MOSCOW — Anatoly F. Dobrynin, a former Soviet ambassador to the United States, was named Friday as a foreign policy adviser to President Mikhail S. Gorbachev only a month after being abruptly retired in a realignment of the Kremlin leadership.
Dobrynin, 68, who returned in 1986 from 24 years in Washington, was credited with a major role in shaping Gorbachev's approach to foreign policy, particularly in formulating the breakthroughs in Soviet relations with the United States.
On his return to Moscow, Dobrynin had become a secretary of the Communist Party's policy-making Central Committee and the head of its International Department, two powerful posts from which he was removed last month in the political maneuvering that consolidated Gorbachev's leadership of the party.
"In retrospect, he seems to have been sacrificed in carrying out other personnel shifts within the party hierarchy," a senior Western diplomat commented Friday. "He and a couple of others may have been moved out of their posts in trade-offs to get rid of some backward-looking conservatives, real die-hards. Now they can be brought back as personal assistants to Gorbachev, posts that are highly influential but outside the party structure."
Yet Dobrynin's "retirement on pension," as the official announcement put it Sept. 30, surprised diplomats here, particularly Americans who had counted on Dobrynin to get the U.S. viewpoint across to Gorbachev.
The assumption then was that Dobrynin had quit after being edged out by Alexander N. Yakovlev, a member of the ruling Politburo and probably Gorbachev's closest adviser, for the chairmanship of the party's new Commission on International Affairs.
His reappearance this week among Soviet officials meeting with visiting Chancellor Helmut Kohl of West Germany again took Western diplomats by surprise--even those who pride themselves on their inside information on Kremlin politics.
Vadim V. Zagladin, who had been Dobrynin's deputy at the International Department, also re-emerged during the Kohl visit as an adviser to Gorbachev.
A specialist on ideology as well as international relations, Zagladin had built up a reputation as a liberal on relations with the West before Gorbachev took over the Soviet leadership in 1985.
In the meantime, Valentin M. Falin, a former ambassador to West Germany who has recently taken a hard line in defending the orthodoxy of past Soviet policies, including the country's prewar pact with Nazi Germany, was formally appointed to head the Central Committee's International Department under Yakovlev's commission.
Foreign Ministry spokesman Gennady I. Gerasimov announced Dobrynin's and Zagladin's appointments Friday without explanation or comment.
"The Kremlin is as inscrutable and enigmatic as ever," a West European ambassador complained. "If we cannot sort out their players, can we be blamed for misreading their policy? Clearly, the internal politics of Dobrynin's and Zagladin's positions are of great importance to understanding what Soviet policy is, and yet we have no idea of what has transpired."