In this fall of 1991, as the former constituents of the Soviet Union struggle to define new political identities and to avert economic disaster, it is worth considering the situations of some of the countries that emerged earlier from behind the Iron Curtain. Czechoslovakia, Poland, and Hungary have renounced communism. Their citizens enjoy freedom of speech, assembly, and travel. As prices are permitted to change in response to market conditions, currencies exchanged, and foreign businesses welcomed, their economies are improving. East Germany no longer exists as a separate country, but as part of the democratic, market-oriented Germany. The Czechs, Poles, Hungarians, and former East Germans have a future full of hope.