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Comparative study of the political and economic consolidation policies pursued by the Soviet Union in Kazakhstan (1917-33) and Communist China in Sinkiang (1949-57) Okoko, Cornelius Amaebi Biye


This study is an attempt to compare similar periods of development during the respective phases of consolidation of power by the Bolsheviks in Kazakhstan and by the Chinese Communists in Sinkiang. It is not intended to be an exhaustive study, given the momentous developments that transpired during the period under study - 1917-33 in Kazakhstan and 1949-57 in Sinkiang. This study will therefore be limited to those important political and economic developments which appear to this writer to demonstrate more convincingly the similarities and differences these two periods of development - the political consolidation phase and the economic consolidation phase - portrayed. What do the Soviet and Chinese economies of the period under study have in common? What do the two regimes have in common in terms of their political policies? Why compare them at all? Perhaps the easiest answer to these questions is that both economies, were lodged in similar doctrinal -political matrices. They were both integral aspects of Communist societies and one-party systems that officially designated themselves, at least at the time, as Marxist-Leninist by ideological commitment, Communist by party label, and Socialist by politico-economic order. But it is equally true, that a common ideological base alone does not of itself ensure that it will be applied precisely the same way regardless of time, place and circumstance. Thus when a Communist party takes power and consolidates its roots in the national soil, its perception of its needs and the nature of its commitments cannot avoid being coloured by the national interests which it has inherited and the pressures of the milieu in which it is compelled to function. In this study, it has also been demonstrated that, with Civil War behind them and once power was won, the political and economic policies pursued by both regimes also differed markedly in many respects.

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