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Digital Archive International History Declassified


  • “Local Nationalism" in Xinjiang, 1957-1958

    At the end of 1957, the Xinjiang Party Committee announced the convening of an enlarged plenum, with the goal of exposing and criticizing so-called local nationalist deviations. Originally scheduled to last only a few weeks, the meeting dragged on for an extraordinary six months, only concluding in June 1958. This collection is introduced by David Brophy in an essay for Sources and Methods. For other collections about Xinjiang, see "China and the Soviet Union in Xinjiang, 1934-1949," and "The Yi-Ta Incident, 1962."

  • 1956 Polish and Hungarian Crises

    The uprising began in Hungary as a spontaneous nationwide revolt against the People's Republic of Hungary and its Soviet-imposed policies, while in Poland similar political uprisings began in October 1956. The documents, most of which are working notes, are from 1956 and come from Russian and Bulgarian archives. See also, the Nikita Khrushchev Collection, and the Warsaw Pact. (Image, Head of a Toppled Stalin Statue in Budapest, 1956 from Wikimedia Commons)

  • 1980-81 Polish Crisis

    The Polish Crisis of 1980-1981 began with a wave of strikes across Poland and the formation of the first independent labor union in a Soviet bloc country – Solidarity. The crisis ended with the imposition of martial law in December 1981. Most of these documents are from Russian archives and record the Soviet response to the Polish crisis, including preparations for military intervention. There are also documents from other Eastern European archives which contain the Communist bloc leaders’ discussions and reactions to the events in Poland. See also the Soviet Invasion of Czechoslovakia and the Warsaw Pact. (Image, Strike Coordination Committee in Szczecin, 1980, Archiwum autora, Stefan Cielak)

  • 1988 Seoul Olympic Games

    A collection of primary source documents about the 1988 Seoul Olympic Games drawn from the archives of the International Olympic Committee. The collection highlight the relationship between sport and politics and offer an unprecedented window into North Korea's negotiating strategies, inter-Korean relations, and the DPRK’s foreign relations at the end of the Cold War. (Image, fireworks over the closing ceremonies of the Seoul Olympics, 1988, US Department of Defense, DF-ST-90-05038)

  • Archivio Andreotti's NATO Series

    Giulio Andreotti (Rome, 1919-2013) was one of the most important figures in Italian politics after the Second World War. This collection, drawn from Andreotti's papers held by the Istituto Luigi Sturzo, features letters, telegrams, reports, notes, and memoranda written by officials from the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MAE) and the Ministry of Defense and various Italian Ambassadors and diplomatic advisers. The materials are broadly related to NATO affairs and include dossiers prepared by MAE officials for the sessions of North Atlantic Council, special meetings of NATO Ministers of Foreign Affairs or Ministers of Defense, Andreotti’s visits abroad, and visits of important international leaders in Italy. The materials were selected and described by Dr. Lodovica Clavarino as part of a joint Wilson Center-Roma Tre University-Istituto Sturzo project.  For further information, see the introduction by Leopoldo Nuti and Lodovica Clavarino, "The Giulio Andreotti Archive: A First-Hand Account of NATO." Image: North Atlantic Council Meeting, Lisbon, June 1985. From left: Carrington, Andreotti, Romano. Source: Istituto Luigi Sturzo, Busta 170_fascicolo 74_1985. Reproduction of this image without the prior authorization of the Istituto Luigi Sturzo is prohibited. All commercial use is forbidden.

  • Asian Peoples' Anti-Communist League

    Documents on several of the early conferences convened by the Asian Peoples' Anti-Communist League in South Korea, the Philippines, and Vietnam and attended by delegations from across Asia. (Image: Syngman Rhee greets Jiang Jieshi in August 1949. Source)

  • Austria and German Unification

    Documents on Austria’s role in the dissolution of the German Democratic Republic (GDR) and the country’s position toward German Unification. Originally published with a Working Paper by Michael Gehler and Maximilian Graf. See also the collections on German Reunification, the Berlin Wall, and the End of the Cold War. Image: Austrian Chancellor Franz Vranitzky meets with the new Chairman of the Council of Ministers of the GDR, Hans Modrow, on 24 November 1989. Source

  • Bandung Conference, 1955

    Leading representatives from twenty-nine newly independent African, Asian, and Middle Eastern countries came together for the Afro-Asian Conference in Bandung, Indonesia, from 19 April-24 April 1955. (Image: Delegates attending the Bandung Conference pose for a group photo, April 1955) (See also: The Second Asian-African Conference.)

  • Baruch Plan for Int'l Control of Atomic Energy

    In June 1946, Bernard Baruch presented to the United Nations Atomic Energy Commission (UNAEC)  a proposal for the international control and regulation of atomic energy. This collection documents the Soviet Union's response to the Baruch Plan. It shows that Molotov and Stalin paid careful attention to the position the Soviet Union was taking at the United Nations on atomic weapons and arms reduction, even as they did not necessarily believe that an agreement was even possible or desirable. For additional information, see David J. Holloway's post on Sources & Methods, "The Soviet Union and the Baruch Plan" (June 2020).

