Nikolai Sokov takes stock of the summit between Reagan and Gorbachev in Reykjavik in 1986 and assesses its impact on future US-Russian arms control efforts. Nevertheless, the idea required more trust between the Soviet Union and the United States than at the time. Secretary-General Yuri Andledow saw Reagan`s proposal as a program that would require the Soviet Union to increase defence spending and end the period of relative stability that marked Secretary General Leonid Brezhnev`s relationship with Presidents Richard Nixon, Gerald Ford and Jimmy Carter. In addition, tensions over the proposed use of U.S. medium-range missiles in Europe came at a time when, as NATO had decided at the end of the Carter administration. Andropov condemned Reagan`s speech, followed by a period of bitter relations. Significant progress in arms control and disarmament must wait for Reagan`s visionary, Gorbachev, to succeed Andropov as leader of the Soviet Union. In his speech on the way back from Reykjavik, written by Chernyaev, Gorbachev gave a very positive assessment of the summit. He announces that he is now “even more optimistic after Reykjavik”, that he understands Reagan`s domestic policy problems and that the US president is not entirely free to make his decisions. He sees Reykjavik as a sign of a new stage in the disarmament process, from restrictions to total abolition. These are the underlying motives that the Soviets and Americans complied with when they arrived in Reykjavik. The summit itself was divided into four sessions on 11 and 12 October. Although no agreement has finally been reached, decommissioned documents once again give us an overview of the reactions of both parties with respect to the commonality and the remaining obstacles to the creation of strong agreements that were likely to succeed.
The first event that followed at the summit was the expulsion of Soviet diplomats from the United States on 22 October. At a Politburo meeting, Gorbachev made it clear that the U.S. government had not committed to halting talks in Reykjavik. Worse, during the meeting, Gorbachev openly stated that Reagan was a liar who could not keep control of his administration. Eight days later, Gorbachev was again pressured at another Politburo meeting, where the Soviet economy is still weakening and workers have stopped working for the worthless ruble. This was a great distraction, as the meeting was also intended to provide instructions for the meeting of the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START) in Geneva. To resolve these issues, it was decided to develop a rigorous economic plan that suspended promises of aid to Soviet satellites, and instructions were given to Geneva officials to make concessions during the audit. These concessions allowed for ground and air tests, although no sun was allowed for ten years.