The Soviet Union andnRevolutionary Warfarenby Richard H. Shultz ]r.nStanford, CA: Hoover InstitutionnPress; 283 pp., $25.95nSpetsnaz: The Inside Story of thenSoviet Special Forcesnby Viktor SuvorovnNew York: W.W. Norton & Co.;n213 pp., $17.95nFor 40 years two topics have dominnated popular discussions of internationalnconflict. The first is the specternof nuclear war and the danger that anynUS-Soviet confrontation will escalate tonArmageddon. The second is that revolutionsnin the Third World are anninevitable part of modernization and arennecessary to escape oppression. Therenhas been a steady flow of serious (asnwell as polemical) work on these twontopics, but the practical political effectnof both has been to create an environmentnof self-deterrence on the part ofnAmerican leaders. Fighting against anleftist revolution is considered fiitile,nwhereas involvement in a counterrevolutionnor conventional war against anCommunist government risks a costlynescalation.nSoviet strategists have come to differentnconclusions. They seldom fear thatnacting against a pro-Westem governmentnwill lead to escalation. Indeed,nsince American leaders have rejectednthe idea of linkage, Moscow hardlyneven needs to worry about an increasenin interest rates from American banks,nlet alone a nuclear crisis, in response tonits military interventions (even RonaldnWilliam R. Hawkins is director of thenFoundation for American Ideals.nSoviet Strategynby William R. Hawkinsn”He CTUciBed noble, he sacrificed mean,nHe filled old ladies with kerosene.nWhile over the waters the papers criedn’The patriot fights for his countryside!'”n— Rudyard Kipling, “The Ballad of Boh da thone”nReagan in his “evil empire” days rescindednthe grain embargo imposed onnthe Soviets for invading Afghanistan).nAnd despite all the attention and moneynspent on nuclear weapons, no suchnweapons have been used since 1945.nYet large areas of the globe havenchanged hands, and millions have diednin what has been a very violent periodnof warfare. As nuclear weapons arendeemphasized in new arms control treatiesnand by the deployment of missilendefense systems, the scope for conventionalnwarfare will expand.nAs to the myth of the guerrilla, thenSoviets well know the inherent weaknessnof revolutionary groups. They nevernput much stock in the romanticnnotions of Che and Mao. Throughoutnhistory, far more revolts have failed thannsucceeded. Those that have won owentheir success more to the disintegrationnnnof the deposed regime than to their ownnefforts. Governments can mobilize farnmore power than rebels as long as theirnleaders can maintain the will to resist.nRebels can only inflict damage, notnseize power, until the main forces of thenregime are defeated. Rebels can seldomndo this without foreign military supportn(Americans forget the money, weapons,ntroops, and ships provided to the colonistsnby France in the War of Independence—naid that escalated into an outrightnGreat Power war). Usually thenonly force that can beat a government isnanother government. This weakness isnan advantage to Moscow, because in anrevolutionary situation, military aid becomesndecisive, thus ensuring that pro-nSoviet factions will emerge victorious.nSince the final phase of a revolutionarynwar is conventional, regardless ofnhow many years of terrorist and guerrillanactions may have preceded it, there is angreat advantage to the establishment ofnforeign bases to provide a sanctuary fornrebels as they are trained and equippednfor the final push, and to provide regularntroops to intervene in support of thenrebels at the decisive moment. Cubanprovided the troops that reinforced thenpro-Soviet factions in Angola, Mozambique,nand Ethiopia. North Vietnamncarried the brunt of the war effort innIndochina after the decimation of thenVietcong in 1968. South Vietnam fellnto 17 regular combat divisions withnmore tanks than the Germans hadnwhen they defeated France in 1940. Inn1979 Cuba sent an “intemational brigade”nto support the Sandinistas notnonly against the Somoza regime, butnalso against rival revolutionary factions.nFrom these satraps, new wars have beennlaunched in southern Africa, southeastnAsia, and Central America. The PLOngained a base area with the disintegra-nJULY 1989/23n