Review: “In The Grip of Terror” – Andrei Grachev

Andrei Grachev’s “In the Grip of Terror” is a brilliant indictment of U.S.-led Western imperialism. It is the best of Michael Parenti’s “The Terrorism Trap: September 11 and Beyond”, “ The Sword & The Dollar: Imperialism, Revolution & the Arms Race”, and “Against Empire”; William Blum’s “Killing Hope: U.S. Military and CIA Interventions Since WorldContinue reading “Review: “In The Grip of Terror” – Andrei Grachev”

Review: “Scandinavian Social Democracy Today” – O. K. Timashkova

“Scandinavian Social Democracy Today” by O. K. Timashkova is one of the many books by Progress Publishers, naturally one of my favourite publishers, that I recently acquired from Gould’s Books in Australia. Obviously a Marxist-Leninist analysis of Scandinavian social democracy and so-called “democratic socialism” by a Soviet scholar intrigued me. Timashkova really dives into theContinue reading “Review: “Scandinavian Social Democracy Today” – O. K. Timashkova”

Review: “Super Profits and Crises! Modern U.S. Capitalism” – Victor Perlo

I still have one more chapter to read (“Socialism vs. Capitalism”) but I couldn’t wait to share this book with everyone because this book is FRIGGIN AWESOME! Victor Perlo was a Marxist-Leninist economist and statistician. In “Super Profits and Crises! Modern U.S. Capitalism,” Perlo combines an immense amount of economic and statistical data with theContinue reading “Review: “Super Profits and Crises! Modern U.S. Capitalism” – Victor Perlo”

Review: “The 900 Days: The Siege of Leningrad” – Harrison E. Salisbury

“The 900 Days: The Siege of Leningrad” by Harrison E. Salisbury…SUCKS! This book really, really sucks, and is a terrible, terrible book. The title of the book is extremely misleading; indeed, only slightly more than half the total number of pages (54%) in the book actually have anything to do with the siege of Leningrad.Continue reading “Review: “The 900 Days: The Siege of Leningrad” – Harrison E. Salisbury”

Review: “Russia’s Protectorates in Central Asia: Bukhara and Kiva, 1865-1924” – Seymour Becker

Seymour Becker’s analysis of Russia’s conquests of the khanates of Bukhara and Khiva is considered the book on the subject. However, I did not find this book lived up to its reputation in Central Asian studies circles. What is most striking about this book is Becker’s elementary understanding of imperialism and empire. Throughout much ofContinue reading “Review: “Russia’s Protectorates in Central Asia: Bukhara and Kiva, 1865-1924” – Seymour Becker”

Review: “Turkmenistan’s Foreign Policy: Positive Neutrality and the Consolidation of the Turkmen Regime” – Luca Anceschi

Luca Anceschi’s “Turkmenistan’s Foreign Policy: Positive Neutrality and the Consolidation of the Turkmen Regime” was another swing and a miss by Routledge. Just like Irina Y. Morozova’s “Socialist Revolutions in Asia,” the subject of Anceschi’s book, i.e., Turkmenistan’s doctrine of Positive Neutrality, is of great interest to me. Since the overthrow of the USSR inContinue reading “Review: “Turkmenistan’s Foreign Policy: Positive Neutrality and the Consolidation of the Turkmen Regime” – Luca Anceschi”

Early Thoughts: “Russia’s Protectorates in Central Asia: Bukhara and Kiva, 1865-1924” – Seymour Becker

Seymour Becker’s analysis of Russia’s conquests of the khanates of Bukhara and Khiva is considered the book on the subject. Although I am only about 70 pages into the book, what I find most striking about this book is Becker’s inability to understand Lenin’s theory of imperialism and his determination to prove that Russia’s motivesContinue reading “Early Thoughts: “Russia’s Protectorates in Central Asia: Bukhara and Kiva, 1865-1924” – Seymour Becker”

Review: “Poles, Jews, and the Politics of Nationality: The Bund and the Polish Socialist Party in Late Tsarist Russia, 1892-1914” – Joshua D. Zimmerman

Joshua D. Zimmerman’s “Poles, Jews, and the Politics of Nationality: The Bund and the Polish Socialist Party in Late Tsarist Russia, 1892-1914” is an excellent, well researched, highly informative, and widely accessible analysis of Polish-Jewish relations and the national question within the late tsarist empire. Zimmerman begins the book by describing the origins of theContinue reading “Review: “Poles, Jews, and the Politics of Nationality: The Bund and the Polish Socialist Party in Late Tsarist Russia, 1892-1914” – Joshua D. Zimmerman”

