Can Putin Survive?
The Lessons of the Soviet Collapse
The crisis over Cuba and the Chinese invasion of India have had their salutary lessons for many nations and many political leaders-for none perhaps more than the neutralists. They have spoken up positively, as before, for peace and negotiation, against blocs and power politics. But what they have seen has attested to their relative inability to influence the course of events, or even to maintain solidarity in their own ranks, when the big powers are taking crucial decisions and the global strategic balance is at stake. A more pertinent question is whether, and how, the neutrals can safeguard their own vital interests.
Jugoslavia, in the past half-year, has had ample reason to be reminded that while it may be a prominent leader of the non-aligned group, it is also a small Balkan country whose fate depends in large measure on what happens beyond its borders and beyond its control. In Washington, the United States Congress singled out Jugoslavia as a special target of its displeasure. The new Trade Expansion Act withdrew most-favored-nation treatment from Jugoslav goods, and only the desperate efforts of the Administration and a slim majority in the Senate kept in the foreign aid bill the provision permitting economic assistance. In the nations of Western Europe, where attention is fixed on the shape of the new European community, Jugoslav concerns encountered little more than frosty indifference; and from President de Gaulle and Chancellor Adenauer something akin to hostility. From the other side of the world came the continuing barrage of Chinese Communist invective against "Titoist revisionism." From Moscow, in contrast, the Jugoslavs heard some conciliatory noises, but they were scarcely heartened by the results of the meeting held there in June of the Council of Mutual Economic Assistance, which laid plans for an Eastern bloc more exclusive and self-contained than ever. At home, meanwhile, Tito and his colleagues found themselves engulfed in a sea of troubles largely of their own making. If they did not call it a crisis, it had all the earmarks of one, in which difficulties on the economic side were accompanied by an evident political malaise.
All these events have combined to raise questions about Jugoslav foreign policy, which seemed in recent years to have attained a certain stability. The world has long since become accustomed to Jugoslavia's insistence on full national independence as the foundation stone of its international position. The Soviet Union has come to accept, although not always with good grace, Tito's maintenance of important economic ties with the West, ties which were crucial to his country's survival in the struggle against Soviet pressures during the Stalin era and which still serve both Jugoslav and Western interests. The West, in turn, has accepted Tito's self- righteous neutralism, with some reservations concerning the unneutral way in which, on occasion, it works out in practice. It has accepted as well, though not without feeling uneasy about it, his endeavors to find a new and "normal" basis for relations with the Soviet Union over the period of alternating reconciliation and mutual denunciation which began with Khrushchev's visit to Belgrade in 1955. Western aid in one form or another, particularly American aid, has continued to go to Jugoslavia ever since 1949.
Have recent events called into question these fixed points of Jugoslav policy, and therefore of Western policies based on them? Did Khrushchev's speech at Varna in May 1962, seemingly holding out new prospects for Jugoslav coöperation with the East, signal a new Soviet approach? Has Tito's practice of positive neutralism brought the country to a new and promising position in world affairs, or to a dead end? Thus far there has been no stated change on Jugoslavia's part. But some hard choices have compelled a reassessment of where the country stands.
Before commenting on Jugoslavia's dilemmas in foreign policy we must consider the internal situation, for the two are intimately connected.
The country's economic plight is not a happy one. Agriculture, since the bumper crops of 1959, has been a keen disappointment. Neither new investments in fertilizers, in Italian-type wheat and in hybrid corn, nor the indefinite postponement of collectivization and the easing of pressure on the peasants have brought production to a constant annual level that enables the country to feed itself. The weather, this year as in the last two, has struck cruel blows. It would seem to be about time to include bad weather in the calculus of hopes and plans for agricultural production; the good year has become the exception, not the rule.
In industry there is uncertainty, disorganization and a sharply falling rate of growth: from an annual rate of 15 percent in 1960, to 7 percent in 1961, to less than 5 percent in the first half of 1962. Something has gone wrong with the supposedly happy combination of planning and use of the free market. In some ways, it now appears, the market has been a little too free. Individual firms and local governments have misdirected investment. Needed foreign exchange has been wasted on nonessential imports. Workers' councils have distributed profits in bonuses for themselves at the expense of needed investment. Managers of enterprises have accumulated considerable personal wealth. Consumption has gone up, as have prices and wages, while productivity by contrast has been almost static. On the surface, Jugoslavia in 1962 looks more prosperous than ever before. The greater variety and quality of clothing and the growing number of private automobiles provide evidence apparent to everyone. But some of Jugoslavia's economists had been asking how long the country could keep consuming more than it produced, and in due course the government woke up to the situation.
