Neo-Stalinism: Writing History and Making Policy
cia historical review program
cia historical review program release in8
CENTRAL INTELLIGENCE AGENCY Directorate of intelligence9
Neo-Stalinism: Writing History and Making Policy
Since the springhe Soviet leaders, proceeding gingerly and obliquely, haveStalin's historical image. Officialhave defined Stalin's successes in industry, agriculture, culture, ideology, and war. The cult of personality and the purges are still disapproved, but only in footnotes to the historical record. Historians, memorialists, and literary menthis positive image have largely replaced critics of Stalin who flourished in the public forums under Khrushchev,
Stalin's rehabilitation has been accompanied in the political sphere by reversion to practices reminiscent of his rule. The regime has sought to refashion the party as an elite ruling body that stands above other interests and imposes its will upon them according to the orthodox precepts of Marxism-Leninism. The governmenthas been recentralized, and the police have become more active. On the propaganda level, the regime has sounded in heavy tones the twin themes of vigilance toward the West and of Soviet low but steady twisting of arms,has been made to conform to the officialforcing reformers to turn increasingly to
Note: Thie memorandum wae produced solely by CIA. It wae prepared by the Office of Currentand coordinated vith the Office of Economic Research and the Office of National Estimates,
such unofficial means of protest as petitions and demonstrations. The Soviet leaders havenot reverted to two extremes of Stalin's rule- one-man dictatorship and mass terror. For this reason, their policy deserves the label "neo-Stalinist" rather than -Stalinist."
The regime's desire for legitimacy probably underlines the drive to rehabilitate Stalin, and its own collective nature seems to have encouraged conservative policies. These two tendencies have become mutually reinforcing. The reformers' major weapon to force change, criticism of policies asas been denied them. Meanwhile, the conservatives have been busy invoking Stalin and his record to ensure "moro of the same." the Soviet leaders have not boen unanimous on all issues, they have stood more united than divided behind both the rehabilitation and the conservative trend. Brezhnev's hand has beenevident, and he has undoubtedly gained thc most from these developments.
The ascendency of neo-Stalinism does not necessarily portend the eventual emergence of full-fledged Stalinism. The present leaders seem to realize the danger this would bring upon themselves and the damage it would cause the Reaction will probably continue, however, at least until the next change of men at the top* The near future will probablyonsolidation of present achievements, that is, fleshingavorable portrait of Stalinore extensive and thorough application of Stalinist principles to current policy.
Khrushchev, by his own blowshe inspired others to deliver, had by thehis rule succeeded in thoroughly blackeninghistorical image. Stalin still lived inand cultural dialogue in the Sovietonly as the embodiment of wrong by whichright. Mention of any positive role that
he had played had ceased
the present regime, Stalin'shasegeneration in the public Political leaders, officialand memorialists have alland in Derogatory statements about Stalinrare and restricted, while praise of mostcareer is now recurrent. Although Stalin's has not regained all of the idealized andglow that it once had, lt has officiallyof its scars and has attained respectability.
First Efforts Bring Protest
twentieth anniversary of the end ofcelebrated5 provided thethe first neutral, if not favorable, publicon Stalin's behalf. During the monthanniversary, articles appeared in themost of them signed by military leaders,the economic and military preparationsthe war, Stalin's leadership of the warhis participation in planning militaryarticles alleged that some writers hadcritical in their treatment of Stalin. seemed to countenance this new look atin his anniversary speechay, when heto Stalin as the chairman of theCommittee for Defense, the firstember of the new leadership.
and negative comments aboutin the press, but Brezhnev's remarkby other signs of high-level approvalformer Soviet leader. On5 theparty First Secretary, Vasilyictum of Stalin's by referring topeech to the Georgian Central Sergey Trapeznikov, head of the CPSUScience and Education Departmenta protege of Brezhnev, argued in Pravda on
6 October that, because the cult of personality did not arise from the nature of Communism, works that concentrated on this aspect of the Stalin years wore in error. Attention, he noted, must bo given to the achievements of those years, includingbased on the primacy of heavy industry,of agriculture, the cultural revolution, the Constitution of victorious socialism, the defeat of Trotskyism and right-wing opportunism, and the conduct of the war. Onhreedeclared in Pravda that the term "period of the cult of personality" washat in no period did the negative aspects of Stalin's rule predominate.
