... by demonising him we risk becoming complacent about the West's own crimes against humanityWe in the West are guilty, proclaims Burnett:
Terrible as Stalin was, his demonisation risks blunting our understanding of 20th century history. At worst, it can result in life under the tsars being regarded as some kind of lost golden age. Moreover, it risks making us complacent about the historical struggle for liberty and justice in our own society. .Well, compared to the Soviet Union, life under the tsars was a golden age. Liberty and justice "in our own society" came by reducing the power of the state, not by expanding it. But people like Burnett will never learn that lesson.