War and Peace in Soviet Diplomacy

ByT. A. TaracouzioMACMILLAN, $4.00
SECRETIVE the Soviet Union certainly is, like all dictatorships. But the general trends of its foreign policy are susceptible to reasonably accurate interpretation by observers who possess a sufficient background of Russian knowledge and experience. Such an observer is Dr. Taracouzio, and his splendidly documented book is both an excellent history and a valuable topical commentary. While absolute proof is impossible, failing the publication of Stalin’s own memoirs, there is the strongest circumstantial evidence for believing that Dr. Taracouzio is correct when he sums up Stalin’s policy in regard to the European war in the following sentences: ‘The Soviets had what they wanted: war in Western Europe and peace in the U.S.S.R. . . . As to the present war, the Soviets not only must stay out of it (thus far — barring the Finnish campaign — they have succeeded admirably) but must promote it until it results in the mass opposition to the bloodshed and misery: revolution.’ That Stalin does not desire a victory of either Germany or Great Britain, but rather a prolonged war leading to the weakening and perhaps social collapse of both, is certainly the interpretation of the Soviet dictator’s policy which fits in best with the ascertainable facts up to the present time.