efforts to enhance Stalin's imageintellectual circles in Moscow. During thepreparations inumorsCentral Committee Secretary Petr Demichev,ideology, had called for amorsof Stalin, it was also rumored thatand Politburo member Mikhail Suslov hadthe subject, with Suslov allegedly contendingSuslov, was too deeply committed to According to another report, the subject was
a major issue of contention within the leadership before the Central Committoe plenum iny6 the story was abroadullof Stalin would be attempted atd Party Congress in March. Shortly before the Congress opened, twenty-five leading intellectuals addressed an appeal to Brezhnev warning of the dire effects Stalin's rehabilitation would have in the Soviet Union and tho world Communist movement.
the Congress, Brozhnev did nota sign perhaps of indecision among the Nikolay Podgomy stood out as the onepraised the party's achievements in "theof the harmful dregs in connection withcult." Podgorny's position withinhowevor, had been weakened inhe was made chairman of the Presidium ofSoviet. He replaced Anastas Hikoyan,of de-Stalinization under Khrushchev,the leadership entirely. The eclipse ofand Podgorny probably helped to open the waysubsequent progress of rehabilitation.
New Look Becomes Official
ormal declaration, thehas resorted to diguised andto make the rehabilitation official. again mentioned Stalin,assinghimeorgian revolutionary,peechin Tbilisi in Georgiaovemberalso received favorable mentionpeech
by the Armenian party first secretary andook
by the Georgian party second secretary during
number of documents have elaboratedguidelines for historians laid down byand, in effect, have made them official.include the Theses of the Centralthe Fiftieth Anniversary of the Revolution,on historiography in the Centraljournal Kommunist No.ndof Stalinolume of memoirs aboutcompiled by the Central Committee's Institute The burden of these articlesthe mistakes of Stalin wore minimal andswept under the carpet of glorious deedsby him and the party. Because thc partyviolations of collective leadership, party
life, and "socialist legality"he subjoct is now closed. Moreover, the articles continue,struggle against so-called Trotskyites, right opportunists, and bourgeois nationalists was correct, thus clouding tho issue of the purges and the later
rehabilitation of their victims. Stalin'sleadership of the war effort overshadows any mistakes made in preparation for war, and also to Stalin'5 credit are collectivization,the victory of socialism in the USSR, and the formation of the world socialist system. His works are now recommended to historians as source material The article on historiography was signed by, among others, V. Golikov, thought toersonal aide to Brezhnev, It closesinging quote from Brezh nev on the need for unflinching loyalty to Marxist-Leninist doctrine.
9. Demichev indicated his approval of this effort to brighten Soviet history when, in Kck-nmunist No.o complained of the nihilistic moods engendered among youth by "the blackening of tho historical past." The only discordant note on the issue from the leadership was sounded by Suslov on9eeting celebrating the Fiftieth Anniversary of the Comintern, when he criticized Stalin's attitude in theoward Social Democrats.
10. The official reinterpretation of Stalin has been imposed on the history written by academics and memorialists. The professional historians did not submitight, however, which came toon A. M. Nekrich's book entitledublished by the Academy of Sciences onference of historians6 organized to censure the book, the critics were held off by the strength of those who supported Nekrich in his view thatwas to blame for the USSR's initial militaryin WW II. It was not until the summer7 that Nekrich's opponents prevailed. He was expelled from the party, and in August the journal Problems of History of ttrn CPSU published th< first ttack" on his book. Meanwhile,eputationartime leader was being advanced withoutin memoirs by his military collaborators,Marshals Grechko, Konov, Merctskov, Rokossov-sky, and zhukov. General Shtemenko, Colonel General Yakovlev, and Admiral Kuznetsov. Lest tho message of these memoirs be lost on anyone. Kommunist No,eview of five of them, con-cluding that they show Stalin, "for all theof his character, as an outstanding military leader."
