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  1. #1
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    Default Recommended reading: "1985" by Gyogry Dalos

    If you're read Orwell's depressing 1984, in which the Ingsoc Party (Communists by another name) acts with impunity, you'll find 1985 to becoming a much more uplifting sequel. Not only does Big Brother finally keel over (as does his toady bitch of a wife), a bunch of Thought Police (the KGB/NKVD by another name) get deservedly killed as well.

    The most remarkable thing about the novel is that the author got away with writing the novel whilst living in Hungary in 1982, i.e. back when that country was still suffering under the Iron Curtain jackboot.

    https://www.amazon.com/1985-Historic...p%2C182&sr=1-1
    Hooah, God bless, and Fight On,

    TrojanSkyCop1
    DDM and recovering former JBGT
    I'm no longer with the government, but I'm still here to help

    ERIN GO BRAGH and ALBA GU BRATH!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Reston, VA (via Social Democratic Germany)
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    Quote Originally Posted by TrojanSkyCop1 View Post
    If you're read Orwell's depressing 1984, in which the Ingsoc Party (Communists by another name) acts with impunity, you'll find 1985 to becoming a much more uplifting sequel. Not only does Big Brother finally keel over (as does his toady bitch of a wife), a bunch of Thought Police (the KGB/NKVD by another name) get deservedly killed as well.

    The most remarkable thing about the novel is that the author got away with writing the novel whilst living in Hungary in 1982, i.e. back when that country was still suffering under the Iron Curtain jackboot.

    https://www.amazon.com/1985-Historic...p%2C182&sr=1-1
    In turn, I learned about 1985 from reading Hammer and Tickle: The Story of Communism, a Political System Almost Laughed Out of Existence by Ben Lewis.

    https://www.amazon.com/Hammer-Tickle...s%2C200&sr=1-4

    Pretty good book overall in its own right, and an addition to the great compilation of anticommunist jokes compiled from many (though not all of) the former Iron Curtain countries and the historical backstory to those jokes, the author provides some pretty good insights on how even after the collapse of the Soviet Union, the Fall of the Berlin Wall, etc, a lot of ostensibly "capitalist" countries have their decidedly socialistic aspects, especially the social democratic safety nets of the Western European countries (something I can personally vouch for from having lived and worked in Der Deutschland for the past 8 months)!

    However, to re-state what I said in my book review on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/review/sho..._review_page=1 )there are some flaws that prevent me from assigning this book a perfect 5-star rating. For one thing, like many pundits in Western journalism and academia, Mr. Lewis gives waaaaaayyyyy too much credit to Mikhail Gorbachev, the *loser* of the Cold War, and not enough to Ronald Reagan, who, more than any other U.S. President, helped accelerate the Soviet collapse (if you don't want to take my word for it, then ask high-ranking officials like former KGB General Oleg Kalugin). Speaking of Mr. Reagan, the author levels against him the disingenuous and misleading accusation of "funding the future Al-Qaeda in their war against the Soviets in Afghanistan." Okay, let's get something straight here: while Osama Bin Laden *was* a *partial* beneficiary of the CIA's support of the mujahideen in the 1980s, the fact remains that the primary beneficiary of the aid program was Ahmed Shah Masood AKA "The Lion of Peshawar," who later became the leader of the Northern Alliance that *opposed* Al Qaeda and the Taliban, and was indeed assassinated by Bin Laden's goons the day before the 9/11 attacks.


    Those nitpicks aside, the book is still well worth reading, and here are some of my favorite passages...


    --from p. 50 of the original hardcover edition: "What were Mayakovsky's last words before he committed suicide? 'Comrades, don't shoot!'"


    --p. 55: "The age-old genre of gallows humour, in which a person threatened with death and misfortune makes light of his impending doom, achieved an unprecedented sale and depth in the popular Communist jokes of Stalinism."


    --p. 68: "Most political jokes in other social systems are told about an other -- Jews, Arabs, Irishmen. Communist joke-tellers overwhelmingly told jokes about themselves." (author's original emphasis)
    Hooah, God bless, and Fight On,

    TrojanSkyCop1
    DDM and recovering former JBGT
    I'm no longer with the government, but I'm still here to help

    ERIN GO BRAGH and ALBA GU BRATH!

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