|By John Gray|
In the summer of 1921, luck broke my way in the shape of the great Russian famine which then threatened to cost about 30,000,000 lives, and probably did cost 5,000,000 or 6,000,000 including deaths from disease - S.J. Taylor’s Stalin’s Apologist: Walter Duranty, The New York Times’s Man in Moscow, 1990, p. 97.
For Walter Duranty, who as the Pulitzer Prize-winning foreign correspondent for the New York Times led the cover-up of the 1932-3 famine in Ukraine, mass starvation was a career opportunity. In order to dispel damaging reports of the famine, the Bolshevik government had decided to admit a number of western journalists into the Soviet Union. Duranty was probably last on the list, if he appeared on it at all.
A year earlier, he had written that Bolshevism was “a compound of force, terror and espionage, utterly ruthless in conception and execution”. The Bolsheviks had not forgotten or forgiven Duranty’s attack, but always a charmer, he overcame their hostility with a flattering article on Lenin’s New Economic Policy. Duranty was allowed into the country, and began his career as an apologist for Soviet crimes.
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