Khrushchev: The Years in Power

Khrushchev: The Years in Power

Khrushchev: The Years in Power

Khrushchev: The Years in Power

Synopsis

Two prominent Soviet dissidents portray Khrushchev in power as a shrewd, complex, decisive, and impetuous innovator, impatient to remedy defects in the Soviet system but carried away by initial successes.

Excerpt

Our plan in this book is first to set the stage for the drama of Khrushchev and his decade of power by describing the immediate background--Stalin's legacy of terror, the subdued but unrelenting power struggle after his death, and Khrushchev's early tentative attempts at agricultural and political reform, reforms that were sensitively tuned to the needs and desires of ordinary citizens. We will then turn to our main theme--those disruptive economic policies and political shocks that Khrushchev so mercilessly heaped on a bewildered people. If "too little, too late" can be catastrophic in war, too much, too soon can be equally disastrous for a nation.

Our "list" of the reasons for Khrushchev's fall is not a mere repetition of those rumored but as yet unpublished accusations against Khrushchev that were put forth in a "confidential" explanation circulated among Party enclaves after October 1964. In large measure, our analysis is independent and points out flaws not only in Khrushchev's own character, but also in the whole pyramid of power of that time, defects of the social sys-

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