Not Cold Anymore: Cold War remembered

It's been 20 years since the world's biggest powers decided to mark the end of the Cold War.

Just weeks after the fall of the Berlin Wall, Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev met his American counterpart, George Bush Sr., in Malta.

The summit marked the end of more than four decades of military and political confrontation between the East and the West.

Eduard Shevardnadze, Soviet Foreign Minister 1985-1990, says there were two options left for the two superpowers as to how relations would continue between them, “One was going from Cold War to a real one. And that would, of course, mean more than just a local war. That would be World War III, and a nuclear one. The other option was to start looking for common ground, so we agreed to meet. It was the first step, the Malta meeting was the first – and a symbolic – event when former foes chose the path of peace.”

Evgeny Bazhanov, Vice President of the Moscow-based Diplomatic Academy, believes both Gorbachev and Bush were tired of the Cold War, but twenty years on, a new generation is treating that historic event differently, “When I talk to my students and I ask them about the Cold War. Some of them have never heard of it. Some say it ended in 1824 or in 1930. So the bad memories go away and we have the same values, we have the basis for cooperation and human contacts. There’s no need for the Cold War.”