Was the Soviet Union in Stalin's Time
an 'Experiment'?

Note: This letter was sent to Jacobin magazine after it published a tirade against the Soviet Union in its socialist period. As usual with these screeds, it was cast as a study of Joseph Stalin.


Ronald Suny ("How Josef Stalin Became a Bolshevik," May 29, 2021) says, "Stalinism was the nadir of the Soviet experiment."

Tens of millions of youth do not move with enthusiasm and energy from farm to factory, city, and office in order to test a hypothesis. They do not study as hard as they work, satisfying their hunger for literacy, culture, vocation, and science, in order to conduct an experiment. They created themselves and the industrial Soviet Union in the 1930s. They overcame the active hostility of all the major capitalist powers, which included support of wrecking actions within the Soviet Union. Finally, the Nazi regime among them, nudged eastward by the others, tried to kill it all. The Soviet people defended their socialism with tens of millions of lives. This was class struggle, not an experiment.

Stalin led the people who accomplished these miracles and who loved their leader. With the label "Stalinism," professor Suny joins the nadir of Sovietologists. As they must in order to have a career, virtually everyone in Soviet studies bows to this mantra of evil about one man in place of actual historiographic work.

If you would rather seek truth from facts, see the work of Grover Furr. He takes up one verse of anti-communist theology after another, then finds out what actually happened – from verifiable primary sources, from evidence.

– Charles Andrews, May 30, 2021

Hollow Colossus front cover