Center for Strategic Communication

Intellectuals and their Romance with Political Barbarism

[by Mark Safranski, a.k.a. “zen“] Martin Heidegger, Eric Hobsbawm and Ezra Pound A  meandering post inspired by Reason Magazine and Charles Cameron. Reason.com is best known for giving a scrappy libertarian take on current events, crime, technology and pop culture,...

Rofer on The Fall of Beria and Putin’s Vanishing Act

[by Mark Safranski, a.k.a. “zen“] Lavrenty Beria (center)  Russian President and brazen strongman Vladimir Putin reappeared Monday, looking wan and a little uncomfortable for the cameras, but jesting at the mad swirl of internet rumors sparked by his extended absence...

Early Endorsement

[by Mark Safranski, a.k.a “zen“] Stalin: Volume I. Paradoxes of Power 1878-1928 by Stephen Kotkin I’ve read quite a bit about old Uncle Joe. Most of the major biographies of Stalin sit on my shelf, including those from Adam Ulam, Roy Medvedev, Robert Tucker, Simon...

On Dealing with the Hermit Kingdom

By Patricia H Kushlis Does North Korea’s leadership belong in the madhouse or Alcatraz as so many of our right wing politicians, militarists and some journalists seem to suggest?  Or are they behaving as sanely – at least from their perspective – as their...

Sixty Years after Stalin

Sixty years ago one of the greatest monsters in history, a mass-murderer of tens of millions many times over, the yellow-eyed, “Kremlin mountaineer”  breathed his last. We live, deaf to the land beneath us, Ten steps away no one hears our speeches, All we hear is the...