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Stalin or Hitler: Who do you love?

[The Economist] – Some stories remained untold because they were inconvenient. About as many people died in the German bombing of Warsaw in 1939 as in the allied bombing of Dresden in 1945. Post-war Poland was in no state to gain recognition for that. The Nazi-Soviet alliance of August 1939 was “cemented in blood”, Stalin said approvingly. Few wanted to remember that two years later, when the Germans invaded the Soviet Union in Operation Barbarossa. The Western allies did little to stop the Holocaust. Few wanted reminding that the only government that took direct action to help the Jews was the Polish one: seven of the first eight operations conducted in Warsaw by the underground Polish Home Army were in support of the ghetto uprising. (After the war, the Communist authorities executed as “fascists” Polish soldiers who had helped the Jews.)

Stalin regarded all Soviet prisoners-of-war as traitors. Their German captors starved them to death in their millions; nobody dared mourn them. The Holocaust, too, did not fit into Soviet historiography, especially as post-war anti-Semitism intensified (“Every Jew is a nationalist and an agent of American intelligence,” Stalin said in 1952). Memorials to murdered Jews carried not the Star of David but the five-pointed Soviet one, and referred blandly to “Soviet citizens” or “victims of fascism”.

Continued at The Economist.

Editor’s Note to correspondents: Our headlined Diddlyism is intentional.

Joe! The musical.

By ANDY BROOK [The New Worker] – Their hatred of Stalin should not surprise us. He led the world’s first socialist state from 1924 until his death in 1953. During those decades the Soviet Union was the hope of working people across the world.

The colossal achievements of the Soviet Union led by Stalin was living proof of the validity of the socialist system. The Soviets swept out the capitalists and land-owners and unleashed the immense potential of the workers and peasants to build a new life for themselves.

While the economies of the imperialist world crashed the people of the Soviet Union saw their living standards rise twelvefold. While the imperialists prepared for another world war, against themselves and eventually against the USSR, the Soviet Union worked tirelessly for collective security and peace.

While the imperialists mercilessly plundered Africa and Asia the Soviet Union helped the world communist cause and the national liberation movement.

Continued at The New Worker | More Chronicle & Notices.

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