GENEVA SUMMIT  1985
courtesy by  Anton Keller, Secretary, Good Offices Group of European Lawmakers
(url: www.solami.com/summit.htm ¦ .../NPT.htm ¦ .../EUUS.htm ¦ .../nations.htm ¦ .../diplomacy.htm ¦ .../oehen.jpg ¦ .../armageddon.htm
research contributed by: EDA & Bundesarchiv, Bern; ETH Zurich; Irina Gerassimova, UN Library Geneva
tks for notification of errors, ommissions & suggestions: 027-2812477 - swissbit@solami.com

Joint Resolution of U.S. Congress on Reagan-Gorbatchev meeting in Geneva
Able Archer, The 1983 Soviet War Scare, Die RYAN-Krise, US-Soviet Relations 61-89,

1 May 11   1983: The most dangerous year, Andrew R.Garland, University of Nevada
1.Mai 10   NATO-Manöver 2.-9.11.83: 8 Min vor III.Weltkrieg, ARTE-Dokfilm
19 May 07   A Cold War Conundrum: The 1983 Soviet War Scare, CIA, Benjamin B. Fischer
19 nov 05   Guerre froide, le début de la fin, Le Temps, Bernard Bridel
2000    The United States and the Nuclear Arms Race, 1981-1999, Oxford University Press, Ronald E. Powaski
30.Jan 85   Orientierungsschreiben an EDA-Staatssekretär Edouard Brunner, Valentin Oehen
20.Juni 84   UdSSR-Antwort, Oberst Y. Denissov
2.Mai 84   Begegnungen der Generalstabchefs der USA und der UdSSR, Valentin Oehen
March 84   Expansion of the US-USSR Military Dialogue, Lt.Col. Wade J. Williams
16 Jan 84   Ronald Reagan: Address to the Nation and Other Countries on United States-Soviet Relations, White House
17 Nov 83   US answer, Col. Justin G. La Porte
11.Nov 83   Zumstein response to NR Oehen
9.Nov 83   Exploratory letter by Swiss lawmaker Oehen to Generals Nikolai OGARKOV & John VESSEY
           (NR Oehen, in Absprache mit Bundesrat, kontaktiert Generalstab-Chefs der USA & der UdSSR)
11.Apr 83   Militärmacht UdSSR - im Westen überschätzt, Der Spiegel
29 Feb 83   EURO-MISSILES NEED LONGER FUSES, H.Anton Keller
July 75   The NPT vs Nuclear Energy Developments, International Law Review, H.Anton Keller, et al.
March 68   Implications of the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty, International Law Review, H.Anton Keller, et al.




Die Erklärung des Vereinten Amerikanischen Kongresses vom 30 Oktober 1985 ist unterzeichnet vom Sprecher des Repräsentatenhauses, Thomas P. O'Neill Jr., vom Senatspräsidenten, Strom Thurmond, sowie vom Präsidenten der Vereinigten Staaten, Ronald Reagan; sie hat folgenden Wortlaut (gemäss Interpellation 03.3487, Begründung, Punkt 6):
"Ninety-ninth Congress of the United States of America
AT THE FIRST SESSION Begun and held at the City of Washington
on Thursday, the third day of January, one thousand and nine hundred and eighty-five
Joint Resolution
To commend the people and the sovereign confederation of the neutral nation of Switzerland for their contributions to freedom, international peace, and understanding on the occasion of the meeting between the leaders of the United States and the Soviet Union on November 19-20, 1985, in Geneva, Switzerland.
   Whereas Switzerland has long played a leading role among nations in the search for international peace and understanding, has generously provided its territory and assistance for international organizations and conferences, and its diplomatic services for arbitration and mediation of disputes among states; and
   Whereas the government of Switzerland has for many years generously represented the diplomatic interests of other nations, including the United States, in lands where these nations have no relations; and
   Whereas the United States and Switzerland share a common heritage, based on a commitment to political and religious freedoms of expression, on our shared legacy of a constitutional and Federal Government, on our commitment to human rights and the dignity of the individual, and on our firm belief that a free enterprise economy provides the greatest prosperity for the greatest number of people; and
   Whereas Switzerland, and the beautiful and historic city of Geneva, ever mindful of their tradition and vocation in the search for international peace, have once again offered their territory and facilities for a major international meeting, on the occasion between the leaders of the United States and the Soviet Union, on November 91-20, 1985:
   Now, therefore, be it
   Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,  That it is the sense of the Congress that, in recognition of their many contributions and as an expression of the warm gratitude of the American people for the strong bonds of friendship which have long existed between our two great democracies, the people and nation of Switzerland are to be commended for all they have done thgroughout this century in the search for freedom, international peace, and understanding."




