Walter Duranty

Walter Duranty (May 25, 1884 – October 3, 1957) was a Liverpool-born, Anglo-American journalist who served as the Moscow Bureau Chief of The New York Times for fourteen years (1922–1936) following the Bolshevik victory in the Russian Civil War (1918–1921).

In 1932 Duranty received a Pulitzer Prize for a series of reports about the Soviet Union, eleven of which were published in June 1931. He was criticized for his subsequent denial of widespread famine (1932–1933) in the USSR,[1] most particularly the mass starvation in Ukraine. Years later, there were calls to revoke his Pulitzer. In 1990, The New York Times, which submitted his works for the prize in 1932, wrote that his later articles denying the famine constituted "some of the worst reporting to appear in this newspaper."[2]

Walter Duranty
1919 photo
Walter Duranty

25 May 1884
Died3 October 1957 (aged 73)
Alma materEmmanuel College, Cambridge

Early life and career

Duranty was born in a middle-class Merseyside family, the son of Emmeline (née Hutchins) and William Steel Duranty. His grandparents had moved to Birkenhead on the Wirral from the West Indies in 1842 and established a successful merchant business there in which his father worked. He studied at Harrow, one of Britain's most prestigious public schools, but a sudden collapse in the family business led to a transfer to Bedford College. Nevertheless, he then gained a scholarship to study at Emmanuel College, Cambridge, where he graduated with a first-class degree.[3]

After completing his education, Duranty moved to Paris. Duranty's biographer, Sally J. Taylor, said that Duranty met Aleister Crowley and participated in magic rituals with him during this period. According to Taylor, Duranty became involved in a relationship with Crowley's mistress Jane Cheron, and eventually married her.[4] Crowley called Walter Duranty "my old friend" and quoted from Duranty's book "I Write as I Please" in his book Magick Without Tears.[5]

During the Great War, Duranty first worked as a reporter for The New York Times.[6] A story Duranty filed about the Paris Peace Conference, 1919 gained him wider notice as a journalist. He then moved to Riga, the capital of Latvia, to cover events in the newly independent Baltic states.

Career in Moscow, 1922–1934

Duranty moved to the Soviet Union in 1921.

On holiday in France in 1924, Duranty's left leg was injured in a train wreck. After an operation, the surgeon discovered gangrene; and the leg was amputated. Once he had recovered, Duranty resumed his career as a journalist in the Soviet Union. During the New Economic Policy with its mixed economy, Duranty's articles from Moscow did not draw wide attention. It was after the advent of the first five-year plan (1928–1933), which aimed to transform Soviet industry and agriculture, that Duranty made his mark.

In 1929, he was granted an exclusive interview with Joseph Stalin that greatly enhanced his reputation as a journalist. Duranty was to remain in Moscow for twelve years, settling in the United States in 1934. Thereafter, he remained on retainer for The New York Times, which required him to spend several months a year in Moscow. It was in this capacity that Duranty reported on the show trials of Stalin's political opponents in 1936–1938.

Views on the Soviet Union, 1931 and after

In the 1931 series of reports for which he received the 1932 Pulitzer Prize for Correspondence, Duranty argued that the Russian people were "Asiatic" in thought: they valued communal effort and required autocratic government. Individuality and private enterprise were alien concepts to the Russian people, which only led to social disruption and were unacceptable to them just as tyranny and Communism were unacceptable to the Western world.

Failed attempts, since the time of Peter the Great, to apply Western ideals in Russia were a form of European colonialism, he wrote, that had been finally swept away by the 1917 Revolution. Vladimir Lenin and his New Economic Policy were both failures tainted by Western thought. Duranty felt that Stalin scrapped the New Economic Policy because he had no political competition. The famine in Ukraine demonstrated the lack of organized opposition to Stalin, because his position was never truly threatened by the catastrophe; Stalin's purges surely contributed to this political vacuum. Stalin succeeded in doing what Lenin could only attempt to do, i.e., he "re-established a dictator of the imperial idea and put himself in charge" by means of intimidation. "Stalin didn't look upon himself as a dictator, but as a 'guardian of a sacred flame' that he called Stalinism for lack of a better name."[7] Stalin's five-year plan was an attempt to effect a new way of life for the Russian people.

