Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Alexander Solzhenitsyn: Facing Evil

“Violence can only be concealed by a lie, and the lie can only be maintained by violence. Any man who has once proclaimed violence as his method is inevitably forced to take the lie as his principle.” --Alexander Solzhenitsyn

Actually, it started with a lie and the war on existence. The comments section to following article contains some wonderful personal anecdotes ...

BBC: "Alexander Solzhenitsyn dies at 89 "

Russian writer Alexander Solzhenitsyn, who exposed Stalin's prison system in his novels and spent 20 years in exile, has died near Moscow at the age of 89. The author of The Gulag Archipelago and One Day In The Life Of Ivan Denisovich, who returned to Russia in 1994, died of either a stroke or heart failure.The Nobel laureate (...) (a)fter returning to Russia, (...) wrote several polemics on Russian history and identity. (...) >>>

The Obituary includes video material: "... an old-fashioned moralist who saw the world in black and white" - relativists, being stripped of ethics as a philosophical field, fail to understand that a compromise between good and evil does not exist: a compromise in this case would be a mere 55 million victims of Left and Right totalitarian experiments instead of the full 110 million. Any concession - even the smallest - would still be evil.

"The good has nothing to gain from evil, evil has everything to gain from the good." --Ayn Rand

at Econ Blog has an excerpt worth quoting in full:

Econ Blog: "The Best of Solzhenitsyn"

Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn's passing reminds me of my favorite passage from his writings:

"But let us be generous. We will not shoot them. We will not pour salt water into them, nor bury them in bedbugs, nor bridle them up into a "swan dive," nor keep them on sleepless "stand-up" for a week, nor kick them with jackboots, nor beat them with rubber truncheons, nor squeeze their skulls with iron rings, nor push them into a cell so that they lie atop one another like pieces of baggage - we will not do any of the things they did! But for the sake of our country and our children we have the duty to seek them all out and bring them all to trial! Not to put them on trial so much as their crimes. And to compel each one of them to announce loudly:
"Yes, I was an executioner and a murderer." --The Gulag Archipelago

If you can read this aloud without tearing up, you're made of sterner stuff than me. Alas, three and a half decades after the publication of The Gulag Archipelago, it looks like we'll never see the Russian analog of the Nuremberg trials. (...) >>>

More excerpts of Solzhenitsyn's brilliant work in the comments section >>>

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