Le Temps    19 novembre 2005

Guerre froide, le début de la fin
Bernard Bridel

HISTOIRE. Il y a vingt ans jour pour jour, jusqu'au 21 novembre 1985, la Cité de Calvin accueillait la première rencontre entre Ronald Reagan et Mikhaïl Gorbatchev.
    Il est dix heures moins quelques secondes, ce mardi matin 19 novembre 1985. Le temps est humide et froid. Dans un crissement de gravier, la puissante Zil noire immatriculée SU 68 07 stoppe au bas de l'escalier conduisant à la terrasse de la Villa Fleur d'eau, à Versoix. Avec sa tache de vin sur le front, l'homme qui en descend est sans aucun doute la personnalité du moment qui fascine le plus les médias du monde entier. A 54 ans, Mikhaïl Gorbatchev est le tout jeune secrétaire général du Parti communiste de l'Union soviétique. Un réformateur, dit-on.
    Désigné huit mois auparavant, il a succédé à «l'intérimaire» Konstantin Tchernenko, lequel avait remplacé l'éphémère Youri Andropov, lui-même passé de la direction du KGB au sommet du pouvoir à la mort de l'inoxydable Leonid Brejnev, fin 1982. «Gorby», comme la presse commence à l'appeler vient, ici en terrain neutre, renouer le dialogue avec le représentant de l'autre grande puissance, Ronald Reagan, 74 ans, 40e président des Etats-Unis, engagé depuis un an dans son second et dernier mandat.
    Les cheveux parfaitement gominés, c'est d'ailleurs l'ancien acteur de série B, maccarthyste notoire dans sa période hollywoodienne, qui, sans manteau ni écharpe, accueille le numéro un soviétique à sa descente de voiture. Car c'est lui l'hôte des lieux. Pour des raisons de sécurité, les services américains ont préféré louer cette magnifique demeure inhabitée des bords du Léman et l'immense parc qui l'entoure, plutôt que d'héberger les premiers entretiens bilatéraux à la mission des Etats-Unis, près de l'ONU.
    La poignée de main est aussi chaleureuse qu'historique. Après quelques instants consacrés aux photographes, les deux hommes s'engouffrent dans la villa dont on a meublé à la hâte quelques salons et repeint les murs en bleu ciel pour plaire aux caméras de télévision. Six ans après le dernier sommet réunissant les deux supergrands (Leonid Brejnev et Jimmy Carter, à Vienne en 1979), celui de Genève peut commencer.
    Il était temps. Car, comme s'en souvient Pierre Aubert, alors chef de la diplomatie suisse: «On était en pleine période de tension. Depuis six ans, l'Armée rouge occupait l'Afghanistan, et en Pologne, la situation était insurrectionnelle. A cela s'ajoutait le déploiement des missiles de l'OTAN en Europe (les Pershing 2, en réponse aux SS 20 soviétiques) et le lancement aux Etats-Unis de ce qu'on a appelé la Guerre des étoiles, l'initiative de défense stratégique (IDS).»