The worsening international balance of payments reflected the slowdown in production and the general disorganization of the economy. Try as it did, Jugoslavia seemed to make no dent in its trade deficit. If exports went up, imports went up also. For 1961, the adverse balance was a sobering $167,000,000 (not counting imports of U.S. agricultural surplus paid for in dinars), and the foreign debt, in the neighborhood of $800 million, presented a heavy repayment burden over the next few years. Exports have improved in recent months, but without bringing any real change in the situation. The bold exchange-rate reform introduced in 1961, sound as it was in conception, made the situation all the more difficult when the supporting credits from the International Monetary Fund and other sources proved less helpful than was hoped and the controls necessary to conserve foreign exchange were not established.
By the spring of 1962 it was apparent that the Jugoslav economic experiment had produced no magic formula for success; that the country had not reached the point of self-sustaining growth; that, indeed, it might be heading for stagnation and international bankruptcy. President Tito, sounding the alarm in an important speech at Split in May 1962, said that corrective measures would be taken, and that those who had waxed fat at public expense-the traders, plant directors and others who had achieved prominence as conspicuous consumers-would be dealt with according to their deserts. His speech, which had in it a note of desperation, indirectly pointed up the political aspect of the crisis. The remedies to be applied were political as well as economic. The people, and especially the Communists, should revive the old spirit and the old discipline, so that things might be set right. If the leaders did not envisage an abandonment of the whole free- market side of the system and a return to centralized planning and the tight party dictatorship of the old days-and it was soon made clear that they did not-the emphasis on new commissions and shifting of personnel, on party control and party discipline, showed the color of Tito's thinking. This was a matter not for professional economists or for bureaucrats but for the Central Committee of the League of Communists.
During the past decade Tito's own reforms have greatly changed the character of Jugoslav society, perhaps more than he himself realizes or can control. At any rate, party spirit will not solve the problems of an economy far more complex than that of 1948, and the role of the party itself has changed both in theory and in fact.
At its Sixth Congress, held in 1952, the Communist Party of Jugoslavia changed its name and its mission. As the League of Communists, its job was to be primarily one of education, guidance and example rather than of direction and control. No one was under any illusion concerning the continuing central role of the party. Yet the fact that, under the stress of conflict with the Soviet Union and in the search for "true" forms of Leninism, the leaders were publicly referring to the gradual withering away of the state and of the party could not but have its effect on the attitudes both of party members and of the population in general. Despite uncertainty and confusion over the party's role in the years which followed, the Seventh Congress, held in 1958, confirmed the basic tenets of the Sixth. In 1962 the party is still the ultimate authority, as the latest session of the Central Committee made clear. The new draft constitution calls it "the fundamental initiator of political activity." It can still use arbitrary police power, and sometimes does. It does not tolerate political opposition, as Milovan Djilas can testify. But it is not what it was.
The rise of a new generation is a part of this picture. As the changes of the past dozen years have taken hold, new loyalties and new ambitions have motivated Jugoslavia's bright young men. The economic system and political institutions have become more complex. There has been much experimentation, some of it under the influence of ideas coming in through the doors the régime has opened to the non-Communist world. The cement that held the leadership together-the common experience in the prewar revolutionary movement, in the partisan military struggle, and in the absorbing task of establishing socialism and then defending it against outside threats and pressures-is no longer as binding as it once was. Many of the old partisans are not equal to the different challenges of a new day. Some have only one claim to leadership-the fact that they were partisans-and are neither sympathetic to the new reforms nor qualified to administer them. As the party relaxed the grip of its police power, it did not gain a compensating authority in public prestige. Many party men, as prosperity grew, were comporting themselves like members of the "new class" described by Djilas. Factionalism, drawing on personal rivalries and the old antagonism between nationalities, and fed by uncertainty where the régime was going, appeared within the party ranks.
Somewhere along the line the Tito régime, consciously or unconsciously, took a basic decision on what it was trying to do, namely to build pragmatically a system that would produce goods for the people and provide some measure of economic self-management and political responsibility. Institutions of "social self-government and socialist democracy," such as the workers' councils and the local communes, were gradually brought into being and strengthened over the years; they are enshrined in the new draft constitution now under discussion. The party organs are still very much in the picture, but the fact remains that these other institutions are acquiring a life of their own.
