CONSEQUENCES OF AN ATTEMPT TO OVERTHROW THE PRESENT REGIME IN ALBANIA (SE 34)

Created: 12/30/1952

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ASSISTAKT DlnECTOR.OI.'E

SPECIAL ESTIMATE

CONSEQUENCES OF AN ATTEMPT TO OVERTHROW THE PRESENT REGIME IN ALBANIA

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CENTRAL INTELLIGENCE AGENCY

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CONSEQUENCES OP AN ATTEMPT TO OVERTHROW THE PRESENT REGIME IN ALBANIA

THE PROBLEM

To estimate the consequences of an attempt to overthrow the present regime Ln Albaniaoup.

ESTIMATE

PRESENT SITUATION

In Albania there ls widespreadwith the present regime. Even within Uie Albanian Government and within Uie Albanian Communistoss ofln thc long-term prospects of the regime and an Increased sense of personalappear to have developed.

Resistance acUvlty In Albania has increased during the past year, in partesult ofactivity by emigre elements, some of thorn supported by Weslern governments. Rumors and reports of plans for the over-Uirow of the Hoxha regime have beencirculated. Most of the Europeanservices, Including those of the USSR and Albania, are aware of connections of thc emigres with Weslern governments andbelieve that some sort ot plan for thc overthrow of the Hoxha regime ls In the making.

Both the USSR and the present Albanian leaders have demonsIrated sensitivity andover this situation and have publicly accused the West, and especially the US. of "organizing provocations" against Albania.

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USSR almost certainly desires towithin the Soviet Bloc, even thoughan economic liability and an IsolatedLoss of Albania would be damagingprestige and would reduce Sovietfor exerting pressure on Yugoslavia

and Greece. Nevertheless, the USSR has not enteredutual assistance pact with Albania, as It has with Its other European Satellites (except Eastlbania hasact only with Bulgaria.

The Interests of Italy. Greece, andIn Albania conflict, and each of these three countries probably prefers continuance-of Uie status quohange which might prove favorable to any ol the others orlo Its own Interests.

Of these three, Yugoslavia appears the most hopeful of eventually achieving aome change ln the Albanian regime favotable to Itself. As wc estimated Inhere are advantages for Yugoslavia ln lis present policy of applying poliiicalagainst thc Albanian regime without dl-recUy Intervening oroup attempt. By continuing their present course. Uie Yugoslavs can promote the predominance of the Yugoslav-supported group within the Albanian emigre movement They canorder and stability In Albaidaserious risk of Internationalwhile developing contacts with disaffected elements within Uie AlbnnlanIf successful In Uiese eflorla. Uiey will have placed themselvesavorable position to exploit any safe opportunity foror to exercise preponderant Influence In any new regime.

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We believe lhat the Yugoslavs have no piesent Intention ofoup against the Hoxha regime. They probably calculate lhat to do so would create serious risks ol provoking Western disfavor andretaliation. They probably wouldoup. If they thought it could be doneIncurring these risks; they mightbe willing to cooperate with other powersoup attempt at some future date.Yugoslavia's cooperation probably would be contingent upon sufficient Yugoslavover the method and nature of the coup attempt to minimise the dangers toandelief that Yugoslavia could eventually dominate the new Albanian regime.

present cbcumstances, theof Western Europe, including thecertainly prefer the status quo Into thc risks which would be Involvedattempt toro-Western regime.

REACTIONSOUP ATTEMPT Soviel Bloc Reoction

Soviet Bloc reactionoupUie Hoxha regime would dependmanner and speed ln which thc coupout. upon the reactions of otherpowers, and upon the globalat the time.