  • Ben Sanders Papers

    This collection features materials from the private papers of Benjamin Sanders, a former Dutch diplomat and United Nations official, concerning the Programme for Promoting Nuclear Non-Proliferation (PPNN). The PPNN was founded in 1986 by Ben Sanders and John Simpson to educate diplomats expected to take part in the 1995 Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) Review and Extension Conference. The PPNN ceased to exist in 2002. The collection includes the correspondences of Ben Sanders, the minutes of PPNN meetings and workshops, and copies of the PPNN Newsbrief. For further information, see the introduction by Michal Onderco on the Sources & Methods blog "The Ben Sanders Collection." (Photo: Members of Core Group 12 at the A-Bomb Dome, Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park, Japan, 1992. Courtesy of University of Southampton Special Collections.)

  • Berlin Wall

    Documents on the history of the Berlin Wall, beginning with the conditions in Berlin and East Germany following WWII and the history of the wall's construction in 1961, and followed by the 1971 Four Power Negotiations on the status of Berlin, and the final tearing down of the Wall in 1989. See also the collections on German Unification and the End of the Cold War. (Image,  Berlin Wall between Mitte and Kreuzberg, Bundesarchiv, B 145 Bild-F078996-0006)

  • Brazilian Nuclear History

    Drawn from Brazilian and US government sources, this collection documents the evolution of the Brazilian nuclear program from the first proposal presented to the government in 1947, through the decision to establish a secret civilian-military program in 1978, until the end of the parallel military program in 1989. The documents are presented in collaboration with Fundação Getúlio Vargas (FGV). (Image, Ernesto Geisel, Shigeaki Ueki, Paulo Nogueira Batista, at an exposition promoted by Nuclebrás in March 1977, Paulo Nogueira Batista Archive at FGV)

  • Cambodian-Vietnamese War, 1977-1991

  • Ceausescu's Diplomacy in the Middle East

    (Image: Yasser Arafat and Nicolae Ceausescu meet in Bucharest in February, 1974)

  • Chernobyl Nuclear Accident, 1986

    The disastrous meltdown in the 4th reactor of the Chernobyl (Chornobyl) Atomic Electrical Station occurred on April 26th, 1986. This collection contains Ukrainian and national KGB reports, Communist Party directives, and Ukrainian Academy of Science measurements which discuss technical issues with the plant, details of the accident, and emergency responses across the republic. It shows that updates from the construction site and first few years of plant operation were dire as early as the 1970s. The collection also demonstrates that the government failed to inform the public of the true scope of radiation damage for years after the accident. Adam Higgonbotham, author of Midnight in Chernobyl, introduces parts of the collection in an essay for Sources & Methods. See also the Digital Archive collection on Ukrainian Nuclear History. (Image: A helicopter sprays a decontamination liquid nearby the Chernobyl reactor in 1986. Source: IAEA Imagebank #02790036, via Wikimedia Commons, CC BY-SA 2.0.)

  • China and Africa

     This collection highlights China's relations with countries in Africa during the Mao period, particularly in the 1960s. The collection features Chinese documents on economic and cultural relations with several countries in Africa, as well as meetings and leadership exchanges. See also the collection: China's Foreign Aid. Image: Chinese leader Mao-Tse-Tung greets President Julius K. Nyerere of Tanzania in Peking. President Nyerere went to Chinese Capital to finalise the Tanzania/Zambia railway line project, January 1, 1960 (Credit: CameraPix).

  • China and Latin America and the Caribbean

    This collection features materials on China's foreign relations with countries in Latin America and the Caribbean during the Mao period. The majority of documents are about Sino-Cuban relations and China's perspectives on the Cuban Missile Crisis. The collection includes embassy cables sent from Chinese diplomats in Latin America and records of conversation between Chinese and various leaders from the region.Image: Zhou Enlai Greeting Che Guevara.

  • China and South Asia

    South Asia was one of the most important regions in China's international relations and foreign policy during the Cold War. This collection, drawn largely from the Chinese Foreign Ministry Archive, sheds light on China's relations with India, Pakistan, and, to a lesser extent, Afghanistan and Sri Lanka (formerly known as Ceylon) from 1949 onwards. It includes high-level records of conversation between Chinese and South Asian leaders, Chinese embassy dispatches from the region, and other types of records. See also the Digital Archive collection on the Sino-Indian Border War, 1962. (Photo: The Prime Minister of Pakistan, Huseyn Shaheed Suhrawardy, meets Mao Zedong (right) in October 1956.) (

  • China and the Korean War

     A collection of materials documenting China's involvement in all stages of the Korean War. For more coverage of the Korean War on the Digital Archive, see the collections: (1) Korean War Origins, 1945-1950; (2) Korean War, 1950-1953; (3) Korean War Armistice; and (4) Korean War Biological Warfare Allegations. (Image: Chen Geng, Peng Dehuai, and Deng Hua, commanders of the Chinese People's Volunteer Army, stand together for a group photo)

  • China and the Middle East/North Africa

    This collection features materials on China's relations with countries in the Middle East and North Africa, primarily during the Mao period. The majority of documents concern China's relations with Egypt and Algeria. The collection includes the records of conversations between Chinese leaders and Gamal Abdel Nasser, Ben Bella, Ferhat Abbas, Ali Sabri, and other preeminent leaders from the MENA region. (Image: Zhou Enlai (left) during his tour of Egypt, with Gamal Abdel Nasser.)