The new institutions have a Marxist label. They are part of the "building of socialism." But the young men and women who have grown up with this system have been more interested in making it work than in party loyalty, party discipline or even party membership. They are concerned with getting jobs that challenge them and reward them; with such matters as science and its practical application, economics, public administration and even artistic expression, rather than with the theory of transition from socialism to Communism or the search for a Leninist rationale for what they are doing. They are beginning to attain governmental posts of some importance, though not yet the top positions. As the years go by, barring some wholesale purge or reversion to the past which could conceivably accompany a crisis over the succession to Tito, they are likely to grow in importance.
These political trends, often under the surface and not immediately evident, are bound to affect the present leaders' attempts to cope with the economic crisis. Will they also affect Jugoslavia's international position, immediately or in the long run? Differences that exist on internal policy- centralization vs. decentralization, discipline vs. liberalization, ideology vs. pragmatism-have found some parallel in conflicting or ambivalent attitudes on foreign policy.
There is no doubt that Jugoslavia has greatly benefited by Western assistance in maintaining its independence and in building its own version of socialism. There is no doubt either that bitterness against the West today is real, at least so far as those in positions of power are concerned. Jugoslav officials ask why the United States follows no consistent policy toward their country, why it overlooks the fundamental principles of Jugoslavia's position and petulantly criticizes neutralism or the Jugoslav voting record in the United Nations, why it insists on waging cold war against Jugoslavia as it does against the Soviet bloc. They are incensed over the lack of appreciation of their position evident in the acts of the U.S. Congress and its committees, but without giving much consideration to the Jugoslav régime's own share of the responsibility for American attitudes that are reflected in Congressional acts and speeches. On both sides it appears that publicly expressed hostility and misunderstanding have been permitted to becloud the real interests of the two countries.
The great bugbear haunting the Jugoslavs is not America and the possible loss of U.S. economic aid, but the European Common Market and what its mere existence will mean to Jugoslavia. As the Common Market lowers its internal tariffs, outsiders feel the pinch. Jugoslavia has to have markets for its agricultural products in Western Europe, particularly in Italy and Germany, if it is to obtain its necessary imports of capital goods and pay its debts. It needs them during the critical period ahead while it attempts to broaden the base of its exports. Some countries of the Common Market have shown a disposition to make adjustments; but with their attention fixed on much broader issues, they seem only marginally concerned with Jugoslavia's plight. If Great Britain and Sweden and Austria are having trouble in getting terms which meet their needs, the Jugoslavs can hardly be optimistic about the consideration that is going to be given to theirs.
Belgrade clings to its alignment with the non-aligned. This has been a useful connection politically, enabling Tito to play on the world stage a role which the size and resources of his country would not otherwise justify. But the conference of unaligned states at Cairo in July 1962 demonstrated, if any demonstration was necessary, that from the economic standpoint the non-aligned countries could provide neither a substitute for ties with the nations of the Common Market nor a serious means of bringing them to terms. Where the Belgrade "summit" conference of 1961 produced a good deal of sound and fury, and Tito's speech there seemed deliberately calculated to please the East even if it annoyed the West, the more modest meeting at Cairo showed a chastened sense of the realities and a willingness to negotiate seriously with the West. Its final declaration reflected the practical approach which the Jugoslav delegation brought to the conference table.
Another Jugoslav worry about the European Common Market, justified or not, is its political aspect. If it were to establish Western Europe as a strong political and military power, would that not create an engine of neo- imperialism, a new and more dangerous form of the policy of blocs against which Tito and his colleagues have inveighed for so long? Unless there is some chance of East-West relaxation, Jugoslavia sees itself squeezed between the two blocs with slight chance of influencing either one. Or is there, perhaps, some possibility of salvation in a decisive turn to the East?
