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Abstract disponibile solo in lingua inglese
1991 is the year which, for what was once called the USSR, will mark the beginning of the "post-Soviet era". The USSR has ceased to be a super power and has started to crumble. The organisation of the Soviet Communist Party (CPSU) has been virtually dismantled. Communist ideology is no longer a credo capable of legitimating a totalitarian regime in Moscow, or of mobilising revolutionary, anti-Western forces worldwide. The parties, the organised groups, the states and the miscellaneous other elements which once formed the Marxist communist system have suddenly become extinct, like so many dinosaurs (genus: "Marxosaurus"!), incapable of adapting to the changes which have taken place in the world in this latter part of the twentieth century. In terms of international relations, the post-Soviet era is also, in a certain sense, the era of the post-détente. Not because we are moving from détente to a new cold war, but because the very terms "détente" and "cold war" are no longer applicable to East-West relations, now that the European geo-political system has been so totally overturned.