The Paris Conference: Neutral Zone

In the notes showered on NATO members on the eve of the Paris conference, Soviet Premier Nikolai Bulganin dropped one calculated teaser: a proposal that both East Germany and West Germany ban the production and stockpiling of atomic weapons in their territories. If the two Germanys would agree to this, said Bulganin, Poland and Czechoslovakia would also adhere to the ban. A de-atomized zone would be created across Central Europe; tensions might be reduced.

The notion of "disengagement" of hostile forces by creating a buffer zone between them has had a long appeal, and it is still strong today among statesmen and...

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