Jugoslav officials frankly say that if they do not get understanding and help from the West they must perforce look in the other direction, purely as a matter of economic necessity. A new long-term agreement for expanded trade with the U.S.S.R., concluded in July 1962, bears witness to the seriousness of the attempt to build up trade with the Soviet bloc, which in 1961 amounted to less than 25 percent of Jugoslavia's total foreign trade. They would welcome loans and look to Moscow to renew credits of some $300 million that were suspended for political reasons in 1958. Yet they know that trade with the bloc will be no more than a partial answer to their problem, and credits would be of limited value since what Jugoslavia needs above all is free exchange, not loans tied to Soviet or satellite exports. And Jugoslav "businessmen," those who actually run the enterprises, much prefer German and other Western goods for obvious reasons.
Delegations of one kind or another have been plying back and forth between Belgrade and Moscow to sound out the terrain. They reached the highest level with the Brezhnev visit to Jugoslavia in the autumn of 1962; and Tito is scheduled to pay a return visit. But how far can the rapprochement go beyond some increase in trade? Jugoslavia has expressed an interest in getting closer to the activities of the Council for Mutual Economic Assistance, in which it would like observer status such as it has in the West's Organization for Economic Coöperation and Development. What Tito wants is to learn what is going on and how Jugoslavia may profit by it, not a commitment to coördinate economic plans with those of the bloc, involving a loss of the power of independent decision. Thus far, the Soviet response has not been encouraging. Khrushchev, one may guess, is merely waiting in the wings until Jugoslavia's situation grows worse and Tito will pay a higher price. But he may overestimate what Tito will pay, even in extremis.
Does the prospect of more and closer economic relations with the East represent a danger to Jugoslavia's independence? Jugoslav leaders say "No": first, because they have no intention of taking any gamble with that independence; second, because they are confident that Khrushchev, having finally learned the lesson he should have learned years ago, now realizes Jugoslavia would never accept satellite status. He has won his fight with the Stalinists at home, so runs the argument; he has repudiated Stalinism in his relations with other countries; he has stood his ground against the Stalinist doctrines and policies of Peking; he is, therefore, ready for normal state relations and increased economic coöperation with socialist Jugoslavia. Jugoslav leaders were gratified when Khrushchev stretched out the hand of friendship in his Varna speech of May 1962. It was an act of courage, they say, for him to send Gromyko to Belgrade on a mission of reconciliation at the same time that he was trying to patch up or paper over the dispute with China. These acts seemed to confirm their view that a new day was dawning, that rapprochement was possible on their terms, not on outworn Stalinist concepts of domination. There is no question, presumably, of special relations between the two Communist parties or of Jugoslavia's "return" to the Soviet bloc.
One may find such a view of Khrushchev's intentions to be quite naïve, without concluding at the same time that Tito is likely to put his head in a Soviet noose. He and his colleagues have personally experienced both the struggle with Stalin and the ups and downs of Jugoslav-Soviet relations since his death: the understandings that turned out to be misunderstandings, the reconciliations followed by denunciations, and the bitterness of the still unsolved doctrinal disputes over revisionism and separate roads to socialism. At present the atmosphere is one of friendliness and coöperation. The trend is up rather than down. But the basic pattern of the past eight years is not likely to change. The Jugoslavs have resisted Soviet pressure for total solidarity on major international questions. They never accepted the "troika" proposal for the United Nations; even on Germany they have not endorsed the Soviet position, as is evident from the non-committal communiqué issued at the close of Brezhnev's visit. The conflict over theory and over the interpretation of Marxist terms has been in reality a conflict of national policies and national interests. The Jugoslavs are not likely to become so fascinated by the lure of economic help from Russia or by the mirage of fraternal socialist collaboration that they forget those interests. But precisely what they decide to do about the immediate choices before them depends on how they judge the prospects in the West as well as in the East.
Jugoslavia is faced with a situation of great difficulty. If the European Common Market has not shown an inclination to make notable concessions to help Jugoslavia, neither is the Soviet bloc, which has many prior demands on its resources, likely to offer any great benefits just to help Tito make revisionism work. The two blocs are hardening. Jugoslavia's role as a member of neither and a suppliant to both seems less promising than at any time since Tito chose his middle course. There is an urgency in the need for more durable relationships, above all with the West.
From the Western viewpoint, some will say that the Jugoslavs made their bed and whether they find it comfortable or not is their own affair. They have had enormous help from the West since their break with Stalin in 1948. The United States provided, up to the end of 1961, over $2 billion in military and economic aid, but still finds Jugoslavia unable to meet its international payments deficit and having to ask, as before, for American food shipments and other help. When these economic facts are seen as part of a general picture which includes Tito's present tactical turn toward the East and his stand on many international issues in direct opposition to the policy of the United States, it is hardly surprising that many American Congressmen, including some who can see a difference between Jugoslav and Soviet Communists, are reluctant to provide further assistance.
