Refuting Pipes

Sat Sep 19 00:28:50 PDT 1998

There were a number of rather harsh reviews of it when it came out. I can try to search the web for them, but so can you. The bottom line is that Pipes has got some stuff that tends to show that Lenin (a) had an affair (gasp, horror, shock; _bourgeois_ politicians would never do such a thing), and (b) ordered the shooting of hostages in the civil war in rather harsh terms, to be condemned; but it doesn't show that he was particularly brutish as leaders, indeed, war leaders go. In fact Pipes' "revelations" don't amount to much that wasn't already known. It's rather like the glasnost relevations about Stalin, which shwoed that he was a tyrant and a butcher, something that I am sure came as a real surprise to everyone. Pipes was hoping that the relkevations about Lenin would show the same, but he was already convinced that the existing facts showed that, and if you didn't think so before, you wouldn't think so afterwards. Personally, I didn't think so before. Ans in what environment are you where people care to debate about Lenin? --jks

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