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February 1, 1990 – CBS World News Roundup – Gordon Skene Sound Collection –
February 1, 1990 – Calls for reunification of the two Germany’s were getting louder and the demonstrations getting larger. In a major policy shift, East Germany’s Prime Minister Hans Modrow endorsed eventual reunification. He called for, what he referred to as “a new German Federation” with a single Parliament, single Constitution and its Capitol in Berlin. In a statement that marked a dramatic turnaround, Modrow even adopted the slogan “Germany: Single Fatherland”, a phrase most often heard at demonstrations against the government he heads. He laid out a loose confederation but gave no timetable when such an even would occur. Still, it was encouraging.
For his part, President Bush, at his first State Of The Union Address, proposed deeper cuts in troop strength throughout Central and Eastern Europe to 195,000 on each side. It went beyond the force reductions Mr. Bush proposed at NATO the year before, which the latest proposal brought broad support in Brussels. Mr. Bush informed Mikhail Gorbachev of his idea in a phone call, but had yet to hear a reaction from the Soviet leader. President Bush also indicated the invasion force he sent to Panama would be withdrawn by the end of February, though the 13,000 troops there would continue on as a police force.
And South Africa’s President F.W. DeKlerk was rumored to have met with jailed dissident Nelson Mandela earlier this day and later confirmed the surprise meeting. It was seen as an attempt to iron-out differences related to Mandela’s release from prison. The two met the previous December to discuss obstacles that prevented meaningful dialogue. It was believed Mandela left his prison house earlier in the day, but his exact location had not been disclosed.
And that’s just a small slice of what happened, this first day of February in 1990 as reported on The CBS World News Roundup.