Page 1, 19th June 1953

19th June 1953
Page 1
Page 1, 19th June 1953 — WILL TITO NOW TURN EAST?

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Organisations: Communist Party
Locations: Belgrade, Moscow


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By Douglas Hyde

WILL Tito sooner or later make his peace Moscow and rejoin the Cominform nations ?

The idea might have seemed far-fetched to some people even a month or two ago; it does not seem so improbable now that Moscow and Belgrade are exchanging ambassadors for the first time since their quarrel in 1948.

There is a good deal of evidence to show that one aim of the new "Malenkov line" is to attempt to create conditions in which Yugoslovia can go back into the Soviet camp without loss of face on either side.

Russia's reasons for wanting to end the present situation are obvious. She has everything to gain and nothing to lose. And that goes for the other Iron Curtain countries too.

But the reasons for Tito wanting to make up the quarrel are almost equally as strong.

In the first place it should never be forgotten that the quarrel was over mere tactics—not fundamentals. And Tito has insisted throughout that he has not changed on those fundamentals. He is, according to both his own public statements and his actions, as much a MarxistLeninist as ever he was.

Neither side planned the break; neither wanted it. Both were the losers by it.

Unchallenged boss

For years Russia, and particularly Stalin, had been the unchallenged boss of Communists throughout the world. As the one country in which the revolution had succeeded and the Communist Party ruled, this was to be expected.

The trouble was that the habit of bossing the rest continued after Russia had been joined by a number of other countries in which the Communist Party also now ruled. Their leaders wanted the final say in their own affairs and a substantial share of responsibility for world Communist policies, too.

Tito, urged on by the leaders of the other satellite States, stood out for these things. Zhdanov, as head of the Cominform and trusted mouthpiece of Stalin, resisted, got tough, threatened Tito's expulsion and, when the Yugoslav leader refused to budge, was finally obliged to put his threat into effect.

It was a stupid battle of wills, in which each was manceuvrcd into a position from which there seemed no return.

Zhdanov's and Stalin's pride in particular made it impossible for the quarrel to be patched up and, from Continued on page 8

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