11. Closely tied to the historical image ofis the matter of rehabilitating his victims. Khrushchev had taken the processoint just short of exonerating Nikolayeading advocateon-Stalinist program of Soviet development. Under Khrushchev's successors, the publication of memorial biographies of purgees has dwindled, and it has become the general practice to dolete all mention of the circumstances of death or to note onlyertain life was "tragically The Golikov article in Kommunist No.f this year went still further and specifically rescinded one rehabilitation by name.
talin's activities in thebegan to receive fuller treatment. Thememoirs of former Armamentsnd of the aircraft designertalin as the competent director ofvital to the war. Ironically, differentof Vannikov's memoirs had been publishedwith the aim of giving the oppositeFinance Minister A. G. Zverev,ortion
of his memoirs printed in early concluded that, although Stalin was not without faults,end to evaluate his direction of financial activity very highly." The reminiscences of others of Stalin's deputies in economic affairs are reportedly being prepared for publication. Social ist Industry in9 carried the recollections of hero worker Ivan Gudov, who invoked the memory of the Stakhanovite movement of production heroes and the popularthat surrounded Stalin. Gudov recalled his awe, at the Eighteenth Party Congresst Stalin's cool assessment of the prospering Soviet economy and its problems and his ability to focus attention on vital questions such as production of. automatictools.
number of conservative journalsStalin's comeback in the literary world. patriotic atmosphere ofo. oem by Sergey Smirnovnotorious for its passages of servileStalin. Two poems by Feliks Chuyev in Qktyabr
No. 1,alledestoration of Stalin's honor. Oktyabr took the next logical step in June by carrying A. Grebenshchikov's call for theof earlier novels, poems, and plays that glorified Stalin. He especially saw the need tothe three historical novels written by Valentin Kostylev about Ivan theonvenientmodel for Stalin. These efforts metopposition in Literaturnaya Gazeta, organ of the USSR Writers Union, and the liberal journal Novy Mir. Two establishment writers, Aleksandr Chakovsky, chief editor of Literaturnaya Gazeta, and Mikhail Sholokov, winner of the Nobel Prize for the novel Quiet Flows the Don, attempted to treat Stalin in major works of literature. In so doing, however, they did not go as far as the historians in covering up Stalin's misdeeds. In his historical novel Blockade published inhakovsky balanced Stalin's days cf panic at the beginning of the war and the harm caused by his egotism against his accomplishments in mobilizing the country to achieve ultimate victory. Similarly, in the extracts of Sholokov's novel They Fought for the Fatherland, which appeared in Pravda inny criticism of Stalin implicit in the treatment of the purges and prison camps was softened by directing the blame principally atdeputies for state security and by the hero's constant faith in the party.
The Balance and the Leadershio
14. The Soviet dictum, being stringentlythat the positive is always morethan the negative ensures that the "balance" inweighs heavily in Stalin's favor. Inthis transformation Brezhnev especially has shown his hand, and Demichev has occasionally appeared to act the role of spokesman. Disagreement within the leadership is indicated by the silonce that most Soviet leaders have maintained and by the cautious and contradictory course that the rehabilitation has followed. Clear directions from the top have been absent. No doubt the loaders have felt opposing pressures from different interests within the Soviet Union and the Communist movement and have found it difficult to arrivebalance." The report that Suslov objected to the rehabilitation is supported
only by the fact that he is the one member of the
Politburo to have publicly criticized Stalin since
the beginning of the process. By individually either
encouraging or acquiescing in Stalin's rehabilitation.
tne current leaders must collectively stand as its authors.
Reversion of Poli
shift toward Stalinist policiesonlyeriod of many45 and after Podgorny andpositions had weakened. Since then thegovernment havoonsiderable andrestriction on intellectual life andhaveore rigid andframework, and have returned toof the bureaucracyorepower. The regime has. however, avoidedelements ofule, thcof the leader and the use of mass terror. and collectivity of the leadershippersonalities and responsibilities. may bear heavily on individual citizenstouches the masses because, howeveronly specific crimes are prosecutedis applied by process of law. current regime may more properly be calledthan "Stalinist."
