German, Romanian & Slavic
There was a time when a description of German, Romanian & Slavic would have referenced "Eastern Bloc" countries or "formerly communist" states. Since the Velvet Revolution in 1989, when the Berlin Wall came down, and the dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1991, however, these descriptors are often moot. A century of wars and the Cold War officially came to an end in 1990 when the Soviet Union, the United States and Europe signed the Paris Charter.
Today, Western, Central and Eastern Europe—the New Europe—are again engaged in a great experiment in economic and cultural reintegration, through the expansion of the European Union and the euro zone, NATO, the Council of Europe, and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, among others. Among the nations that are represented in our section, Poland (1991), Romania (1993), Slovenia (2003), Slovakia (2003), Croatia (1996), Russia (1996) Bosnia and Herzegovina (2002), and Serbia (2003) have joined the Council of Europe.
Poland (2004), Slovenia (2004), Slovakia (2004), and Romania (2007) are members of the European Union.