THE POLITICAL and intellectual leaders of Eastern Europe's revolution of
1989 describe their aim as a "return to Europe." Their overwhelming
judgment is that the postwar division of Europe into East and West was
artificially imposed by the Soviet Union, at enormous human and
economic cost. They underscore the artificiality of the division by
referring to their region as East Central Europe (or Middle Europe),
rather than Eastern Europe, thereby stressing their countries' place in
the mainstream of European history, politics, arts, and economy.