The Ghost of Stalin by Jean-Paul Sartre

Translated from the French by Martha H Fletcher

Opening: I have received many letters recently. Among the questions asked me are two recurring from very diverse pens to which I think it is useful to respond publicly.

These essays first appeared in December 1956/January 1957 in Les Temps Moderns and is in protest against the Soviet intervention in Hungary and the debacle in Egypt, namely the Suez crisis.

“The Government of USSR, if it is to be believed, intervened in Hungary to save the foundations of socialization there; it decide on this intervention the day when the magnitude of counterrevelutionary disturbances had made it inevitable.”

And the context: While a Marxist, Sartre attacked what he saw as abuses of freedom and human rights by the Soviet Union. He was one of the first French journalists to expose the existence of the labor camps, and vehemently opposed the invasion of Hungary, Russian anti-Semitism, and the execution of dissidents. (Wiki sourced)

I read this now to see if any light can be thrown on the present Ukraine situation. Ultimately, Hungary then and Ukraine now look very similar, yet I don’t feel Satre is the man to explain things to me. I shall find a better source. Next!

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