Communists: Aleksei on the Spot

When U.S. jets began hitting North Viet Nam last week, the most surprised Communist of all was probably Soviet Premier Aleksei Kosygin. There he sat in Hanoi, exchanging pleasantries with North Viet Nam's Ho Chi Minh and chatting desultorily about possible Soviet military aid. Then—bang!—bombs were falling only 250 miles away. Aleksei was on the spot, and his position brought into sharp focus the whole question of Communist-bloc relations.

Could Moscow possibly back away from the Khrushchevian line of "peaceful coexistence" and espouse the militant "permanent war" cause of Peking? Could any...

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