Labour and the Gulag
Russia and the Seduction of the British Left
The Labour Party welcomed the Russian Revolution in 1917: it paved the way for the birth of a socialist superpower and ushered in a new era of Soviet governance. Labour excused the Bolshevik excesses and prepared for its own revolution in Britain. In 1929, Stalin deported hundreds of thousands of men, women and children to work in labour camps. Subjected to appalling treatment, thousands died. When news of the camps leaked out in Britain, there were protests demanding the
government ban imports of timber cut by slave labourers.
The Labour government of the day dismissed mistreatment claims as Tory propaganda and blocked appeals for an inquiry. Despite the Cabinet privately acknowledging the harsh realities of the work camps, Soviet denials were publicly repeated as fact. One Labour minister even defended them as part of ‘a remarkable economic experiment’.
Labour and the Gulag explains how Britain’s Labour Party was seduced by the promise of a socialist utopia and enamoured of a Russian Communist system it sought to emulate. It reveals the moral compromises Labour made, and how it turned its back on the victims in order to further its own political agenda.
‘The best book of British political history for years.’
‘A splendid book, an incredibly powerful
indictment of a generation of the Left.’
‘A scholarly and passionate indictment of Labour's complicity
with Soviet oppression. An important book on how a
'progressive' approach to foreign policy can conceal systematic murder on a vast scale.’
Lord Maurice Glasman
‘A compelling work of history - at once scrupulous, angry and humane.
Told with a masterly eye for detail and an unflinching commitment to the truth.’
TITLES IN PREPARATION
What's Wrong with Marx?
A examination and critique, drawn extensively from their own writings, of the corrosive political ideas of Marx, Engels, Lenin and Trotsky
Tapesty of Tears - Journeys Into the Gulag
The history of the notorious Siberian Arctic Gulag camps of Norilsk, and the stories of those who were sent there