Duranty argued that the Soviet Union's mentality in 1931 greatly differed from the perception created by Karl Marx's ideas. Duranty claimed: "It would be more proper to refer to the principle present during the period of Stalin's reign as 'Stalinism'",[8] which Duranty viewed as a progression and integration of Marxism combined with Leninism. In one of the articles submitted for the Pulitzer Prize ("Stalinism smashes foes in Marx's name", 24 June 1931) Duranty gives his views of the Soviet actions in the countryside that eventually led to the famine.[9]

what is happening now to the Kulaks is leading to the same result—the kulaks who, under Leninism were an almost privileged class, encouraged to work and prosper (did not Bukharin then Leninism's chief spokesman, ... once say to the peasants, "Enrich yourselves," that is, become kulaks better than—or a different class from—your fellows by individual, self—helping effort?) "The liquidation of the kulak as a class" runs the present slogan whose meaning in terms of reality is that 5,000,000 human beings, 1,000,000 families of the best and most energetic farmers are to be dispossessed, dispersed, demolished, to be literally melted or "liquidated" into the rising flood of classless proletarians. Here, when you get right down to it, is the supreme justification from the Bolshevik angle of the cruel and often bloody pressure upon "the former People" or class enemies from Czar to kulak. Where Marxism theorized Stalin acts. Marxism says, "Eliminate class distinctions" and Stalinism does so by the simple and effective process of destructions, as Tamerlane destroyed his enemies or the Hebrew prophet [Samuel] slew for the glory of Jehovah.

Duranty sometimes claimed that individuals being sent to the labor camps in the Russian North, Siberia or Kazakhstan were given a choice between rejoining Soviet society or becoming underprivileged outsiders. However, he also said that, for those who could not accept the system, "the final fate of such enemies is death". Though describing the system as cruel, he said he has "no brief for or against it, nor any purpose save to try to tell the truth". He ends the article with the claim that the brutal collectivization campaign was motivated by the "hope or promise of a subsequent raising up" of Asian-minded masses in the Soviet Union which only history could judge.

Rather than just repeating the Stalinist viewpoint, Duranty often admitted the brutality of the Stalinist system then proceeded to both explain and defend why dictatorship or brutality were necessary. In addition, he repeated Soviet views as his own opinion, as if his 'observations' from Moscow had given him deeper insights into the country as a whole.

Duranty's motivations have been hotly debated and his reporting is faulted for being too uncritical of the USSR, presenting Soviet propaganda as legitimate reporting.[10]

In his praise of Joseph Stalin as an imperial, national, "authentically Russian" dictator to be compared to Ivan the Terrible, Duranty was expressing views similar to those of some White (Russian) émigrés during the same period,[11] namely the Smenovekhovtsy movement, echoing still earlier hopes by the Eurasianism movement and the Mladorossi group currents in the 1920s. (Of course, Stalin was not Russian, but Georgian, with distant Ossetian ancestry — his paternal great-grandfather was an Ossetian[12]—a fact that he himself downplayed during his lifetime.)

In 1933, Stalin rewarded this praise and appreciation by saying that Duranty tried "to tell the truth about our country".[13]

Reporting the 1932–1933 famine

In The New York Times on 31 March 1933, Walter Duranty denounced reports of a famine and, in particular, he attacked Gareth Jones, a British journalist who had witnessed the starving in Ukraine and issued a widely published press release about their plight two days earlier in Berlin. (Jones' release was itself immediately preceded by three unsigned articles describing the famine in the Manchester Guardian.)[14]

Under the title "Russians Hungry, But Not Starving" Duranty's article described the situation as follows:

In the middle of the diplomatic duel between Great Britain and the Soviet Union over the accused British engineers, there appears from a British source a big scare story in the American press about famine in the Soviet Union, with "thousands already dead and millions menaced by death from starvation.

