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By Paul Lendvai

On October 23, 1956, a favored rebellion opposed to Soviet rule swept via Hungary like a strength of nature, basically to be mercilessly beaten via Soviet tanks twelve days later. in simple terms now, fifty years after these harrowing occasions, can the entire tale learn. This ebook is a robust eyewitness account and a gripping historical past of the rebellion in Hungary that heralded the longer term liberation of japanese Europe.

Paul Lendvai was once a tender journalist masking politics in Hungary while the rebellion broke out. He knew the govt. officers and revolutionaries concerned. He was once at the entrance strains of the scholar protests and the bloody road fights and he observed the innovative executive smashed via the crimson military. during this riveting, deeply own, and infrequently irreverent booklet, Lendvai weaves his personal reports with in-depth reportage to solve the advanced chain of occasions top as much as and together with the rebellion, its brutal suppression, and its far-reaching political repercussions in Hungary and neighboring japanese Bloc nations. He attracts upon particular interviews with Russian and previous KGB officers, survivors of the Soviet backlash, and family members of these performed. He unearths new facts from closed tribunals and files stored mystery in Soviet and Hungarian data. Lendvai's breathtaking narrative exhibits how the rebellion, whereas tragic, introduced a beautiful blow to Communism that helped to eventually lead to its demise.

One Day That Shook the Communist World is the simplest account of those unheard of events.

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This pronouncement elicited nice pleasure in Hungary. Even the wary Nagy, to whom Ambassador Andropov officially passed the textual content in Parliament, used to be so delighted that during an improvised speech within the early afternoon of 31 October he introduced to demonstrators on Parliament sq. the “triumph” and the “victory of the innovative struggle. ” “We shall no longer tolerate any interference into Hungary’s inside issues. . . . we're experiencing the 1st day of the victory of our sovereignty and our independence. . . . lengthy reside the autonomous, loose, democratic Republic of Hungary! lengthy dwell the loose Hungary! ”2 Appearances have been misleading. The Soviet Presidium had unanimously made up our minds within the morning hours of that day—in stark distinction to the spirit of simply twenty-four hours earlier—to overwhelm the Hungarian Revolution by means of the strength of fingers. Khrushchev used to be so preoccupied with the total challenge in Hungary that in keeping with his memoirs, whilst he ultimately acquired to mattress after the all-night consultation of 30 to 31 October the place he had prompt a metamorphosis within the past evaluate of the placement and the adoption of an army resolution, “it stored [him] from having the ability to sleep. ”3 the true reasons of this about-face within the Kremlin are nonetheless a bone of competition between historians and specialists on Hungarian occasions. in spite of the fact that, earlier than we try to appear into the main points and outcomes of this fateful determination, allow us to first study the contradictory occasions in Hungary and principally in Budapest. The Dams Are Breaking within the final days of October, Budapest was once the scene of indescribable pleasure on the occur leap forward completed through the revolution. whilst discussing the inconceivably fast cave in of the Hungarian employees’ social gathering (what the Communist occasion used to be known as after 1948), one has to conjure up its tremendously important place within the method of presidency. The occasion, with its club of 800,000 to 900,000 (the fl uctuation was once as a result of quite a few “vigilance campaigns”), had 6,225 full-time political celebration employees, 9,966 administrative employees, and 1,079 technical employees. there have been one other 1,400 political staff of the Union of operating formative years on my own, plus the equipment of the alternate unions and the women’s and children’s firms. by the way, the variety of humans hired via the party-controlled kingdom equipment in 1955 amounted to 280,000—and that during a rustic of 9 million population! four In his memories Ferenc Donáth, the above-quoted reformer and farsighted philosopher, posed the next query: “What does it indicate if the operating plenty absorb hands and struggle with a weeklong normal strike opposed to a regime that has existed for 8 years and the place the ability is utilized within the identify of the operating classification? ”5 in the course of these days many social gathering activists from substantial issues and places of work have been burdened, chased away, or mocked, whereas others attempted, without or with luck, to affix the present victors. In his pressured exile within the Romanian Sagov, Nagy was once to write down: “When i used to be put on the head of the govt., there has been not a celebration in the back of me.

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