The Soviet Far East, located on the Pacific coast of northern Asia, appeared with ever increasing frequency in Soviet print and cinema during the late 1930s. This late addition to the Russian empire, having only become a Russian territory in 1860, was also a latecomer to the Soviet Union, delayed by a prolonged Civil War and a Japanese occupation well into the early 1920s.3 Although the region had been a source of special concern for some time, Far Eastern development and security skyrocketed in importance in 1936 and 1937 because of increased international tensions. The Far East’s distance from the center, its low population density, and, in the 1930s, the swelling numbers of Japanese forces in Manchuria intensified insecurities within the Politburo and saturated public discussion of the region with an aura of jingoism. Japanese activity in Manchuria did not consist solely of an expansion in their military presence but also encompassed resettlement programs for impoverished Japanese and Korean farmers along its northern frontiers.4 Soviet authorities responded with their own military build-up and a renewed emphasis on establishing permanent settlers as the first line of defense.5