[Marxism] Sino-Soviet Split and Chinese Invasion of Vietnam

Calvin Broadbent calvinbroadbent at hotmail.com
Mon May 30 05:37:21 MDT 2005

Hi Dayne,

Thanks a lot for your message. I believe a lot of it, however, was simply 
Trotskist invective. I believe the foreign policy of the USSR was *clearly* 
distinguishable from bourgeois foreign policy (concrete support for Cuban 
and Vietnamese independence, and support for many other national liberation 
struggles). Admittedly, the Russia-centric Cominform seems to have lent very 
lukewarm support to some national liberation struggles such that it may be 
fairly characterised as counter-revolutionary in some instances (perhaps 
post-partition Ireland or pre-Communist China are good examples of this). 
Even so, Soviet foreign policy must always be placed in its proper context 
of international relations generally. In the case of China, Stalin's 
unwillingness to support all out communist revolution in China (and his 
backing Chiang Kai-Shek's anti-communist nationalist forces) stemmed largely 
from his desire to get the US fully on board in the war against Nazi Germany 
to the West and Japan to Russia's east.

Arguably, in fact, Soviet foreign policy only became fully 
counter-revolutionary during the Gorbachev years when its support for 
national liberation struggles everywhere was totally reneged upon. Also, if 
Stalinist Russia was so 'bourgeois', how is it that the standard of living 
in post-1991 Russia, that is, fully capitalist Russia, declined so 
dramatically? If there was virtually no difference between the Yeltsin 
regime and any of the 'Communist' regimes, then how come the degeneration of 
standards of living in the USSR was not a far more gradual process?

I would say that not only must Communist governments' foreign policy be 
analysed in terms of international relaitons, but I would agree with you and 
Tom Lincoln that international relations must be viewed in light of the 
character of a given country's "domestic" economy. In the Soviet case, I 
believe foreign policy seems to be intrinsically connected to the outcome of 
class struggles favouring particular elements in that society. I do not 
believe that those elements, after Lenin, have always been bourgeois.



>as you are asking, how could "socialist" governments which want
>the workers of the world to unite against capitalism and imperialism end
>up fighting each other?
>a reasonable deduction would be that they are not socialist
>governments, more specifically that they are not workers governments and
>they are not committed to revolutionary socialist policies.

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