Some of the most respected British intellectuals of their day – HG Wells, George Bernard Shaw, Sidney and Beatrice Webb – were apologists for Stalin.
Walter Duranty, as the Moscow correspondent of the New York Times, was also an arch apologist for Stalin – for which he was rewarded with a Pulitzer Prize.
Skip two or three generations and we have the contemporary example of
That country’s experience shows that many on the Left still see and believe only what they wish to – no matter how formidable is the evidence to the contrary.
They have turned a blind eye to one of the most vile and disastrous regimes on the planet.
When Hugo Chavez died, Jeremy Corbyn, the Labour Party leader, tweeted in support of the late Venezuelan president:
Thanks Hugo Chavez for showing that the poor matter and wealth can be shared. He made massive contributions to Venezuela & a very wide world
— Jeremy Corbyn MP (@jeremycorbyn) March 5, 2013
For a time under Chavez, the Venezuelan government gave free heating oil to 200,000 US households in 23 states. This may have had something to do with Corbyn’s tribute.
But the dreadful reality of Chavez’s legacy is evident in the country’s current state of emergency.
Babies routinely die in hospitals as blackouts shut down the respirators in the maternity wards.
The shortages have gone beyond lavatory paper being unavailable in the
Hyperinflation combined with a lack of paper has caused difficulty printing enough bank notes.
Venezuela is now a country that doesn’t have enough money to pay for its money.
Labour MPs who signed a motion praising Venezuela as a “social development model” included Emily Thornberry, now the Shadow Defence Secretary.
And Labour shadow international development secretary Diane Abbott accepted £3,000 of hospitality from the Chavez regime, which she later praised as a a model which shows that “another way is possible.”
In Venezuela as an official observer for the elections. https://t.co/H7ynxsr3
— Diane Abbott MP (@HackneyAbbott) October 5, 2012
Despite the moral bankruptcy of their stances having been glaringly apparent, none of them has apologized.
As Chavez abused human rights and censored the press he was praised by the British socialist commentator Owen Jones for having managed to
overcome “an aggressively hostile media.”
The American economist and Chavez cheerleader Mark Weisbrot would be introduced as an “expert” on the regime as he toured US studios with his punditry.
Thus the chutzpah of the far Left is passed down the generations.
Perhaps more staggering is that these men on the democratic Left simply maintained a silence at the appalling suffering imposed on the country due to it taking place under the label of socialism.
The defenders of Chavez are accomplices of evil. They should not go unchallenged.