The Party's Loading Role
present leaders have workedthey see as errors in the regimes of bothKhrushchev in party affairs. In place ofof ono man above the party, theyto reassert the dictatorship of the party They haveeparation of theparty and govornment offices, the Generalof the party and the Chairman of theMinisters, and haveenuine balance
of power in the Politburo. The expression of party leadership by committee, however, has proved to be less dynamic and decisivene-man The leaders have tried to keep the nsts of the party distinct from those of other groups in
society so as to conserve the integrity of the party as an elite body above all others. They have,pulled back from the party of specialists that was forming under Khrushchevore restricted and professional party in the Leninist tradition. The result hase-emphasis of many of the principles of political control and ideology for which the era of Stalin is known.
Khrushchev's division of the party into agricultural and industrial sections was abolished, and the Twenty-third Party Congress in6 took other measures to fit the party for its changed role. Khrushchev's formula, enshrined in1 program, that the party was "of the whole people" was tacitly abandoned. It reverted, as under Stalin, to being the party of the "vanguard of thethe working class. Corresponding emphasis was laid on restricting membership, particularly in favor of workers. Amendments to the party statutes made it harder, especially for the young, to join the party and easier for lower party organs to expel members. The Twenty-third Party Congress also revokedrule calling for the change-over ofof party cells every two years. In thefield, the regime has stressed the importance of Marxism-Leninism and, demonstrating itshas introduced full-time ideological refresher courses for party officials at the district level.
In tho later Khrushchev years andfollowing his ouster, there was considerable public discussion concerning the withdrawal of the party from day-to-day administrative tasks. This policy was never put in practice howover; on thethe maintenanceeading role for the party in all sectors of socioty has been givenemphasis. Early moves to improve the flow of Information and communication inside the party and between the party and the people have also The Twenty-third Party Congressesolution to hold party conferences betweenin order toider forum than the Central Committee plenum. No such conference has yet been held. Politburo members have widelythc decisions of some of the plenums, but
the effect has been weakened by the Stalinist bent for secrecy. The last central committee plenum fortenographic report was published was innd the last at which some of the debate was published in the press was inince then only two of the main speeches have been published in full: those by Brezhnev on agriculture in6 and in Thus, the party's hand has not been lifted from society's back while the source of its direction has become more distant, dogmatic, and obscure.
Administration is Centralized
The current regime has reversed nearly ail the measures that Khrushchev had designed tothe machinery of administration. entral ministerial system replaced the regional councils of the national oconomy established Since then the number of ministries has been gradually increasing. In6 two union-republic ministries (central ministries supervising ministries in the republics) were established for the Preservation of Public Order and for Education.
The concentration of power in Moscow, along with other developments, has largely doomed thereforms ofhich wore supposed to free the hands of enterprise managers and torational decision making through use ofindicators and incentives. The preservation
of central planning, direction, supply distribution, and centralized determination of norms and prices has left little leeway for the enterprise manager. To the distress of republic and local officials, the return to the ministerial system has been accompaniedecline in the attention given by planners to regional considerations. Finally, although thestill relies in practice on economicto spur production, the party has been led by its ideological turn to place renewed stress on ideological incentives.
of Khrushchev's schemes towas to remove some administrativedirect control of the state. The measures he
introduced were primarily in the legal sphere. They included the abolition of the Ministry of Justice, whose functions largely devolved to the courts, and the institution of "comrades courts" and civilian aides to the militia. Khrushchev also placed the oroanization of physical education and sports in the haiWl of public bodies. So far his successors have not reversed those changes except for replacing sports under state control. They have, however,the rationale for carrying decentralization forward by arguing in theoretical articles that the state apparatus must retain its full powers until the point where Communism is achieved.
police organs have enjoyed sometheir authority* In8 measuresto raise the quality of the militiaits public image. These measureseturn to the title Ministry ofAffairs (MVD) that had become notorious inof Stalin and Beria. The secretecree ofowers of criminal investigation, byandidate mercber of the Politburo asinnd by the appointment ofofficers to the Supremo Court inappear to be increasingly active in buildingof informers and in exercisingagainst dissident elements.