Review: “The Formation of the Uzbek Nation-State: A Study in Transition” – Anita Sengupta

Anita Sengupta’s “The Formation of the Uzbek Nation-State: A Study in Transition” is a highly theoretical examination of nation-state formation. Unlike Adeeb Khalid, Adrienne Edgar, Arne Haugen, and other Central Asia scholars, Sengupta’s primary focus is not on the actual establishment of Uzbekistan, a former Soviet republic, nor Soviet nationalities policy, but how the transformationContinue reading “Review: “The Formation of the Uzbek Nation-State: A Study in Transition” – Anita Sengupta”

Review: “Making Uzbekistan: Nation, Empire, and Revolution in the Early USSR” – Adeeb Khalid

Adeeb Khalid’s “Making Uzbekistan: Nation, Empire, and Revolution in the Early USSR” is a landmark study of the creation of the state of Uzbekistan and national territorial delimitation in Soviet Central Asia. The haphazard and seemingly irrational borders of the five Central Asian republics — Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, and Turkmenistan — has often beenContinue reading “Review: “Making Uzbekistan: Nation, Empire, and Revolution in the Early USSR” – Adeeb Khalid”

Review: “Lady Death: The Memoirs of Stalin’s Sniper” – Lyudmila Pavlichenko

With 309 confirmed Nazi kills, Lydumila Pavlichenko was the most successful female sniper in the history of modern warfare. In these memoirs Pavlichenko recounts her experience during the Siege of Odessa and the Siege of Sevastopol. Pavlichenko wasn’t just a sniper; she was a sniper that specialized in hunting enemy snipers! A sniper sniper! Pavlichenko’sContinue reading “Review: “Lady Death: The Memoirs of Stalin’s Sniper” – Lyudmila Pavlichenko”

Review: “How the National Question was Solved in Soviet Central Asia (A Reply to Falsifiers)” – R. Tuzmuhamedov

R. Tuzmuhamedov’s “How the National Question was Solved in Soviet Central Asia” offers a superb analysis of the socialist transformation of Soviet Central Asia. Most of the book is what you would expect from something published by Progress Publishers: constant praise for Lenin and the Great October Socialist Revolution (not that I think that’s aContinue reading “Review: “How the National Question was Solved in Soviet Central Asia (A Reply to Falsifiers)” – R. Tuzmuhamedov”

Review: “Tajikistan: A Political and Social History” – Kirill Nourzhanov and Christian Bleuer

Kirill Nourzhanov and Christian Bleuer’s “Tajikistan: A Political and Social History” offers the most comprehensive analysis of the history of Tajikistan that I have ever read. The main purpose of the book is to understand the causes of the Tajik Civil War (1992-97), one of the deadliest conflicts in the former USSR. More specifically, NourzhanovContinue reading “Review: “Tajikistan: A Political and Social History” – Kirill Nourzhanov and Christian Bleuer”

Review: “Ethnicity, Nationalism and Conflict in the South Caucasus: Nagorno-Karabakh and the Legacy of Soviet Nationalities Policy” – Ohannes Geukjian

Ohannes Geukjian’s “Ethnicity, Nationalism and Conflict in the South Caucasus: Nagorno-Karabakh and the Legacy of Soviet Nationalities Policy” offers a comprehensive and rather unique analysis of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict and Soviet nationalities policy in the South Caucasus. A professor at the American University in Beirut, Lebanon, Geukjian’s analysis of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict is unique inContinue reading “Review: “Ethnicity, Nationalism and Conflict in the South Caucasus: Nagorno-Karabakh and the Legacy of Soviet Nationalities Policy” – Ohannes Geukjian”

Review: “The Establishment of National Republics in Soviet Central Asia” – Arne Haugen

“The Establishment of National Republics in Soviet Central Asia” by Arne Haugen is the Das Kapital of Soviet nationalities policies, especially in Central Asia. Haugen, a Norwegian scholar, methodically and scientifically examines Soviet national territorial delimitation in Central Asia. In this book Haugen examines many of the issues raised in Western scholarly works on SovietContinue reading “Review: “The Establishment of National Republics in Soviet Central Asia” – Arne Haugen”

Soviet Nationalities Policy and Territorial Delimitation: “Divide at impera” or something else?

Have you ever looked at a map of Central Asia and the Caucasus? If you answered ‘yes’, then you have more than likely wondered why the borders of many of the now independent states in these regions of the former Soviet Union are so confusing and seemingly irrational. The strategic and fertile Ferghana Valley, forContinue reading “Soviet Nationalities Policy and Territorial Delimitation: “Divide at impera” or something else?”