Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Claire Berlinski: A Hidden History Of Evil

MC is a big fan of David Berlinski ("The Deniable Darwin" and other against the grain intellectual works) and have likewise become enamored of his daughter, the increasingly must-read Claire Berlinski (that she lives in one of MC's favorite cities in the world--Istanbul--only adds to her luster). Ms. Berlinski is out with a very smart piece in City Journal in which she wonders outloud why there is a lack of interest in translating what amounts to a large corpus of Soviet Union-era documents. Why, indeed?

You can read her full piece by clicking on the title of this blog post. MC found the following well said and irrefutable:

"Indeed, many still subscribe to the essential tenets of Communist ideology. Politicians, academics, students, even the occasional autodidact taxi driver still stand opposed to private property. Many remain enthralled by schemes for central economic planning. Stalin, according to polls, is one of Russia’s most popular historical figures. No small number of young people in Istanbul, where I live, proudly describe themselves as Communists; I have met such people around the world, from Seattle to Calcutta.

We rightly insisted upon total denazification; we rightly excoriate those who now attempt to revive the Nazis’ ideology. But the world exhibits a perilous failure to acknowledge the monstrous history of Communism. These documents should be translated. They should be housed in a reputable library, properly cataloged, and carefully assessed by scholars. Above all, they should be well-known to a public that seems to have forgotten what the Soviet Union was really about. If they contain what Stroilov and Bukovsky say—and all the evidence I’ve seen suggests that they do—this is the obligation of anyone who gives a damn about history, foreign policy, and the scores of millions dead."

You can and should follow her on Twitter @ClaireBerlinski