We are  including herewith some reviews of Dr. Valenta's books:



Jiri Valenta,  Soviet Intervention in Czechoslovakia; Anatomy of a Decision


 Baltimore, Johns Hopkins University Press, 1991 (last edition), with a forward by Alexander

Dubcek.


"An excellent anatomy of Kremlin politics is Jiri Valenta's Soviet Intervention in Czechoslovakia, 1968, Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, 1979."  The late  William Hyland, former Deputy NSA to Henry Kissinger  and thereafter editor-in-chief of Foreign Affairs. Hyland's book, Soviet-American Relations A New Cold War, Section I, published by the Rand Corporation, May, 1981, page 29.. 



Yuri Fedorov is  an International Relations Center Executive Board Member and Security  Index Editorial Board Member.  He discussed Jiri Valenta's bureaucratic politics paradigm and  its application to his study of Russia's 2008 intervention in Georgia, "The Sleep of Reason:The war on Georgia & Russia’s foreign policy – December 2008." 



American scholar of Czech origin, Jiri Valenta, the author of the brilliant analysis of the Soviet decision to intervene into Czechoslovakia in 1968, outlined the mechanism of foreign policy shaping in the former USSR as the “bureaucratic-politics paradigm”. “The general argument of the bureaucratic-politics paradigm can be summarized as follows: Soviet foreign policy actions, like those of other states, do not result from a single actor (the government) rationally maximizing national security or any other value. Instead, these actions result from a process of political interaction (“pulling and hauling”) among several actors”40. The same paradigm describes foreign policy shaping in Russia today. There are a substantial number of pressure groups, clans and cliques within the top echelons of governmental bureaucracy, armed forces, security and intelligence services merged with various business groups. They compete for control over alluring segments of national economy, flows of financial assets, and influence on making governmental decisions including those about foreign policy. As a result of this, zigzags of Russia’s policy reflect, directly and indirectly, balances of influences between different domestic actors and their coalitions existing at each instant of time.

Research Paper 5/2008 The Sleep of Reason: The war on Georgia & Russia’s foreign policy – December 2008 The Sleep of Reason: The war on Georgia & Russia’s foreign policy – Yury E. Fedorov.  ​ https://www.amo.cz/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/amocz-RP-2008-5.pdf



Soviet Intervention in Czechoslovakia, 1968:Anatomy of a Decision
Foreward by Alexander Dubcek
Jiri Valenta, Baltimore:  Johns Hopkins University Press.  Revised edition, 1991.
Reviewed by Robert Levgold Fall 1992

Hardcover, Johns Hopkins Univ Pr, ISBN 0801842972 (0-8018-4297-2).
Softcover, Johns Hopkins University Press, ISBN 0801825407 (0-8018-2540-7)     





​Making use of archival material available in Poland, Hungary and Czechoslovakia as well as interviews with Alexander

Dubcek  and other principals,  Valenta has added two chapters to his well-received original study of the Soviet decision 

to crush the Czech  reform of 1968. He finds in these materials the most important of which are summaries of the Dresden, Moscow, Cierna and Yalta meetings, vindication of his initial assessment: that the  Soviet  leadership hesitated to unleash military intervention until the last possible minute, that Janos Kadar, alone among Warsaw Pact leaders, refused to see

the Prague Spring as a “counterrevolution” deserving of suppression, and that an unseemly group of hardliners in Berlin, Prague and Moscow finally drove the decision. Still, as Valenta acknowledges, many key questions will remain unanswered until the Soviet archives reveal what they contain.

Soviet Intervention in Czechoslovakia, 1968, has had translated into Czech, Russian and modified Chinese editions as

shown below.

Valenta makes a very good case for the use of the bureaucratic-politics paradigm in analyzing Soviet foreign policy

decision-making... The author recognizes the limitations of such an approach and the difficulties facing it. ... Valenta's

book undoubtedly contributes significantly to a better understanding of Soviet decision-making and the Czechoslovak

crisis.-- Fawwaz Yassin.

​​


Su Lian Dui Wai Jun Shi Jue Ce [Military Decision-Making of the Soviet Union]

1986 Chief Editor, Jiri Valenta et al.  

Published by the People's Liberation Army, Defense University Press,  People's Republic of

 China, the  book was inscribed by  Zhang Liexiag with these words: "The book has aroused

the interest of many  Chinese scholars.  I hope to see more cooperation  between Chinese

andAmerican scholars in the  field of Soviet Studies. June 13, 1989."







