Brad De Long delong at econ.Berkeley.EDU
Sun Mar 28 06:15:22 PST 1999

>We have no idea of how Europe would have turned out in the early post-WW II
>years had it not been for the Cold War and U.S. resolve to destroy the
>USSR. U.S. policy helped create the repressive monster its propaganda
>condemned - starting not in 1945 but 1917.

I would agree with you if Stalin had died in the spring of 1945, and had been succeeded by Khrushchev--then I think there would have been a real genuine possibility for a relaxation of tensions. But as long as Stalin remained in power (or if he had died and been succeeded by someone like Beria or Zhdanov) it seems to me that the inner dynamics of the Soviet system and its leaders' psychology were driving toward the internal outcomes we saw in the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe between 1945 and 1990.

After all, at various times during the 1920s and 1930s, Zinoviev, Kamenev, Radek, Bukharin, and Kirov had thought that peaceful coexistence with Stalin was attainable...

Brad DeLong

More information about the lbo-talk mailing list