«D'énormes attentes»
    «Les attentes étaient énormes», confirme Curt Gasteyger, à l'époque professeur à l'Institut de hautes études internationales (HEI) et grand spécialiste de l'URSS. Après plus de trente ans de guerre froide, quelque chose bougeait enfin.»
    Et même si le sommet genevois ne fut que le point de départ d'un processus, tant ses conclusions concrètes furent mineures, il apparaissait alors à l'opinion mondiale comme le début d'une nouvelle ère de détente. Il faut dire que tout a été mis en œuvre pour accréditer cette idée et son succès médiatique: plus de 3000 journalistes accourus du monde entier, une scénographie étudiée jusque dans les moindres détails, et un suspense garanti jusqu'au dernier jour, avec la signature solennelle et publique de différents accords au Centre international des conférences de Genève (CICG). Sans oublier, bien sûr, le rôle essentiel joué par les épouses des deux grands: la très patricienne Nancy Reagan et la brillante et cultivée Raïssa Gorbatcheva.
    C'est que, pendant qu'à huis clos, ces messieurs, en tête-à-tête ou accompagnés de leur délégation, font connaissance et négocient (à la Villa Fleur d'eau le premier jour, puis à la mission soviétique le second), ces dames occupent les médias en faisant du tourisme culturel et social ou en posant la première pierre du Musée international de la Croix-Rouge. Avant de se retrouver pour le thé. Nancy Reagan, rendra ainsi visite aux toxicomanes de La Picholette, au Mont-sur-Lausanne, alors que Raïssa Gorbatcheva s'entretiendra de l'agriculture suisse avec la famille Pradervand au domaine de La Grande Coudre, à Céligny.
    Pour la Suisse et Genève, bien qu'habituées à accueillir ce genre d'événements, celui-ci eut une résonance particulière. Président de la Confédération d'alors, Kurt Furgler dira, après des entretiens bilatéraux organisés à la veille du sommet, combien les deux hommes d'Etat appréciaient le rôle d'hôte de la Suisse et sa disponibilité. Presque euphorique, le président Furgler se permettra d'affirmer devant la presse: «Les deux interlocuteurs manifestent une ferme volonté de dialogue.»
    Si le sommet de Genève symbolisa en quelque sorte la consécration internationale de Kurt Furgler, pour le maire de la ville de l'époque, «il n'y a rien eu d'équivalent depuis». Et René Emmenegger de se souvenir d'avoir accompagné Mme Gorbatcheva au Musée de l'horlogerie et à la Bibliothèque populaire et universitaire. «Elle voulait absolument voir la table où travaillait Lénine durant son séjour genevois. Et quand on la lui a montrée, elle a brandi un portrait du camarade Vladimir pour se faire immortaliser par les photographes.»
    Quant à Robert Vieux, chef du protocole de l'Etat de Genève jusqu'en 1987, et à ce titre grand organisateur du sommet, il est toujours convaincu aujourd'hui que ce fut «l'événement le plus important de [sa] carrière», et qu'«il faudra se lever tôt pour revoir ça». «Nous avons eu quinze jours à trois semaines pour nous préparer. Je me souviens que les Russes s'inquiétaient toujours de ne pas avoir les mêmes facilités que les Américains. Je ne dirais pas qu'on était fiers, on a simplement fait ce qu'il fallait.» Des grandes jusqu'aux petites choses, en usant parfois du système D. C'est ainsi que les deux fauteuils sur lesquels le président Reagan et le premier secrétaire Gorbatchev se sont assis le dernier jour sur la scène du CICG provenaient du propre bureau du chef du protocole.
    Autre meuble dont on n'a pas fini de parler: la grande table ovale autour de laquelle les huit membres de chaque délégation se sont assis lors des séances plénières à la Villa Fleur d'eau. Vingt ans après, elle est toujours introuvable, et fait l'objet d'intenses recherches de la Bibliothèque et Musée présidentiels Ronald W. Reagan, à Simi Valley en Californie, qui la veut à tout prix pour ses collections.

L'esprit de Genève
    Si, comme le pense toujours l'ancien maire René Emmenegger, le sommet Reagan-Gorbatchev fut très bénéfique pour l'image de Genève, ils sont nombreux, de Moscou à Washington, à affirmer que l'accueil et le cadre dans lequel il s'est déroulé ont eu un effet très positif sur ses participants. Il faut dire que durant six jours (le couple Reagan était arrivé le samedi 16 novembre déjà, les Gorbatchev le 18), ce petit monde a été l'objet de toutes les attentions, la République (et certains de ses citoyens à titre privé) mettant ses plus belles demeures à disposition pour les diverses réceptions et cérémonies, ou tout simplement pour loger certains des visiteurs. C'est ainsi que plutôt que d'habiter à l'hôtel ou à la mission américaine, les Reagan éliront domicile à la Maison De-Saussure, alors que les Gorbatchev logeront à la Mission soviétique. «L'esprit de Genève» aura joué à plein.
    Le jeudi 21 novembre au matin, la messe est dite. Après la signature de quelques accords sans grande importance au CICG, les deux chefs d'Etat s'envolent. Le Russe pour Prague, où l'attend une réunion du Pacte de Varsovie, l'Américain vers Bruxelles où il va faire rapport à ses alliés de l'OTAN.
    «Le plus important est que les deux hommes ont pris complètement les choses en main... La durée, l'intensité, la franchise et l'envergure de leurs entretiens en tête-à-tête [plus de cinq heures] sont allées au-delà de tout ce que nous attendions... C'était réellement ce que nous étions venus chercher et cela a été très fructueux.» A l'heure du bilan, le secrétaire d'Etat américain George Shultz insiste sur le climat positif de la rencontre. Un jugement partagé par le Bureau politique du PC soviétique, pour lequel le sommet «a changé de façon positive le climat politique et psychologique des relations internationales».
    Les officiels se sentent-ils obligés d'insister sur la qualité du climat des discussions parce que sur le fonds (abandon ou non de l'IDS par les Etats-Unis, réduction de 50% des armes stratégiques, Afghanistan, libertés individuelles et droits de l'homme, etc), le président américain et le premier secrétaire du PCUS n'ont abouti à rien? Ce serait injuste, explique le professeur Gasteyger, «un sommet de cette importance ne pouvait pas échouer», car il s'agissait, comme le dira Ronald Reagan lui-même le dernier jour, de rendre possible un «nouveau départ», de briser la glace.
    Réalistes, les deux dirigeants avaient eux-mêmes mis en garde contre tout excès d'optimisme, affirmant qu'ils ne pourraient pas changer le monde en deux ou trois jours. Dès l'année suivante d'ailleurs, ils se rencontreront lors d'un nouveau sommet à Reykjavik.
    Toutefois, avant de quitter Genève, Mikhaïl Gorbatchev affirmera à la presse: «Depuis aujourd'hui, nous vivons dans un monde plus sûr.» Quatre ans plus tard, le 9 novembre 1989, le mur de Berlin s'écroulait [dans notre direction, nota bene, nonobstant les impressions contraires causées par le flot des législations bureaucratiques émergent des organisations telles que l'UE, l'OECD et l'ONU].

