Chapter VI

Western Analysis and the Soviet Policymaking Process

Vladimir G. Treml

Although the USSR ceased to exist more than a decade ago, we still do not have a complete understanding of the system that governed the flow of information to its higher authorities, particularly information originating outside the country. In the past, Soviet academic and government economists worked under a number of severely debilitating ideological and Communist Party-imposed restrictions. Soviet economists were not allowed to deviate from the official view of the Soviet economy. They could not use or cite any statistic or quantitative measure not published in the open literature or approved by central statistical authorities, no matter how distorted these data were. The secrecy was pervasive--even researchers cleared for basic classified documents would not find much [1] and were essentially isolated from the outside world, particularly from the outside international scholarly community. The Soviet open economic literature paid scant attention to Western analyses of the Soviet economy or offered short, critical, and largely defensive summaries of Western research.

(Research for this paper initially was supported by a fellowship grant from the National Council for Soviet and East European Research, Washington, DC. An earlier draft titled “Western Economic Sovietology and Soviet Authorities” was released by the National Council for Eurasian and East European Research, Washington, DC 1999. An updated text titled Censorship, Access and Influence: Western Sovietology in the Soviet Union (Berkeley, CA: University of California at Berkeley, 1999) also was published. I am grateful to Christopher Andrew, Oleg Kalugin, Sergo Mikoyan, and Timothy Naftali for their thoughtful comments on the draft of this paper. I am responsible for errors of fact and interpretation.)

But as this study shows, we now have evidence that behind closed doors a number of Soviet academic and government economic specialists with appropriate clearances reviewed a large number of Western studies of Soviet economic performance, selected some studies to be translated into Russian, and commented on them or made specific policy recommendations to higher authorities based on these studies. Until the dissolution of the Soviet Union, the Western economic Sovietological studies remained buried in "closed repositories" (spetskhrans) while memoranda, comments and recommendations related to these studies stayed hidden in classified files.

The need to seek out Western sources of data for the Soviet Union was not restricted to Soviet economists. For example, William Odom cites a case in which researchers of the Moscow Institute for the Study of the USA "denied access to Soviet military thinking and information, resorted to Western data on Soviet forces, and adopted Western concepts to the Soviet internal debate." [2]

The purpose of this study is relatively narrow. It is to investigate the different channels by which Western Sovietological literature entered the USSR and to evaluate the literature’s potential impact and influence on high-level Soviet policymakers and leading economists. My research concentrates primarily on studies by Western academic and government economic researchers who focused on the performance, policy effectiveness, and structural changes in the Soviet economy. To make the project manageable, Western political, legal, historic, and sociological studies (with some exceptions) will not be included. Broader issues related to the potential impact of mainstream Western economic ideas on the development of Soviet economic thought, interesting as they are, will not be considered. We should note, however, that with some exceptions Western theoretical and policy-related economic literature was banned from open circulation in the USSR, and a few translated texts carried a restrictive "for scientific libraries only" classification. The system and scope of Soviet external and domestic censorship are considered here only as they pertain to Western Sovietological studies entering the USSR.

The period covered in this study is approximately from the beginning of Nikita Khrushchev’s reign in the mid 1950s to the beginning of Mikhail Gorbachev’s glasnost policy in the late 1980s, when the internal restrictions on Western scholarly literature were significantly relaxed if not completely lifted, and many new channels of interaction between the Soviet Union and the outside world emerged. Although internal censorship rules governing access to and utilization of Western publications changed somewhat over this long period, the basic patterns remained relatively stable.

The conclusions of this study are based on formerly classified and open documents found in Russian central archives, interviews with Russian economists, general Soviet and post-Soviet literature, and contributions from Western economic Sovietologists. A comprehensive search in the main central Russian archives--that is, GARF, RGAE, and TsKhSD--and in the numerous archives of former USSR ministries, state agencies, and academic institutes for all documents related to the study would have required a much larger research effort. The archival work for this project had to be highly selective and discriminating. A list of Russian archives searched appears at the end of this chapter.

This paper is not focused exclusively on studies of the Soviet economy by the CIA but on the broader scope of Western, primarily American, economic Sovietology. But it must be recognized that in the postwar period the Agency was a major player, some would say the dominant player, in the development and progress of research on the Soviet economy, polity, and society. CIA’s involvement took many forms--preparation, publication, and wide distribution of numerous classified and unclassified reports and studies; participation by Agency researchers in various open domestic and international seminars and conferences; contributions to published compendia; direct funding of economic research at various academic centers and think tanks; and administrative and financial support of miscellaneous projects. The Joint Economic Committee (JEC) of Congress became a major vehicle for disseminating CIA studies; since 1955 more than 25 compendia of studies of the Soviet economy have been published and widely distributed to the public. Some of these were produced exclusively by CIA researchers, while others were composed of studies by academics (US and foreign), researchers from other US government organizations, and CIA specialists. Some were slim, single volumes; others were published as multivolume sets of close to a thousand pages. It is impossible to be precise, but roughly more than 40 percent of JEC compendia on the Soviet economy had been completely translated or summarized, excerpted, or reviewed in classified Soviet publications and, occasionally, in open publications in Soviet economic journals. In addition, the JEC sponsored publication of a large number of similar compendia devoted to socialist countries in Eastern Europe and to China.

My knowledge of the public dissemination of internal analytical reports by intelligence agencies of major countries is only cursory. But a superficial scanning of available documents suggests that CIA during the years of the Cold War was unique in widely sharing the analytical findings of the economic and political research by its analysts compared to countries such as Germany, France, the United Kingdom, and the USSR. At least in this respect the debilitating "culture of secrecy" critically assailed by Senator Moynihan in his 1998 book does not apply to the Agency. [3]

An exhaustive collection, collation, and analysis of all pertinent documents, were it feasible, was not deemed necessary for the purposes of this study. The massive, secret Soviet effort to select, translate, review, analyze, and disseminate Sovietological economic studies to higher authorities was essentially unknown in the West and even in the USSR. The main purpose of this study therefore is to establish the existence of and to ascertain the approximate scope of this effort, to understand its administrative structure and the rules under which it operated under the controls of the Central Committee, and to sample the Western studies involved.

Programs of the Institute of the USA and Canada of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR, although close to the main subject of this study, will not be considered. The Institute, established in 1967, was responsible for studying American (and later Canadian) economic and political developments and advising the Central Committee and the government on foreign relations with the United States. The institute staff apparently had unrestricted access to a broad range of American publications including Sovietological sources. Sovietologists were considered only from the perspective of their influence on American public opinion and government policies toward the Soviet Union. Otherwise (at least in the open literature) they were contemptuously dismissed as "overt enemies of détente," and "the product of the cold war which, in turn, they did everything to stimulate." [4] According to the Institute director, Georgiy A. Arbatov, the Sovietologists "multiplied errors and miscalculations" concerning the USSR while "trying to come forward as advisors to the governments of Western countries…" [5] The house organ of the Institute, the journal SSHA: Economika, Politika, Ideologiya, did not offer any factual analysis and evaluation of Sovietological studies. Accordingly, whatever impact Western Sovietology had on Soviet policymakers was affected through channels other than the Institute.

This study is of more than historic interest because, unfortunately, Russia and other newly independent states have inherited a number of systemic features of the old Soviet Union, and the political characteristics of the emerging societies are by no means clear. The roles of the independent press, of self-governing autonomous academic research institutions, and of mechanisms for independent scholarly or scientific exchanges with the outside world have not been fully defined. The findings of the research into the previously concealed Soviet system of channeling the findings of Western Sovietological studies to selected policymakers (or controlling information flow generally) could be profitably used by Western and Russian contemporary scholars.


The System of Ideological Controls

Suspicion of foreign ideas and influences, particularly in the social sciences and humanities, was long a part of the Soviet authoritative mindset and, in fact, predates it. Evaluation and criticism of the Russian and later Soviet economic and political system offered by foreigners was particularly distrusted. Censorship of foreign publications in Russia has been commonplace for at least two centuries. The censor’s controls covered both foreign publications in original languages and Russian translations of these publications. Works in original foreign languages, however, received more lenient treatment. Thus a foreign-language book might be allowed to enter the country while a Russian translation of the same book was prohibited. Only the elite--that is, intelligentsia and aristocracy--knew foreign languages, and they were either already corrupt or could handle foreign subversive ideas without harm. As Marianna Choldin, a noted specialist on pre-1917 censorship in Russia, observed, "the fear of popularization, translation, and cheap editions for the masses…runs through the censors’ reports…. Well-to-do Russian intellectuals traveled abroad and read freely and widely. . . carrying the pernicious ideas of these authors and thinkers back home to Russia. Common people were another story; there were so many of them and they might be difficult to control if aroused." [6]

The censorship of foreign publications under the imperial system was not very effective. Many books did get through, and Western ideas circulated in Russia fairly unobstructedly. In this respect, the post-1917 Soviet censorship was much more severe and effective; most Western publications in the social sciences, politics, and humanities were completely banned. In an ironic twist, selective Western works were made available to a limited number of trusted, high-level Communist Party officials. Unlike the generations of Lenin Bolsheviks, most of the officials in Nikita Khrushchev’s and Leonid Brezhnev’s days did not know foreign languages, thus making Russian translations necessary.

A quotation from Gorbachev’s memoirs serves as a good introduction to this paper, because it stresses the role of the Central Committee and specifically refers to "prohibited" literature:

The introduction of glasnost was handicapped not only by "nomenclatura." The roots went into the very system of control of means of information inherited from Stalin’s days. The center retained total control of this sphere from Moscow to far away regions. AGITPROP [The Department of Agita­tion and Propaganda of the Central Committee of the CPSU] was above everybody--party newspapers, trade unions, Komsomol, organizations of fishermen, hunters, veterans or whomever. All editors were approved by the party. The Department of Propaganda of the Central Committee would meet once or twice every month with chief editors…

I must mention the censorship, which played a major role in protecting the system. Officially, this organization, politely called GLAVLIT, was responsible for protecting state secrets. In fact it was an ideological KGB, and editors and publishers were in mortal fear of it. GLAVLIT was responsible for the control of periodic publications, libraries, and archives. It prepared for approval the lists of prohibited literature, and directed what should be kept in "spetskhrans," classified as "secret," "absolutely secret," or "for administrative use only." [7]

The details of the ideological control over foreign publications becomes clear from the following document. On 2 September 1969, the Central Committee adopted a secret resolution "on measures of orderly organization of preparation and dissemination of restricted foreign information materials of political-ideological nature." I did not find the original resolution, but the TsKhSD archive contains a secret report dated 23 February 1970, addressed to the Central Committee concerning the fulfillment of the 1969 resolution (TsKhSD, F5, O62, D44, L58-61). From selected parts of this report signed by the Chief Scientific Secretary of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR, the main points of the resolution can be deduced:

  • To decisively end all instances of publication in the open literature (razglasheniye) of classified information.

  • To establish strict control over the quantity and the nature of publications requested by the individual libraries operated by the Academy of Sciences of the USSR, under book exchange programs with foreign libraries.

Meanwhile, the Presidium of the Academy of Sciences uncompromisingly prohibited institutes, research councils, and other organizations from publishing bulletins and compendia containing foreign politico-ideological information (including information provided by TASS) without approval of the Propaganda Department of the Central Committee. Subscription to foreign scientific literature by Academy of Sciences libraries and by scholars for personal use also was strictly limited by the scope of their scientific profiles.

The Academy of Sciences, with the approval of the Central Committee, allowed a small number of its social research institutes to publish classified ("closed" or "for administrative use only") foreign information and reference bulletins. The list included:
  • The Institute of Oriental Studies published Information Bulletin and Reference Bulletin.

  • The Institute of International Workers’ Movement published the Scientific Bulletin.

  • The Institute of History of Belorussia published Review of Foreign Literature on Belorussia.