If the USSR should learnoup plan In advance, it almost certainly would take preventiveariety of such actions would be possible, ranging from Improvedprecautions and liquidations within Albania to thc dispatch of Soviet or Satellite forces to Albania and shows of force on Uie Yugoslav and Greek borders. The Soviet rulers would exploit the situation so as to create maximum division, suspicion, andamong the NATO countries and within the free world generally. If Uie USSR did not Icamlanned coup In advance, but the coup was quickly suppressed by the present Albanian regime, Uie USSR would exploit tho situaUon In the same manner.

oup were attempted anduick success, the Soviet rulers would be faced

ifficult decision. Several possibilities

present themselves:

tear; We believe It highlythat the Soviet rulers wouldglobal war over Albania.

miliiary counteraction:who Initialed or supported thc coup,rulers might conclude that toloss of Albania would open the Sovietnew and stronger challenges whichIn eventual and serious losses of Therefore, they might direct theSatellites to advance throughorder to come to Albania'swould, ln such an event, expectto develop In the NorUi Atlantic On the other hand, they wouldthe risk that the West would comesupport with consequentof global war. We believe thatprobably would not take this risk.

ol the loss ol Albaniaelsewhere: If the Sovietunwilling to accept the risks ofwhich would be Implicit In localthey would be obligedthe loss of Albania. However,leaders would probably Intensifyat vulnerable points In the(for example, tn Berlin, Vienna,Indochina) In an attempt to oflseteffect of Uie Albanian loss.

counteractions: Al aUSSR would Intensify Itsagainst Uie West, exploitingrills had occurred In connection withcoup. It might make shows ofattempt to divide Uie West by threatsIt might, depending upon Itsof the altitudes of the varioustake an appeal to the UN oraome uncommitted country to do so.

n the long run, If local or global war wereoup attempt In Albania, whether successful or not. would make little difference In the Soviet attitude toward thc West. Thc Soviet rulers would regard thc coup attempt as merely an Incident ln Uie long-term struggle between Communism and capitalism. They probably would conclude, owevcr. that thc West was accelerating the

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of Uie struggle. They probably would, therefore, intensify their militaryand improve their war-readiness.

coup attempt tn Albania,It were successful, would raise thedissident elements within Uie othercountries. It might In some casespremature and futile resistancewould provoke greater security effortsSoviet and Satellite authorities.

Yugoslavia

of their recent predominancetheir hopes to re-establishIn any new regime, and theirto any Soviet orthe Yugoslavs wouldnltcrnpl to overthrowatter of vital concern toInterests. If such ansuccessful and did not provokethe Yugoslavs would almostmake Intensive efforts to dominateregime, if the coup attempt provedwhether or not Yugoslaviathe Yugoslavs would maketo disassociate themselves from

took over, the Italians would probably try to establish some measure of Influence over It. Greece would display concern by re-asserting its claim to northern Epirus.

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DEVELOPMENTS IN AlBANIA IN THE EVEN!UCCESSFULny new regime In Albania, regardless or Its leadership, orientation, or outside support, would face substantialbut not InsolubleInternal problems. If the new leadership were strong and competent, the peoplewould support It The new regime would require not only political and military support, bul also continuing economicby thr West, presumably by thc US It

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major Western powers, and particularly the US, announced and fulAUed an intention to provide poliUcal and economic support to the new regime, Albanian popular supportcertainly would be forthcoming.

or some time after the coup regime was Installed Its precise political orientation would depend upon the personallUesIt and their relationship with the West. As noted above, Yugoslavia, Greece, and Italy would all try to gain some kind of special position or predominance. The Greeks would probablypecial status for northern Epirus. Thc Italians wouldask for restoration of some of theireconomic concessions, and alsoradual rc-cstablishrnent of part of thoirpolitical Influence. The Yugoslavs would try to Infiltrate and eventually tothe regime. The new regime, like all previous regimes in Albania, would need the

active support and protectionarger power. The precise behavior of Albania's three neighbors would be Influenced by theof US commitments to the new regime.'

"The Deputf Director tar Intelligence. The Joint StarT, betlevei that the following consequence* Inherent In any chance In the government ot Albania are deserving of not*:

unfriendly regime would be replaced byregtme.

territory would betrom Uie tnldit of an area to befrom Soviet attack.

e. Dissident elements In otherlt* oounlrtU would be encouraged to oppose Soviet dornlna-

UOTL

peoples of the world and theirwould be encouraged In theirthe Soviet*.

with the defection ofthewould help to demonstrate Clint the holdUSSR on Oi< Satellites Is not unbreakable.

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