Albania: Goodbye, Stalinism

Goodbye, Stalinism

That thud heard last week was the sound of Europe's last Marxist dictatorship landing on the trash heap of history. Following three days of student riots in Tirana, Albanian President Ramiz Alia summoned leaders of the demonstrations to his palace. Alia then abruptly canceled the Communists' 44-year monopoly on politics. He announced that henceforth rival parties will be permitted in the interest of "further democratization."

One day later, at a mass rally, a brand-new Democratic Party was formed. Its program, organizers said, would call for basic human rights, a mixed-market economy and parliamentary democracy. The fledgling party will now try to...

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