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September 2002

The myth of

by Harvey Klehr

Re-evaluating the treatment of the volunteers of the Abraham Lincoln Brigade.

In 1984, George Orwell gave the Ministry of Truth the task of rewriting history. Under the slogan “who controls the past controls the future,” an army of scribes modified documents, changed textbooks, and rewrote old newspapers to ensure that history conformed to every shift of the ruling party’s political line. Left-wing American historians have likewise been busily engaged in altering the past to buttress their conviction that Communists are the real heroes of modern history. Of all the historical myths promoted by the American left, few have been more fiercely protected than those about the Spanish Civil War, lionized as “the Good Fight,” a heroic struggle between fascism and antifascism, and the Communist-led International Brigades, a band of selfless volunteers whose brave deeds were immortalized in stirring songs (they won the battles, but we had all the good songs, Tom Lehrer noted).

I ...

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Harvey Klehr is andrew Mellon Professor of Politics at Emory University.

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This article originally appeared in The New Criterion, Volume 21 September 2002, on page 19

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The Walter Duranty Prize for Journalistic Mendacity
On May 5, 2014, The New Criterion and PJ Media presented the second Walter Duranty Prize for Journalistic Mendacity. The award is given to highlight egregious examples of dishonest reporting. Also awarded this year was the Rather, a new award for lifetime achievement in mendacious journalism.
The Duranty Prize is named after Walter Duranty, the New York Times Moscow corresponded in the 1920s and 1930s who whitewashed Joseph Stalin’s forced starvation of the Ukrainians (the Holodomor) and many other aspects of Soviet oppression. Duranty was awarded the Pulitzer Prize in 1932 for his efforts. It has never been revoked.
Audio copyright Ed Driscoll,

Introduction to The Kennedy Phenomenon
Roger Kimball introduces The Kennedy Phenomenon, a conference presented by The New Criterion on Tuesday, November 19.

The Kennedy Phenomenon: "Watching the Kennedy Train-Wreck"
Roger Kimball reads Peter Collier’s paper on oft-overlooked unsavory details of the Kennedys' lives. Much of the paper is drawn from Collier’s book, coauthored with David Horowitz, The Kennedys: An American Drama.