It is, of course, unwise to determine policy on the basis of disillusionment or spite. But it is in every way proper to reëvaluate the policy which started as a series of emergency measures "to keep Tito afloat" and came to be a regular and consistent effort to support Jugoslavia's independent effort to attain economic stability and progress. That policy has already been reappraised several times, generally under the stress of some new shock administered by Tito himself, and it has shown remarkable staying power. It has been kept in effect, with variations, under all administrations from Truman to Kennedy. In judging it in the light of Jugoslavia's present and possible future course, we shall be wise to keep in mind what can reasonably be anticipated in the way of results, and what cannot.
Experience has taught us not to expect too much in tangible returns for our assistance. Western aid and good will have not drawn Jugoslavia into association with NATO-that was clear by 1953 when Tito halted certain tentative steps taken toward coöperation in military planning-nor with its Balkan neighbors, despite the Balkan Alliance which was concluded with Greece and Turkey in 1954 but soon fell into a state of desuetude. They have not brought Jugoslav support on issues concerning Africa, colonialism, disarmament or Germany, on which Belgrade's policy, though independently reached, has run closer to that of Moscow. Nor has Western aid to Tito had striking results in promoting disruption within the Soviet bloc, which was one of the main reasons for its adoption. From conversations with some Jugoslav officials today, one gets the impression that Jugoslav influence is not even intended to be disruptive.
As we look at the situation in Eastern Europe today, it is at least questionable whether the contrast and competition between Jugoslavia with its freer institutions and the Soviet satellites with their centralized structure on the Soviet model have any sharp meaning. A few years ago the Jugoslav system seemed to be on top of the wave, clearly doing more for its people and making better economic progress than was being done in the neighboring countries to the east. Today the Jugoslavs are reaping a harvest of troubles, while their rivals are not doing badly at all. Rumania, sporting an air of confidence and claiming a 16 percent annual rate of increase in industrial production based largely on new industries like petrochemicals well suited to its resources, has surprised even its own leaders by its progress. Hungary also is doing quite well, thanks largely to the considerable Soviet economic assistance extended to the Kádar régime following the suppression of the revolt of 1956, and to the attitudes of relative tolerance prevailing between the régime and the people. Kádar has finally taken action against the more notorious of those identified with the hated Rákosi régime, and seems intent on winning at least passive support from the people by relaxing some of the pressures on them. Bulgaria, Jugoslavia's other neighbor on the east, is having its troubles with production and is handicapped by a singularly uninspiring political leadership, but is still doing as well economically as comparable parts of Jugoslavia. Actually, the determining factors in the relative economic progress of the countries of Central and Southeastern Europe seem to be not the differences in economic systems but the differences, or similarities, in historical background, basic resources and technical advancement. Titoism has not proved its superiority, at least not at this reading. The real contrast to Prague or Budapest is not Belgrade, but Vienna and Munich.
Yet two facts of prime importance dictate caution in pursuing that argument to its logical conclusion. The first is that Jugoslav society, with all its contradictions and disappointments, is alive-with ideas, with enterprise, with new forms of expression, with a search for practical truths in disregard of doctrinal "truth." The second is that Jugoslavia remains independent. It stands as an example, still a significant example despite the frustration of earlier hopes that its force of attraction would somehow draw other East European states out of the Soviet bloc. It is ironic that the one satellite which seems successfully to have broken away from Moscow since 1948 is Jugoslavia's bitter enemy, Albania, whose leaders find Khrushchev too revisionist, or Titoist, for their taste. Yet what has happened in Tirana illustrates the ferment and cross-currents that exist within the bloc. As the ties which bind the satellites to Moscow are loosened, a trend which has been unmistakable despite the declarations of solidarity and the grandiose plans for economic integration, Jugoslavia cannot but exert an influence, not because of this or that set of institutions or reforms, but because of the simple fact of its independence.
The Jugoslavs face critical decisions on internal affairs: on the stimulation of economic growth and of exports, the expansion or contraction of recent reforms, the distribution of political power, the real meaning of industrial self-management and the future role of the Communist Party. They face questions just as critical and as difficult to answer in determining the country's international position: how to judge the long-term prospects for neutralism, how strongly to cling to existing ties with the West, how far to move toward the East. Most important of all is the general direction of the régime's policies. Will the leaders preserve the "openings" to the free world-and to the Jugoslav people themselves-that have already been made?
