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Chernyaev, Anatoly S.
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Excerpt from Anatoly S. Chernyaev's Diary
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In this entry Gorbachev's senior foreign policy aide reflects on Gorbachev's meeting with the Pope and the legacy of the Malta summit, since in the press of events, he had not managed to write down his commentary in the moment. The main point Chernyaev sees about Malta, a month later, is the "normalcy" of the summit, the shared understanding that the Soviet Union and the United States are partners and nobody would attack the other, therefore, the threat of nuclear war is a thing of the past, as is the Cold War itself. Chernyaev sees Gorbachev making an intentional effort at Malta to discard this old reality of the Soviet threat, of the "terror" projected by the Soviet Union in Europe as a result of its invasions and repressions. In Malta, according to Chernyaev, Gorbachev and Bush "gave hope to all humanity," and at the Vatican, Gorbachev and the Pope "spoke like two good Christians." The world has changed indeed.