Books: Collapse

OUT OF THE NIGHT—Jan Valtin—Alliance ($3.50).

In the plain, unvarnished days of the Russian Revolution, the Chekists used to keep batteries of automobile engines constantly running to drown out the human and mechanical sounds from the execution cellars. As Russia sought to "catch up with and surpass capitalist technology," less garish techniques were found for silencing the human voice. Few of the men & women who might tell how Communism really works ever escaped to tell. The handful who did* were defeated by a twofold irony: 1) they were suspect as Communists, doubly suspect as ex-Communists; 2) the things of which...

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