The whole trend of Jugoslavia's development argues that they will, that they do not have an unlimited range of choice. It is true that the régime is essentially a dictatorship, and that dictatorships are capable of sudden turns of policy without accountability to anyone. It is also true that there are those among Jugoslavia's Communists who, whether or not they were "Cominformists" at one time or another, have never been happy about the increasing liberalization of the internal system or the running dispute with Moscow. Even with the top leaders themselves, brought up as they were in the world Communist movement, there is a certain feeling of "coming home" whenever they move toward better relations with Moscow. But these are rather shaky premises on which to spin a theory of impending fundamental change in Jugoslavia's position.
The more reliable signs of the times indicate that Tito does not intend such a change; that any subsequent or alternative leadership is likely to be guided by the same general lines; and that the weight of popular will provides something close to a guarantee of the validity of those two propositions. The Jugoslav people have not all become converts to socialism, even in its comparatively mild Titoist form. For the most part they have accepted the system because there is no alternative and because a Jugoslav citizen, party member or not, can find a place for himself in it that is more than mere submission to his fate. Whether Jugoslav socialism is becoming more socialistic as time passes, or less so, is a matter for interpretation and argument, but there is little doubt that it becomes ever more Jugoslav.
If the Jugoslavs can be counted on in any event to safeguard their independence, to continue building their own system, and to keep useful ties with the West, why should we be concerned at all? The difficulty lies in the fact that nothing can be counted on "in any event." If the internal crisis deepens, if the economic position becomes much weaker, if the United States and other Western nations are totally unresponsive to Jugoslav needs, if the succession reveals unexpected stresses and conflicts, if the cold war enters an intensive phase with increasing Soviet pressures to bring Jugoslavia into line-if any or all of these things happen, no prediction can be sure.
Its nationality conflicts still rumbling under the surface, Jugoslavia has a history marked by courageous struggles but hardly by continued stability under stress. Certainly it is not in the interest of the West, by what we do or fail to do, to encourage chaos, to aggravate Jugoslavia's problems or to make its decisions more difficult than they are bound to be. The Jugoslavs, despite all the pressures to which they were subjected, came through the struggle with Stalin after 1948 thanks to their own determination and courage, but also because they had an anchor to the West. That anchor has continued to be important to Tito's capacity to deal with the Soviet Union on his own terms. Ties with the neutralists are no substitute.
Jugoslavia may never provide what the title of a book by Charles P. McVicker called a "pattern for international Communism." But it does represent a society in which a Communist régime has undergone organic change, for both practical and human reasons. The new constitution appears to confirm that change. So long as its independence is maintained-and both government and people are firm in that resolve-Jugoslavia will have an influence both inside and outside the Communist world that in the long run can only be of benefit to the West. Whatever the superficial appearances may be, as Jugoslavia makes its presence felt in Asia, Africa and Latin America, it is not serving as the Kremlin's agent or torchbearer. It is in fact offering an alternative. Tito has won for himself and his country a considerable international prestige and freedom of action. He would not trade that for the status of a Kádar or even of a Gomulka. If his government talks about the sins of imperialism or the virtues of "peaceful coexistence," we have to interpret those words on the basis of Jugoslavia's conduct and not on the fear that it is but the parroting of Soviet tactical slogans at Soviet behest.
Modest assistance, which is all Jugoslavia has been getting in recent years, is no great burden for the Western nations to carry. It can and should be continued. Even more important, the West should make adjustments to allow Jugoslavia to trade with the free world and to make its own way without discrimination. The Common Market should negotiate arrangements with Belgrade while the situation is still favorable. And the United States, when the new Congress meets, should restore to Jugoslavia most- favored-nation treatment, which it was never in the national interest to withdraw.
We may be sure that the sympathies of the Jugoslav people lie with the West as they have even when the régime was hostile, and that a new generation less burdened by the forms and prejudices of the past will be making its influence felt within the leadership. The Western nations will only be spiting themselves if they abandon a policy that has had real success and can have more, for it is based on a fundamental Jugoslav interest that is also in line with their own principles: that of national independence sustained by open and coöperative relations with other nations.