Andrei Gromyko

Andrei Andreyevich Gromyko (Russian: Андре́й Андре́евич Громы́ко; Belarusian: Андрэ́й Андрэ́евіч Грамы́ка; 18 July [O.S. 5 July] 1909 – 2 July 1989)[2] was a Soviet Belarusian communist politician and diplomat during the Cold War. He served as Minister of Foreign Affairs (1957–1985) and as Chairman of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet (1985–1988). Gromyko was responsible for many top decisions on Soviet foreign policy until he retired in 1988. In the 1940s Western pundits called him Mr Nyet ("Mr No") or "Grim Grom", because of his frequent use of the Soviet veto in the United Nations Security Council.

Andrei Gromyko
Андре́й Андре́евич Громы́ко
Gromyko in 1972
Chairman of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR
In office
27 July 1985  1 October 1988
DeputyVasili Kuznetsov
Pyotr Demichev
Preceded byKonstantin Chernenko
Vasily Kuznetsov (acting)
Succeeded byMikhail Gorbachev
First Deputy Chairman of the
Council of Ministers of the Soviet Union
In office
24 March 1983  2 July 1985
PremierNikolai Tikhonov
Preceded byHeydar Aliyev
Succeeded byNikolai Talyzin
Minister of Foreign Affairs
In office
15 February 1957  2 July 1985
PremierNikolai Bulganin
Nikita Khrushchev
Alexei Kosygin
Nikolai Tikhonov
Preceded byDmitri Shepilov
Succeeded byEduard Shevardnadze
Permanent Representative of the Soviet Union to the United Nations
In office
April 1946  May 1948
PremierJoseph Stalin
Preceded byPost created
Succeeded byYakov Malik
Full member of the 24th, 25th, 26th, 27th Politburo of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union
In office
27 April 1973  30 September 1988
Personal details
Andrei Andreyevich Gromyko

18 July [O.S. 5 July] 1909
Staryye Gromyki, Mogilev Governorate, Russian Empire
Died2 July 1989(1989-07-02) (aged 79)
Moscow, Russian SFSR, Soviet Union
Resting placeNovodevichy Cemetery
Political partyCommunist Party of the Soviet Union (1931–1989)
Spouse(s)Lydia Dmitrievna Grinevich (1911–2004)[1]
ProfessionEconomist, diplomat, civil servant

Gromyko's political career started in 1939 in the People's Commissariat for Foreign Affairs (renamed Ministry of Foreign Affairs in 1946). He became the Soviet ambassador to the United States in 1943, leaving that position in 1946 to become the Soviet Permanent Representative to the United Nations in New York. Upon his return to Moscow he became a Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs and later First Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs. He went on to become the Soviet ambassador to the United Kingdom in 1952.

As Foreign Minister of the Soviet Union, Gromyko was directly involved in deliberations with the Americans during the Cuban Missile Crisis and helped broker a peace treaty ending the 1965 Indo-Pakistani War. Under the leadership of Leonid Brezhnev, he played a central role in the establishment of détente with the United States by negotiating the ABM Treaty, the Partial Nuclear Test Ban Treaty and the SALT I & II among others. When Brezhnev suffered a stroke in 1975 impairing his ability to govern, Gromyko effectively dictated policymaking alongside KGB Chairman Yuri Andropov, Defense Minister Andrei Grechko and Grechko's successor, Marshal Dmitry Ustinov. Even after Brezhnev's death, Gromyko's rigid conservatism and distrust of the West continued to dominate the Soviet Union's foreign policy until Mikhail Gorbachev's rise to power in 1985.

Following Gorbachev's election as General Secretary, Gromyko lost his office as foreign minister and was appointed to the largely ceremonial Chairman of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR. Subsequently, he retired from political life in 1988, and died the following year in Moscow.