Whatever course the Soviet Union ultimately takes in handling the Czechoslovak crisis — from inaction to armed intervention—it will have to pay dearly. If Moscow chooses muscle, it will not only antagonize most of the non-Communist world but will also alienate many Communist countries and national parties. If it permits Dubček to proceed, his sweeping reforms are bound to spread elsewhere and further weaken Russia's hold over its Communist neighbors. The Kremlin is caught in an enormous dilemma and. no matter what it does, the shape and strength of what used to be...

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