“He (Philip Larkin) had struck up the friendship with Conquest in 1955. The connection came about through Conquest’s editorship of the New Lines anthology; the friendship blossomed on a shared interest in what Thwaite describes as ‘illustrated magazines for men’ and Larkin more bluntly called ‘sex, in printed or photocopy form’. Chaperoned by Conquest, Larkin toured the porn shops of Soho, looking for pictures of schoolgirls being caned. ‘Bamboo and Frolic are the tops, or rather the bottoms . . .’; ‘MINUIT CINQ has some good rears in it now and again . . .’, ‘Yes, I got the pictures – whacks. I admired the painstaking realism of it – I mean, the teacher really did look like a teacher, and I greatly appreciated the school-like electric bell on the wall.’ When Thwaite says that this kind of thing is Larkin’s ‘bawdy’, the red-blooded Falstaff-&-Mistress-Quickly word does less than justice to the desolate giggliness of the letters to Conquest and the way they conjure, with horrid poignancy, the emptied bottle and the lonely room.”
JONATHAN RABAN (1992)
Source: Jonathan Raban. (18 October 1992). “Books: Mr Miseryguts: Philip Larkin’s letters show all the grim …”, The Independent.
“I agree ‘Bamboo’ & ‘Frolic’ (British porn magazines that featured ‘schoolgirls’ being whipped and sodomized) are the tops, or rather bottoms: do pass on any that have ceased to stimulate.”
PHILIP LARKIN, Letter to Robert Conquest (1958)
Source: Selected Letters of Phillip Larkin (1940 – 1985)
“In the post-Stalin period much changed, but the party remained inviolable. Khrushchev’s attempt to relax the party’s tight hold on everyone and everything by granting a larger role to the government apparatus cost him the post of general secretary of the party.
During Perestroika a policy was adopted of fundamentally reorganizing party activity, democratizing it internally, and later changing its very role in society.
…The fact is that the CPSU began the reforms when leaders who were adherents of reform were in its leadership. Moreover, those changes would not have begun at all if the initiative for them had not come from the CPSU…[thus, resulting in the formation of] the reform group at the head of the party.”
Source: Gorbachev, M. (2000). English edition of the “Razmyshleniia o proshlom i budushchem”, USA: Columbia University Press, pp. 22.
“The new and startlingly different picture of Diego Rivera is revealed in US State Department and FBI documents uncovered by Professor William Chase, of Pittsburgh University, Pennsylvania, and his assistant, Dana Reed, during their researches on Trotsky. The Mexican political and cultural establishment has been stunned by this weeks publication of the references by a journalist, Rossana Fuentes-Berain, in Mexico’s business daily El Financiero …
When the exiled Trotsky was roaming Europe, unable to persuade many countries to let him in, Rivera used his contacts to get him into Mexico in 1937 …
Rivera’s FBI file number was 100-155423. One report, dated as far back as 18 October 1927, when Rivera was travelling in the US, shows that he had long been of interest …
All this material leaves no doubt that Rivera was passing information to the Americans. Whether or not that information was accurate and several diplomats pointed out the painter’s tendency towards exaggeration is another question. True or not, it was all music to the ears of the FBI chief, J Edgar Hoover …
The revelations about Rivera are surprising enough, but Chase and Reed are promising to shatter some much bigger illusions. Reed told the Independent the two academics had also uncovered some very damaging stuff about Trotsky. We’re still trying to get hold of some FBI stuff on him . . . in fact, I can tell you we have concrete information that Leon Trotsky, too, was an informant of the US government.
Source: The Report of published in “The Independent” on November 25th, 1993.
“Stalin has been widely attacked by political adversaries, Russian and foreign, as a cruel and heartless man, but in point of fact he was remarkably long-suffering in his treatment of the various oppositions. This statement may sound surprising, but it is true, as the record shows. The Kremlin’s struggle with Oppositionists began before Lenin s death, and again and again one or another of the Opposition leaders admitted his faults and beat his breast and cried “Mea maxima culpa,” and the Kremlin forgave him. I say this is all on record, whatever the Trotskyists may claim.”
Walter Duranty – The Pulitzer Prize winning Anglo-American journalist.
Source: Duranty, Walter (1941), “The Kremlin and the People”, Reynal & Hitchcock, Inc., New York.
” …the victory of socialism in one country does not at one stroke eliminate all war in general. On the contrary, it presupposes wars. The development of capitalism proceeds extremely unevenly in different countries. It cannot be otherwise under commodity production. From this it follows irrefutably that socialism cannot achieve victory simultaneously in all countries. It will achieve victory first in one or several countries, while the others will for some time remain bourgeois or pre-bourgeois. This is bound to create not only friction, but a direct attempt on the part of the bourgeoisie of other countries to crush the socialist state’s victorious proletariat. In such cases a war on our part would be a legitimate and just war. It would be a war for socialism, for the liberation of other nations from the bourgeoisie. Engels was perfectly right when, in his letter to Kautsky of September 12, 1882, he clearly stated that it was possible for already victorious socialism to wage “defensive wars”. ”
V. I. Lenin (1917)
Source: V. I. Lenin, Collected Works (Vol 23), Progress Publishers, Moscow, 1964
“In Lenin I honor a man, who in total sacrifice of his own person has committed his entire energy to realizing social justice. I do not find his methods advisable. One thing is certain, however: men like him are the guardians and renewers [Erneuerer] of mankind’s conscience.”
Sir Albert Einstein (1929), the Nobel Laureate Physicist.
Source: “On the Fifth Anniversary of Lenin’s Death, 6 January 1929”. Einstein on Politics… Princeton University Press (2007).