RUSSIA'S EUROPE by Hal Lehrman
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Everyone should read this book, for there is the conversion of a liberal from faith in the Soviet to recognition of the Soviet Union and its insatiable greed for expansion as the main threat in the world today. It took him a year of surveying middle Europe- and a return engagement to re-survey the scene- before he was ready to set down what he'd seen. Bitterly opposed to British- and to American- procedure in Greece, he came to realize that rigidity of the left destroys all alternatives except rigidity of the right. He gives most space to Yugoslavia; next to Hungary; then on to Rumania, Bulgaria, -- and in each he sees the same grim pattern repeated, the steps by which the Soviet gains control. He shows the failures of performance in keeping promises; the processes of enfeeblement; the stripping and commercial and industrial sabotage, leaving the countries impotent, terrified, police states. In Czechoslovakia, he felt there was hope of a bastion of democracy in the Soviet orbit -- until the reversal of the vote on the Marshall Plan, under orders from the Kremlin, showed the scheme beginning to work-the Soviet true aim, total domination. The legacy of hatred is too late, The western democracies have failed- in every challenge- to be ready. The way is not to stop Russia by conciliatory discussion, but by straight talk and force. We must keep a strong military defense force; we must have a military training program; we must sponsor a long term plan of European recovery. Greece and Turkey cannot be redeemed by what we are doing, but at least they prove we can implement a policy. The crying need is positive defense of Democracy, not simply just negative work against Communism. The little people of the borders are the pawns of Empire- the plan is on to Austria, through to the Mediterranean and the Middle East.....An absorbing and convincing book, the more so, in that -- as a Liberal, critical of the home front, he saw and was convinced himself. His aim- to persuade Liberals to reexamine their positions- is fully realized. And the book has color and drama and a sense of people, living under Soviet domination.

Pub Date: Nov. 24th, 1947
Publisher: Appleton-Century