HARRY TRUMAN: THEY MUST LIKE THEIR GOVERNMENT OR THEY WOULDN’T DIE FOR IT …

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Excerpted from the personal diary of President Harry S. Truman, 7 June 1945:

Friends Forever: Churchill, Truman, Stalin (Credit: U.S. Army)

Friends forever: Churchill, Truman, Stalin (Credit: U.S. Army)

I’m not afraid of Russia. They’ve always been our friends and I can’t see any reason why they shouldn’t always be. The only trouble is the Crazy American Communist. There is only one in a million of our population but they are loyal to Stalin and not to the American President. I’d like to send them to Russia. Uncle Joe would promptly send them to Siberia or a concentration camp, I’m sure. But I can’t do that and wouldn’t if I could. Emma Goldman and William Z. Foster found by experience that the dictatorship of the proletariat is no different from the Czar or Hitler (1).

There’s no socialism in Russia. It’s the hotbed of special privilege.

A common everyday [Russian] citizen has about as much to say about his government as a stock holder in the Standard Oil of New Jersey has about his Company. But I don’t care what they do. They evidently like their government or they wouldn’t die for it. I like ours so let’s get along.

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(1)     Goldman, an anarchist, was indeed disillusioned by a trip to Russia in 1920-1921, but Truman was wrong about Foster, leader of the American Communist Party.

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2 Comments on “HARRY TRUMAN: THEY MUST LIKE THEIR GOVERNMENT OR THEY WOULDN’T DIE FOR IT …”

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