Vigilance and Patriotism
regime has been particularlythe weakness of its ideological base whenwith foreign example. At the Centralplenum in8 Brezhnev prescribedof vigilance toward the West,concept of "peaceful coexistence" in favor ofintense ideological struggle between thesocial systems. The result, best described
sieges similar to the attitude fostered by Stalin's theory of capitalist Sharp campaigns against alleged Westernand penetration havo been unleashed, and "class criteria" are being used to discredit foreign influences and ideological revisions. Thehave restored selective radio jamming and have
discouraged contact of Soviet citizens with foreigners The ultimate expression of this attitude, of course, was the use of troops in Czechoslovakia to crush that country's reform movement.
sign that the regime may doubteffect of its message ofand "proletarian internationalism" isefforts to revive the intensethe war years. The authorities have organizedparade of celebrations andthe recurring anniversaries ofwartimo events. omplex of measures knwn"military-patriotic upbringing of youth"to battlefields, military classes inand more universal military service. all is the effort to usethof Lenin's birth0 to invoke him andin almost supernatural terms.
atmosphere of neo-Stalinistand regimentation has weighed perhapsand painfully on the cultural life ofUnion. The new leadership4 heldpromise of an end to thc direct andin the arts that Khrushchev hadand that was itself redolent of Stalinism.
The editor of Pravda, Aleksey Rumyantsev, tookof the situation to publish in5 an unusually liberal interpretation of the policy. He argued the need for intellectuals to exposein Soviet life and said that talk about party guidance must not be used to cover up injunction in intellectual life. That same month, however, the regime demonstrated that its attitude toward intel- ectuals had toughened drastically. Rumyantsev was fired and two writers. Andrey Sinyavsky and Yuly Daniel, who had been smuggling their satirical works abroad under pseudonyms, were arrested. Their trial on charges of engaging in "anti-Soviet propaganda and agitation" and their seven- and five-yearto prison camps in6 ended any illusions among tho liberal intelligentsia that the regime now tolerated free expression.
Since then the regime hae succeeded inif not its positive injunctions, certainly its negative ones, on the intellectual world. tools in the process have been tho writers' and artists' unions, and their internal party Censorship has had its deadening effect. It kept the works of Drabkin, Bek, and Solzhenitsyn out of the pages of Novy Mir oven after their publication had been announced. Works giving less thantreatment to Soviet history or contemporaryorympathy for ethnic ortraditions were systematically denounced by defenders of "socialist realism." Calls came from officials for more heroic works about Lenin,and war subjects, and the modem Soviet worker. , some of the more daring theaters sought to evade these strictures by stagingversions of classics, such as Chekhov's Three Sisters andemunerative Position, to comment on contemporary Tife. Only after consider-able offorts were the authorities, including part of the Moscow party organization, able finally to tame the unorthodox journal Teatr and to ban the mostplays in the fall
Conservatives in the cultural establishment have found this atmosphere propitious for engaging
in particularly vicious attempts to discredit their rivals associated with liberal literary journals. The journal Yunost, after months of hounding byand rumors of changes, in9 lost three prominent liberals, Yevgeny Yevtushenko, Vasily Aksenov, and Viktor Rozov, from its editorial board. The one independently minded replacement, Anatoly Kuznetsov, soon defected to the West. Theare now concentrating their fire on the last and still defiant refuge of the liberals, Novy Mir. In their heat they have raised again the charge ofabel Stalin used againstand Jews in purges after the war.
