Notes on the Russian Turn

Notes on the Russian Turn

Which shall one stress—the extent to which important changes have occurred or the extent to which Russian society under Khrushchev remains continuous with that under Stalin? It depends on the frame of discourse. In trying to foresee the consequences of the Russian turn one must clearly focus on that which is new. In debating with those radicals who seem tempted to soften their opposition to the Russian dictatorship, one must stress that it remains a totalitarian or authoritarian society, qualitatively different from anything that merits the name of socialism. We must anticipate and struggle against a New Appeasement.

In these notes I make no claim to be presenting a rounded analysis of the Russian events; my only interest, at the moment, is in indicating what seem to me the premises of a socialist response to these events.

• The present regime in Russia is perhaps the first in modern history to be led by self-confessed murderers. There has been no lack of brutal go...

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