Communist Schisms

December 18, 1963

Report Outline
Clash Between Russian and Chinese Reds
Intra-Communist Conflicts Since 1917
Impact of De-Stalinization on Satellites

Clash Between Russian and Chinese Reds

Red Chinese Challenge of Soviet Leadership

Soviet Russia and Red China are locked in a bitter ideological quarrel that threatens to split the Communist world as the Reformation split Christianity. Since the Bolshevik revolution in the autumn of 1917, Moscow has been the Rome of communism. Now Peking is asserting its claim to be the capital of the Communist sphere, maintaining that the Kremlin has strayed dangerously far from the teachings of Marx and Lenin. Polemics fill the party press and the air waves.

For almost a decade, the Sino-Soviet conflict was carefully hidden from public view, presumably to maintain the pretense of Communist solidarity. Red China would assail Yugoslavia instead of the Soviet Union, and the Soviet Union would castigate Albania instead of Red China. Since last January, however, the two countries have attacked each other publicly and by name. Their frequent exchanges of insults show that the dispute involves not only ideology but also, to an increasing extent, national interests and racial antagonism.

Adam Ulam of Harvard's Russian Research Center wrote last spring in The New Face of Soviet Totalitarianism that “Peking and Moscow must be approaching the realization that the old pattern of relations between the U.S.S.R. and world communism is gone forever.” As long as the Soviet Union was the only Communist country, “there was a clear and unambiguous identity between the interests of world communism and the Soviet national interest.” The final Communist victory in China in 1949—an event that apparently caught even Moscow by surprise—changed all that. Russia and China had fought over territory in the Far East for three centuries, and common allegiance to communism only partly dispelled their traditional enmity.

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Dec. 18, 1963  Communist Schisms
Mar. 13, 1963  Venezuela: Target for Reds
Apr. 25, 1962  Teaching About Communism
Dec. 01, 1960  Farming and Food in Communist Lands
Apr. 27, 1960  Communist Party, U.S.A.
Nov. 07, 1956  Reds and Redefection
Apr. 11, 1956  Communists and Popular Fronts
Dec. 07, 1955  Religion Behind the Iron Curtain
Nov. 12, 1954  Communist Controls
Feb. 11, 1953  Red Teachers and Educational Freedom
Apr. 04, 1950  Loyalty and Security
Aug. 19, 1949  Church and Communism
Jul. 22, 1949  Reds in Trade Unions
Jul. 05, 1949  Academic Freedom
Feb. 11, 1948  Control of Communism in the United States
Feb. 05, 1947  Investigations of Un-Americanism
Nov. 13, 1946  Communism in America
Mar. 28, 1935  Anti-Radical Agitation
Oct. 19, 1932  The Socialist Vote in 1932
Aug. 08, 1931  National Economic Councils Abroad
Cold War
Conflicts in Asia
Regional Political Affairs: East Asia and the Pacific
Regional Political Affairs: Russia and the Former Soviet Union
War and Conflict