- Paperback: 165 pages
- Publisher: City Lights Publishers; First Printing, Notations edition (January 1, 2001)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0872863298
- ISBN-13: 978-0872863293
- Product Dimensions: 5.6 x 0.5 x 8.1 inches
- Shipping Weight: 8.5 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars See all reviews (22 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #119,760 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Blackshirts and Reds: Rational Fascism and the Overthrow of Communism Paperback – January 1, 2001
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About the Author
Michael Parenti, PhD Yale, is an internationally known author and lecturer. He is one of the nation's leadiing progressive political analysts. He is the author of over 250 published articles and seventeen books. His writings are published in popular periodicals, scholarly journals, and his op-ed pieces have been in leading newspapers such as the New York Times and the Los Angeles Times. His informative and entertaining books and talks have reached a wide range of audiences in North America and abroad.
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Top customer reviews
Parenti covers three topics that don't get enough say in Western discourse.
1) The differences between Communism and Fascism (as they REALLY existed) and why the Liberal attempts at drawing parallels between them are misguided.
2) The harmful role left-wing anticommunism has had on Leftist movements
3) The harm that the fall of the USSR and Eastern bloc caused the world as a whole.
current situation on the background of historical events .
Author glorifies Lenini's communism..even communist concentration camps comparing them.....whith American's camp detentions for Japans during the II World War.This is stupidity of a leftist propagandist completely blind on real goals these camps, and conditions in which people could live there.
Gulags had been morderous concentration camps where all population of discriminated people by communist regime had been in total way liqiudated .They became a fashion for future Hitler's camps for political prisoner.Gulags had been the tool of political solution in a form of holocaust .
Detention camps had been temporary settlements , and no one intended to kill any imprisoned people there.
Government of USA didn't keep there compulsory slavery labor..
didn't keep there prisoners with intentional starvation to death...or tortures in stile of Czk;that's CARDINAL difference between them .
It would be much better for socialist wonderful ideas reprezented by Parenti,if he would be more objective abou historical truths.
Lenin intentionaly discriminated more part of Russian society and sentenced it to death as.."kulaks"..as "petty burgeois"..
as "contrevolutioners"....or "SR" ..or..Anarchists (left and right )..."Whites"..or.."stupid farmers"...and so on..and so on.
In effect above 20 milion people just Lenin killed in Czk..in concentration cumps ..by shooting squadrons..by politics of starvation created INTENTIONALLY by his regime,under the pretext of "domestic war ".Parenti should be very happy,that he didn't live under Lenin's regime..he couldn't be so "independent" lecturer as he is now ...with own opinions...unless he would be "good" Lenin's propagandist...but he would later be killed by Stalin's regime,which didn't want to save anyone from "old revolutioners" and killed them all in exact way.
Why Parenti didn't mention even one word bloody supression of Kronstadt Uprising..just against Lenin's Party and red biurocracy ( new form of red bourgeoisie under Lenin's regime );
why Parenti didn't mension in his book even one word,communist Pol-Pot and his crimes against humanity...but he is pouring crocodile tiers upon...American's detention camps (!)This kind of "history" is called in another word PROPAGANDA someone who is very limited in his opinions .
Parenti's books are good as a kind of provocation for discuss but not as a source of historical objective facts .They are the kind of propaganda of author's opinions.
His description of the current social and economic conditions for the average Eastern European and citizens of the former USSR is worth the price of the book alone. The obvious conclusion is that they'd be much better off under the old egalitarian system than their current lives of penury under the new capitalist system that Yeltsin, the nomenclatura and the United States were and are so eager to throw upon them.
Propping up brutal undemocratic regimes (Chile, El Salvador, Indonesia, Guatamala, etc.) that are conducive to capitalist penetration and exploitation while obliterating democratically elected governments (Nicaragua, The Congo, Allende's Chile, Spain, Vietnam, East Timor, etc.) that want to follow a more egalitarian non-capitalist path are some of the things the capitalist powers have done during the last millenia. Of course they couch their criminal conduct (often carried out by the CIA, U.S. State Department and segments of the U.S. military, some times using proxies) in euphemisms such as "free markets" and "free elections." Parenti delves into much of this sordid history in this fine book.
He eloquently describes how and why the former USSR collapsed and he doesn't feel the need to constantly make casual asides about how evil Stalin supposedly was. He mentions how the Soviet Union's collapse had a lot more to do with the constant capitalist propaganda and glittery materialistic imagery of the West rather than with the failure of Communism itself. Today, the average Russian citizen would be much better off economically and socially (they wouldn't have to fend for their livelihoods against organized mafiosi or suffer through exploitative jobs or prostitute themselves) if they were still in a socialist state rather than living in the current capitalist nightmare that was rammed down their throats in a shock treatment manner.
Parenti touches on all of this. He also delivers an array of facts and figures which demonstrate that the Gulag and Stalin were no where near the hellishness that they're often labeled as being by pro-West capitalist sympathizers and their propaganda machine.
Lastly, his analysis of the manner in which the East Germans dealt with former sadistic Nazi criminals and fascist sociopaths (imprisoning them and holding them accountable for their execrable and hateful actions) as opposed to the coddling West Germany bestowed on them is some of the most fascinating and intellectually enlightening passages I've read in years.
I cannot recommend this book enough and I eagerly anticipate the intellectual joys his next book will bring.