Two plus Four: Revisiting a diplomatic masterpiece that paved the way for German Reunification
Dramatic events in Central Europe in Autumn 1989—particularly demonstrations on the streets of Leipzig and East Berlin—often overshadow the accounts of the high- stakes diplomacy that ended the Cold War division of Germany and Europe. This account by a member of the West German team that negotiated the ‘Two-plus-Four’ Treaty between the two Germanies, France, the UK, Soviet Union and United States puts the spotlight on the monumental issues resolved in a frenetic period of diplomacy between February and July 1990. The treaty leading to German unification managed issues central to modern Europe’s bloodiest conflicts—state sovereignty and national self-determination—by preserving and extending Western Europe’s multilateral institutions. Negotiators trod a narrow path between sceptics in East and West, unifying Germany without undermining Europe’s multilateral political and security order founded on NATO and the European Community. Rather than raising the German Question anew, the ‘Two-plus-Four’ Treaty unified Germany by extending eastward the Federal Republic’s postwar commitments to the West. Ambassador Luy provides a first-hand account of how this fortuitous chain of events unfolded.