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Charting the 'Return to Europe': Or, Can Hungary, Poland, and Czechoslovakia Cooperate?

Author(s): Dabrowski, Patrice M.

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Abstract: The democratic revolutions of 1989 and the dissolution of the postwar bipolar world have prompted the search for a framework for a common European home that might include the new democracies of East-Central Europe. This paper examines the positions of Hungary, Poland, and Czechoslovakia—the three former East bloc countries which have made the greatest progress towards adopting market economies—in relation to Western Europe and to the in- ternational political economy. The possibility of their "re- turn to Europe" via a regional subgrouping which would enable them to speed economic recovery is considered. In keeping with the normative premise of the paper, Hungary, Poland and Czechoslovakia should form a "Central Eu- ropean Triangle" to represent East-Central Europe in a world where regional blocs provide a much needed degree of leverage for small and otherwise impotent countries. A regional grouping might ease the countries' transition to the global economy, facilitate internal and external eco- nomic integration, distribute and coordinate Western con- tributions of assistance, and reconstruct their dilapidated infrastructures. The paper examines the historical rela- tionship of the three countries with Western Europe as well as the impact of several significant events in the international political economy during 1990 and weighs various scenarios for the countries' reintegration with the West.
Publication Date: 1991
Pages: 39-52
Type of Material: Journal Article
Series/Report no.: Volume 2;
Journal/Proceeding Title: Journal of Public and International Affairs
Version: Final published version. Article is made available in OAR by the publisher's permission or policy.

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