The Nation: Beware the Russian Trader

During the days of the cold war, it was widely believed that the wily Russians would, unless watched with the greatest suspicion, outwit the simple-hearted Americans at every turn. The myth has turned out to be true—in a most embarrassing way. Last year the Soviet Union, needing grain because of serious crop failures, sent a delegation to hole up in a New York hotel to buy wheat—440 million bushels of it. The U.S., long plagued by grain surpluses, obligingly held the export price of wheat at $1.63 per bu. by subsidizing farmers and grain dealers to the tune of nearly $300...

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