Conflict in Nicaragua Edited byJiri Valenta and Esperanza Duran, Boston:  Allen & Unwin, 1987.
Reviewed by George Russell in Commentary
Hardcover, Allen & Unwin, ISBN 0044970331 (0-04-497033-1)


The distinguished Sovietologist Jiri Valenta, coeditor of the volume, with his (late) wife

Virginia describes the  Leninist evolution of the Sandinistas in forthright terms. The Valentas

also provide a much-needed morphology of the Sandinista National Directorate, which has

mutated from a nine-member conclave of cornandantes into a multi-departmental bureaucracy

reminiscent of Soviet and  Cuban politburo models.










Grenada and Soviet/Cuban Policy: Internal Crisis and U.S./OECS Intervention
Edited by Jiri Valenta and Herbert J. Ellison, Boulder:  Westview Press, 1986.
Reviewed by Robert D. Crassweller, Summer 1986
Hardcover, Perseus Books, ISBN 0813302358 (0-8133-0235-8) 
Softcover, Westview Press, ISBN 0813302366 (0-8133-0236-6) 



An exhaustive examination of every facet of the recent Grenada crisis, based on analysis of the

famous  captured documents, which  are reproduced here in an appendix of 228 pages. The

volume consists of 12  essays and related discussions evolved from papers  given at a conference

in August 1984, with representation  from academia, the media and research institutions. There

is  also a  chapter of findings and recommendations  reflecting not a consensus but an exchange

of ideas.


​ Henry Kissinger wrote, "The captured Grenada documents are invaluable in those interested in studying the goals and attitudes of a Leninist leadership.   This compendium of analyses and documents offers a unique perpective on Grenada's former relationships with the Soviet Union and its allies.  Thee book was also reviewed by Zbigniew Brzezinski  for

"unique insights into covert Soviet-Cuban operations, as well as an important guide to an effective U.S. response."  

Commenting on the book's "unique perspective," Henry Kissinger remarked on its "compendium of analyses and captured

documents" as "invaluable to those interested in studying the goals and attitudes of the Leninist leadership."

Winston Lord, former president of the Council on Foreign Relations, praised Jiri's work as a visiting Fellow from 1981-82,

saying that he "demonstrated organizational talent in setting up the institutional groundwork for a bipartisan approach

toward controversial topics."  He also stated that Jiri's book "tells  much more about Soviet/Cuban strategy and tactics in

the Third World than was known before."  It also "provides a useful corollary to recommendations  put forward by the

[Kissinger] Bipartisan Commission [on Central America]."  

                                                                                       

Soviet Decision Making for National Security
Edited by Jiri Valenta and William C. Potter, 
Reviewed by John C. Campbell Winter 1980

Hardcover, G. Allen & Unwin, ISBN 0043510639 (0-04-351063-9) 

A serious effort to probe the making of Soviet policy from Stalin’s time to the early 1980’s. The

fact  that  the various  contributors tackle  the problem in different ways adds to the value of

the book,  for there is  obviously no one key  approach  that will yield a uniform truth.  Among

the chapters  are first-rate case  studies on the Soviet moves in  Czechoslovakia and

  Afghanistan  (by Jiri Valenta), the Middle East war  of 1973 (by Galia Golan), and the Soviet

  handling of SALT (by Raymond  Garthof). Not everything is new-- these authors have written

elsewhere on these  topics -- but the volume as a whole constitutes  real progress in difficult

terrain and a basis for further  research.

 



Gorbachev’s New Thinking & Third World Conflict
Edited by Jiri Valenta and Frank Cibulka, Brunswick: Transaction Publication Press, 1990. 
Reviewed by John C. Campbell Fall 1990
Hardcover, Transaction Pub, ISBN 0887382126 (0-88738-212-6

An ambitious attempt to see what place, in theory and practice, the Third World has in Soviet

foreign  policy since the  dispensations of 1985. An all-star cast of authors agree more or

less on what  Gorbachev and his cohorts have said  and done -- indeed, some of it  is told

several times over -- but  they have differing views on motives and strategy.  Some stress

sharp and genuine change in Soviet  ideology and policy; others counsel caution The book

has at least three notable merits: it contains  a fine overall analysis by Vernon Asparutian; it

covers in detail the important but uncertain roles of  Moscow’s junior partners, Cuba and

Vietnam; and it includes among  its contributors a number of scholars from Third World countries including India, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Thailand and Nicaragua. 