  • The Institute of World Economy and International Relations published Information Bulletin and was permitted to send it to organizations interested in military economics and the military technology of capitalist countries.

The system of control of Western Sovietological studies consisted of several components with complex interrelations. As a strictly observed rule, original Sovietological publications in foreign languages or in Russian translation were not allowed to circulate openly in the USSR. Several academic research institutes discussed below, and selected key state agencies and organizations--such as the KGB, the Intelligence Administration of the General Staff of the Armed Forces of the USSR (GRU), the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Soviet news service TASS, and probably some others--had the responsibility of examining Western Sovietological economic studies, and, when deemed important, of translating them into Russian and passing them on with their comments and analysis to the Central Committee and key Party and state officials on a classified basis. Occasionally, staff members of the Central Committee apparatus learned about an important Western publication through their own channels and directed one of the organizations listed above to procure it. The largest share of the translation and distribution to a restricted list of cleared individuals was entrusted to a secret department of the PROGRESS Publishing House (see PROGRESS’s Restricted Mailing List at the end of this chapter).

Compendia of reports on the economy of the USSR prepared by academic and government analysts and published periodically by committees of the United States Congress, particularly the JEC, were of special interest to Soviet policymakers and occupy an important place on lists of classified Russian translations and reviews prepared by PROGRESS and other organizations. The censorship organization GLAVLIT provided a second channel of entry of Western literature. All "bourgeois" literature coming into the country through numerous channels (mailed by private foreign citizens or organizations to Soviet contacts, brought in by Soviet citizens returning from abroad, or carried by foreign visitors to the USSR) was intercepted by GLAVLIT, classified "for administrative use only," and distributed to state organizations and agencies cleared to handle the given subject. GLAVIT officials destroyed or deposited with spetskhrans literature they deemed to be "Anti-Soviet." In the mid-1960s, four spetskhrans were authorized to collect all foreign publications: the Lenin Library, the library of the Institute of Scientific Information on Social Sciences (INION), PROGRESS Publishing House, and the Union of Soviet Societies of Friendship and Cultural Ties with Foreign Countries (TsKhSD, F5, O59, D34, L25-26). It is possible that the list varied over time.

As a rule, GLAVLIT handled the foreign publications and listed only the titles in its reports to the Central Committee. Occasionally, however, GLAVLIT included in its reports summaries and comments on confiscated sources. For example, the head of GLAVLIT, P. Romanov, sent to the Central Committee a Top Secret memorandum reporting on the control of foreign literature in November 1970. The memorandum included a review of Michael Kaser’s book, Soviet Economics. [8] A similar memorandum covering the June to August 1971 time period reviewed Stanley Cohn’s 1970 book, Economic Development in the Soviet Union (TsKhSD, F5, O59, D44, L198-202 and D98, L30-36). [9]

Western Sovietological studies in the open economic literature were not completely ignored in the USSR. The 1966 Joint Economic Committee of Congress publication of a six-volume compendium on the Soviet economy was discussed in a memorandum by the head of the Information Department of the Central Committee, D. Shevlyagin. He recommended that a number of Soviet newspapers and journals publish critical reviews of the compendium. His recommendation was supported by several Central Committee Secretaries. [10]

From time to time, articles surveying specific broad topics--such as Soviet industrialization, use of profit category, economic reforms, or effectiveness of central planning--appeared in economic journals, particularly in the conservative journal Voprosy Ekonomiki published by the Institute of Economics of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR. [11] Most of the authors managed to be disparaging of Sovietological studies without revealing much, if anything, of substance about the studies themselves. The work of Sovietologists, usually referred to as "ideologists of anti-communism," or "petty-bourgeois critics of socialism," was castigated for "unscientific fabrications" and "falsehoods." Although bibliographic references to original foreign language sources were numerous and complete, they were of little help to an ordinary Soviet economist who did not have access to Western scholarly books or journals, except for the few who had been cleared for reading rooms in spetskhrans.

As a rule, more factual as well as longer descriptions, and formal reviews of Western Sovietological studies could be found in classified review bulletins and other documents prepared by PROGRESS Publishers and in different research institutes. The dual treatment of reviews and sundry reports covering Western Sovietology (i.e., in the open literature and in classified sources) often involved duplication.

It is impossible to estimate how many people in the USSR had the opportunity to familiarize themselves with Western Sovietological research through different channels. Depending on the time-period, PROGRESS distributed, in classified form, documents, translated monographs, and compendia to between 200 and 500 people; the number of copies of different documents varied from only a few to several hundred. These high-ranking officials retained the books in their personal or office libraries. Most original foreign language and translated works ended up in spetskhrans of main academic research institutes or in the general purpose spetskhrans in the Lenin Library, [12] INION, the Academy of Sciences, or KGB special libraries. A clearance to read documents in spetskhrans was not easy to obtain. For example, an applicant to the spetskhran of the Library of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR who already had a general admission library card had to provide a letter from the head of his research institute giving the applicant’s position and requesting access to specific subjects. Permission would be granted for one year before a new letter had to be provided. [13]

It is likely that people who had the clearance would share what they learned from classified documents with interested friends and colleagues. We can speculate that a good share of the Sovietological analyses "trickled down." But the KGB, or its representatives in Department One (Pervyi otdel), who were responsible for security in all government and academic research organizations, were never far away, so that secrecy rules were fairly well observed in the USSR.

Western Sovietological sources that found their way into the private libraries of Soviet economists did not stay there long. For example, a Moscow economist told me that in the late 1970s an American colleague sent him a copy of one of John K. Galbraith’s books on economics (1971), addressing the package to him at his academic institute. [14] The institute’s Department One intercepted the package and placed the book in the spetskhran with a note about the confiscation sent to the addressee. In another case, the censors at the Soviet Post Office apparently slipped up and a copy of a US Congressional hearing on the Soviet economy was delivered to the private address of another economist. The rule prohibiting possession of Western literature was strict, and the addressee immediately turned over the Congressional compendium to the spetskhran of his institute.

The overall impression I have from discussing the accessibility of Sovietological studies with many Russian friends and colleagues in the early 1990s is that most prominent Soviet economists had seen a few translated Western studies or heard about summary results provided in others. But the immense scope of the system of translating, reviewing, and commenting on Western Sovietological research has always been a closely held secret and the findings of this study came as a surprise to most of my professional colleagues in Russia. Generally speaking, the system of severely restricting the dissemination of Western ideas to a small number of trusted officials was successful.

It is interesting to note that the whole massive Soviet operation of selecting, translating into Russian, reviewing, commenting, and distributing hundreds of selected Sovietological books and studies to higher authorities remained equally unknown in the West. My correspondence with a large number of Western economic Sovietologists yielded relatively little documentary evidence. Several specialists I contacted remembered hearing of a specific book or a study of theirs being known to a few Soviet colleagues. None, however, had seen the actual documents.

Robert M. Gates, the former Director of Central Intelligence, in describing the research work of the agency in his memoirs said that "CIA estimates have been accepted as authoritative throughout the world, including the Soviet Union…" [15] In his personal communication to me, he explained that the quote was from "a study group by the House Intelligence Committee" and that it was based on "a number of informal comments from Soviet defectors and émigrés as well as casual comments by a few Soviet officials in the Central Committee apparatus."

Mistrust of official views and acceptance of Western evaluation of the Soviet system was fairly common among the elite. For example, speaking at a closed meeting of Leningrad editors in July 1965, the director of the Novosibirsk Institute of Economics and later one of Gorbachev’s key advisors, Abel Aganbegyan, casually dismissed official Soviet economic statistics as "absurd" and "lies" and contrasted them with the "absolutely accurate assessment of the economy" made by CIA. [16]

The fact that most controls over the selection, translation, summary, review, and restricted distribution of Sovietological and other Western sources was handled in "Agitprop" could be interpreted to mean that the purpose of this massive and expensive operation was to learn foreign adversary opinions and views of the Soviet system in order to counteract it and to guide Soviet media specialists in preparing defensive counter propaganda. This was probably true in a limited sense. We have evidence that the Central Committee "Agitprop" staff would occasionally instruct newspaper and journal editors on how to react to a specific Western publication. But the results of the defensive counter-propaganda measures were meager and definitely not commensurate with the scale of the effort.


Evidence and Cases

The extent of the impact of the Sovietological studies on high-level Soviet policymakers is difficult to fully assess. The absence of most archival records documenting the decisionmaking process at the Central Committee level has several possible explanations. The main one is that many Central Committee documents remain classified or were lost or destroyed. A second reason is that a "paper trail" of important policy decisions originating at the Central Committee often does not exist or is impossible to trace. Russian contemporary specialists refer to this Soviet practice as telefonnoye pravo ("telephone right" or "telephone license"). Under the Soviet system, the power of the party over the state apparatus was vast, and many facets of party-state relations were not formal in an administrative (or, one could say, constitutional) sense. Many Central Committee decisions and instructions thus bypassed or ignored the formal chain of administrative command and were conveyed by a telephone call from a member of the Central Committee or his subordinate to the appropriate state official rather than by an official document. [17]

In most cases, one could theorize that high-level researchers and advisors associated with the Central Committee would assemble a dossier of Western Sovietological (and possibly some Soviet) studies of specific problems, debate the issues and possible solutions, and prepare a short report. This report, with or without sources, would be reviewed and rewritten by a senior Central Committee member, and, if deemed worthy,

would be passed on for inclusion in the Politburo agenda. Yuli Ol’sevich, the author of many open articles on Western economic analysis, however, told me in a recent interview, "In the 1970s and 1980s senior (and older) Politburo members, with some exceptions, would not have read Western studies translated for the Central Committee. They were still influenced by these studies through their younger colleagues and Central Committee staffers."

The issues described below are grouped under five headings and presented in roughly chronological order. They have different historic importance--some may even appear to be trivial--but I chose to include all of them to illustrate the variety of mechanisms and channels through which Western Sovietological studies and Western ideas found their way to Soviet authorities.

1.Large-Scale Translation and Dissemination of Western Literature to a Restricted Audience.

A. PROGRESS Publishers. PROGRESS was the main Soviet publishing organization responsible for translating and marketing Soviet books abroad and foreign language books inside the USSR. One large department of PROGRESS dealt with the selection, translation into Russian, and publication of selected Western nonfiction monographs and compendia, which for ideological reasons could not be published in the country openly. In the early 1950s, this department was headed by Georgiy A. Arbatov, who became a major Central Committee functionary and the director of the Institute of the US and Canada. [18] Beginning in the early 1960s, PROGRESS concentrated on foreign books in the social sciences and humanities while the translation and distribution of books in natural sciences and mathematics were entrusted to a separate publishing organization, MIR. In addition to translated books, PROGRESS also published classified compendia written by Soviet authors that summarized and commented on specific topics and issues. A classified bulletin, New Books Abroad, also was published; it contained reviews of selected Western books. The circulation of these classified publications was strictly controlled, and they were distributed to a small list of cleared people and institutions.

Regardless of the formal lines of subordination, PROGRESS was always under the de facto control of the Central Committee that reviewed its operations, made recommendations concerning the selection of Western sources, and decided on the list of people authorized to receive classified documents. The process of selection was complex and often caused disputes within the Central Committee. For example, in 1970 memoirs by Konrad Adenauer, Mao Tse-tung, and a book by Jean-Jacques Servan-Schreiber were initially approved and translated but subsequently dropped from the list of publications (TKhSD, F5, O62, D44, L148-149).

