The Historical Foundations of the Policy

  • Karen Dawisha


Prior to 1955, the establishment of full and cordial relations with Egypt and the other states of the developing East was not high on the list of Soviet objectives. Rather, priorities lay more with domestic economic growth and the establishment of a socialist order in the industrialised West. Nevertheless, both geographically and demographically Russia has always stood between East and West; and it was not unnatural, therefore, for the Bolsheviks to conclude that the October Revolution had ‘built a bridge between the Socialist West and the enslaved East’.1 In the years following the revolution, the Bolsheviks tried to strengthen this bridge by advocating that all communists and Eastern nationalists should join forces in a united front to bring about the collapse of imperialism and the victory of socialism. The decision to adopt united front tactics was taken at the Second Comintern Congress in 1920 against the bitter opposition of many Eastern communists who claimed, not without justification, that the national bourgeoisie in the East were unreliable allies and that they would turn against the Communists at the first opportunity.2


Foreign Policy Communist Party October Revolution Historical Foundation Soviet Leader 
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Notes and References

  1. 1.
    J. Stalin, Pravda (November 1918), as quoted in Stanley W. Page, Lenin and World Revolution ( New York: McGraw-Hill Book Company, 1972 ), p. 142.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    The various debates at the Second Congress can be found in Seymour Becker, Russian Protectorates in Central Asia. Bukhara and Khiva, 1865–1924 ( Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1968 ), pp. 240–57;Google Scholar
  3. Helene Cancre d’Encausse and Stuart R. Schram, Marxism and Asia ( London: Allen Lane, The Penguin Press, 1969 ), pp. 149–68.Google Scholar
  4. 3.
    J. Stalin, as quoted in E. H. Carr, Socialism in One Country, 1924–1926, Vol. 3 ( London: Macmillan and Co., 1964 ), p. 650.Google Scholar
  5. 4.
    Quoted in Jane Degras, ed., The Communist International 1919–1943, Vol. 3 ( London: Oxford University Press, 1956 ), p. 78.Google Scholar
  6. 7.
    Ye. Zhukov, ‘Obostrennyy krizis kolonial’noy sistemy’, Bol’shevik, No. 23 (15 December 1947), pp. 51–64.Google Scholar
  7. 8.
    Ye. Zhukov, ‘Voprosy natsional’no-kolonialnoy bor’by posle vtoroy mirovoy voyny’, Voprosy ekonomiki, No. 9 (1949), p. 58.Google Scholar
  8. 10.
    L. Vatolina, ‘Yegipet i krizis Britanskoy kolonial’noy politiki’, Imperialist icheskaya bor’ba za Afriku i osvoboditel’noye dvizheniye narodov (Moscow, 1953), p. 127.Google Scholar
  9. A similar view is expressed in L. Vatolina, ‘Bor’ba Yegipetskovo naroda za mir i nezavisimost’, Voprosy ekonomiki, No. 2 (1952), pp. 61–73;Google Scholar
  10. and L. Gordonov, Yegipet (Moscow, 1953 ).Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    D. S. Carlisle, ‘The Changing Soviet Perception of the Development Process in the Afro-Asian World’, Midwest journal of Political Science, Vol. 8, No. 4 (1964), p. 388.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Stephen Page, The USSR and Arabia ( London: Central Asian Research Centre, 1971 ), p. 19.Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    David J. Dallin, Soviet Foreign Policy After Stalin ( London: Methuen and Co., 1960 ), pp. 15–17;Google Scholar
  14. Isaac Deutscher, Stalin ( London: Penguin, 1866 ), p. 602.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Karen Dawisha 1979

Authors and Affiliations

  • Karen Dawisha
    • 1
  1. 1.University of SouthamptonUK

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