An Interview with Kadar

A Communist who does it his way candidly assesses his aims and achievements

His hands tremble slightly now, and the flesh around his eyes makes them seem smaller than they really are, heightening an occasional glare, muffling his frequent shy smiles. Yet Janos Kadar still displays the same unexpected charm and cool canniness that have helped make the onetime typewriter mechanic the boldest and most beloved leader in Eastern Europe. Wearing a tailored gray suit and a wine-red silk tie, Kadar chain-smoked Symphonia cigarettes while talking for two hours with a group of TIME visitors in his office in Budapest's Central Committee headquarters. Any initial reserve that the General Secretary displayed quickly vanished. Present...

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