The list of people authorized to receive PROGRESS’s classified translations varied over time between 200 and 500 and was periodically revised. According to documents in the Central Committee archives, in the 1950s they were sent to 464 people; the New Books Abroad bulletin was distributed to 956 people. In January 1958, the Department of Agitation and Propaganda of the Central Committee, in consultation with the Politburo (approved by Politburo members Suslov, Kuusinen, and Furtseva), ruled that since "distributed translated foreign books contained anti-Soviet materials and are becoming available to a significant number of readers" the distribution list should be reduced (TsKhSD, F11, O1, D230, L138). It subsequently was cut to about 200 names. What happened to the bulletin subscribers list was not reported, but the same document notes that "the Bulletin did not contain anti-Soviet materials" and could be distributed to a larger number of subscribers. The decision also stressed that the PROGRESS translations and reviews are marked "for administrative use only" and should be kept with other classified documents in the spetskhrans of responsible organizations. Our research uncovered a copy of such a list approved by Suslov, Furtseva, and Kuusinen in 1958. It included all members of the Presidium of the CPSU (Politburo), about 100 members of the Central Committee, leading regional party officials, and representatives of the Council of Ministers, the KGB, the Academy of Sciences of the USSR, the Central Statistical Administration of the USSR (TsSU USSR), the Central Committee of Komsomol, and others. Being on the list was an important status symbol in the USSR.

Between the late 1950s and late 1980s, PROGRESS and its predecessors selected hundreds of books that were translated into Russian marked "for administrative use only," and distributed to a limited number of officials. The books dealt with the social sciences and humanities--that is, economics, politics, international affairs and diplomacy, contemporary history, current affairs, philosophy, religion, military affairs, and sociology. Most of the books selected for translation or review were policy-oriented or of an "applied" nature versus theoretical or abstract manuscripts. The list of selected authors was fairly wide, ranging from journalists and statesmen to academic scholars. It included such names as Louis Aragon, Frederick Barghoorn, Abram Bergson, Giuseppe Boffa, Chester Bowles, Zbigniew Brzezinski, Robert Byrnes, Robin Clarke, Nicholas Daniel, Allen Dulles, Raymond Garthoff, Marshall Goldman, Herman Kahn, Edward Kennedy, Henry Kissinger,

Walter Laqueur, William Lederer, Walter Lippmann, Alfred Meyer, Richard Nixon, George Orwell (the only book of fiction found on the restricted PROGRESS list), Richard Pipes, Bertrand Russell, Palmiro Togliatti and many others. Americans authored about two-third of the books focusing on the Soviet Union, socialism, and communism. Congressional compendia (mainly prepared by the JEC) and collections of Western materials devoted to such topics as the energy crisis, the military strategy of the West, the Communist Party, and economic reforms prepared by Soviet specialists also were published. I have compiled an index of more than 200 Western monographs and compendia published and distributed by PROGRESS, but the list is probably not complete. [19]

PROGRESS published a bulletin, titled Novye Knigi za Rubezhom, 24 times a year between 1956 and 1987. It contained short (two-to-five pages), published reviews of Western studies. My research uncovered more than 100 of them. The bulletin was classified "for administrative use only" and was distributed to between 500 and 1,000 people; it was kept in the spetskhran of the Lenin State Library. Economics dominated the series, accounting for close to one-third of all the reviews during the period covered. Within the economics disciplines, more than half reviewed monographs and compendia written by American authors. The work of British, German, Italian, and French authors also was reviewed. The reviews done initially appeared anonymously but, starting in 1969, the names of the reviewers were given.

The tone of the reviews markedly "mellowed" over time. In the 1950s and 1960s, the reviewers frequently included disparaging adjectives and comments describing the reviewed studies as "tendentious," "biased," and "unfounded," and suggested that the authors "did not hesitate to slander the USSR economy," or "to distort the Soviet reality." The style of writing became notably more balanced and factual in the 1970s. Nevertheless, even the earlier reviews were much more restrained in their language than references to Sovietological studies appearing in the open literature. The reviewers also were skilled in selecting the most important, novel, and controversial issues and problems.

More than 80 percent of the books reviewed under "economics" focused on the Soviet economy, and a few addressed general or theoretical economic issues. The selection of monographs and compendia dealing with the Soviet economy for inclusion in Novye Knigi za Rubezhom appears to have been comprehensive. It included practically all established Western economic Sovietologists and reviewed most Congressional JEC publications dealing with the Soviet economy as well as most standard English-language, college-level textbooks on the Soviet economy (e.g., by Nove, Gregory, Stuart, and Dyker).

B. The Scientific-Research Economic Institute of GOSPLAN (NIEI Gosplana SSSR). One of the functions of this influential and large institute was to provide Soviet authorities, including the Central Committee and selected economic academic institutes, with analyses of economic performance of foreign (mainly nonsocialist) countries. The institute also frequently identified, translated, reviewed and commented on Sovietological economic studies in classified publications. The archives of the institute are partially closed or are being reorganized, and this summary is based on documents found in Central Committee archives.

The work of GOSPLAN’s Scientific-Research Economic Institute differed from the similar, though much larger, PROGRESS operation in several ways. First, the analytical papers prepared by the sector were, as a rule, not meant to be distributed outside the institute; the number of copies varied from three to five. There were, of course, exceptions, and copies of some reports ended up with the Central Committee, with academic economists, or in other institutes. Special reports often were prepared for a high government official. Commentaries by the Institute staff on foreign economies, on the other hand, frequently appeared in the open literature.

Second, the focus of the research was almost exclusively economic and often topical-- that is, it addressed economic problems and issues being researched elsewhere in the GOSPLAN Institute. An editorial board consisting of about a dozen of the institute’s leading economists was responsible for the selection of topics. Third, most of the Sovietological studies selected were from Western (mainly American, British, West German, and French) academic economic and business journals, government reports, and newspapers. Less emphasis was placed on books. For example, an analysis of the 1965 Soviet reform of management and planning offered by the London Economist was summarized in one lengthy study; a similar study of reforms was based on articles published in scholarly journals such as Soviet Studies (Glasgow), Problems of Communism, Foreign Affairs, Dissent, and KYKLOS. In one case, a book by Barry Richman on management development in the Soviet Union (1967) was summarized in a twelve-page document. [20]

Between the late 1950s and early 1960s, the Scientific-Research Economic Institute of GOSPLAN also periodically published a bulletin under the title Ekonomika Za Rubeshom. It was distributed, judging from the few copies found, to some 200 addressees. This bulletin was marked "not for publication" and individual issues were numbered for security purposes. We found only a few copies of it in the Moscow archives.

C. The Institute of the World’s Socialist System (Institut Mirovoy Sotsialisticheskoy Sistemy) of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR. This institute (renamed in the 1990s the Institute of International Economic and Political Studies) was organized in the late 1960s when, after the Soviet invasion and occupation of Czechoslovakia, the central authorities realized they needed to "carefully watch the ideological, economic, and political developments in socialist countries." [21] Among other responsibilities, the institute was involved in translating, summarizing, reviewing, and analyzing foreign economic literature with one "closed" department responsible for Western Sovietological economic studies of socialist countries and a second one for the economic literature of these countries. [22] A classified bulletin of reviews and abstracts, Vestnik Instituta, was published periodically. Most of the documents produced by the USSR Academy of Sciences’ Institute were classified. Its operations with studies of foreign origin were similar to those of the GOSPLAN Institute. The Central Committee and some key research institutes received a small number of copies. Most of the thirty to forty copies prepared were distributed within the institute.

The USSR Academy of Sciences’ Institute concentrated on Western scholarly papers and surveys of the foreign media. One notable exception was the translation of a book by Michael Marrese and Jan Vanous examining foreign trade among socialist countries in the 1960-80 period. Using officially published foreign trade statistics in value and physical terms, the authors quantified the USSR’s massive subsidy to the rest of the Soviet Bloc. [23] According to knowledgeable Moscow economists, the book created a major sensation in the Central Committee and led to several meetings with heated discussions between the Central Committee staff and institute analysts. Similar topics involving protracted interaction with the Central Committee covered Yugoslavia, Poland, and economic reforms in Hungary. Listings for several translated Sovietological documents that originated with this institute are in the archives of the Central Committee. Unfortunately, all we have are the titles; the documents remain classified.

D. Others. The list of state agencies and organizations allowed to receive Western publications and engaged in their translation, analysis, and distribution is much longer than the few described here. We have evidence that the Institute of Economics, the Institute of World Economy and International Relations, INION, the KGB, and the GRU were doing similar work, although on a smaller scale. For example, a condensed version of the Congressional JEC 1976 compendium on the Soviet economy was translated and published

"for administrative use only" by PROGRESS in 1977. The TsKhSD archive records show that the Central Committee received an earlier "secret" translation done by the GRU. The translation was accompanied by a summary prepared by the Minister of Defense D. Ustinov, addressed to Leonid Brezhnev, and dated 29 January 1977. Signatures of Central Committee members B. Gostev, V.I. Dolgikh, Ya. P. Ryabov, I.V. Kapitonov, B. N. Ponomarev, Katushev, K.U.Chernenko, A.P. Kirilenko, F.D. Kulakov, and A.Ya. Pelshe indicate that they read the summary. The documents remain classified (TsKhSD, F5, O73, D1882, L1-28).

In 1982, the Ministry of Defense of the USSR sent to the Central Committee a Russian translation of the 1981 brochure Soviet Military Power published by the US Department of Defense, accompanied by an analytical report. Both the brochure and the report remain classified (TsKhSD, 1982, F5, O88, D1107). In 1983, the General Staff of the Soviet Armed Forces sent to the Central Committee a Russian translation of a NATO document on the evaluation of Soviet military expenditures in the 1970-81 period and their projected growth to 1990. The document remains classified, and all we have is its Russian title (TsKhSD, 1983, F5, O89, D898).

2. General Cases Illustrating the Possible Influence of Western Sovietology on Soviet Authorities.

In a description of the October 1964 plenary meeting of the Central Committee at which Nikita Khrushchev was forced to resign, the author says, "Khrushchev was accused of ruining agriculture; according to projections of American specialists Soviet purchases of grain from capitalist countries would continue until year 2,000." [24] We should not, of course, conclude that the critical American evaluation of the state of Soviet agriculture doomed Khrushchev as the leader of the Communist Party and of the Soviet state. But it is noteworthy that an American Sovietological study (probably by CIA) that, to the best of my knowledge, had not been published or discussed in the open Soviet press was cited as an authoritative source at a closed Central Committee meeting.

In 1978, Professor Marie Lavigne published an article in which she critically reviewed and contrasted two recently published Soviet books on money and credit in capitalist countries. [25] She suggested that the volume, edited by a well known and oft-published Lidia Krasavina, offered a standard "orthodox" treatment of the subject, full of ideological cliches and of little or no utility to Soviet students seeking practical understanding of international finance. [26] The second book, by Grigory Matyukhin--a then-little-known professor of the Moscow State Institute of International Relations (MGIMO) --was in Marie Lavigne’s opinion much more scholarly and balanced, offering a relatively good and comprehensive primer on Western banking and financial markets. [27]

At an international conference in the early 1980s, Grigory Matyukhin sought out Professor Lavigne and told her that her review article was translated into Russian and discussed "in camera" at the Collegium of the Ministry of Finance of the USSR. Participants at the meeting reportedly said that "the West is making fools of us because we are writing vapid things about their economics and finance as if we still were in Lenin’s days, while we have good people who understand what is going on…" According to Matyukhin, Lavigne’s review and the favorable reaction to it at higher echelons of the Ministry of Finance "changed his life" and started him on a fast career track in teaching and publishing in the field of finance and banking. Later, visiting Paris in his capacity as the first governor of the newly created Central Bank of Russia, Matyukhin again "attributed the start of his career to Professor Lavigne’s article." [28]

In the early 1980s, a Soviet demographer at the Moscow State University (MGU), N. N. Zhuravleva, completed her "kandidat" dissertation on studies of Soviet demography by Western specialists. The authorities considered the dissertation too sensitive to be openly released and classified it "for administrative use only." Zhuravleva’s dissertation advisor and the head of the demography department at MGU, Dmitri Valentei, wrote a forty-page summary, which was sent to the Central Committee where it created quite a stir. The importance of differentials in Slavic and non-Slavic birth rates and the implications for population and employment growth emphasized by American demographers alarmed Central Committee and Soviet demographers. As a result of these debates, Valentei became the head of the "Laboratory for the Study of Population" at the Tashkent University and visited Uzbekistan several times.