the social sciences, history hasmost under the new dispensation. ewHistory Institute was created under theDefense6 for tho purpose offalsifiers" and "propagandizing the heroic
feats" of the Soviet armed forces. The Institute of History, apparently because of the recalcitrance of many of its members, lost its director in7ear later was split into two Institutes, one for USSR History and one for General History- entral Committee decree on tho social sciences in7 resulted in many changes in the organization of research and the system of institutions. Theof the measures, however, has been hampered by their contradictory aims: to improve knowledge of foreign countries and to counter bourgeois and revisionist ideas. The development of sociology still languishes for want of official approval. Hopes for radical economic discussion raised by thereform were dashed by conservatives who began to warn against "market socialism" and "anarcho-syndicalism" and to point to reforms in Eastern Tho natural sciences have been freer from Lysenkoism was discredited afterfall, although its spokesmen have recently been finding their way into print again.
Protests and Persecution
29. esult of this deadening policy,who previously had tried to work within thc system now find themselves outside it. Theirarguments in the public press have been replacedrotest movement concentrating on dramatizing constitutional rights by petitions to Sovietand international bodies and by occasional public demonstrations. The movement has attracted the support of famous figures in the arts andas well as hundreds of virtual unknowns, professional people, party members, and workers in various cities around tho country. The protestors have broadcast their fears that the illegalof disseht threatens the countryew era of Stalinist terror, Russian-centered activity has been paralleled by similar activity amonggroups such as the Ukrainians and the Tatars and among religious organizations, and some attempts have been made to link all those causesroader struggle for justice,
30. The authorities havo responded to this challengeariety of measures which, while
often harsh, have fallen short of the massive and brutal solutions of Stalin. The principal activists were sent to prison or into exileeries of trials in Moscow, Leningrad, and other cities. Others have been committed to mental hospitals. Probablyundred of those who lent their names to petitions have suffered loss of party membership, professional status, employment, or schooling. The regime has seemed particularlyto end the public nature of the protests and the attention they receive abroad. Althoughhad apparently achieved some success inthe voices of protest afterpen dissent during the International Communistin9 proved that the measures being used had not solved the problem.
Ill, The Uses of Stalin
erson and the system heloom so large in Soviet history thatthe principal guidelines by whichand modes of.government are defined inand official minds. This situation isby the fact that in politicalpractice so restricts direct debatepolicy that the use of other terms,historical, is required. esult,approval or disapproval of Stalin has beenlikely to continue to be an important signaldirection of policy, toward reaction or reform.
The Conservative Impulse
regime has found it desirable toStalin's image probably for reasons of itsand of public morale and order. has been at pains since it demotedestablish that itontinuous andin all periods of Soviet history as theof socialist development according toof Marxism-Leninism. The horrendousKhrushchev charged to Stalin impliedparty's complicity or its abdication of The party's leaders have in self-defenseto minimize those crimes, if not forget them.
At the personal level, many officials had been in league with Stalin in carrying out his policies and were potentially compromised by exposure of their character and by the course of theof their victims. For the millions ofpeople who had learned to revere him as aleader and an infallible authority, the denunciation of Stalin hadhocking and disillusioning experience. His reinstatementhas assuaged the feelingsargeof the population.
nature of the currenthas also encouraged the reversionpractices. The interests that arein Soviet society, including, besides thepolice forces, the military, heavyvarious bureaucracies, are those thatStalin and his system of rule. Government
by committee has shown itself to be resoonsive to these major interests. In fact, the consultation and compromise requiredommittee system to work suggest that it willonservative rule.
started, the reactionary drift proveda dynamism of its own. Khrushchev'sof Stalinsychological climatethe existence of at least some measureand dissent. The new regime's attempts
to turn back the clock met with stiff resistance, which then required harsher measures to overcome. The influence of foreign example on this resistance further demanded, in the authorities*enophobic stance and finally contributed to the military intervention in Czechoslovakia.