© Le Temps. Droits de reproduction et de diffusion réservés. www.letemps.ch




arte    1.Mai 2010

1983. Am atomaren Abgrund

Ende des Jahres 1983 spitzten sich die Spannungen zwischen der UdSSR und den USA dramatisch zu. Um Haaresbreite wäre es wegen des Verdachts, eine Übung sei in Wirklichkeit der Ernstfall, zu einer atomaren Katastrophe gekommen. Der Dokumentarfilm beleuchtet die bisher kaum bekannten Ereignisse während dieser Phase des Kalten Krieges, die die Bewohner der Erde innerhalb einiger Tage im November 1983 an den Rand des Abgrunds führten.

Beginnend mit dem 2. November 1983 veranstaltete der NATO-Generalstab eine jährliche militärische Übung namens "Able Archer". Dieses europaweite zehntägige Manöver simulierte einen Atomkrieg. Doch in der angespannten politischen Situation hätte die Routineübung unter Realbedingungen beinahe zur Eskalation in eine nukleare Katastrophe geführt. Besonderen Verdacht auf einen ernst gemeinten atomaren Erstschlag der USA löste bei den Sowjets die Tatsache aus, dass bei diesem Manöver erstmals ein neues Codierungsformat für die Nachrichtenübermittlung zum Einsatz kam.
Außerdem hatte die Stationierung neuer Pershing-Raketen in Europa durch US-Präsident Ronald Reagan dem ohnehin latenten sowjetischen Misstrauen neue Nahrung geboten und das Wettrüsten angeheizt. Trotz zahlreicher Friedensdemonstrationen hielt Reagan an seiner harten Linie fest. So sprach er in einer Rede im März 1983 vom "Reich des Bösen". Im gleichen Monat startete er das "Star-Wars-Programm", das die Errichtung eines Gürtels von Waffen zum Abfangen sowjetischer Interkontinentalraketen vorsah.
Auf sowjetischer Seite verstarb im Juni 1983 Leonid Breschnew, neuer starker Mann der UdSSR wurde Juri Andropow als Generalsekretär der KPdSU, der 1967 bis 1982 Chef des Geheimdienstes KGB gewesen war. Der greise und kranke Andropow wollte um keinen Preis dem Westen gegenüber Schwäche zeigen. Und das gesamte Politbüro wollte nicht wieder auf so verheerende Weise überrumpelt werden wie bei Hitlers Überraschungsangriff im Juni 1941. Unter Andropow erreichte das Misstrauen auf sowjetischer Seite einen Höhepunkt. Für den Generalstab der Sowjetunion vervielfachten sich die Alarmzeichen. Bis zu dem Moment, als ein Militärsatellit - irrtümlich - den Start mehrerer Raketen meldete. Doch das besonnene Verhalten sowjetischer Militärs verhinderte die Katastrophe.

(Grossbritannien, 2007, 73mn)    ARTE F (http://plus7.arte.tv/de/1697660,CmC=3175048.html)   Regie: Henry Chancellor

Regie
Henry Chancellor

Besetzung (In der Reihenfolge des Abspanns)
 Robert Cambrinus ...  Colonel Stanislav Petrov
 Olegar Fedoro ...  Russian General
 Gina McKee ...  als sie selbst - Erzähler (Sprechrolle)