Zhuravleva’s dissertation remains classified and could not be located in the archives, but in 1987 she published a 190-page condensed version under the same title. [29] Despite the tendentiousness of the title, the book was quite balanced and factual, and it offered a serious review of a whole range of American studies. Zhuravleva discusses the work of 96 authors, presenting a rather comprehensive picture of American studies of Soviet demography of the past forty years.

In his recently published memoirs, Vladimir Kryuchkov, the last KGB Chairman, devoted several critical paragraphs to Gorbachev’s anti-alcohol campaign. Among other things, Kryuchkov said that "there had been many people who expressed doubts concerning the effectiveness of the anti-alcohol campaign; negative consequences were being anticipated. Intelligence (that is, the KGB’s Foreign Intelligence Directorate that was headed by Kryuchkov at the time) sent to higher authorities several summaries of foreign evaluations of the massive anti-drinking campaign. These evaluations contained rather serious warnings of what to expect and the probable damage to the Soviet economy was predicted fairly accurately." [30] One can conjecture that Western studies and the accompanied endorsement by the KGB had something to do with the subsequent reversal of the campaign.

3. Publishing Summary Results of Sovietological Studies without Attribution.

Soviet censors would not allow, as a rule, an open-literature publication of a general description or summary measurement of adverse Soviet developments or phenomena unless it had been mentioned or quantified in "official" sources, such as the State Statistical Agency, or in a statement made by a person in high authority. Such developments as growing drug abuse, prostitution, abortion, suicide, illegal home-distillation of alcohol, graft, theft of state assets, and the like were not mentioned in the media at all, or were described in terms of specific cases from which no generalizations concerning the entire economic system could be made. Academic or government statisticians, while often fully capable of identifying and quantifying these adverse phenomena, were not allowed to engage in sensitive research, and journalists familiar with the issues involved had no domestic, officially approved source of general information.

A subterfuge employed on some occasions by journalists was to publish a report using summary results of a Western Sovietological study without attribution or any reference to its "foreign" origins. We do not have the complete background and details of such cases. Had the journalists been given the Western estimates or the whole study with instructions to publish a brief summary by higher authorities? Or did they find the Sovietological references themselves and somehow manage to publish them without attribution and without being caught by their editors or censors? Several cases described below illustrate such subterfuges.

In the 1970s and 1980s, the Soviet media published frequent reports on "left" gasoline, the theft and resale of state gasoline coupons by state drivers to private car owners and the like. However, all of these stories covered specific and isolated instances and no estimate of the overall size of the gasoline black market ever was made. In June 1981, Professor Michael Alexeev published a study in which he estimated that about 4.3 million tons of gasoline were illegally diverted from state use to private car owners in the USSR. [31] In

October of the same year, a well known Soviet journalist, V. Selyunin, wrote an article in Sotsialisticheskaya Industriya in which he said that "according to expert opinion, about four million tons of state gasoline end up in the tanks of private cars annually…" [32] It is reasonable to assume that Selyunin obtained the estimate, directly or indirectly, from the study by Alexeev.

In the 1980s, CIA analysts periodically published their estimates of per capita calorie consumption in the USSR. For most years the estimates had been rounded off, but for some reason the 1980 estimate was given as an unusually precise 3,280 calories per day per person. [33] Soon after the CIA estimate appeared, the Soviet news agency NOVOSTI reported that Soviet daily per capita consumption amounted to 3,280 calories without mentioning the source. [34] Daily calorie consumption calculations are inherently approximate, and the fact that the two figures are identical strongly suggests that NOVOSTI used the CIA estimate. Why was it used? One possible explanation is that Soviet official statistical publications never published calorie-consumption estimates and the infrequent estimates made by Soviet scholars were, as a rule, somewhat lower than the one given by Henry Rowen in the CIA estimate. The publication of the Rowen estimate was probably of a propagandistic nature.

In the late 1980s, Soviet estimates of the illegal narcotics market ranged between 300 million and 3 billion rubles. [35] Kimberly Neuhauser, in her study of the narcotics market in the USSR, dismissed Soviet figures as unreasonably understated. She estimated the overall market at between 5.5 and 18.1 billion rubles, with a mid-point of 11.2 billion rubles. [36]

In a PRAVDA article, KGB Chairman Kryuchkov, noted that "according to American experts we do not have an effective mechanism for combating the shadow economy" and reported, among other figures on economic crime, that the illegal narcotics trade generated about 14 billion rubles. [37] Kryuchkov’s figure, which contradicted the latest official Goskomstat and MVD data, is very close to Neuhauser’s estimate. [38]

Kryuchkov’s statement is significant in that it came from the head of the KGB. While journalists may have felt that the publication of the results of a Sovietological study was in the public interest, Kryuchkov was probably motivated by different considerations. In 1990, KGB officials periodically published alarming reports on the deterioration of the Soviet economy and deepening social problems--such as the growing underground economy, prostitution, and drug and alcohol abuse--implying that they were the results of Gorbachev’s perestroika. It is not unreasonable to speculate that, having seen an internal KGB document summarizing Neuhauser’s study, Kryuchkov decided to dramatize the issue by making public an estimate of the narcotics turnover several times higher than figures given by official sources.

Valentin Falin, one of Gorbachev’s principle political advisors in 1980s, in his major report on the state of the Soviet economy to the July 1987 Plenary Session of the Central Committee said that "according to Western estimates personal consumption in the USSR comprises one-third of the US level and that 70 percent of Soviet consumption is devoted to basic needs (food, clothing, and footwear)." [39] These ratios were taken directly from a 1981 CIA report on consumption in the USSR. [40]

4. Important Western Studies Which Probably Had Significant Impact in the USSR but the Documentation for Which Remains Incomplete or Cannot Be Found.

In 1950, an American economist, Naum Jasny, published a study of gaps in and shortcomings of Soviet economics statistics in The Review of Economics and Statistics. [41] The paper was translated into Russian and its archival copy (RGAE F1562, O329, D4592, L1-22) carries a notation that it was "read by all members of the Collegium of the Central Statistical Administration (TsSU) of the Gosplan of the USSR." This reference was discovered in a collection of historic documents. [42] Neither the organization responsible for the translation and its dissemination, or the date of publication are known.

In 1961, Robert Campbell published a paper titled "Marx, Kantorovich and Novozhilov: Stoimost’ Versus Reality," which was very well received in the United States and also became known in the USSR. [43] University of Pennsylvania Economics Professor Aron Katsenelinboigen, who at that time was associated with the Institute of Economics of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR, told me that Campbell’s paper was translated into Russian by a special department of the institute and widely discussed. According to available reports, the institute’s authorities apparently viewed the paper as important enough to warrant a special closed meeting to review and refute it. Unfortunately, no references to the translated Campbell paper or reactions to it were found in the archives. Somewhat belatedly, the Russian version was published without comments in Moscow in 1992. [44]

By the mid-1970s, the Soviet Union became the largest oil producer in the world, and its oil output was growing at a high annual rate of 8 to 9 percent. It came as a surprise to the world when in 1976 President Carter announced that, according to a CIA study, the Soviet petroleum industry was beset by serious problems. As the result of the looming crisis, the CIA projected that by the early 1980s Soviet oil production was likely to reach a plateau and later would decline to the point that the USSR would become a net importer of oil. [45]

CIA’s oil study was translated into Russian and submitted to the Central Committee with comments by the GRU of the General Staff of the Soviet Armed Forces. Unfortunately, all documents related to the CIA oil study remain classified. [46] Did the CIA study alarm the Soviet leadership and force them to reassess their priorities in the energy field? The full story will not be known until we have the minutes of Politburo meetings and other relevant documents, but it is reasonable to conjecture that it did. In his 1980 book, Marshall Goldman speculated that the CIA’s projection of the forthcoming petroleum crisis was taken very seriously by Soviet policymakers, causing them to direct a major shift in both investment patterns in favor of the fuel sector and in extraction and exploration policies. [47] Soviet statistics support Goldman’s description of changes in the oil industry introduced in the late 1970s and early 1980s. Around 1978, the year in which the CIA study became available to Soviet leaders, capital investment in the oil and gas industry increased significantly compared with earlier years, employment in oil extraction grew significantly, and Soviet imports of oil and gas machinery and equipment and pipeline hardware rose. Would the Soviet leaders have acted as vigorously as they did in the late 1970s without having read the CIA study and were changes in oil policies "stimulated by the CIA assessment"? [48] The statistical evidence strongly suggests that the CIA studies had a significant impact on Soviet authorities.

A knowledgeable Moscow economist told me that, starting in the late 1960s, the Science Department of the Central Committee translated and distributed CIA’s estimate of the growth rates of the Soviet economy. In the mid-1970s, Nikolai N. Inozemtsev, then the director of the Institute of World Economy and International Relations (IMEMO), ordered translations and summaries of American (mainly CIA) studies of the defense expenditures of the USSR in rubles and dollars. The classified summaries were sent to the Central Committee and directly to Brezhnev. All such documents in TsKhSD remain closed.

The work of Morris Bornstein, one of the leading American specialists on Soviet prices, was well known in the USSR. As noted above, 150 copies (an unusually large number) of the classified Russian translation of his 1964 paper on the Soviet price reform were prepared in the Scientific-Research Institute of GOSPLAN. Three of his papers were included in the translated PROGRESS compendia. Several knowledgeable Moscow economists told me that in the 1970s and 1980s, Chairman of the State Committee on Prices Glushkov frequently referred to issues and criticism raised in Bornstein’s studies. No references or discussion of his work was found, however, in the Central Committee or other archives.

For many years, Soviet authorities and academic researchers disregarded the evidence of the USSR’s growing private underground, or "second economy," dismissing it as marginal and mainly criminal in nature. When Professor Gregory Grossman and I, and our colleagues began to study the second economy in communist countries, in the late 1970s a number of the studies found their way to Soviet economists and triggered their interest. It appears that the studies made the Soviet authorities aware of the scope and importance of the second economy (termed "the shadow economy" by Soviet specialists) and of the fact that it was rooted in systemic features of the Soviet economy such as, for example, in the method of setting prices and perennial shortages. [49]

In 1992, Professor Valeriy Rutgaizer published a paper in Berkeley-Duke Occasional Papers on Soviet academic research on the "shadow economy" describing the work he and Tatiana Koryagina began at the Scientific-Research Economic Institute of GOSPLAN in the mid-1980s. Rutgaizer reported that Soviet academic analysts were familiar with at least some American research and were influenced by it. [50]

Following many years of continuous decline, infant mortality in the Soviet Union started inexplicably to rise in the early 1970s from 22.9 deaths per 1,000 live births in 1971 to 27.9 in 1974. The TsSU continued to print the infant mortality series for a few years after the alarming reversal of the long-term trend, but it stopped open publication of the data in 1975. Christopher Davis and Murray Feshbach published a research report in 1980 depicting the deteriorating state of public health in the USSR and--with what later proved to be an accurate set of estimates for the missing years--suggesting that infant mortality in the Soviet Union was continuing to rise. [51] Several of my colleagues and I, while visiting Moscow in the early 1980s, heard Soviet demographers and economists say that "Feshbach saved thousands of infant lives in the Soviet Union," implying that the Davis-Feshbach study was made available to high Soviet authorities who directed beneficial changes in public health policies. Feshbach heard similar comments.

