Robert Conquest Quote of the Day

Further to David’s post, I recently came across this amusing passage from John Earl Haynes and Harvey Klehr’s In Denial: Historians, Communism, and Espionage, about the whitewashing of Soviet crimes by the Western intelligentsia. Singled out for special condemnation is J. Arch Getty who consistently downplayed Stalin’s brutality, portraying him as “a moderate unable to control an intrabureaucratic struggle that regrettably got out of hand.” Getty maintained this position even after the Soviet archives were opened to Western observers after 1991. Note Haynes and Klehr:

Getty has refused to withdraw his condemnation of historians such as Robert Conquest whose earlier estimates of the human toll of communism, while probably high in light of post-1991 evidence, were easily more accurate than Getty’s’ own prior attempts to minimize this catastrophe. One can understand why Conquest, responding to a request from his publisher for a new title for the revised edition of The Great Terror after the opening of the archives, tartly replied, “How about I Told You So, You F—-ing Fools.”

Peter G. Klein is a Research Fellow, Associate Editor of The Independent Review, and Member of the Board of Advisors of the Center on Culture and Civil Society at the Independent Institute.
Posts by Peter Klein | Full Biography and Publications
Comments
  • Catalyst
  • MyGovCost.org
  • FDAReview.org
  • OnPower.org
  • elindependent.org