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Cold War Broadcasting

Impact on the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe

Edited by A. Ross Johnson, R. Eugene Parta

Publication Year: 2010

The book examines the role of Western broadcasting to the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe during the Cold War, with a focus on Radio Free Europe and Radio Liberty. It includes chapters by radio veterans and by scholars who have conducted research on the subject in once-secret Soviet bloc archives and in Western records. It also contains a selection of translated documents from formerly secret Soviet and East European archives, most of them published here for the first time.

Published by: Central European University Press

Title Page

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Copyright Page

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Table of Contents

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pp. v-ix

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Preface

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pp. xi-xiii

Radio Free Europe and Radio Liberty were, along with other Western broadcasters, effective instruments of Western policy during the Cold War. Previous studies have examined the history and organization of RFE /RL and its place in American national security strategy. Major publications include...

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Foreword

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pp. xv-xvi

In a tumbledown farmhouse in the poorest corner of south-eastern Poland, at the height of the Solidarity revolution of 1980-81, I met a farmer who had just sold some home-weaved baskets in order to buy a radio. He had bought it to keep himself informed about the...

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Introduction

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pp. xvii-xxv

Part One of this book, “Goals of the Broadcasts,” reviews the origins and development of RFE and RL , and the complementary development of the Voice of America. These chapters were written by participants in the events described. The subsequent sections were provided...

Part 1: Goals of the Broadcasts

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pp. 1-48

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Chapter 1: RFE ’s Early Years: Evolution of Broadcast Policy and Evidence of Broadcast Impact

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pp. 3-16

Since the liberation of Eastern Europe and the collapse of the Soviet Union, the effectiveness of Radio Free Europe broadcasts has never been questioned. Testimony on the impact of the broadcasts has come repeatedly from the new leaders...

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Chapter 2: Goals of Radio Liberty

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pp. 17-24

Aleksandr Herzen wrote from London in the 1850s: “There is no place for freedom of speech at home—it can be heard elsewhere. I remain in the West only to begin free Russian speech, to set up for Russia an organ without censorship...

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Chapter 3: The Voice of America: A Brief Cold War History

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pp. 25-48

The Voice of America, the nation’s only government-funded global broadcaster, has been on the air more than six decades. It has served listeners during World War II , the Cold War, the immediate post-Cold War period of unprecedented geopolitical...

Part 2: Jamming and Audiences

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Chapter 4: Cold War Radio Jamming

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pp. 51-66

On the night of November 21, 1988, shortly after 9 p.m., I received a call at my home in Munich, Germany, from operators at the RFE/RL Technical Monitoring and Receiving station at Schleissheim, a northern suburb, reporting that Soviet...

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Chapter 5: The Audience to Western Broadcasts to the USSR During the Cold War: An External Perspective

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pp. 67-101

Survey data on Radio Liberty’s audience during the failed coup in August 1991 was available within days of the event. It showed widespread listening to the station. (A survey carried out a few weeks after the coup by Vox Populi, a leading Moscow research...

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Chapter 6: The Foreign Radio Audience in the USSR During the Cold War: An Internal Perspective

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pp. 103-120

The attempt to influence populations through broadcasting in national languages was just one episode of the so-called Cold War between the USSR and the West, especially the United States. In 1947 the Voice of America started broadcasting...

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Chapter 7: The Audience to Western Broadcasts to Poland During the Cold War

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pp. 121-144

The purpose of this paper is to examine the audience to Radio Free Europe’s Polish Service from the 1960s to the early 1990s. The paper includes and compares data from three sources: external surveys with travelers conducted by RFE ’s audience research department...

Part 3: Impact of Western Broadcasts in Eastern Europe

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pp. 145-274

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Chapter 8: Radio Free Europe in the Eyes of the Polish Communist Elite

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pp. 147-168

Radio Free Europe played a complex role in Polish elite politics. In the process of providing Poles with information about the realities of life and politics their media did not report, it served as an alternative source of information for the Polish elite...