A large collection of documents related to infant mortality found in the archives remains inaccessible with the explanation that the documents have not been cataloged or declassified. We do not know whether and by whom the study was translated, evaluated, and disseminated and to whom. Infant mortality rates were published in Narodnoye Khozyaystvo, 1975 (p. 45), but were not resumed until twelve years later in Narodnoye Khozyaystvo, 1987 (p. 408).

A full interpretation of these and similar cases is difficult. The TsSU and the Ministry of Health of the USSR probably continued to collect statistics on infant mortality, and the rise in the rates in the early 1970s was known to at least some specialists. The Soviet statistical system, including the Central Statistical Administration and other agencies processing statistical data, however, was known for its reluctance to be the bearer of bad news. In the case of infant mortality, as in many similar cases, the data on adverse developments were simply deleted from the open literature. One can thus speculate that the information on the rise in infant mortality and other adverse health developments in the USSR in the 1970s had been buried by the statistical agencies. It took an alarming and well-publicized American report to alert higher authorities to the critical situation and to introduce remedies.

In July of 1982 Barry Kostinsky and I completed a study of Soviet foreign trade based on input-output data. [52] The study showed that the USSR was much more dependent on foreign trade than had been assumed in earlier Western analyses and that this dependence (particularly on critical imports) was growing rapidly. The USSR appeared to be more open to the world economy and vulnerable to external forces. Our findings were discussed at a press conference in Washington and widely reported in the media.

TASS distributed a highly critical commentary two days after the press conference but there were no reports about the study in open Soviet sources. I did not find any relevant documents in the Moscow archives (TsKhSD, GARF, and RGAE; Ministry of Foreign Economic Relation) and do not know whether the study was translated into Russian or reviewed in a classified source. However, the study and a followup report published later that year apparently became available in the Soviet Union. I was repeatedly asked specific questions about it during my visits to Moscow in 1982 and 1983. Moreover, I learned in an interview with a Dr. Kudrov and others at the Institute for Europe that, in the mid-1980s, the Chief Soviet representative with the United Nation Economic Commission for Europe, Zoya Mironova, called a special meeting of the Soviet staff at which she described and criticized our study in detail. She concluded her report, however, by asking the staff not to disregard the study completely as it had some merit. The study also was known and discussed on several occasions in the Institute of the World’s Socialist System.

5. Miscellaneous.

A somewhat different case is instructive because it shows how Western Sovietological research helped Soviet economists work with their own statistics despite being constrained by secrecy rules. In 1972, a group of economists with the US Census Bureau published a book focusing on "reconstructing," that is, filling in large gaps in the published, truncated 1966 Soviet input-output table. [53] The book, however, went beyond the transaction details of the input-output table. Because of numerous gaps and ambiguities in the available Soviet national income data, the authors had to address a large number of statistical issues, such as foreign trade accounting, definitions and relationships among various elements of national aggregates, differences between administrative and economic production data, labor and capital data, production of military hardware and commodity classification systems. The treatment of these issues was based on the interpretation of obscure Soviet sources. This book became a useful primer on Soviet national statistics. Copies of it were sent to several Soviet economists.

According to the testimony of a former staff member, the book was placed with the spetskhran of the Institute for Scientific Information on Social Sciences. The reason given by the censorship organization, GLAVLIT, was that the American authors had used secret Soviet economic statistics in making their estimates. A special investigation with representatives of several state agencies (including the KGB) determined somewhat later that this was not true and that all the data underlying the estimates contained in the book were from the open Soviet statistical literature. The process of removing a book from a spetskhran had always been a tedious one, but in this case the book was "freed" from spetskhran and placed in a general reference section. [54]
  • The book clearly was used by Soviet economists. According to Professor Gregory Grossman: "In the summer of 1973, in Sofia, I visited Evgeni Mateev in his office in the Council of Ministers Building. Mateev, an economist whom I had met previously at several international gatherings, was at that moment the ‘super minister’ for economics, with specialized ministers under him. I noticed your input-output book on his desk, and said that I knew well both it and its author. He volunteered that he kept the book regularly on hand and consulted it frequently, since it was very useful to him in his work." [55]

  • According to the son of a prominent Soviet economist and author of many books on the Soviet economy, "whenever my father was too busy to get a clearance to get some classified national statistics he would use Treml’s book." (April 1997).

  • At a meeting with me in August 1997, Yuri V. Beletsky, at the time a department head in the Ministry of Economics of Russia, recalled that he knew the input-output book very well and for him and others it was "a bible" for national statistics (nastol’naya kniga).



A massive Soviet program of selection, translation, and distribution to higher authorities of Western Sovietological socio-economic studies existed in the USSR. The program, orchestrated by the Central Committee, operated for most of the postwar period. The history of the Cold War is fraught with many ironies and certainly more will be uncovered as we get full access to Western and Soviet classified documents. One such irony is found in the realm of East-West cultural exchanges. In the postwar period the US government (with the help of private foundations) sponsored many far-reaching and expensive programs designed to familiarize the outside world with America by means of educational and cultural exchanges, foreign broadcasts, and the distribution of books and magazines in English or translated into foreign languages. [56] While many programs had wide popular appeal, the targeted audiences were mostly foreign professional and political elites. Programs focused on the Soviet Union and socialist Eastern Europe were frustrated by relentless internal censorship, and apparently not many books in the social sciences, politics, and humanities got through. What would State Department staffers have said had they known that hundreds of books by such influential American authors as George W. Ball, Chester Bowles, Zbigniew Brzezinski, Allen Dulles, Herman Kahn, Edward Kennedy, George Kennan, Henry Kissinger, Walter Lippmann, Richard M. Nixon, Richard Pipes, and Marshall Goldman, as well as full texts of Congressional hearings, were being secretly translated, printed, and distributed by PROGRESS to hundreds of key policymakers in the USSR?

The list of Western Sovietological economic studies that were made available to Soviet authorities through secret channels is, in my opinion, remarkable. Looking back at thirty-five years of Sovietological research and comparing it with titles identified in various classified Soviet programs, I see few serious omissions and few names which did not deserve inclusion, at least at the time of the original publication. The list is exhaustive, balanced, and shows little ideological bias. If anything, the bluntest and the most knowledgeable of the serious scholarly critics of the Soviet economic system are somewhat overrepresented, while the few "progressive," economic writers such as Victor Perlo (United States), Charles Bettelheim (France), or Maurice Dobb (Great Britain) are absent.

It will be difficult to fully evaluate the influence of Western Sovietology on Soviet policymakers until Russian archives are open and we can scrutinize such documents as the minutes of the Politburo, the deliberations of different departments of the Central Committee and the Council of Ministers. Even then, direct documentary links between specific Western studies and the formulation of Soviet economic policies may not be apparent. But we can reasonably conclude that officials on or near the top of the Soviet heirarchy read, or at least scanned, restricted Sovietological and other Western sources. All the ostensible contempt for Western scholarship notwithstanding, they apparently paid attention to what they were reading.

A person close to Khrushchev, for example, recalled the following exchange. "One evening, after having listened to a Voice of America broadcast, Khrushchev said ‘Not everything they say is correct. But there is also some bitter truth. It is remarkable how accurate their information is. Even I, in my time a well-informed person, often knew less…’ The person talking with him said something about [Western] intelligence services. Khrushchev responded angrily ‘What the devil, intelligence service…it is an elementary skill in the analysis of facts, understanding of economics, and a sober look at things.’" [57] While the reference is to Voice of America broadcasts, the evaluation could be easily applied to the Western Sovietological studies.

Evidence of interest in Western classified sources can be found in recently published memoirs. Soviet Premier Alexei Kosygin, for example, "systematically read sources, references, and books translated into Russian that were not available in the open literature but had been sent to a special list of people." [58] And in a Pravda discussion of the 1987 Congressional compendium on Soviet reforms, Mikhail Gorbachev said that American specialists "offer much factual and objective assessments… We could debate some of the opinions but in some instances, I would say, they would be worth listening to." Gorbachev also wrote in his memoirs that:

Life forced me to thinking, to search for answers… Our publications on these subjects had little new to offer. Creative thought was not encour­aged--on the contrary, it was suppressed in all kinds of ways. As a member of the Central Committee I had access to books by Western politicians, political scientists, theoreticians published by the Moscow publisher PROGRESS. Even today on the shelves of my library you will see… Read­ing these sources allowed me to familiarize myself with different views of history and on contemporary processes taking place on both sides of the ideological fault line. [59]

Another example of Soviet interest can be found in a recent Russian publication. As described above, in the 1970s and 1980s the Institute of the World’s Socialist System (Institut Mirovoy Sotsialisticheskoy Sistemy) was engaged in classified studies of translated Western Sovietological research that focused on East European socialist countries. Summarizing the achievements of the Institute during the 1970s and 1980s, its director, Oleg Bogomolov, said that "despite all the difficulties, the staff succeeded in utilizing the opportunities for objective analysis…and acquainted the leadership of the country…with the developments in these countries." [60]

Yuli Ol’sevich, a prominent economist with the Institute of Economics, sees "a direct impact of translated Sovietological studies on the already shaky ideology of the ruling elite at the center and in the regions (in which career bureaucrats have long replaced monolithic Bolsheviks). The work of Sovietologists undermined the faith in the ‘advantages of central planning’ and created a foundation for the future fissures among the Soviet leaders, turning away from the large part of systemic values, and from the Marxian ideology." [61]

The massive scale of this effort, so carefully hidden from Western and domestic audiences, is in itself instructive. The primary, albeit unspoken, reason for this effort must have been the recognition of the weakness of Soviet economic science, the paucity of Soviet economic analysis, and the significant shortcomings of information systems, including gaps and distortions in official statistics. This recognition probably was gradual and not equally shared by all economists and policymakers, but it was genuine and caused alarm among the Soviet elite.

The deteriorating performance of the Soviet economy was evident to some officials by the late 1960s, and by the late 1970s it was obvious to most. Soviet academic and government specialists were seeking a better understanding of the underlying economic forces in order to formulate remedial policies. Among their sources were Western Sovietological studies. Consider this statement made by a prominent and experienced Soviet planner, Gennadi Zoteev:

Even before I started to work at GOSPLAN, I realized (thanks primarily to Western literature on the Soviet economy) that the planning system was highly inflexible, sluggish, and inefficient… My thesis, shared by many of my colleagues at GOSPLAN, was that the Soviet system was inefficient but stable…. [62]

Dr. Pekka Sutela suggests that: "One should finally emphasize that learning from other countries influences Soviet reform discussions in many ways that are difficult to pin down. For example, there is the possibility of an echo effect. People have for centuries used foreigners’ opinions as a mirror for looking at their own society. The economist who is in words condemn­ing the Sovietologists’ talk about an economic crisis in the USSR--or the views of the non-Bolshevik Soviet economists of the twenties on agricul­tural institutions--may in fact have wanted to make such interpretations better known in the USSR. Until glasnost, after all, any open advocacy of such views was impossible." [63]

In the post-World War II period, Western Sovietologists successfully disentangled the intricate blend of myths, distortions, and real accomplishments of the Soviet economic system. They have provided a rich and diverse literature used by professional economists, area specialists, government analysts and policymakers and, generally, students of the country Winston Churchill called "a riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma." Many of these studies made their way to selected audiences in the USSR. Needless to say, Western Sovietological studies differed in analytical quality and in the accuracy of their estimates and projections. Some outstanding ones may have been disregarded or misinterpreted by Soviet policymakers. Some, no doubt, were used for political purposes or to further parochial goals. But by and large, I believe their overall impact was mostly positive.

The history of Western studies of the Soviet Union has not been written yet, but Western influence on Soviet economists and higher authorities deserves scrutiny. I believe there is sufficient direct and indirect evidence to suggest that Western economic Sovietologists did have significant influence on the Soviet economic profession and higher authorities. There is no doubt that in the last twenty to thirty years of the Cold War the Soviet economic profession and policymakers gradually became less ideological and intolerant of Western views, more pragmatic and respectful of factual information, and more balanced in their assessment of the performance of the Soviet economy. These changes, in fact, prepared the way for Gorbachev’s reforms. A number of different factors contributed to those changes, and the exposure to Western Sovietology likely was one of them.


