Glasnost & Goodwill: Cold War Citizen Diplomacy
The Washington State Historical Society has just released a video, "Glasnost & Goodwill: Citizen Diplomacy in the Northwest," outlining the importance of individual citizens in reducing Cold War tensions between the U.S. and former USSR.
The video explores the sister cities initiative between Seattle and Tashkent, Uzbekistan; the 1990 Goodwill Games; and the Mount Everest International Peace Climb.
These citizen diplomacy initiatives were influential because, according to one interviewee, “Organizations don’t talk. Governments don’t talk. People talk. It’s the only way to make things work.” Thanks to these people-to-people exchanges and citizen diplomats, Americans and Soviets alike were able to build a friendship that rose above Cold War tensions.