quarter of its pre-war territory were annexed to Poland and the Soviet Union, and their German populations were expelled to the West. Furthermore, Saarland was under French control until 1957. At the end of the war, there were some eight million foreign displaced persons in Germany; mainly forced laborers and prisoners; including around 400,000 from the concentration camp system, survivors from a much larger number who had died from starvation, harsh conditions, murder, or being worked to death. 12-14 million German-speaking refugees and expellees arrived in western and central Germany from the eastern provinces and other countries in Central and Eastern Europe between 1944 and 1950; many died on their way there. Some 9 million Germans were POWs, many of whom were kept as forced laborers for several years to provide restitution to the countries Germany had devastated in the war, and some industrial equipment was removed as reparations.
German Reich was the constitutional name for the German nation state that existed from 1871 to 1945. The Reich became understood as deriving its authority and sovereignty entirely from a continuing unitary German "national people", with that authority and sovereignty being exercised at any one time over a unitary German "state territory" with variable boundaries and extent. Although commonly translated as "German Empire", the word Reich here better translates as "realm" or territorial "reach," in that the term does not in itself have monarchical connotations. The word Kaiserreich is applied to denote an empire with an emperor; hence the German Empire of 1871–1918 is termed Deutsches Kaiserreich in standard works of reference. From 1943 to 1945, the official name of Germany became – but was not formally proclaimed – Großdeutsches Reich on account of the additional German peoples and associated territories annexed into the state's administration before and during the Second World War.
The Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty was an arms control treaty between the United States and the Soviet Union. US President Ronald Reagan and Soviet General Secretary Mikhail Gorbachev signed the treaty on 8 December 1987. The US Senate approved the treaty on 27 May 1988, and Reagan and Gorbachev ratified it on 1 June 1988.
The Treaty of Zgorzelec between the Republic of Poland and East Germany (GDR) was signed on 6 July 1950 in Zgorzelec, Poland.
The original Treaty on Conventional Armed Forces in Europe (CFE) was negotiated and concluded during the last years of the Cold War and established comprehensive limits on key categories of conventional military equipment in Europe and mandated the destruction of excess weaponry. The treaty proposed equal limits for the two "groups of states-parties", the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and the Warsaw Pact. In 2007, Russia "suspended" its participation in the treaty, and on 10 March 2015, citing NATO's de facto breach of the Treaty, Russia formally announced it was "completely" halting its participation in it as of the next day.
The military history of the Soviet Union began in the days following the 1917 October Revolution that brought the Bolsheviks to power. In 1918 the new government formed the Red Army, which then defeated its various internal enemies in the Russian Civil War of 1917–22. The years 1918–21 saw defeats for the Red Army in the Polish–Soviet War (1919–21) and in independence wars for Estonia (1918–20), Latvia (1918–20) and Lithuania (1918–19). The Red Army invaded Finland ; fought the Battles of Khalkhin Gol of May–September 1939 against Japan and its client state Manchukuo; it was deployed when the Soviet Union, in agreement with Nazi Germany, took part in the invasion of Poland in September 1939, and occupied the Baltic States, Bessarabia and Northern Bukovina. In World War II the Red Army became a major military force in the defeat of Nazi Germany and conquered Manchuria. After the war, it occupied East Germany and many nations in central and eastern Europe, which became satellite states in the Soviet bloc.
The OTR-23 Oka was a mobile theatre ballistic missile deployed by the Soviet Union near the end of the Cold War to replace the obsolete SS-1C 'Scud B'. It carried the GRAU index 9K714 and was assigned the NATO reporting name SS-23 Spider. The introduction of the Oka significantly strengthened Soviet theatre nuclear capabilities as its range and accuracy allowed it not only to strike hardened NATO targets such as airfields, nuclear delivery systems, and command centers, but moving targets as well. It also had a fast reaction time, being able to fire in approximately five minutes, and was nearly impossible to intercept, thereby allowing it to penetrate defenses.
Although Germany has the technical capability to produce weapons of mass destruction, since World War II it has generally refrained from producing those weapons. However, Germany participates in the NATO nuclear weapons sharing arrangements and trains for delivering United States nuclear weapons.
This is a timeline of the main events of the Cold War, a state of and military tension after World War II between powers in the Western Bloc and powers in the Eastern Bloc.
Allied-occupied Germany was the administration of Germany upon defeat of Nazi Germany in World War II, when the victorious Allies asserted joint authority and sovereignty over Germany as a whole, defined as all territories of the former German Reich west of the Oder–Neisse line, having declared the destruction of Nazi Germany at the death of Adolf Hitler. The four powers divided "Germany as a whole" into four occupation zones for administrative purposes under the three Western Allies and the Soviet Union, respectively. This division was ratified at the August 1945 Potsdam Conference. The four zones were agreed by the United States, United Kingdom and Soviet Union at the February 1945 Yalta Conference, setting aside an earlier division into three zones proposed by the September 1944 London Protocol.
The Cold War period of 1985–1991 began with the rise of Mikhail Gorbachev as General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union. Gorbachev was a revolutionary leader for the USSR, as he was the first to promote liberalization of the political landscape (Glasnost) and the economy (Perestroika); prior to this, the USSR had been strictly prohibiting liberal reform and maintained a command economy. The USSR, despite facing massive economic difficulties, was involved in a costly arms race with the United States under President Ronald Reagan. Regardless, the USSR began to crumble as liberal reforms proved difficult to handle and capitalist changes to the economy were badly instituted and caused major problems. The Cold War came to an end when the last war of Soviet occupation ended in Afghanistan, the Berlin Wall came down in Germany, and a series of mostly peaceful revolutions swept the Soviet Bloc states of eastern Europe in 1989.
Rundfunk der DDR was the collective designation for radio broadcasting organized by the State Broadcasting Committee in the German Democratic Republic (GDR) until German reunification in 1990.
The German Democratic Republic (GDR), German: Deutsche Demokratische Republik (DDR), often known in English as East Germany, existed from 1949 to 1990. It covered the area of the present-day German states of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Brandenburg, Berlin, Sachsen, Sachsen-Anhalt, and Thüringen. This area was occupied by the Soviet Union at the end of World War II, with the remaining German territory to the west occupied by the British, American, and French armies. Following the economic and political unification of the three western occupation zones under a single administration and the establishment of the German Federal Republic in May 1949, the German Democratic Republic was founded on 7 October 1949 as a sovereign nation.
During World War II, the Soviet Union occupied and annexed several countries effectively handed over by Nazi Germany in the secret Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact of 1939. These included the eastern regions of Poland, as well as Latvia, Estonia, Lithuania, part of eastern Finland and eastern Romania. Apart from the Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact and post-war division of Germany, the USSR also occupied and annexed Carpathian Ruthenia from Czechoslovakia in 1945.
The legal status of Germany concerns the question of the extinction, or otherwise continuation, of the German nation state following the rise and downfall of Nazi Germany, and constitutional hiatus of the military occupation of Germany by the four Allied powers from 1945 to 1949. It became current once again when the German Democratic Republic joined the Federal Republic of Germany in 1990.
The Treaty on Relations Between the USSR and GDR was a treaty between the Soviet Union and German Democratic Republic, commonly known as East Germany, signed on 20 September 1955. The treaty became the legal basis for the Group of Soviet Forces in Germany, and its successor, the Western Group of Forces to maintain its presence in Germany following the end of the Soviet Occupation.
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