Discussant Comments

A panel moderated by Christopher Andrew, Professor of Modern and Contemporary History at Cambridge University, discussed Vladimir Treml’s paper and provided comments on the influence Western analysis had on Soviet policy during the Cold War. The panelists were Sergo Mikoyan, a former aide to Deputy Prime Minister Anastas I. Mikoyan (his father) and a researcher at the World Economic and International Institute in Moscow; Oleg Kalugin, retired KGB Major General and Director of IntelCon International; and Timothy Naftali, Associate Professor of Soviet and Russian History at the University of Virginia.

Sergo Mikoyan, an insider in the Soviet Union during much of the period, began by stating "…one should not overestimate the influence of Western analysis on Soviet policymaking. Still, to reject it altogether would not be correct. In different periods the degree of influence changed." He described the extreme measures that were taken by the Communist Party and Soviet Government to censor and restrict the dissemination of Western materials in the USSR. Among the measures he described were efforts by the KGB

to enforce censorship by keeping samples of the fonts of every typewriter in the country and stationing representatives of the Agency for the Protection of Military and State Secrets at every large publishing house and newspaper in the Soviet Union.

Mikoyan described a process whereby Western materials were routed to selected Party and government officials who were interested in them, particularly Agency publications. He implied, however, that more of these materials were available to academics and other interested analysts than Treml had found. According to Mikoyan:

  • Western materials were reviewed, translated, and selectively routed to a spetskhran-- a special reading room in Soviet libraries where admission was restricted and controlled. In his view, however, some of the libraries did a poor job of enforcing such restrictions, which allowed relatively easy access to these materials.

  • The Publishing House of Foreign Literature (PROGRESS) translated and published limited copies of books and published works--including unclassified CIA reports-- that were often sent to Politburo members and members of the Party Secretariat. Sometimes, according to Mikoyan, copies were sent to the Council of Ministers, local Party members, and to spetskhrans of research institutes.

  • Every member of the Central Committee received daily reviews of foreign press articles called "white TASS" that were marked "For Administrative Use," and Politburo members were allowed to subscribe to two or three foreign periodicals.

  • Party and government officials in the Kremlin, the Council of Ministers, and GOSPLAN (the State Planning Organization) preferred to use CIA’s analyses of grain crops in the USSR rather than reports from local Party bosses.

  • Western studies were a factor in decisions by Alexey Kosygin, Mikhail Gorbachev, and others in the USSR to undertake various reform measures.

Mikoyan also addressed the question of how much influence Western analyses had on the Soviet policymaking process. According to the former Soviet official, Politburo members during the Khrushchev and Brezhnev years were not highly educated. The degree to which they used and paid attention to Western analyses depended on the assistants and consultants who worked for them. In many cases, he noted, the assistants were academicians and directors of institutes, who were well educated and able to contribute to a serious dialog on important issues. The use of Western studies depended as well on how open the Politburo member was to frank advice. Mikoyan cited Yuri Andropov, Andrei Gromyko, and perhaps Dmitri Ustinov as receptive to open and frank briefings by their staffs or by Central Committee advisors. Khrushchev, on the other hand, was unpredictable so his advisors usually were reluctant to provide objective assessments on important issues.

Oleg Kalugin provided a somewhat different view of the impact of western analyses on Soviet leaders. Speaking from the perspective of a former KGB senior officer who had served as the head of political intelligence in Washington in the late 1960s, Kalugin described a process by which information was collected in the field and sent to the Party Central Committee where it was "filtered, scanned and emasculated, if necessary; sent to the Party Secretariat; and then, probably, to Politburo members." With reference to CIA estimates, however, he indicated that they usually were ignored, never sent to senior officials, or simply destroyed. He cited two reasons for this. First, Kalugin said that top officials in the Kremlin possessed a kind of arrogance, stemming from their indoctrination in Marxist concepts that preached that capitalism was doomed. This was considered to be preordained and, according to Kalugin, no one in the higher echelon of power would dare to challenge the notion. Second, the Soviets had a deep-seated suspicion of foreign influence. Consequently, relatively few officials were authorized to read Western materials.

Kalugin offered a third reason why Western studies had little impact in the USSR, namely a lack of desire or willingness on the part of Politburo members to read anything except gossipy type information collected on US officials. According to the former Russian general, the KGB would often try to provide a dose of realism to Soviet leaders about problems in the Soviet economy and society by citing information and statistics collected in the West, or by relaying information related to some important military development in the United States. Usually the information was simply ignored.

There were exceptions, according to Kalugin, such as the 1976 CIA study of the Soviet oil industry. He confirmed that this study did catch the eye of the Soviet leadership. The Academy of Sciences shortly thereafter issued its own report which concluded that "Soviet oil production will go flat in the 1980s and decline by the end of the century"--a message strikingly similar to the one contained in the CIA paper.

Timothy Naftali used the Khrushchev years as a reference point for his comments on the role of Western ideas on the Soviet leadership. His overall conclusion was that:

Soviet intelligence clearly added much good Western analysis to the reser­voir of Western ideas the Kremlin collected through other channels. But, in most cases, at least in the Khrushchev era, this information was ignored or misused. So, despite the hemorrhaging of US secret documents to the East, the US taxpayer can be assured that it was not paying for Soviet analysis.

Naftali stated that during the Khrushchev years the Soviets collected information from the press, scoured the public statements of Western leaders, closely monitored information gotten from meetings with foreigners, and purloined diplomatic messages and foreign intelligence reports. In some ways, according to Naftali, this information proved useful to the Kremlin. As an example, he claims that the decision to build large-scale fertilizer plants in the USSR in 1963 was motivated by Khrushchev’s relationship with Roswell Garst, an Iowa farmer.

Naftali characterized the quality of the Soviet intelligence take, based on his research with Alexander Fursenko of the Russian Academy of Sciences, as "excellent." In his view, however, Soviet leaders hardly ever used the information collected. The problem was the inability of the system to absorb the information in a meaningful way. He cited as an example the fact that Western sources consistently argued that the only way the United States would intervene against Cuba would be if the Soviets put missiles on the island, a message that obviously was overlooked or ignored by the leadership.

Perhaps more important was the total absence of a mechanism to analyze information in the Soviet intelligence and foreign policy communities. According to Naftali, the KGB’s reports from the period were compilations of excerpts of raw intelligence, mostly HUMINT reports, with some weak and often self-contradictory interpretative paragraphs. There were no National Intelligence Estimates or similar products to help the leadership make decisions. Overall, the reporting lacked rigor, was incomplete, and devoid of analytic content.

Finally, Naftali opined that the personality of the General Secretary together with the Soviet penchant for not sharing information often resulted in decisions being made for reasons other than an objective and thorough vetting of facts and logic. Rather, they were often made on the basis of, for example, Khrushchev’s own interpretation of world events based on his personal experiences in life.


Russian Archives Searched

The following archives or parts of archives, all located in Moscow, were selectively searched for documents in conjunction with this study:

1. Tsentr Khraneniya Sovremennoy Dokumentatsii (TsKhSD), formerly the Archive of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union. Collection ("Fond") of the Secretariat of the Central Committee (# 4), and Collection of Departments of the Central Committee (# 5) from mid-1950s to mid-1980s.

2. Gosudarstvennyi Arkhiv Rossiyskoy Federatsii (GARF). Collection of PROGRESS Publishing House documents from mid-1950s through mid-1980s.

3. Collection of spetskhran of Rossiyskaya Gosudarstvennaya Biblioteka formerly the Lenin State Library of Moscow.

4. Collection of spetskhran of the library of the Institut Nauchnoy Informatsii po Obshchestvennym Naukam (INION) Akademii Nauk Rossii.

5. Archive of the Institut Makroekonomicheskikh Issledovaniy Ministerstva Ekonomiki Rossii, formerly the Nauchno- Issledovatel’skiy Ekonomicheskiy Institut Gosplana SSSR (NIEI).

6. Collection of documents of the Nauchno-Issledovatel’skiy Ekonomicheskiy Institut Gosplana SSSR located in Rossiyskiy Gosudarstvennyi Arkhiv Ekonomiki, (formerly Tsentral’nyi Gosudarstvennyi Arkhiv Narodnogo Khozyaystva SSSR), covering 1955-65 period.

7. Collection of the Gosudartvennyi Komitet po Delam Izdatel’stv, (the agency which supervised the work of PROGRESS Publishing House) located in GARF.

8. Collection of annual editions of LETOPIS’ in the KNIZHNAYA PALATA, which contained indexes of all publications, was searched selectively but, as a rule, classified publications were not included in LETOPIS.’

References to archival documents used in this study follow the standard Russian practice (Prasolova et al., 1994): Name of the archive, fond (F) number, opis’ (O) number, delo (D) number, and list (L) number(s).


PROGRESS’s Restricted Mailing List

The list covered only monographs and compendia. PROGRESS’s Bulletin was distributed to a much larger list. (Based on TsKhSD, F11, O1, D7, L116-117, dated 24 March 1958.) The mailing lists were marked Top Secret and approved by M.A. Suslov, E.A. Furtseva, and O.V. Kuusinen.

Part 1. List of people to receive all restricted publications (one copy each).

All members or candidate members of the Presidium of the Central Committee of the CPSU (later Politburo):

A. B. Aristov

E. A. Furtseva

N. I. Beliaev

N. S. Khrushchev

L. I. Brezhnev

N. M. Shvernik

N. A. Bulganin

Ia. E. Kalnberzin

K. E. Voroshilov

A. P. Kirilenko

N. G. Ignatov

D. S. Korotchenko

A. I. Kirichenko

A. N. Kosygin

F. R. Kozlov

K. T. Mazurov

O. V. Kuusinen

V. P. Mzhavanadze

A. I. Mikoyan

M. G. Pervukhin

N. A. Muhitdinov

P. N. Pospelov

M. A. Suslov

Part 2. List of people cleared to receive restricted publications dealing with economic issues:

A.N. Kidin - CC of CPSU Administration, Trade and Finances Division

S.I. Kislin - CC of CPSU Administration, Trade and Finances Division

V.S. Frolov - CC of CPSU Engineering Industry Division

A.P. Rudakov - CC of CPSU Heavy Industry Division

I.D. Serbin - CC of CPSU Defense Industry Division

P.E. Doroshenko - CC of CPSU Agricultural Division

V.P. Mylarshchikov - CC of CPSU Agricultural Division

I.A. Grishmanov - Construction Division

S.A. Aristov - Transportation and Communication Division

S.A. Baskakov - CC of CPSU Industry and Transportation Division for RSSFR

M.V. Romanov - CC of CPSU Division of Consumer Goods and Foodstuffs Production

I.I. Kuz’min - USSR Council of Ministers

P.I. Ivashutin - KGB (Committee of State Security)

V.N. Starovskiiy - Central Statistical Administration

A.N. Nesmeyanov - Presidium of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR

K.V. Ostrovitianinov - Presidium of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR

S.S. Nemchinov - Economics, Philosophy and Legal Sciences Division of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR

A.N. Efimov - Institute of Economics of GOSPLAN (State Planning Committee)

I.D. Laptev - Institute of Economics, Academy of Sciences of the USSR

L.M. Gatovskiiy - editorial staff of "Voprosy Ekonomiki"

N.I. Orlov - Scientific-research Institute of the Ministry of Foreign Trade

A.A. Arzuman ian - IMEMO (Institute of International Economics and International Relations



Alexeev, Michael "Illegal Gasoline Consumption in the USSR" Radio Liberty Research Bulletin 240/81, June 1981.

