Friday 22 February 2019

re: the sources of soviet conduct

Though never intended for public consumption but eventually published in Foreign Affairs magazine under the pseudonym Mister X eighteen months later, Deputy Chief of the Mission of the United States of American to the USSR George F Kennan dispatched his “Long Telegram” back to the State Department in response to questions by the Department of the Treasury as to why Moscow was not supportive of the newly minted institutions of the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund on this day in 1946.
Unable to articulate his answer succinctly—which is often a bit suspect of the author’s grasp of the matter at hand—as Kennan owes in the preamble to the five part thesis that overburdened the telegraphic channels. Kennan’s characterisation that Soviet power was “impervious to the logic of reason: but responded well to “the logic of force” and rooted in nationalism and neurosis—espousing a stance and ideology that would inform and define the policy of containment and excluded the idea of peaceful coexistence.