"A thoughtful and provocative analysis of Gorbachev's New Thinking in the Third World.  The book is a challenge to Soviet scholars who study regional conflicts."  Dr. Andre V. Kortunov, Director General of  the Russian International  Affairs Council, the think tank of the Rusian foreign ministry, Moscow.

"The book has the rare virtue of combining strong editing with diversity of views."  Daniel Pipes, Foreign  Policy  Research Institute.  

 

Eurocommunism Between East and West
Edited  by Vernon V. Asparturian, Jiri Valenta and David P. Burke
Reviewed by John C. Campbell Winter 1980-81
Hardcover, Indiana University Press, 1980, ISBN 0253323460 (0-253-32346

This latecomer to the succession of books on a well-worn subject says little about

Eurocommunism in its native Western habitat, but gives broad coverage in 15 essays,

on the connections with Eastern Europe and ranging as far as China and Japan, to the

significant t international dimensions. The authors are competent, the editing is good

and the book is a welcome addition to the specialized  literature.


Other Books and Books Published in Foreign Languages

Area Handbook for Finland, 1974
Co-Author,  Jiri Valenta

Published by Cross-Cultural Research, The American University.

The Communist Challenge in the Caribbean and Central America, 1987
Co Authors:  Howard J. Wiarda, Jiri Valenta, Virginia Valenta and  Ernest Evans
 
Published by American Enterprise, Institute for Public Policy research, December 1987
ISBN 0844736287 (0-8447-3628-7) 


Monographs, Reports and Occasional Papers

As noted earlier, the Institute of Soviet and East European Studies (ISEES), which Jiri directed for the University of Miami, presented debates and  dialogues on the foreign and domestic policies of the Soviet Union and East European nations, the results of which were presented in occasional  papers, working papers and meeting reports.  Copies of these are still extant and are available to interested scholars.



The Soviet Invasion of Afghanistan:  Three Perspectives.
Essays by Vernon Aspaturianm, Alexander Dallin and Jiri Valenta
Center for International and Strategic Affairs, University of California, Los Angeles, Sept. 1980
Hardcover, Univ of California LA Center for, ISBN 0866820264 (0-86682-026-4) 


​Ceske Narodni Zajmy [Czech National Interests]. 
Co-Authors and Editors:   Miroslav Had and Jiri Valenta
Prague Institute of International Relations, 1993.

The book has been described as the official document of the concept of foreign policy of the Czech Republic.  The most relevant conclusion of the  document was regarding the possible participation in NATO.  The document concluded that for Czech interests in the field of security, cooperation  with NATO is the priority, given by the transatlantic dimension of this organization, above all by the position of the United States with it." See page 50.

In 1992, the IRR established a close relationship with Deputy U.S. Assistant Secretary of Defense Bruce Weinrod, inviting him to Prague for  preliminary discussions  with both the Czech First Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs and the Czech Minister of Defense about some sort of  association with NATO. 

 

Terrorism:  Reagan's Response
Institute for Soviet and East European Studies, (ISEES) University of Miami, Coral Gables, FL, April 1986
Occasional Papers Series

Perhaps the best example of national debate is one Jiri  organized and presided over on terrorism between neoconservative Norman Podhoretz,  a former editor-in-chief of Commentary,  and the late William Maynes, a former editor of Foreign Policy. The debate did not take place at the North  South Center, as sometimes cited, but at ISEES.

 

Soviet/Cuban Strategy in the Third World After Grenada:  Toward Prevention of Future Grenadas:  A Conference Report

Naval Postgraduate School, Monteray, CA, August, 1984
Chairmen:  Jiri Valenta, Postgraduate Naval School and Herbert J. Ellison, Kennan Institute for Advanced Russian Studies.   
 
"The purposes of the conference were --- To generate scholarly examination of documents captured during the U.S., East Caribbean forces' intervention  in Grenada in October 1983,with a view to deterining causes of the bloody coup in Grenada, the impact of the intervention on Soviet/Cuban strategy,  and tactics in the Caribbean basin and other areas of the Third World.   --- To examine in bipartisan fashion U.S. opetions for countering Soviet/Cuban  strategy and tactics in the Third World."


Institute of Soviet and East European Studies Publications

The following reports are the product of the Institute for Soviet and East European Graduate School of International Studies, at the Graduate School of  International Studies, University of Miami.  Jiri Valenta was generally the chief organizer of the conference, the moderator of debates, and the editor of,  and contributor to theOccasional Papers Series which documented the proceedings. 

