Anne Applebaum (Continuación)

Yesterday the Iranian Foreign Ministry held an international conference. Nothing unusual in that: Foreign ministries hold conferences, mostly dull ones, all the time. But this one was different. For one, "Review of the Holocaust: Global Vision" dealt with history, not current politics. Instead of the usual suspects -- deputy ministers and the like -- the invitees seem to have included David Duke, a former Ku Klux Klan leader; Georges Theil, a Frenchman who has called the Holocaust "an enormous lie"; and Fredrick Toeben, a German-born Australian whose specialty is the denial of Nazi gas chambers.

The guest list was selective: No one with any academic eminence, or indeed any scholarly credentials, was invited.…  Seguir leyendo »

In the 10 days that have passed since Alexander Litvinenko, an ex-KGB agent, died of radiation poisoning in London, we have learned a lot about his death -- haven't we?

Well, we have learned that Litvinenko died after somehow ingesting polonium-210, a relatively rare radioactive substance. We have learned that a mysterious Italian, Mario Scaramella-- a self-employed "security expert" who last year claimed that he'd found ex-KGB men selling nuclear material in the postage-stamp republic of San Marino -- has been poisoned too. We have learned that various other ex-KGB agents floating around London also have tested positive for polonium-210, as have a Piccadilly sushi restaurant, a London hotel room and a few airplanes.…  Seguir leyendo »

There was a photograph: a weeping Sudanese woman, standing before a freshly dug grave. There were statistics: 400,000 people dead, 2.5 million driven from their homes, "untold thousands" raped. There was an appeal: "Innocent civilians are being slaughtered in Darfur. You can end it," and a Web address, http://www.dayfordarfur.org.

This advertisement -- which appeared on a full page of the International Herald Tribune last week, and previously in Le Monde, the Guardian, and many other newspapers in Europe and the United States -- was truly arresting. But what really made me look twice was the slogan across the top: "When all the bodies have been buried in Darfur, how will history judge us?"…  Seguir leyendo »

" I did of course know of many of the terrible crimes of the Stalin era even while they were under way; anyone who says he knew nothing is a liar."

-- "Memoirs of a Spymaster,"

Markus Wolf, 1998

He tried hard, but when he died in his sleep last week, at 83, Markus Wolf had still not attained the elder statesman status to which he had long aspired. As chief of East Germany's foreign intelligence service, he had for three decades cultivated an aura of mystery, rejoicing in the nickname "Man Without a Face" (because Western intelligence long had no photograph of him) and in having allegedly been the model for Karla, John le Carre's fictional spymaster (though le Carre repeatedly denied it).…  Seguir leyendo »