After all these decades, an academic finally found something negative to say about Soviet dictator Josef Stalin: He was a tyrannical….editor.
“Joseph Djugashvili was a student in a theological seminary when he came across the writings of Vladimir Lenin and decided to become a Bolshevik revolutionary,” Holly Case writes in The Chronicle Review. “Thereafter, in addition to blowing things up, robbing banks, and organizing strikes, he became an editor, working at two papers in Baku and then as editor of the first Bolshevik daily, Pravda.
“Lenin admired Djugashvili’s editing; Djugashvili admired Lenin, and rejected 47 articles he submitted to Pravda.” Case is an associate professor of history at Cornell University.
“In 1934 a high-ranking member of the Communist Party, Sergei Kirov, was assassinated,” Case goes on to write. “His death, likely orchestrated by Stalin himself, was used to initiate a mass persecution that would result in over a million imprisoned and hundreds of thousands killed.” Actually, she’s a bit off on the casualty count.
“The late Alexander Yakovlev, the lifelong Soviet apparatchik who in the 1980s became the chief reformer and close aide to Mikhail Gorbachev, and who, in the post-Soviet 1990s, was tasked with the grisly assignment of trying to total the victims of Soviet repression, estimated that Stalin alone was responsible for the deaths of 60 to 70 million, a stunning number two to three times higher than estimates in The Black Book of Communism,” Grove City College historian Paul Kengor has noted.
Malcolm A. Kline is the Executive Director of Accuracy in Academia.
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