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Author: Eugeniusz Smolar

The circle of hope: Samizdat, tamizdat and radio

I left Poland in 1970 with no hope that things would ever change for the better. Back then, would you dare to hope that Soviet communism could implode with just a little outside help?

I first got involved in dissident activity with a group of friends in high school during the early 1960s. During my studies at Warsaw University, my engagement with the movement grew. However it was all rather innocent then – mostly discussions about the past, present and the future, and some attempts to unnerve communist activists during public meetings at the university by asking awkward questions on issues such as the Katyń massacre or the exploitation of Poland by the Soviet Union. It was innocent until Jacek Kuroń and Karol Modzelewski were imprisoned for three years in 1965. After that, our group – built around Adam Michnik – started to be harassed by the secret police.

May 2, 2019 - Eugeniusz Smolar

Edward Lucas Strikes Back

This review was originally published in New Eastern Europe Issue 4/2012. Edward Lucas's response to this review is in the current issue of New Eastern Europe 1/2013. Edward Lucas wants to alert western decision makers about the threat coming from Moscow. The question is: do we really need spies to “decode” or uncover Russia’s true […]

January 3, 2013 - Eugeniusz Smolar

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