übrige Besetzung in alphabetischer Reihenfolge:
 Ted Bliss ...  als er selbst
 Maxim Devetyarov ...  als er selbst (als Col. Maxim Devetyarov)
 Ben Fischer ...  als er selbst
 Robert Gates ...  als er selbst (als Robert M. Gates)
 Oleg Gordievsky ...  als er selbst
 Werner Grossmann ...  als er selbst
 John Hughes-Wilson ...  als er selbst (als Col. John Hughes-Wilson)
 Oleg Kalugin ...  als er selbst
 Igor Kondriatev ...  als er selbst (als Gen. Igor Kondriatev)
 Vladimir Kryuchkov ...  als er selbst
 Sergei Lokot ...  als er selbst
 Robert McFarlane ...  als er selbst (Archivfilmmaterial) (als Robert 'Bud' McFarlane)
 Gennadi Osipovich ...  als er selbst
 Stanislav Petrov ...  als er selbst
 Charles Powell ...  als er selbst (als Sir Charles Powell)
 Peter Pry ...  als er selbst
 Rainer Rupp ...  als er selbst

 John Schwab ...  Erzähler
 Vladlen Smirnoff ...  als er selbst (als Admiral Vladlen Smirnoff)
 Viktor Tkachenko ...  als er selbst (als Capt. Viktor Tkachenko)
 Ivan Tretyak ...  als er selbst (als Gen. Ivan Tretyak)
 Ivan Yesin ...  als er selbst (als Gen. Col. Ivan Yesin)

 Ronald Reagan ...  als er selbst (Archivmaterial) (nicht im Abspann)
 Margaret Thatcher ...  als sie selbst (Archivmaterial) (nicht im Abspann)



   NATIONALRAT                               VALENTIN OEHEN        9.November 1983
    CONSEIL NATIONAL                    6981 Sessa
    CONSIGLIO NAZIONALE        091/731427
 

Herrn Marschall Nikolai OGARKOV
Generalstabchef
via Militärattaché,  UdSSR-Botschaft

Herrn General John VESSEY
Vorsteher des Vereinigten Generalstabs
via Militärattaché,  USA-Botschaft

Sehr geehrte Herren,

Wie Ihnen bekannt, haben die Teilnehmer des Wiener Kongresses 1815 erklärt:

"Die Neutralität und Unverletzlichkeit der Schweiz, sowie ihre Unabhängigkeit von allen fremden Einflüssen sind im wahren Interesse [der Politik] von ganz Europa."
Die so international anerkannte und respektierte Neutralität der Schweiz dürfte mit Ihrer Mitwirkung auch zu europäischen Gegenwartsproblemen eine Vielfalt guter Dienste ermöglichen und leisten.

Als Mitglied der eidgenössischen Räte gestatte ich mir, Sie in diesem Sinne anzufragen, ob Sie bereit wären einer Einladung des Schweizer Generalstabchefs zu einem Besuch der Schweiz Folge zu leisten.   Der Zweck Ihres Besuchs, der von der Oeffentlichkeit abgeschirmt wäre, bestünde in einer protokollfreien, persönlichen Begegnung mit Ihrem amerikanischen, resp. sowjetischen Homolog, um sich gegenseitig in ungezwungener Atmosphäre persönlich kennen zu lernen, und so ein erhöhtes Mass an persönlichem Vertrauen zueinander gedeihen zu lassen.   Dies scheint mir besonders für jenen denkbaren Ernstfall wichtig zu sein, wo Sie und Ihre Dienststellen sich auf Informationen stützen müssen, deren Verlässlichkeit zu wünschen übrig lässt, und wo der direkte Kontakt mit ihrem Homolog nur in Verbindung mit einem Mindestmass an gegenseitigem Vertrauen zur Problemlösung beitragen kann.

In der Hoffnung, damit auch Ihnen dienlich zu sein, stehe ich Ihnen für alle weiteren Fragen gerne zur Verfügung, und wäre ich Ihnen für Ihre wohlwollende Prüfung dieser Anregung, sowie eine baldige Stellungnahme hierzu, sehr verbunden.

Mit vorzüglicher Hochachtung

Valentin Oehen,  Nationalrat
[Originalkopie: www.solami.com/oehen.jpg]






 









 





 




WHITE HOUSE    January 16, 1984

Address to the Nation and Other Countries on U.S.-Soviet Relations
US President Ronald Reagan [emphasis added]

During these first days of 1984, I would like to share with you and the people of the world my thoughts on a subject of great importance to the cause of peace -- relations between the United States and the Soviet Union.

Tomorrow the United States will join the Soviet Union and 33 other nations at a European disarmament conference in Stockholm. The conference will search for practical and meaningful ways to increase European security and preserve peace. We will be in Stockholm with the heartfelt wishes of our people for genuine progress.

We live in a time of challenges to peace, but also of opportunities to peace. Through times of difficulty and frustration, America's highest aspiration has never wavered. We have and will continue to struggle for a lasting peace that enhances dignity for men and women everywhere.

