Sigma: Journal of Political and International Studies


Caleb Ringger


Chinese-Soviet relations, China, Soviet Union


In December 1960, the Peking Review, China’s only English national news magazine, celebrated the “Eternal, Unbreakable Sino-Soviet Friendship” on its front page (Peking Review 1960). The alliance between the world’s largest communist nations certainly seemed ironclad, at least from an outside perspective. But over the next decade, relations between the two allies completely deteriorated, ultimately resulting in bloody confrontation on the Sino-Soviet border, where dozens were killed in violent clashes in March 1969. What accounts for the rapid deterioration in relations between China and the Soviet Union? How could two seemingly close allies turn into enemies so quickly?