Eastern Europe Struggles to Shed Vestiges of Soviet Dominance

By Peter Grier, writer of The Christian Science Monitor | The Christian Science Monitor, January 7, 1992 | Go to article overview

Eastern Europe Struggles to Shed Vestiges of Soviet Dominance


Peter Grier, writer of The Christian Science Monitor, The Christian Science Monitor


THEY used to be dismissed as "puppet states," countries with no mind of their own. Now, in a great irony of history, it is the puppeteer that has exited the world stage, while the ex-Soviet "puppets" of Central and Eastern Europe struggle toward democracy and the promised prosperity of free-market economies.

So far, their road hasn't been an easy one. To varying degrees, all the remaining ex-East Bloc nations have been troubled by nagging political instability. Much of the region remains troubled by high unemployment and paralyzed industrial production.

The region's high hopes of 1989 and '90 have faded. "It will take a full generation before even the Central European nations can be considered secure, stable democracies," predicted J. Brian Atwood, head of the National Democratic Institute for International Affairs, in a recent speech.

Yet general dissatisfaction with the state of affairs hasn't translated into any nostalgia for the old days of communism. Public-opinion polls show multiparty politics and market economies still have strong support.

By large margins, the people of Eastern Europe "express their overwhelming desire to move forward," said Mr. Atwood.

That doesn't mean they're enjoying the transition. Poland, where political reform began earliest and prices were unfrozen two years ago, is an example.

Voters are apathetic in the country many credit with having sparked the collapse of communism in all its neighbors. Only 42 percent of those eligible cast ballots in last fall's general election.

The Polish parliament is a fractured body of many small parties. With stable coalitions all but impossible, power has been flowing inevitably to the executive - President Lech Walesa.

Even as he feuds with his latest nominee for prime minister, Jan Olszewski, Mr. Walesa is pressing for constitutional changes that would, in effect, allow him to go over a prime minister's head, pick a cabinet himself, and let it rule by decree. In a time of troubles Poland needs decisive government to stick with reforms, he argues.

"Poland may well be an indicator of what may happen in other countries," says Wolfgang Reinicke, a Brookings Institution European specialist.

Bulgaria, for instance, has progressed toward democracy faster than many Western analysts predicted it would. Yet the Bulgarian parliament is largely split between the old Communists, reborn as the Socialist Party, and Union of Democratic Forces reformers. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Eastern Europe Struggles to Shed Vestiges of Soviet Dominance
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.