Tony Cliff


(Summer 1964)

From International Socialism (1st series), No.17, Summer 1964, pp.31-32.
Thanks to Ted Crawford & the late Will Fancy.
Transcribed & marked up by Einde O’Callaghan for the Marxists’ Internet Archive.

Peking and Moscow
Klaus Mehnert
Weidenfeld & Nicolson, 50s.

Mao against Khrushchev
David Floyd
Praeger, 21s.

Mehnert’s book is very good, readable, and full of reliable information. It is based on wide reading of the literature on the subject and extensive travel in Russia, China and the neighbouring Asian countries. A few words of criticism may be called for in that Mehnert does not pay sufficient attention to the economic factors that brought about the Moscow-Peking rift.

The second book is very poor indeed. It is made up of two parts. The first aims to be a popular history of the Sino-Soviet conflict. It is too shallow to be or real use. The second is a collection of documents on the subject. This is quite useful, but it is marred by the fact there is too little on the pre-1956 period, and by the inclusion of material – such as the ‘confidential memorandum’ by the Chinese CP (December 1962) – which is probably not authentic at all (pp.338-39).

Last updated on 10 April 2010