Despite multiple interactions between the United States and Mongolia over the course of 70 years, a formal relationship was not established until 1987. Much of that delay can be attributed to the fact that US-Mongol relations often took a backseat to other strategic interests including relations with China and the Soviet Union. Shortly after the normalization of relations, a visit by then Secretary of State Baker helped to strengthen the relationship by raising the Third Neighbor concept which provided a strategic framework for continued relations between the two nations. This paper will touch on the strategic impediments that delayed relations, the circumstances that had to come together to enable the establishment of a formal relationship, and development of the Third Neighbor framework. This builds upon the authors’ research over the past five years including their chapter in Socialist and Post-Socialist Mongolia (Routledge 2021); memories and memoirs of the American, Mongolian, Japanese, and Russian diplomats; and declassified records from the CIA and the State Department. These research paths provide additional insights and perspectives on the winding path that eventually led to diplomatic recognition and additional interactions in the waning days of the Cold War. This presentation reflects the authors’ ongoing effort to document the events that led to Mongolia’s implementation of a Third Neighbor policy. This shift in Mongolia’s strategic thinking unfolded against the backdrop of its changing relationship with the Soviet Union and the ending of 45 years of international bipolar strife.
Michael Lake, Quantifiable Entropy, United States
Joseph Lake, Quantifiable Entropy, United States
About the Presenter(s)
Michael Allen Lake is an independent scholar focused on diplomatic relations between the United States and Mongolia. His published work includes articles and a chapter in the book Socialist and Post-Socialist Mongolia published by Routledge in 2021.
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See this presentation on the full schedule – Monday Schedule