Arbatov, G. Sovietology or Kremlinology," SSHA: Ekonomika, Politika, Ideologiya, 12 (6 June 1970), pp. 208-209.

Arbatov, G. Zatyanuvsheyesya Vyzdorovleniye (1953-1985 GG): Svidetel’stvo Sovremennika, Moscow: Mezhdunarodnyye Otnosheniya, 1991.

Bakatin, V. "Ob usilenii bor’by s organizovannoy prestupnost’yu," Sotsialisticheskaya Industriya, (23 December 1989), pp. 1-2.

Bogomolov O. "Nauchnuye znaniya i politika: soperniki ili soyuzniki?" Problemy Prognozirovaniya, No. 4, (1997), pp. 144-149 (an interview given by Bogomolov to Dr G.S. Lisichkin).

Campbell, Robert W. "Marx, Kantorovich and Novozhilov: Stoimost’ Versus Reality," Slavic Review, 20, No. 3 (1961), pp. 402-418.

--"Marx, Kantorovich i Novozhilov: stoimost’ protiv real’nosti," Ekonomika I Matematicheskie Metody, 28, issues 5-6 (1992), pp. 974-986.

Central Intelligence Agency. Prospects for Soviet Oil Production, (ER77-10270), Washington, DC, April 1977.

-- Prospects for Soviet Oil Production: A Supplemental Analysis, (ER77-10425), Washington, DC, July 1977.

-- Consumption in the USSR: An International Comparison. A Study Prepared for the Joint Economic Committee of Congress, Washington, DC: US Government Printing Office, (1981).

Choldin, Marianna T. A Fence Around the Empire: Russian Censorship of Western Ideas Under the Tsars’, Durham, NC: Duke University Press, (1985).

Cohen, Stephen, ed. An End of Silence. Uncensored Opinion in the Soviet Union, New York and London: W. W. Norton, (1982).

Cohn, Stanley H. Economic Development in the Soviet Union, Lexington, KY: Heath Lexington Books, (1970).

Davis, Christopher and Murray Feshbach, Rising Infant Mortality in the U.S.S.R in the 1970s. Washington, DC: US Department of Commerce, Bureau of the Census, Series P-95, Issue no. 74, (June 1980).

Falin, Valentin, Konflikty V Kremle, Moscos: Tsentropoligraph, (2000).

Fetosova, T. I., ed. Prem’er Izvestnyi I Neizvestnyi: Vospominaniya O A.N. Kosygine, Moscow: Respublika, (1997).

Galbraith, John K. Contemporary Guide To Economics, Peace, And Laughter, Houghton Mifflin, New York, (1971).

Gates, Robert M. From the Shadows: The Ultimate Insider’s Story of Five Presidents and How They Won the Cold War, New York, NY: Simon & Schuster, (1996).

Goldman, Marshall, The Enigma of Soviet Petroleum: Half-Full or Half-Empty?, New York, NY: Allen and Unwin, (1980).

Gorbachev, Mikhail, Zhizn’ I Reformy, Volumes 1 and 2, Moscow: Novosti, (1995).

Gromova, T.V., ed., Tsenzura V Tsarskoy Rossii I V Sovetsom Soyuze. Materialy Konferentsii 24-27 Maya 1993 G., Moscow, (1995).

Illesh, A. "Skol’ko u nas narkomanov," Izvestiya, (29 August 1990), p. 6.

Ivanov, V. "Tenevoy kapital v rynochnoy ekonomike," Ekonomika I Zhizn’, No. 36, (September 1990), pp. 20-21.

Jasny, Naum, "Soviet Statistics," The Review of Economics and Statistics, 32, No. 1, (1950) pp. 92-99.

Joint Economic Committee, Soviet Economic Growth: A Comparison With The United States, Washington, DC: US Congress, US Government Printing Office, (1957).

Kaser, Michael, Soviet Economics, London: McGraw-Hill, (1970).

Kiselev, A. F. and E.M. Shchagina, eds., Khrestomatiya Po Otechestvennoy Istorii (1946-1995), Moscow: Vlados, (1996).

Krasavina, L., ed., Denezhnoe Obrashchenie I Kredit Kapitalisticheskikh Stran, Finansy, Moscow, (1977).

Krimerman, P. M., in N. S. Khrushchev, 1894-1971, Moscow: Gorbachev Fond, (1994).

Kryuchkov, V. "Znayem li my vsyu pravdu o tenevoy ekonomike?" Pravda, (18 August 1990), pp. 1-2.

-- Lichnoye Delo, Vol. 1, Moscow, Olimp, (1996).

Kudryavtsev, I.I. and V.P. Kozlova, eds., Arkhivy Kremlya I Staroy Ploshchadi. Dokumenty Po Delu KPSS, Novosibirsk: Sibirskii Khronograf, (1995).

Kuleshov, S. V. et al. Nashe Otechestvo. Opyt Politicheskoy Istorii, Vol. 2, Moscow: Terra, (1991).

Lavigne, Marie, "Diversite des points de vue sovietiques sur le systeme monetaire international," Banque, Paris, No. 371, (1978) p. 317-320.

Marrese, Michael and Jan Vanous, Soviet Subsidization of Trade with Eastern Europe, Berkeley, CA: Institute of International Studies, (1983).

Matyukhin, G. Problemy Kreditnykh Deneg Pri Kapitalizme, Moscow: Nauka, (1977).

Moynihan, Daniel Patrick, Secrecy: The American Experience, New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, (1998).

Neuhauser, Kimberly C. "The Market for Illegal Drugs in the Soviet Union in the Late 1980s." Berkeley-Duke Occasional Papers on the Second Economy in the USSR, No. 23, The WEAFA Group, (November 1990).

Nove, Alec, Glasnost’ In Action: Cultural Renaissance, Boston, MA: Unwin Hyman, (1989).

Odom, William E. The Collapse of the Soviet Military, New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, (1988).

Ol’sevich, Yu. "Nuzhno li zanovo issledovat’ ekonomicheskuyu istoriuy SSSR?" Voprosy Ekonomiki, 11 (2000), pp. 79-90.

-- S.A. Khavina, K. Myuller, et al. Burzhuaznye I Melkoburzhauznye Kritiki Sotsailizma (Posle Vtoroy Mirovoy Voyny): Kriticheskiye Ocherki, Moscow: Nauka, (1978).

Pells, Richard, Not Like Us, New York, NY: Basic Books, (1997).

Prasolova, S. V, A.K. Sokolov, E.A. Tyurina, William Chase, and Jeffrey Burds, eds., Putevoditel’-Kratkyi Spravochnik Fondov, Moscow: Blagovest, (1994).

Radio Liberty, Report on the USSR, Vol. 2, No. 33, (17 August 1990), p. 40.

Radio Liberty Monitoring Service, 5 May 1983, Soviet News Agency Novosti (English language).

Richman, Barry M. Management Development And Education in the Soviet Union, Ann Arbor, MI: University of Michigan Press, (1967).

Riva, Joseph P., Jr. "The Petroleum Resources of Russia and the Commonwealth of Independent States," in The Former Soviet Union in Transition, Vol. 2, by Joint Economic Committee, 461-476. Washington, DC: US Government Printing Office, (1993).

Rowen, Henry, "Soviet Food Self-Sufficiency," in Allocation of Resources in the Soviet Union and China - 1982, by Joint Economic Committee, 262-264. Washington, DC: US Government Printing Office, (1982), pp. 262-264.

Rutgaizer, Valeriy, "The Shadow Economy in the USSR," Berkeley-Duke Occasional Papers on the Second Economy in the USSR, Paper No. 34, The WEAFA Group, (February 1992).

Schwartz, Morton, Soviet Perceptions of the United States, Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, (1978).

Selyunin, V. "Istoki i pripiski," Sotsialisticheskaya Industriia, (18 October 1981), p. 2.

Shatalin, S. et al. Perekhod K Rynku; Kontseptsiya I Programma, Part 1, Moscow, (1990).

Shestakov, V. "Nachalo kontsa ery Khrushcheva," Komsomol’skaya Pravda, (3 June 1997), p. 2.

Sutela, Pekka, Economic Thought and Economic Reforms in the Soviet Union, New York, NY: Cambridge University Press, (1991).

Treml, Vladimir G. Censorship, Access, and Influence: Western Sovietology in the Soviet Union, Berkeley, CA: International and Area Studies, (1999).

Treml, Vladimir, Dimitri M. Gallik, Barry L. Kostinsky, and Kurt W. Kruger, The Structure of the Soviet Economy: Analysis And Reconstruction of the 1966 Input-Output Table. New York, NY: Praeger, (1972).

Treml, Vladimir and Barry Kostinsky, The Domestic Value of Soviet Foreign Trade, Foreign Economic Reports, Washington, DC: Bureau of the Census, (1982), 96 pp.

Zhuravleva, N. N. Antisov’etizm Burzhuaznoy Demografii, Moscow, (1987).

Zoteev, Gennadii,"The View from GOSPLAN: Growth to the Year 2000," pp. 85-93, in The Destruction of the Soviet Economic System: An Insider’s History, Michael Ellman and Vladimir Kontorovich eds., pp. 85-930. Armonk, NY: M. Sharpe, (1998).




Vladimir G. Treml, Professor Emeritus at Duke University, a Russian-born economist, co-directed the Duke University-University of North Carolina Center for Slavic, Eurasian and East European studies.



[1] I found and carefully examined about 25 classified statistical compendia published in the 1970s and 1980s, as well as a few published in the 1990s. By and large, I was disappointed in the coverage--the industrial abstracts offered more details than those openly published, but the sectors and products which were considered secret remained hidden. There was no mention of nonferrous metallurgy, the data for machine-building included several products normally deleted in open sources such as output of railroad rolling stock, but nothing at all from the defense industries including civilian shipbuilding, radio-electronics, and civilian aircraft.

[2] William E. Odom, The Collapse of the Soviet Military (New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1988), p. 150.

[3] Daniel Patrick Moynihan, Secrecy: The American Experience (New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1998), pp. 154-201.

[4] Morton Schwartz, Soviet Perceptions Of The United States (Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, 1978), p. 77.

[5] G. Arbatov, "Sovietology or Kremlinology," SSHA: Ekonomika, Politika, Ideologiya, 12, (6 June 1970), pp. 208-209, in a review of William Zimmerman’s Soviet Perspectives on International Relations (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1969), p. 209.

[6] Marianna T. Choldin, A Fence Around the Empire: Russian Censorship of Western Ideas Under the Tsars (Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 1985), pp. 201-202.

[7] Mikhail Gorbachev, Zhizn’ I Reformy, Volumes 1 and 2, (Moscow: Novosti, 1995), pp. 323-324.

[8] Michael Kaser, Soviet Economics (London: McGraw-Hill, 1970).

[9] Stanley H. Cohn, Economic Development in the Soviet Union (Lexington, KY: Heath Lexington Books, 1970).

[10] I.I. Kudryavtsev and V.P. Kozlova, eds, Arkhivy Kremlya I Staroy Ploshchadi. Dokumenty Po Delu KPSS (Novosibirsk: Sibirskii khronograf, 1995), p. 59.

[11] In the period between 1960 and 1987, less than 1 percent of all full-length articles published in Voprosy Ekonomiki addressed Sovietological studies. Two authors, both senior members of the Institute, S.A. Khavina and Yu.Ya. Ol’sevich, contributed more than one-third of all these survey articles. In 1978, the same two authors published under the auspices of the Institute a compendium of papers focused on Western critics of Soviet-type socialism similar in tone and contents to the journal articles (Yu Ol’sevich, S.A. Khavina, and K. Jyuller, Burzhuaznye I Melkoburzhauznye Kritiki Sotsailizma [Posle Vtoroy Mirovoy Yoyny]: Kriticheskiye Ocherki (Moscow: Nauka, 1978).

