Over the weekend, as statesmen gathered at the United Nations, the two superpowers took major steps with third countries to create the kind of post-Cold War world order that is made possible by their improved bilateral relationship.
The Soviet Union charted full diplomatic relations with South Korea, thus creating a two-Korea policy after years of recognizing only Kim Il-sung's North Korea. Moscow is too much in need of South Korean technology, capital and products to resist commercial relations.
Soviet Foreign Minister Eduard A. Shevardnadze also had a nuts and bolts session with Foreign Minister David Levy of Israel, with which the Soviet Union broke relations in 1967. Relations have been warming since 1987. A full Soviet relationship with Israel is necessary to encourage Israeli-Arab dialogue, and to handle the exodus of Soviet Jews to Israel. Mr. Shevardnadze and Mr. Levy agreed to establish consulates in each other's countries and to meet regularly. Coincidentally, Moscow was approving direct air links to Israel. This is not full diplomatic relations, but is three steps closer.