The Soviet era seems to be approaching some sort of terminus, a crossroad as it were. For Russia, the change that Iosif Vissarionovich Stalin wrought, a legacy that his successors have preserved, has created a paradox that determines today the life of the Soviet state and its internal equilibrium. It is worth reiterating that the Soviet regime of pursues a basically conservative policy behind a smokescreen of revolutionary ideological verbiage, for two basic reasons. First, to cover up the facts that domestically it is a swollen state and a spent society. Second, to cover up the fact that externally in any meaningful sense, it is no longer a force for revolutionary change. Soviet policies regarding middle-range nuclear missiles are politically aimed at keeping Western Europe in a state of concern about its own safety, unless it accommodates itself to the Soviet-East European situation as it exists; in the Soviet view, thus, for an indefinite period.