I believe that 1984 finds the United States in the strongest position in years to establish a constructive and realistic working relationship with the Soviet Union. We've come a long way since the decade of the seventies, years when the United States seemed filled with self-doubt and neglected its defenses, while the Soviet Union increased its military might and sought to expand its influence by armed forces and threat.

Over the last 10 years, the Soviets devoted twice as much of their gross national product to military expenditures as the United States, produced six times as many ICBM's, four times as many tanks, twice as many combat aircraft. And they began deploying the SS - 20 intermediate-range missile at a time when the United States had no comparable weapon.

History teaches that wars begin when governments believe the price of aggression is cheap. To keep the peace, we and our allies must be strong enough to convince any potential aggressor that war could bring no benefit, only disaster. So, when we neglected our defenses, the risks of serious confrontation grew.

Three years ago, we embraced a mandate from the American people to change course, and we have. With the support of the American people and the Congress we halted America's decline. Our economy is now in the midst of the best recovery since the sixties. Our defenses are being rebuilt, our alliances are solid, and our commitment to defend our values has never been more clear.

America's recovery may have taken Soviet leaders by surprise. They may have counted on us to keep weakening ourselves. They've been saying for years that our demise was inevitable. They said it so often they probably started believing it. Well, if so, I think they can see now they were wrong.

This may be the reason that we've been hearing such strident rhetoric from the Kremlin recently. These harsh words have led some to speak of heightened uncertainty and an increased danger of conflict. This is understandable but profoundly mistaken.

Look beyond the words, and one fact stands out: America's deterrence is more credible, and it is making the world a safer place -- safer because now there is less danger that the Soviet leadership will underestimate our strength or question our resolve.

Yes, we are safer now, but to say that our restored deterrence has made the world safer is not to say that it's safe enough. We're witnessing tragic conflicts in many parts of the world. Nuclear arsenals are far too high, and our working relationship with the Soviet Union is not what it must be. These are conditions which must be addressed and improved.

Deterrence is essential to preserve peace and protect our way of life, but deterrence is not the beginning and end of our policy toward the Soviet Union. We must and will engage the Soviets in a dialog as serious and constructive as possible -- a dialog that will serve to promote peace in the troubled regions of the world, reduce the level of arms, and build a constructive working relationship.

Neither we nor the Soviet Union can wish away the differences between our two societies and our philosophies, but we should always remember that we do have common interests and the foremost among them is to avoid war and reduce the level of arms.

There is no rational alternative but to steer a course which I would call credible deterrence and peaceful competition. And if we do so, we might find areas in which we could engage in constructive cooperation. Our strength and vision of progress provide the basis for demonstrating with equal conviction our commitment to stay secure and to find peaceful solutions to problems through negotiations. That's why 1984 is a year of opportunities for peace.

But if the United States and the Soviet Union are to rise to the challenges facing us and seize the opportunities for peace, we must do more to find areas of mutual interest and then build on them.

I propose that our governments make a major effort to see if we can make progress in three broad problem areas. First, we need to find ways to reduce, and eventually to eliminate, the threat and use of force in solving international disputes.

The world has witnessed more than 100 major conflicts since the end of World War II. Today there are armed conflicts in the Middle East, Afghanistan, Southeast Asia, Central America, and Africa. In other regions, independent nations are confronted by heavily armed neighbors seeking to dominate by threatening attack or subversion. Most of these conflicts have their origins in local problems, but many have been exploited by the Soviet Union and its surrogates. And, of course, Afghanistan has suffered an outright Soviet invasion.

Fueling regional conflicts and exporting violence only exacerbate local tensions, increase suffering, and make solutions to real social and economic problems more difficult. Further, such activity carries with it the risk of larger confrontations. Would it not be better and safer if we could work together to assist people in areas of conflict in finding peaceful solutions to their problems? That should be our mutual goal.

But we must recognize that the gap in American and Soviet perceptions and policy is so great that our immediate objective must be more modest. As a first step, our governments should jointly examine concrete actions that we both can take to reduce the risk of U.S.-Soviet confrontation in these areas. And if we succeed, we should be able to move beyond this immediate objective.

Our second task should be to find ways to reduce the vast stockpiles of armaments in the world. It's tragic to see the world's developing nations spending more than $150 billion a year on armed forces -- some 20 percent of their national budgets. We must find ways to reverse the vicious cycle of threat and response which drives arms races everywhere it occurs.

With regard to nuclear weapons, the simple truth is America's total nuclear stockpile has declined. Today we have far fewer nuclear weapons than we had 20 years ago, and in terms of its total destructive power, our nuclear stockpile is at the lowest level in 25 years.

