The Left's New Soviet Union

The left never had much bad to say about the Soviet Union.  Leftist icons like Teddy Kennedy actually tried to get the Soviet Union to interfere in American presidential elections to keep Reagan from being re-elected – something conveniently forgotten by Democrats today.

The Soviet Union was one of the most malicious and horrible empires in human history.  The Holodomor swallowed as many human lives as the Holocaust; the Gulag gobbled more souls than any system of concentration camps or slave labor camps in history.  The Soviet Union conspired with Nazi Germany to begin the Second World War and then worked tirelessly to assure Nazi victory up to the day of Operation Barbarossa.

The Soviet Union was required to build an "Iron Curtain" to separate the Warsaw Pact slave states from the rest of Europe and to maintain a KGB Border Guard larger than the United States Marine Corps just to keep people from leaving the Soviet Union.  The system of internal passports prevented Soviet subjects from even moving from one region to another without state approval.

Tsarist Russia was incomparably better in every way than the Soviet Union.  The industrial production of Russia was increasing faster than any major nation in the world up to 1913, and Russian engineering and technology were among the best in the world.  Russian literature, music, and art enriched the whole world. 

Tsarist Russia's greatest flaw was its anti-Semitism, but even so, Tsarist Russia was a much better place for Jews to live than the Soviet Union.  Stalin killed every single Jew who had helped the Bolshevik Revolution, and Jews were almost completely absent from any important positions in the Soviet Union right up to the time of its collapse.

The Soviets turned many Jews over to the Nazis, and the Soviets, alone, suppressed any information about the Holocaust (much of which had taken place on Soviet soil.)  The haunting poem by the dissident Yevgeni Yevtushenko in 1962 begins, "No monument stands over Babi Yar," the site of the slaughter of thousands of Ukrainian Jews.  The Star of David was placed on that grim site only after the Soviet Union collapsed.

The left ignored all this and preached that we ought to find a way to work with the Soviet Union because Russia was, of course, a great nation and a nuclear superpower.  Today, however, leftists seem to view Russia the way they ought to have viewed the Soviet Union. 

Soviets always toyed with our presidential elections.  The Soviets poured huge amounts of money into our nation to engage in propaganda and subversion.  The Soviets even placed agents in positions so that if Henry Wallace had become president, our secretary of state and secretary of treasury would have both been active Soviet agents.  They deliberately infiltrated academia, government, Hollywood, and other targets of opportunity.

Now pull back and look at Putin's Russia as it really is and compare it to the Soviet Union (and the left's hysteria about Russia and indifference to the Soviet Union).  Russia has regular elections with international observers in which a number of different political parties compete.  In the 2011 elections, Putin's United Russia lost its majority in the Duma, and last year, it won that majority back, but there are still six different political parties with seats in the Duma.  President Putin is a political boss, but he won a contested election with five different parties on the ballot.

There is no Iron Curtain, and there is no KGB Border Guard or system of internal passports or a Gulag or a Communist Party that runs virtually everything.  (There is still is a Communist Party in Russia, but it won only 13% of the vote in the last election.)  Every aspect of life is freer in Putin's Russia than it was in the Soviet Union. 

Putin's Russia is an imperfect but authentic democracy run by a nationalistic strongman.  Putin's Russia is like all the world except for Western Europe, the English-speaking democracies, and a few nations in the Asian Pacific Rim.

The left, which excused or ignored every monstrous crime and every instance of gross interference in our domestic politics by the Soviets, now wishes to persuade us that Trump ought to react to Putin's Russia as Ronald Reagan did to the Soviet Union.  Trump should reject this approach and do what he has done all his life: get the best deal for America that he can with Russia.

The left never had much bad to say about the Soviet Union.  Leftist icons like Teddy Kennedy actually tried to get the Soviet Union to interfere in American presidential elections to keep Reagan from being re-elected – something conveniently forgotten by Democrats today.

The Soviet Union was one of the most malicious and horrible empires in human history.  The Holodomor swallowed as many human lives as the Holocaust; the Gulag gobbled more souls than any system of concentration camps or slave labor camps in history.  The Soviet Union conspired with Nazi Germany to begin the Second World War and then worked tirelessly to assure Nazi victory up to the day of Operation Barbarossa.

The Soviet Union was required to build an "Iron Curtain" to separate the Warsaw Pact slave states from the rest of Europe and to maintain a KGB Border Guard larger than the United States Marine Corps just to keep people from leaving the Soviet Union.  The system of internal passports prevented Soviet subjects from even moving from one region to another without state approval.

Tsarist Russia was incomparably better in every way than the Soviet Union.  The industrial production of Russia was increasing faster than any major nation in the world up to 1913, and Russian engineering and technology were among the best in the world.  Russian literature, music, and art enriched the whole world. 

Tsarist Russia's greatest flaw was its anti-Semitism, but even so, Tsarist Russia was a much better place for Jews to live than the Soviet Union.  Stalin killed every single Jew who had helped the Bolshevik Revolution, and Jews were almost completely absent from any important positions in the Soviet Union right up to the time of its collapse.

The Soviets turned many Jews over to the Nazis, and the Soviets, alone, suppressed any information about the Holocaust (much of which had taken place on Soviet soil.)  The haunting poem by the dissident Yevgeni Yevtushenko in 1962 begins, "No monument stands over Babi Yar," the site of the slaughter of thousands of Ukrainian Jews.  The Star of David was placed on that grim site only after the Soviet Union collapsed.

The left ignored all this and preached that we ought to find a way to work with the Soviet Union because Russia was, of course, a great nation and a nuclear superpower.  Today, however, leftists seem to view Russia the way they ought to have viewed the Soviet Union. 

Soviets always toyed with our presidential elections.  The Soviets poured huge amounts of money into our nation to engage in propaganda and subversion.  The Soviets even placed agents in positions so that if Henry Wallace had become president, our secretary of state and secretary of treasury would have both been active Soviet agents.  They deliberately infiltrated academia, government, Hollywood, and other targets of opportunity.

Now pull back and look at Putin's Russia as it really is and compare it to the Soviet Union (and the left's hysteria about Russia and indifference to the Soviet Union).  Russia has regular elections with international observers in which a number of different political parties compete.  In the 2011 elections, Putin's United Russia lost its majority in the Duma, and last year, it won that majority back, but there are still six different political parties with seats in the Duma.  President Putin is a political boss, but he won a contested election with five different parties on the ballot.

There is no Iron Curtain, and there is no KGB Border Guard or system of internal passports or a Gulag or a Communist Party that runs virtually everything.  (There is still is a Communist Party in Russia, but it won only 13% of the vote in the last election.)  Every aspect of life is freer in Putin's Russia than it was in the Soviet Union. 

Putin's Russia is an imperfect but authentic democracy run by a nationalistic strongman.  Putin's Russia is like all the world except for Western Europe, the English-speaking democracies, and a few nations in the Asian Pacific Rim.

The left, which excused or ignored every monstrous crime and every instance of gross interference in our domestic politics by the Soviets, now wishes to persuade us that Trump ought to react to Putin's Russia as Ronald Reagan did to the Soviet Union.  Trump should reject this approach and do what he has done all his life: get the best deal for America that he can with Russia.