Conversations with Stalin

Conversations with Stalin

Milovan Djilas

Language: English

Pages: 210

ISBN: 0156225913

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

A memoir by the former vice president of Yugoslavia describing three visits to Moscow and his encounters there with Stalin. Index. Translated by Michael B. Petrovich.



















archives from the Kremlin. I proposed to Stalin that the Comintern direct a proclamation to the German soldiers. He agreed, though he felt no good would come of it. Soon after, I too had to leave Moscow. Stalin did not leave; he was determined to defend it. And at that most dramatic moment he held a parade in Red Square on the anniversary of the October Revolution. The divisions before him were leaving for the front. One cannot express how great a moral significance was exerted when people

impression that it pleased him, though he did not betray his feelings in any way. I do not remember the reason, but I happened to remark, “Without industrialization the Soviet Union could not have preserved itself and waged such a war.” Stalin added, “It was precisely over this that we quarreled with Trotsky and Bukharin.” And this was all—here in front of the map—that I ever heard from him about these opponents of his: they had quarreled! In the dining room two or three people from the

not have been difficult for me, even then, to detect in any other author of the same qualities that his style was colorless, meager, and an unblended jumble of vulgar journalism and the Bible. Sometimes the idolatry acquired ridiculous proportions: we seriously believed that the war would end in 1942, because Stalin said so, and when this failed to happen, the prophecy was forgotten—and the prophet lost none of his superhuman power. In actual fact, what happened to the Yugoslav Communists is what

despotism, the bureaucracy, the narrowness, and the servility that he imposed on his country. It is indeed true that no one can take freedom from another without losing his own. 2 The occasion for my departure to Moscow was the divergence between the policy of Yugoslavia and that of the USSR toward Albania. In late December of 1947 there came from Moscow a dispatch in which Stalin demanded that someone of the Yugoslav Central Committee—he spoke of me only by name—come in order to bring into

Party, 1955, found Djilas being tried and sentenced (a sentence of three years was passed but suspended) for “hostile propaganda” arising from an interview he gave The New York Times. After the uprising in Hungary, Djilas criticized the Yugoslav Government’s position toward the brutal Soviet action and was, as a result, sentenced to three years in prison. The manuscripts of his two books were, shortly before he was arrested, sent out of Yugoslavia, and the publication of The New Class caused him

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