We read with rapt attention the highly stimulating, well-researched and scholarly piece, stuffed full with a wealth of detail of an unprecedentedly original type, by a certain Mr Johann Hari in the Independent of 5 March (‘Stalin died 50 years ago, but his legacy lives on’).
On a more serious note, we had no idea that the likes of Mr Hari existed outside of mental hospitals, never mind being free to write in the ‘Editorial and Opinion’ pages of our prestigious dailies.
There is, however, a method in Mr Hari’s madness. His unfounded and vituperative attacks on Stalin and the USSR that he led, merely serve as a distraction from the foul deeds of the real criminals, namely his much-beloved ‘democrats’, who plunged the world into the Second World War, which claimed the lives of 50 million people around the world, including 27 million Soviet people – for the sole purpose of deciding which groups of the imperialist fraternity should have what share of the world’s riches.
Further, it serves to distract our attention from the fact that since the Second World War, these ‘democrats’ have claimed the lives of four million Koreans, four million Vietnamese and other Indo-Chinese people, one million Indonesians, five million Congolese, four million Angolans and Mozambicans, 1.5 million Iraqis though the cruel sanctions regime and countless others in Asia, Africa and Latin America.
Not satisfied with all this, Mr Hari’s ‘democrats’ are poised to unleash a murderous, predatory and imperialist war of aggression against Iraq on the pretext of Iraq’s alleged possession of weapons of mass destruction, but actually to monopolise its oil resources, which account for a tenth of the world’s proven reserves of this precious raw material.
The whole world knows that Iraq possesses no weapons of mass destruction. The only country that does possess these weapons in the Middle East is Israel, which, far from being targeted by sanctions, continues to murder with impunity tens of thousands of Palestinians, depriving the latter of their homeland – all this with the help of these same ‘democrats’.
It would be futile to discuss with the likes of Mr Hari the monumental achievements of the Soviet Union under the leadership of Stalin in the fields of industry, agriculture, education, science and culture, for he knows as little about the subject as old Haile Selassi, the late Emperor of Ethiopia, knew about higher mathematics, as Uncle Joe once said. We would, however, say that Mr Hari’s assertion that “any Russian leader who had been attacked by the Reich” would have defeated Nazi Germany is puerile in the extreme.
The foundation of the Soviet victory was laid through the five-year plans for industrialising the country, the collectivisation of its agriculture, the building of the Red Army and the creation of an educated, cultured and scientifically-equipped working population. Thus it can be seen that the Soviet victory against Nazism had been planned years in advance and was meticulously executed. A regime far less steeled, far less prepared and far less far-sighted would have collapsed in the same way as did Tsarist Russia during the First World War and as did France and many other European countries during the Second World War. All serious historians, including the congenitally anti-Stalin Isaac Deutscher, have been forced to admit this plain truth.
Mr Hari’s article reminds us of the saying that one fool can ask more questions than ten wise men can answer. It would take us practically the whole of one issue of the Independent to answer each one of his baseless and scurrilous assertions. We have no such facility for doing so through the pages of your newspaper. Anyone who is interested in knowing the facts about the Soviet Union can write to our society and we shall gladly provide the necessary material.
Devoted as your paper is to democracy and freedom of speech, we very much hope that you will publish this letter.
Your obedient servants
Harpal Brar, Chairman, Stalin Society, Joti Brar, member, Stalin Society