Managing the End of the Cold War
Most discussions of cross-domain deterrence focus on variation in the means of coercion, but variation in political ends can be just as consequential. Cross-domain deterrence in the context of linkage politics, in which disparate political interests are tied together to create incentives for favorable outcomes, gives potential adversaries the opportunity to avoid confrontational meeting engagements by playing for time to clarify interests and choosing the means most suited to achieving new goals. A broader diplomatic conception of cross-domain deterrence can also highlight the potential of using financial, institutional, or other nonmilitary actions that render the threat or use of force less attractive. This chapter draws on newly available archival evidence to examine issue linkage politics in the context of changing strategic interests in the case of U.S. efforts to deter Soviet repression in Poland and East Germany at the end of the Cold War. In both cases, U.S. policymakers used diplomatic reassurance and threats of isolation to shape Soviet policy as the United States pressed its new-found political interests in Eastern Europe rather than its traditional preoccupation with military affairs.
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