A Cardboard Castle? An Inside History of the Warsaw Pact, 1955-1991

By Vojtech Mastny; Malcolm Byrne | Go to book overview

Document No. 144: Bulgarian Proposal for Reform of
the Warsaw Treaty, June 14, 1989

The Bulgarians, after consulting with Moscow, made this counter-proposal in response to the 1988 Romanian proposal for Warsaw Pact reform (see Document No. 133). The Bulgarians proposed retaining the PCC but expanding its agenda, and providing for informal meetings at various levels, among other points. For the first time, the Soviets supported the idea of creating a unified secretariat with a rotating secretary general slot, similar to NATO. The bottom line, however, was that both the Bulgarians and Soviets wanted to maintain the Warsaw Pact—incorporating reforms as they deemed neces- sary—in hopes this would help strengthen the present regimes in power.

1. Intensification and improvement of the activities of the PCC, CMFA and CMD of member-states of the Warsaw Treaty

Political Consultative Committee (PCC)

Keep the Political Consultative Committee within the framework of the Warsaw Treaty. Deepen the practice of carrying out its meetings in the spirit of principled comradely discussion, and free exchange of opinions. Widen the range of topics discussed, above all by "bringing in" questions of multilateral political and economic cooperation, and socialist construction in the allied states.

Inform each other ahead of time about new initiatives and ideas, which this or that side intends to put forward at a meeting of the PCC.

Strengthen the practice of conducting, in the course of PCC consultations, restricted meetings of the leaders of delegations and ministers of foreign affairs. Inform them in a timely way about the approximate topic without prejudice to the possibility of raising, at the same time, any questions during the meetings.

Conduct multilateral informal meetings of heads of governments, secretaries of the CC and ministers of defense with the participation of the supreme commander and chief of staff of the UAF.

Track the results of restricted meetings. The representatives of the organizing country "should" summarize at the closing session the essence of agreements "reached" at the restricted meetings.

Create a mechanism for accounting for and controlling the implementation of agreements, proposals and thoughts contained in the statements at the PCC. The secretary general of the Warsaw Treaty "should" systemize and table them for discussion in practical terms at deputy foreign ministers' meetings "called to discuss" the results of the PCC meetings.

In keeping with the existing practice of having defense ministers, the supreme commander and chief of staff of the UAF participate in meetings of the PCC, peri-

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