I can't say that I am surprised, for two reasons. First, Hemingway had a rather vitriolic reaction to John Dos Passos's disillusionment with the Stalinist influence on the Loyalist side in the Spanish Civil War. Second: Hemingway was one of the signers of the infamous “Open Letter of the 400” [Aug. 14, 1939] To All Active Supporters of Democracy and Peace:The text of an Open Letter calling for greater unity of the anti-fascist forces and strengthening of the front against aggression through closer cooperation with the Soviet Union, released on August 14 by 400 leading Americans.As published in Soviet Russia Today , v. 8, no. 5 (Sept. 1939), pp. 24-25, 28At least one of the ironies of the letter is that by being signed before the Nonagression pact between Germany and the Soviet Union, it was very anti-Fascist, a line which changed after the Nonaagression pact was signed.Here are some excerpts.On the domestic scene the reactionaries are attempting to split the democratic front by similar tactics. Realizing that here in America they cannot get far with a deﬁnitely pro-fascist appeal, they strive to pervert American antifascist sentiment to their own ends. With the aim of turning anti-fascist feeling against the Soviet Union they have encouraged the fantastic falsehood that the USSR and the totalitarian states are basically alike. .... 7. From the viewpoint of cultural freedom, the difference between the Soviet Union and the Fascist countries is most striking. ....9. The Soviet Union considers political dictatorship a transitional form and has shown a steadily expanding democracy in every sphere. Its epoch-making new Constitution guarantees Soviet citizens universal suffrage, civil liberties, the right to employment, to leisure, to free education, to free medical care, to material security in sickness and old age, to equality of the sexes in all ﬁelds of activity, and to equality of all races and nationalities. Anyone who has read this Open Letter will laugh at subsequent Open Letters from "intellectuals." Keep "intellectuals" and politics away from each other.
The Jews had the same problem when meeting Jesus of Nazareth. Their high level of lawyer knowledge and specialization in the Law, prevented them from recognizing the prophet foretold by Moses and other Jewish prophets. It is an interesting human problem, that the more people know, the less wise they become. The more they know about the law, the less they obey the law.
Maybe this would be easier if we just listed the people who weren't Communist spies in the 60s.
Paul Johnson, in "Intellectuals," says that Hemingway lectured George Orwell, criticizing him for mentioning leftist atrocities during the Spanish Civil War, in "Homage to Catalonia."
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