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Chapter 9: Polish Regime Countermeasures against Radio Free Europe

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pp. 169-204

Over more than four decades of existence, the Communist system in Poland underwent a significant evolution, but throughout the period, from the beginning of the 1950s until the end of the 1980s, one of the permanent enemies of the system was...

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Chapter 10: Radio Free Europe’s Impact in Romania During the Cold War

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pp. 205-227

Emil Constantinescu, President of Romania from 1997 to 2000, spoke those words in his prepared remarks during an official visit to Prague in the spring of 1997, a few months after his inauguration as President. His metaphor may seem overreaching...

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Chapter 11: Ceauşescu’s War against Our Ears

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pp. 229-238

If censorship can be defined as “the knot that binds knowledge and power,”2 then the secret services established under communist regimes provide the best illustration of censorship at its being most distorted and pathological. Although complete state...

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Chapter 12: Just Noise? Impact of Radio Free Europe in Hungary

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pp. 239-257

E. H. Gombrich, one of the most influential art historians of the twentieth century, who was at one time director of the Warburg Institute in London, worked as a so-called monitor and later as a monitoring supervisor, between 1939 and 1945 at the...

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Chapter 13: Bulgarian Regime Countermeasures against Radio Free Europe

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pp. 259-274

The impact of RFE ’s Bulgarian broadcasts falls historically into three distinct phases, and so, by extension, do the countermeasures taken against the station. During the first period (1950s–1960s), the broadcasts proved relatively ineffective in influencing...

Part 4: Impact of Western Broadcasts in the USSR

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pp. 275-342

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Chapter 14: Soviet Reactions to Foreign Broadcasting in the 1950s

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pp. 277-298

In spite of the extensive literature on the history of foreign broadcasting in the Soviet Union, the Soviet response to foreign radio transmissions has not yet emerged as a focus for scholarly analysis (except for the topic of jamming, examined in detail most...

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Chapter 15: Foreign Media, the Soviet Western Frontier, and the Hungarian and Czechoslovak Crises

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pp. 299-317

Evaluating the impact of foreign broadcasts and publications is a tricky pursuit for those who seek to influence the course of events in an opponent’s country, and the impact of Cold War broadcasts to the Soviet Union is not always easy to measure. This essay discusses Soviet...

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Chapter 16: Water Shaping the Rock: Cold War Broadcasting Impact in Latvia

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pp. 319-342

Each of the Western broadcasters played a role in the battle of the airwaves that took place during the Cold War. Before RFE /RL began broadcasting in 1975 (initially as part of Radio Liberty, later as part of Radio Free Europe), VOA was the only major...

Part 5: Conclusions

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Chapter 17: Cold War International Broadcasting and the Road to Democracy

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pp. 345-350

This volume assesses the impact of Western broadcasts to the USSR and Eastern Europe during the Cold War based on evidence from Western and Communist-era archives and oral history interviews. External and internal audience surveys...

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Part 6: Documents from East European and Soviet Archives

This section contains translations of documents from East European and Soviet archives concerning Western broadcasting during the Cold War. The documents make clear that the Communist regimes perceived “enemy” broadcasts as a serious threat...

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I. Regime Perceptions of Western Broadcasters

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pp. 355-437

In 1977 the hostile propaganda against the People’s Republic of Bulgaria remained almost unchanged in terms of quantity. The broadcasts in the Bulgarian language continued from 10 radio stations from the capitalist countries...

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II. Regime Countermeasures against Western Broadcasters

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pp. 439-561

The representatives of the intelligence organs of the PRB, HPR, GDR , PPR, USSR and CSSR , who met on 12–13 February 1976 in Prague exchanged experience on active measures, both completed and in preparation, against the centers...

Contributors

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pp. 563-564

Glossary

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pp. 565-567

Index

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pp. 569-584

Back Cover

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E-ISBN-13: 9786155211904
Print-ISBN-13: 9789639776807

Page Count: 613
Publication Year: 2010