Just 3 months ago, we and our allies agreed to withdraw 1,400 nuclear weapons from Western Europe. This comes after the withdrawal of 1,000 nuclear weapons from Europe 3 years ago. Even if all our planned intermediate-range missiles have to be deployed in Europe over the next 5 years -- and we hope this will not be necessary -- we will have eliminated five existing nuclear weapons for each new weapon deployed.

But this is not enough. We must accelerate our efforts to reach agreements that will greatly reduce nuclear arsenals, provide greater stability, and build confidence.

Our third task is to establish a better working relationship with each other, one marked by greater cooperation and understanding. Cooperation and understanding are built on deeds, not words. Complying with agreements helps; violating them hurts. Respecting the rights of individual citizens bolsters the relationship; denying these rights harms it. Expanding contacts across borders and permitting a free exchange or interchange of information and ideas increase confidence; sealing off one's people from the rest of the world reduces it. Peaceful trade helps, while organized theft of industrial secrets certainly hurts.

Cooperation and understanding are especially important to arms control. In recent years we've had serious concerns about Soviet compliance with agreements and treaties. Compliance is important because we seek truly effective arms control. However, there's been mounting evidence that provisions of agreements have been violated and that advantage has been taken of ambiguities in our agreements.

In response to a congressional request, a report on this will be submitted in the next few days. It is clear that we cannot simply assume that agreements negotiated will be fulfilled. We must take the Soviet compliance record into account, both in the development of our defense program and in our approach to arms control.

In our discussions with the Soviet Union, we will work to remove the obstacles which threaten to undermine existing agreements and a broader arms control process. Examples I've cited illustrate why our relationship with the Soviet Union is not what it should be. We have a long way to go, but we're determined to try and try again. We may have to start in small ways, but start we must.

In working on these tasks, our approach is based on three guiding principles -- realism, strength, and dialog. Realism means we must start with a clear-eyed understanding of the world we live in. We must recognize that we are in a long-term competition with a government that does not share our notions of individual liberties at home and peaceful change abroad. We must be frank in acknowledging our differences and un- afraid to promote our values.

Strength is essential to negotiate successfully and protect our interests. If we're weak, we can do neither. Strength is more than military power. Economic strength is crucial, and America's economy is leading the world into recovery. Equally important is our strength of spirit and unity among our people at home and with our allies abroad. We're stronger in all these areas than we were 3 years ago. Our strength is necessary to deter war and to facilitate negotiated solutions. Soviet leaders know it makes sense to compromise only if they can get something in return. Well, America can now offer something in return.

Strength and dialog go hand in hand, and we're determined to deal with our differences peacefully through negotiations. We're prepared to discuss the problems that divide us and to work for practical, fair solutions on the basis of mutual compromise. We will never retreat from negotiations.

I have openly expressed my view of the Soviet system. I don't know why this should come as a surprise to Soviet leaders who've never shied from expressing their view of our system. But this doesn't mean that we can't deal with each other. We don't refuse to talk when the Soviets call us imperialist aggressors and worse, or because they cling to the fantasy of a Communist triumph over democracy. The fact that neither of us likes the other system is no reason to refuse to talk. Living in this nuclear age makes it imperative that we do talk. Our commitment to dialog is firm and unshakeable, but we insist that our negotiations deal with real problems, not atmospherics.

In our approach to negotiations, reducing the risk of war, and especially nuclear war, is priority number one. A nuclear conflict could well be mankind's last. And that is why I proposed over 2 years ago the zero option for intermediate-range missiles. Our aim was and continues to be to eliminate an entire class of nuclear arms. Indeed, I support a zero option for all nuclear arms. As I've said before, my dream is to see the day when nuclear weapons will be banished from the face of the Earth.

Last month the Soviet Defense Minister stated that his country would do everything to avert the threat of war. Well, these are encouraging words, but now is the time to move from words to deed. The opportunity for progress in arms control exists. The Soviet leaders should take advantage of it.

We have proposed a set of initiatives that would reduce substantially nuclear arsenals and reduce the risk of nuclear confrontation.

The world regrets -- certainly we do -- that the Soviet Union broke off negotiations on intermediate-range nuclear forces and has not set a date for the resumption of the talks on strategic arms and on conventional forces in Europe. Our negotiators are ready to return to the negotiating table to work toward agreements in INF, START, and MBFR. We will negotiate in good faith. Whenever the Soviet Union is ready to do likewise, we'll meet them halfway.

We seek to reduce nuclear arsenals and to reduce the chances for dangerous misunderstanding and miscalculations, so we have put forward proposals for what we call confidence-building measures. They cover a wide range of activities. In the Geneva negotiations, we proposed to exchange advance notification of missile tests and major military exercises. Following up on congressional suggestions, we also proposed a number of ways to improve direct channels of communications. Last week, we had productive discussions with the Soviets here in Washington on improving communications, including the hotline.