independent reasons have led thein power both to restore Stalin'sto resort to neo-Stalinist practices, theyfound the two policies to be mutually Under Khrushchev, progressives regularlyin party and historical journals specific
mistakes" of Stalin in economic, military,and foreign policy. Usually these articles
had implications for contemporary Soviet policies, andinimum undercut conservative objections to change. The term "Stalinist" itselfoaded epithet that liberals could use to discredit conservative opponents. These were vital weapons for reformers who otherwise had limited means for countering entrenched Theirwas admitted by D. I. Chesnokov, deputyof the Central Committee's Academy of Social Sciences, who complained in Problems of Philosophy No.8 that "the bugaboo of 'Stalinism1 is used to frighten unstable people, and to spread the idea that any firmness, any revolutionary policy, any implacability in ideology, any consistency in the defense of Marxism, is somehow 'Stalinism1."
conservatives, too, can use Stalinown ends. If Stalin's constitution ofsaid to have served the nation so well,is little reason to update it. has come of the leadership'sew constitution that would emphasizewith the past. The party's praise ofof the country throughand 'socialist competition" puts athe use of economic levers and incentivesdevelopment. Endorsement of Stalin1sand the "cultural revolution" servesregiment the artistic world, whose radicals,eagerness for now horizons, haveasteland,
the proclaimed correctnessstruggles against "right and leftuseful authority for combatting anyonethc relevance of Moscow's line today. Comintern anniversary meeting last March,Stalin for misdirecting the Communists'against Social Democrats8 andthan against the rising tide of fascismand Germany. He said the error was akinand must not be repeated. In essence,discussing the propriety of politicalbetween Communist parties andwhich can onlyat the cost of "bending" Communist The points that he made run counter to
Brezhnev's efforts to lead the Communist movement back to uncompromising hostility to everything non-Communist and to tighten control from thehat this continued to be Brezhnev's position is evident in Golikov's attack in Konnaunist on the theme that Lenin had not always been unconditionally hostile to all except pure Bolsheviks. The problem of reconciling Conmunist principles and tactical compromise remains at the base of Moscow's with Eastern and Western European parties, figures in the difficulties with China, and hasfor Soviet attitudes toward the West.
activity on behalf ofhas been matched by his embrace ofpolicies. Certainly, as Stalin'sas General Secretary, he has had most to gain
by reversion. As leader of the party, he has bcon the architect of its restorationoreand worker-oriented elite. He has led the revival of Marxism-Leninism to an all-embracing and unyielding state dogma. He has shown himself to be solicitous of the military's material desires as well as their historical pride. That such policies havo prevailed indicates that the majority of the Politburo has been with Brezhnev. On particular questions, however, there have obviously beenamong individuals. For example, Kosygin, who promoted the restoration of the central economic ministries, is probably chagrined that traditional ideological strictures hamper the adoption ofnew measures of economic rationality. Whether Suslov's objection to one aspect of foreign policy extends to other portions of the Stalinist heritage is unknown. In general, however, the neo-Stalinist program of thc leadership has largely pre-empted an important area of challenge for its ambitious members Individuals such as Aloksandr Shelepin, for example, are not themselves strong enough to mountiberal platform and yet they find roost conservative positions already well occupied.
ascendancy of neo-Stalinism doesportend the eventual emergence ofStalinism. The present leaders know that
the ways of Stalin ultimately endanger no one so much as themselves. Their desire to avoid theof Stalinism is evident in their rebuke of the cult of Stalin and the purges, and in their shunning of one-man rule and unlimited police power. They also show some appreciation of the havoc that Stalinism would raise in the country's domestic and foreign affairs. Although the atmosphere today is more conduciveull return to Stalinism than in the recent past,evelopment would probably come onlyime of crisis andhange in top leadership,
40. There is no indication,hat modification of the current reaction is in prospect. Not only are the heirs of Stalin in power, but the spirit of Stalinrip on the country. Here events to bring new leaders to the fore, leaders who were ready to break with the past, that grip would again have to be loosened. hange at the top, the near future will probablyonsolidation of the stage presently achieved, thatleshing out of Stalin's favorable portraitore extensive and thorough application of Stalinist principles to current policy. Especially in the arts, the freeze threatens to harden. In this sense, Stalin's legacy will continue to weigh heavy on Soviet society.