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When did we win the Cold War?

Not, I would think in 1982. Brezhnev was in power until November of that year, Trident and cruise missile deployments were, ahem, controversial, the Red Army roamed freely in Afghanistan and Central and Eastern Europe were well and truly under the Red Wheel. While Thatcher and Reagan were doing a splendid job of sinew stiffening, it was by no means clear that the miracle of '89-91 was on its way.

So much for the history lesson. I pose the question as the Finns have decided to open up the archives to show the results of surveillance of the Finnish Communists. Said party was aligned with Moscow, polled 15-20% in elections and Finland was, after all, 'Finlandised'. While I imagine that the records will be mainly taken up by interminable exegeses of dialectical materialism and the like, I would imagine that there are a few bombshells lurking in the minutes of the central committee's meetings. The relevance to 1982 is that the then Finnish president decided that year was a really great time to pull the plug on the operation as "he did not feel that the surveillance of communists was necessary". I find that a surprising choice.

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Blogger Nick Drew said... 1:09 pm

With the full bebenfit of hindsight, I could make a case for 1982 being

"not the end ... not even the beginning of the end. But ... perhaps the end of the beginning"

● The decision on INF had been made and they were about to be deployed;

● By mid-year, the Falklands had been re-taken (this impressed the Sovs disproportionately, though Gulf War 1 in 1991 was what confirmed to them they really had lost a few years earlier);

● Ogarkov had given it his best shot, and come up short;

● But he had spurred NATO to change its doctrine for a much more war-fighting orientation (though again, it didn't reach fruition for several more years).

Perhaps the Finns understood all these things at the time - what prescience! I would like to shake the hand of their intelligence chief ...  



Blogger Croydonian said... 3:05 pm

You make a solid case. I would certainly agree that the retaking of the Falklands demonstrated a will they did not expect the West to have.  



Blogger Nick Drew said... 4:05 pm

It was in fact more than just the willpower on display,

but also certain technical characteristics that caused them to uprate their assessment of British combat effectiveness, in the typically marxist-planner, numbers-driven, by-the-book way they have of doing things.  



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