Only a sampling of the reports have been included:


Conflict in Nicaragua:  National, Regional and International Dimensions
A Conference Report, April 29-30, 1986
Sponsored jointly by ISEES with the Royal Institute of International Affairs, London
Conference Coordinators, Jiri Valenta and Esperanza Duran
Occasional Papers Series, Vol 1, No. 4, 1986

"The primary objective ... was to examine the conflict in Nicaragua in the ... most comprehensive fashion ... The organizers assembled a wide range of  outstanding experts on Latin America, Soviet affairs and international relations.  ... Jiri and Virginia Valenta's article, "Sandinistas in Power," (Problems of Communism, September-October 1985) (was) a point of discussion... Valenta and Duran invited... Arturo Cruz, Jr. of the United Nicaraguan Opposition  (UNO), Alfred Cesar of the Southern Opposition Front (BOS), and Francisco Lopez, head of Nicaragua's Institute of Economic and Social Research.

 (Despite the organizers early and continued efforts, High-level official Nicaraguan government participation could not be obtained)." 


Frontiers of Soviet Democracy
A report on Boris Yeltsin's address at the Institute for Soviet and East European Studies
Sponsored jointly by ISEES with the Peace Institute & the Occasional Papers Series, Vol. lll, No.3, 1988

In the prologue of the report, "Yeltsin's Soviet Vision," Jiri described Yeltsin's metamorphosis from candidate Politburo member and apparatchik to  political maverick, with a far more radical version of democratic reform than Gorbachev's perestroika and glasnost.  He further asserted that, despite  Russia's roots in Tatar and tsarist despotism, the emergence of Yeltsin suggested that the democratic alternative and peaceful systemic change was not impossible in the Soviet Union.
  
 

Reflections on Gorbachev's Policies and East-South Relations by Ambassador Vernon A. Walters

Occasional Papers Series, Vol. ll, No.4,1989


The Strategic Significance of Afghanistan's Struggle for Freedom

Lieutenant General William E. Odom

Occasional Papers Series, Vol. II, No. 2


Moscow-Miami Dialogue:  The Mini-Summit, A Report on the First Meeting, May 26-27, 1990
Co-Organizers, Jiri Valenta and Andre Kortunov
Reporter:  James C. Siegel
Occasiona  Papers Series, Vol. III, No. 4  


Revolutionary Changes in the USSR and East Central Europe and their Impact on the Orthodox Communist Regimes of Cuba,

North Korea, and China:
A Report on the Conference, Decemb
er 1990
Occasional Papers Series, Vol. III, No. 5





Soviet Intervention in Czechoslovakia, 1968:Anatomy of a Decision
Foreward by Alexander Dubcek
Jiri Valenta, Baltimore:  Johns Hopkins University Press.  Revised edition, 1991.
Reviewed by Robert Levgold Fall 1992

Hardcover, Johns Hopkins Univ Pr, ISBN 0801842972 (0-8018-4297-2).
Softcover, Johns Hopkins University Press, ISBN 0801825407 (0-8018-2540-7)     


​Making use of archival material available in Poland, Hungary and Czechoslovakia as well as interviews with Alexander

Dubcek  and other principals,  Valenta has added two chapters to his well-received original study of the Soviet decision 

to crush the Czech  reform of 1968. He finds in these materials the most important of which are summaries of the Dresden, Moscow, Cierna and Yalta meetings, vindication of his initial assessment: that the  Soviet  leadership hesitated to unleash military intervention until the last possible minute, that Janos Kadar, alone among Warsaw Pact leaders, refused to see

the Prague Spring as a “counterrevolution” deserving of suppression, and that an unseemly group of hardliners in Berlin, Prague and Moscow finally drove the decision. Still, as Valenta acknowledges, many key questions will remain unanswered until the Soviet archives reveal what they contain.

Soviet Intervention in Czechoslovakia, 1968, has had translated into Czech, Russian and modified Chinese editions as

shown below.

Valenta makes a very good case for the use of the bureaucratic-politics paradigm in analyzing Soviet foreign policy

decision-making... The author recognizes the limitations of such an approach and the difficulties facing it. ... Valenta's

book undoubtedly contributes significantly to a better understanding of Soviet decision-making and the Czechoslovak

crisis.-- Fawwaz Yassin.

​JIRI'S BOOKS