Alexander Solzhenitsyn was a big hero in the USA when his book Gulag Archipelago was published here and won the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1970. The three-volume book is a narrative relying on eyewitness testimony and primary research material, as well as his own experiences as a prisoner in a Soviet forced labor camp. The book, was, of course, banned in the bad old USSR-darn those commies and their censorship!
So imagine my surprise when I found out his last book, Two Hundred Years Together, about Jews in Russia, was banned in almost every language, except German and French. Let’s see what Wikipedia, which appears to be edited by Mossad, has to say about it:
“The book stirred controversy and is viewed by most historians as unreliable in both factual data and ideological approach, as well as antisemitic.” This is CLASSIC Zionist BS-any criticism of Israel, Zionism, or any vaguely negative statement about Jews and you are Hitler.
Naturally, I had to find a copy in English to check it out, because I had found Solzhenitsyn to be unusually honest-even if it did get him in trouble. One warning-if you are going to read Solzhenitsyn, set out a big block of time, because once you start, its hard to stop.
The book is as blazingly honest as an Old Testament prophet, but is not anti-Semitic; that is, if anti-Semitic means hatred for Jews. Why THIS book is “historically unreliable” and Gulag was spot on has more to do with politics (Cold War vs. unconditional support for Israel) than his methods. After all, he lived through most of the period he discusses and the footnotes are voluminous.
He pries into the human condition in general and his own human condition in particular. This is what happened, but why did it happen? What motivated people to do that?
And the question that seems to haunt him: Can we do better in the future?
He quotes two Israelis: “In reality, this world is not solely divided on the grounds of one’s attitude toward Jews, as we sometimes think owing to our excessive sensitivity.”
A. Voronel agrees: “The Jews pay too much attention to anti-Semites, and too little — to themselves.”
NOW do you see why it is banned in English?