October 17, 2010

HOW STALIN AND HITLER enabled each other’s crimes. A review of Timothy Snyder’s Bloodlands: Europe Between Hitler and Stalin. Note this: “‘Bloodlands’ has aroused fierce criticism from those who believe that the Soviet Union, for all its flaws, cannot be compared to the Third Reich, which pioneered ethnic genocide.”

Bah. Comparing the Soviet Union to the Nazis only makes the Nazis look better if you don’t understand the truth about the Soviet Union. Communists are as bad as Nazis, and communist sympathizers and apologists are as bad as Nazi sympathizers and apologists.

This has been obvious for quite a while. Here’s what Robert Heinlein wrote in 1949:

Let me go on record that I regard communism as expressed by the U.S.S.R. and its friends here and elsewhere as a grisly horror, a tyranny maintained by force and terror, utterly subversive of human liberty, freedom of thought, and dignity. I regard it as Red fascism, distinguishable from black and brown fascism by differences of no importance to me nor to its victims.

That’s from a letter he wrote to Robert Bloch, quoted in William Patterson’s new biography of Heinlein, which I’m reading now. Heinlein held these anti-communist views even in the 1930s, when he was working as a leftist organizer for Upton Sinclair’s EPIC, an insurgent Democratic group that nonetheless had some Tea Party like elements.

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