Africa Notes: Four Soviet Views of Africa - May 1987
May 9, 1987
By the early 1980s, the disagreements within the Soviet hierarchy about how the USSR might best go about trying to accomplish its goals in Africa had crystallized into four distinct lines of argument, and these persist in the late 1980s. They reflect differing perceptions of the realities of the continent. In part, the differences stem from clashing assessments of specific conditions there; in part, they involve varying judgments about precisely which aspects of the African situation should be key policy considerations. Each of these four viewpoints has had advocates at or near the centers of power in the USSR. Moreover, the adherents of the diverse outlooks not only express their own positions openly but have sometimes even explicitly criticized the outlooks of other schools.