by Rick Rozoff
April 10, 2009
There was a noble if naive expectation that with the effective dissolution of the Soviet-led Warsaw Pact in 1989 and even more so with its formal dismantling and the breakup of the Soviet Union itself into fifteen new countries two years later that an era of peace in the world and demilitarization of the European continent was dawning.
The peace might not be a just one, leaving the major Western military and economic powers in charge of the planet, but peace of a sort – any sort – seemed preferable to a continued state of armed, which meant nuclear, confrontation, some thought.
Hopes and talk abounded of a global peace dividend, with hundreds of billions of dollars and pounds, marks and francs and rubles hitherto expended on the production of weapons, the maintenance of armies and the prosecution of wars to be allotted to civilian production and to basic human needs in Europe, North America and throughout the world, especially its most underdeveloped and desperately needy nations.