Soviet Decisionmaking for National Security

In This Review

Soviet Decisionmaking for National Security

Edited by Jiri Valenta and William C. Potter
Allen & Unwin, 1984
319 pp. $42.50
Purchase

A serious effort to probe the making of Soviet policy from Stalin's time to the early 1980s. The fact that the various contributors tackle the problem in different ways adds to the value of the book, for there is obviously no one key or approach that will yield a uniform truth. Among the chapters are first-rate case studies on the Soviet moves into Czechoslovakia and Afghanistan (by Jiri Valenta), the Middle East war of 1973 (by Galia Golan), and the Soviet handling of SALT (by Raymond Garthoff). Not everything is new-these authors have written elsewhere on these topics-but the volume as a whole constitutes real progress in difficult terrain and a basis for further research.