The Soviet-Yugoslav Controversy, 1948-58: A Documentary Record

The Soviet-Yugoslav Controversy, 1948-58: A Documentary Record

The Soviet-Yugoslav Controversy, 1948-58: A Documentary Record

The Soviet-Yugoslav Controversy, 1948-58: A Documentary Record

Excerpt

The documentary record of the first decade of the SovietYugoslav dispute, prepared by the East Europe Institute, will render great service to American students of political theory and international relations. It not only broadens our factual knowledge; it also enhances our understanding of the position of Communism in the contemporary world. It reveals some fundamental tensions in Communist doctrine and practice which often are hidden from the outside observer. Among those tensions the one caused by the prevailing strength of nationalism has played a prominent role in the dispute between the motherland of Communism and the second most important Communist country in Europe. Soviet Russia under the leadership of Stalin and Khrushchev, and Yugoslavia under Tito's leadership, were in 1948, when the dispute started, and are today, in its eleventh year, nations entirely subject to, and governed by, the Marxist-Leninist doctrine of history and society. Both were, and are, equally dedicated to it. What has separated them for the last ten years are not minor doctrinal differences but nationalist considerations.

The first Soviet document of the record presented here, a letter from Moscow to Belgrade dated March 20, 1948, speaks of the fact that the Yugoslav Communists had accused their fellow-Communists in the Soviet Union of "great-power chauvinism." In its reply the Yugoslav Communist Party stressed its love of its own country and complained that the economic position and the behaviour of Soviet Russian experts in Yugoslavia exactly followed the pattern set, or supposedly set, by Western colonial administrators or "advisors" in dependent or semi-dependent territories. Naturally, the Yugoslav Communists did not formulate their complaint in . . .

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