The Comintern was founded in particular circumstances, at a time when the Russians believed that the revolutionary spark struck in Russia would soon leap over to Western Europe. The victorious proletariat of the industrialized West would then reassume the leadership of the revolutionary struggle, relieve the burden of their Russian class brothers, and help them to develop their economically backward country. This expectation that the revolution would quickly spread beyond Russia had important consequences for the character of the Third International, some of which still affect Moscow-oriented Communist parties today. 1