Now these bilateral proposals will be broadened at the conference in Stockholm. We're working with our allies to develop practical, meaningful ways to reduce the uncertainty and potential for misinterpretation surrounding military activities and to diminish the risk of surprise attack.

Arms control has long been the most visible area of U.S.-Soviet dialog. But a durable peace also requires ways for both of us to diffuse tensions and regional conflicts.

Take the Middle East as an example. Everyone's interest would be served by stability in the region, and our efforts are directed toward that goal. The Soviets could help reduce tensions there instead of introducing sophisticated weapons into the area. This would certainly help us to deal more positively with other aspects of our relationship.

Another major problem in our relationship with the Soviet Union is human rights. Soviet practices in this area, as much as any other issue, have created the mistrust and ill will that hangs over our relationship. Moral considerations alone compel us to express our deep concern over prisoners of conscience in the Soviet Union and over the virtual halt in the emigration of Jews, Armenians, and others who wish to join their families abroad.

Our request is simple and straightforward: that the Soviet Union live up to its obligations. It has freely assumed those obligations under international covenants, in particular its commitments under the Helsinki accords.

Experience has shown that greater respect for human rights can contribute to progress in other areas of the Soviet-American relationship. Conflicts of interest between the United States and the Soviet Union are real, but we can and must keep the peace between our two nations and make it a better and more peaceful world for all mankind.

Our policy toward the Soviet Union -- a policy of credible deterrence, peaceful competition, and constructive cooperation -- will serve our two nations and people everywhere. It is a policy not just for this year, but for the long term. It's a challenge for Americans; it is also a challenge for the Soviets. If they cannot meet us halfway, we will be prepared to protect our interests and those of our friends and allies.

But we want more than deterrence. We seek genuine cooperation. We seek progress for peace. Cooperation begins with communication. And, as I've said, we'll stay at the negotiating tables in Geneva and Vienna. Furthermore, Secretary Shultz will be meeting this week with Soviet Foreign Minister Gromyko in Stockholm. This meeting should be followed by others, so that high-level consultations become a regular and normal component of U.S.-Soviet relations.

Our challenge is peaceful. It will bring out the best in us. It also calls for the best in the Soviet Union. We do not threaten the Soviet Union. Freedom poses no threat. It is the language of progress. We proved this 35 years ago when we had a monopoly on nuclear weapons and could have tried to dominate the world, but we didn't. Instead, we used our power to write a new chapter in the history of mankind. We helped rebuild war-ravaged economies in Europe and the Far East, including those of nations who had been our enemies. Indeed, those former enemies are now among our staunchest friends.

We can't predict how the Soviet leaders will respond to our challenge. But the people of our two countries share with all mankind the dream of eliminating the risk of nuclear war. It's not an impossible dream, because eliminating these risks are so clearly a vital interest for all of us. Our two countries have never fought each other. There's no reason why we ever should. Indeed, we fought common enemies in World War II. Today our common enemies are poverty, disease, and above all, war.

More than 20 years ago, President Kennedy defined an approach that is as valid today as when he announced it. ``So let us not be blind to our differences,'' he said, ``but let us also direct attention to our common interests and to the means by which those differences can be resolved.''

Well, those differences are differences in governmental structure and philosophy. The common interests have to do with the things of everyday life for people everywhere. Just suppose with me for a moment that an Ivan and an Anya could find themselves, oh, say, in a waiting room, or sharing a shelter from the rain or a storm with a Jim and Sally, and there was no language barrier to keep them from getting acquainted. Would they then debate the differences between their respective governments? Or would they find themselves comparing notes about their children and what each other did for a living?

Before they parted company, they would probably have touched on ambitions and hobbies and what they wanted for their children and problems of making ends meet. And as they went their separate ways, maybe Anya would be saying to Ivan, ``Wasn't she nice? She also teaches music.'' Or Jim would be telling Sally what Ivan did or didn't like about his boss. They might even have decided they were all going to get together for dinner some evening soon. Above all, they would have proven that people don't make wars.

People want to raise their children in a world without fear and without war. They want to have some of the good things over and above bare subsistence that make life worth living. They want to work at some craft, trade, or profession that gives them satisfaction and a sense of worth. Their common interests cross all borders.

If the Soviet Government wants peace, then there will be peace. Together we can strengthen peace, reduce the level of arms, and know in doing so that we have helped fulfill the hopes and dreams of those we represent and, indeed, of people everywhere. Let us begin now.

Thank you.

Note: The President spoke at 10 a.m. in the East Room at the White House.