WASHINGTON — Soviet Foreign Ministry spokesman Gennadi I. Gerasimov today said the Soviet Union has adopted the "Sinatra Doctrine" in its policy toward Warsaw Pact nations--they can do things their way.
Gerasimov appeared on ABC's "Good Morning America" to discuss the speech delivered Monday by Soviet Foreign Minister Eduard A. Shevardnadze in which he said that the Soviets now recognize the absolute freedom of choice of all countries, specifically the Warsaw Pact nations.
That marks a huge departure from the past, in which Eastern European countries that strayed too far from Communist orthodoxy found Soviet armies on their doorsteps.
"We now have the Frank Sinatra doctrine," said Gerasimov. "He has a song, 'I (Did) It My Way.' So every country decides on its own which road to take."
Asked if that includes an absolute rejection of any military force against any Eastern nation, Gerasimov replied:
"That's for sure . . . political structures must be decided by the people who live there."
But what, he was asked, if the Communist Party were to be rejected in a country?
"Take Poland," replied Gerasimov. "There are new faces there."