The Magazine

Two Roads Converged

How fascism and communism led to totalitarianism.

Aug 12, 2013, Vol. 18, No. 45 • By RONALD RADOSH
Widget tooltip
Audio version Single Page Print Larger Text Smaller Text Alerts

How else to explain the enduring admiration for tyrants like Fidel Castro and the late Hugo Chávez in many sectors of today’s leftist intelligentsia? Indeed, while Eastern European dissidents came to give up their hope for a humane socialism, the Western left persists in standing behind their dream of a socialist future. But Tismaneanu warns that there is no easy road to any kind of utopia in which a “delusional vision of mandatory happiness” exists. All we can do is remain steady amidst the threats to a liberal social order based on private property, the market, and individual freedom—from whatever source those threats emanate. The “devil in history” has changed since the era of communism and fascism; its forms and adherents are still with us. 

Ronald Radosh is coauthor, with Allis Radosh, of A Safe Haven: Harry S. Truman and the Founding of Israel