[12] In the late 1980s, the Lenin Library spetskhran had 300,000 foreign books, 550,000 issues of journals, and 10,000 annual newspaper volumes located on 19 levels of stacks. T.V. Gromova, ed., Tsenzura V Tsarskoy Rossii I V Sovetsom Soyuze. Materialy Konferentsii 24-27 Maya 1993 G (Moscow, 1995), p. 21.

[13] Ibid., p. 151. Some idea of the number of specialists with clearances to read foreign literature can be obtained from the data on the use of spetskhran of the Lenin Library, the largest spetskhran in the country. The number of cleared visitors--2,000 in 1960-- rose to 3,700 in 1974 and to 3,940 in 1985; on average a cleared reader visited the library about eight times per year. These numbers cover all sources in the spetskhran, including foreign language and Russian books, newspapers, and journals from all countries and on all subjects (ibid., p. 21). Of course the number of specialists having access to Western economic Sovietological sources would be only a small fraction of the total.

[14] John K. Galbraith, Contemporary Guide to Economics, Peace, and Laughter (New York, NY: Houghton Miflin, 1971).

[15] Robert M. Gates, From the Shadows: The Ultimate Insider’s Story of Five Presidents and How They Won the Cold War (New York, NY: Simon & Schuster, 1996), p. 563.

[16] Stephen Cohen, ed., An End of Silence: Uncensored Opinion in the Soviet Union (New York, NY: W.W. Norton, 1982), p. 227.

[17] T.V. Gromova, Tsenzura V. Tsarskoy Rossii I. V. Soretsom Soyuze, p. 153. A Moscow historian and an archival specialist who assisted me in this study summarized the issue with reference to PROGRESS publishers as follows: "Central Committee staff members preferred to instruct the editors and to resolve administrative issues not in writing, but by telephone. This is seen from numerous reports addressed to the Central Committee and found in the archives which started by saying, "‘in accordance with oral instruction of comrade…’" (Personal communication). One archival document illustrating this practice is worth discussing here. V. Pavlov, the chief editor of PROGRESS, recorded that on 2 January 1969, V. M. Vodolagin, an instructor of the Department of Propaganda of the Central Committee, called him and referred to instructions given him by telephone by the deputy head of the Department, A.N. Yakovlev. According to these instructions, PROGRESS was allowed to publish the book by Galbraith [title not given, VGT] earmarking it "For scientific libraries" and "Accepted for information and execution," (GARF, F9590, O1, D804, L 1).

[18] G. Arbatov, Zatyanuvsheyesya Vyzdorovleniye (1953-1985 GG): Svidetel’stvo Sovremnnika (Moscow: Mezhdunarodnyye Otnosheniya, 1991), p. 17.

[19] See Vladimir G. Treml, Censorship, Access, and Influence: Western Sovietology in the Soviet Union (Berkeley, CA: International and Area Studies, 1999), pp. 49-61.

[20] Barry M. Richman, Management Development and Education in the Soviet Union (Ann Arbor, MI: University of Michigan Press, 1967).

[21] O. Bogomolov, "Nauchnuye znaniya i politika: soperniki ili soyuzniki?" Problemy Prognozirovaniya, # 4 (1997), pp. 144-149 (an interview given by Bogomolov to Dr. G.S. Lisichkin).

[22] Ibid., p. 144. According to the director of the Institute, the events of the late 1960s led to the tightening of ideological controls in the Soviet Union, while the Prague Spring swelled liberal thinking among intellectuals in Central and Eastern Europe. The staff of the Institute "greedily gulped" translations of Czech newspaper and journal articles.

[23] Michael Marrese and Jan Vanous, Soviet Subsidization of Trade with Eastern Europe (Berkeley, CA: Institute of International Studies, 1983).

[24] S.V. Kuleshov et al., Nashe Otechestvo. Opyt Politicheskoy Istorii, Vol. 2 (Moscow: Terra, 1991), p. 482.

[25] Marie Lavigne, "Diversite des points de vue sovietiques sure le systeme monetaire inter-national," Banque, No. 271 (1978), p. 317-320.

[26] L. Krasavina, ed., Denezhnoe Obrashchenie, Finansy I Kredit Kapitalisticheskikh Stran (Moscow: P.P., 1997).

[27] G. Matyukhin, Problemy Kreditnykh Deneg Pri Kapitalizme (Moscow: Nauka, 1977).

[28] Personal communication to the author from Professor Lavigne.

[29] N. N. Zhuravleva, Antisov’etizm Burzhuaznoy Demografii (Moscow, 1987).

[30] V. Kryuchkov, Lichnoye Delo, Vol. 1 (Moscow: Olimp, 1996), p. 323.

[31] Michael Alexeev, "Illegal Gasoline Consumption in the USSR," Radio Liberty Research Bulletin 240/81 (June 1981).

[32] V. Selyunin, "Istoki i pripiski," Sotsialisticheskaya Industriia (18 October 1981), p. 2.

[33] Henry Rowen, "Soviet Food Self-Sufficiency," in Joint Economic Committee, US Congress, Allocation of Resources in the Soviet Union and China - 1982 (Washington, DC: US Government Printing Office, 1982), pp. 262-264.

[34] Radio Liberty Monitoring Service, 5 May 1983, Soviet News Agency NOVOSTI (English Language).

[35] S. Shatalin et al., Perekhod K Rynku; Kontseptsiya I Programma, Part 1 (Moscow, 1990), p. 126; A. Illesh, "Skol’ko u nas narkomanov," Izvestiya (29 August 1990), p. 6; and V. Ivanov, "Tenevoy kapital v rynochnoy ekonomike," Ekonomika I Zhizn’ # 36 (September 1990), p. 20.

[36] Kimberly C. Neuhauser,. "The Market for Illegal Drugs in the Soviet Union in the Late 1980s," Berkeley-Duke Occasional Papers on the Second Economy in the USSR, #23, The WEAFA Group (November 1990), p. 106.

[37] V. Kryuchkov, "Znayem li my vsyu pravdu o tenevoy ekonomike?" Pravda, (18 August 1990), pp. 1-2.

[38] Neuhauser’s study referred to the late 1980s; applying the average growth rates given in the study to her mid-point of 11.2 billion rubles, the overall narcotics market would have grown to 14-15 billion rubles by 1989 or 1990.

[39] Valentin Falin, Konflikty V Kremle (Moscow: Tsentropoligraph, 2000), p. 314.

[40] Central Intelligence Agency, Consumption in the USSR: An International Comparison. A Study Prepared for the Joint Economic Committee of Congress (Washington, DC: US Government Printing Office, 1981) pp. 6-7.

[41] Naum Jasny, "Soviet Statistics," The Review of Economics and Statistics, Vol. 32, No. 1, (February 1950).

[42] A. F. Kiselev and E.M. Shchagina, eds., Khrestomatiya Po Otechestvennoy Istorii, 1946-1995 (Moscow: Vlados, 1996), pp. 25, 26 and 138.

[43] Robert W. Campbell, "Marx, Kantorovich and Novozhilov: Stoimost’ Versus Reality," Slavic Review, Vol. 20, No. 3 (1961), pp. 402-418.

[44] Robert W. Campbell, "Marx, Kantorovich i Novozhilov: stoimost’ protiv real’nosti," Ekonomika I Matematicheskie Metody, Vol. 28, issues 5-6 (1992), pp. 974-986.

[45] CIA, Prospects for Soviet Oil Production (ER77-10270), (Washington, DC, April, 1977) and CIA, Prospects for Soviet Oil Production: A Supplemental Analysis (ER77-10425), (Washington, DC: July, 1977).

[46] I found two documents related to the CIA oil study in the Central Committee archive, but they remain classified. The first was a translation of the study accompanied by a separate document written by the Deputy Head of the General Staff, Kozlov, under the title "The Information by the General Staff on the CIA study on prospects of oil extraction in the USSR," dated 21 December 1977. The documents (of which only three copies were made) carry a note by the then-Secretary of the Central Committee responsible for defense, V.I. Dolgikh, directing I.P. Yastrebov and V.T. Arkhipov to read the documents; their signatures recorded on the document indicate that they have done so on 30 December 1977 (TsKhSD, F5, O73, D1881, L1-2 and 3-37).

[47] Marshall Goldman, The Enigma of Soviet Petroleum: Half-Full or Half-Empty? (New York and Boston: Allen and Unwin, 1980), pp. 5-10 and 173-186.

[48] Joseph P. Riva, Jr.," The Petroleum Resources of Russia and the Commonwealth of Independent States," in Joint Economic Committee, US Congress, The Former Soviet Union In Transition, Vol. 2 (Washington, DC: US Government Printing Office, 1993), p. 465

[49] Discussions of Western studies of the second economy appeared occasionally in the open Soviet literature. For example, a lengthy critical review was published in Voprosy Ekonomiki in 1986 (Khavina and Superfin, 1986), pp. 104-112. At the December 1989 session of the Congress of Peoples’ Deputies, the MVD Chairman, Bakatin, complained about the absence of reliable Soviet research and statistical data on the second economy and referred in general terms to the importance of Western studies on the subject (V. Bakatin, "Ob usilenii bor’by s organizovannoy prestupnost’yu," Sotsialisticheskaya Industriya, [23 December, 1989] p. 2).

[50] Valeriy Rutgaizer, "The Shadow Economy in the USSR," Berkeley-Duke Occasional Papers on the Second Economy in the USSR, Paper # 34, The WEAFA Group, (February 1992).

[51] Christopher Davis and Murray Feshbach, Rising Infant Mortality in the U.S.S.R in the 1970s (Washington, DC: US Department of Commerce, Bureau of the Census, Series P-95, No. 74, June 1980).

[52] Vladimir G. Treml and Barry Kostinsky, The Domestic Value of Soviet Foreign Trade, Foreign Economic Reports (Washington, DC: Bureau of the Census, Department of Commerce, 1982).

[53] Vladimir G. Treml, Dimitri M. Gallik, Barry L. Kostinsky, and Kurt W. Kruger, The Structure of the Soviet Economy: Analysis And Reconstruction Of The 1966 Input-Output Table (New York, NY: Praeger, 1972).

[54] April 1997 interview with an INION employee.

[55] Letter to the author dated 14 May 1996.

[56] Richard Pells, Not Like Us (New York: Basic Books, 1997), pp. 69-76.

[57] P. M. Krimerman, N. S. Khrushchev, 1894-1971 (Moscow: Gorbachev Fond, 1994), p. 194, and V. Shestakov, "Nachalo kontsa ery Khrushcheva," Komsomol’skaya Pravda (3 June 1997), p. 2.

[58] T. I. Fetosova, ed., Prem’er Izvestnyi I Neizvestnyi: Vospominaniya O A.N. Kosygine (Moscow: Respublika, 1997), p. 201.

[59] Mikhail Gorbachev, Zhizn’ I Reformy, Vol. 1 (Moscow: Novosti, 1995), pp. 144-145.

[60] Oleg Bogomolov, "Nauchnuye znaniya i politika: soperniki ili soyuzniki?" Problemy Prognozirovaniya, No. 4 (1997), p. 145 (an interview given by Bogomolov to Dr. G. S. Lisichkin).

[61] Yu Ol’sevich, ‘Nuzhno li zanovo issledovat’ ekonomicheskuyu istoriuy SSSR?" Voprosy Ekonomiki, 11 (2000), p. 82.

[62] Gennadii Zoteev,"The View from GOSPLAN: Growth to the Year 2000," pp. 85-93, in Michael Ellman and Vladimir Kontorovich, eds., The Destruction of the Soviet Economic System: An Insider’s History (Armonk, NY: M. Sharpe, 1998), p. 87.

[63] Pekka Sutela, Economic Thought and Economic Reforms in the Soviet Union (New York, NY: Cambridge University Press, 1991), p. 128.

Historical Document
Posted: Mar 16, 2007 09:03 AM
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