Frédéric Bozo

Mitterrand: The End of the Cold War and German Unification From Yalta to Masstricht Publication date : May 25, 2005

What role did France play at the end of the Cold War? Was it just marginal? What was President François Mitterrand’s policy on such issues as the emancipation of Eastern Europe, German reunification and the break-up of the Soviet Union? Was the response of French diplomacy overly cool and unenthusiastic? To what extent were French goals met? Did France make a significant contribution to the unfolding of events, or was its role merely secondary?
These questions demanded an in-depth inquiry so as to reconstitute objectively and precisely the thread of French policy during Mitterrand’s presidency, to explain certain choices, and to make an assessment.
Because the history of the end of the Cold War is still being written, a rigorous evaluation of its beginnings is all the more necessary.
This is the first complete and rigorous historical study of French diplomacy in the years from 1980 to 1990. Eschewing the usual polemical arguments of the pro- and anti-Mitterrand camps, Bozo provides the reader with a much-needed, sober revaluation of French policies under Mitterrand.

Frédéric Bozo is a professor of the history of international relations at the University of Nantes and a senior research associate at the Institut Français des Relations Internationales (IFRI).