The "diplomatic duel" was a reference to the arrest of engineers from the Metropolitan-Vickers company who were working in the USSR. Accused with Soviet citizens of "wrecking" (sabotaging) the plant they were building, they were the subjects of one in a series of show trials presided over by Andrey Vyshinsky[15] during the First Five Year Plan.

Five months later (23 August 1933), in another New York Times article, Duranty wrote:

Any report of a famine in Russia is today an exaggeration or malignant propaganda. The food shortage, however, which has affected the whole population in the last year and particularly in the grain-producing provinces — the Ukraine, North Caucasus [i.e. Kuban Region], and the Lower Volga — has, however, caused heavy loss of life.

Duranty concluded "it is conservative to suppose" that, in certain provinces with a total population of over 40 million, mortality had "at least trebled." [16] The duel in the press over the famine stories did not damage esteem for Duranty. The Nation then described his reporting as "the most enlightened, dispassionate dispatches from a great nation in the making which appeared in any newspaper in the world."[17]

Following sensitive negotiations in November 1933 that resulted in the establishment of relations between the U.S. and the U.S.S.R., a dinner was given for Soviet Foreign Minister Maxim Litvinov in New York City's Waldorf-Astoria Hotel. Each of the attendees' names was read in turn, politely applauded by the guests, until Duranty's. Whereupon, Alexander Woollcott wrote, "the one really prolonged pandemonium was evoked ... Indeed, one quite got the impression that America, in a spasm of discernment, was recognizing both Russia and Walter Duranty."[17]

Sally J. Taylor, author of the critical Duranty biography Stalin's Apologist, argues that his reporting from the USSR was a key factor in U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt's 1933 decision to grant official recognition to the Soviet Union.[6]

Later career

In 1934, Duranty left Moscow and visited the White House in the company of Soviet officials, including Litvinov. He continued as a Special Correspondent for The New York Times until 1940.

He wrote several books on the Soviet Union after 1940. His name was on a list maintained by writer George Orwell of those Orwell considered to be unsuitable as possible writers for the British Foreign Office's Information Research Department owing to the possibility of them being too sympathetic to communism or possibly paid communist agents.[18]


Duranty died in Orlando, Florida in 1957 and is interred at Greenwood Cemetery.

Scholarship on Duranty's work

Duranty was reporting at a time when opinions were strongly divided on the Soviet Union and its leadership.

The admission of the USSR to the League of Nations in 1934 was viewed optimistically by some. Others saw an inevitable confrontation between fascism and communism as requiring individuals to take one side or the other. After German invasion of the USSR, Joseph E. Davies, former U.S. Ambassador to the Soviet Union (1936–1938), wrote positively about "Russia and its people in their gallant struggle to preserve the peace until ruthless aggression made war inevitable". In the same book he referred to Stalin as a "decent and clean-living" man and "a great leader."[19]

Many reporters of Duranty's time slanted their coverage in favour of the Soviet Union. Some drew a contrast with the capitalist world, sinking under the weight of the Great Depression; others wrote out of a true belief in Communism; some acted out of fear of being expelled from Moscow, which would result in a loss of livelihood. At home many of their editors found it hard to believe a state would deliberately starve millions of its own people. Duranty's reports for The New York Times were a source of much frustration for the paper's readers in 1932, because they directly contradicted the line taken on the paper's own editorial page.[13]

The Holodomor (1932-1933) and the 1938 Moscow Show Trials

Duranty has been criticized for deferring to Stalin and the Soviet Union's official propaganda rather than reporting news, both when he was living in Moscow and later. For example, he later defended Stalin's Moscow Trials of 1938, which were staged to eliminate potential challengers to Stalin's authority.[20]

The major controversy regarding his work remains his reporting on the great famine of 1932–33 that struck certain parts of the USSR after agriculture was forcibly and rapidly "collectivised". He published reports stating "there is no famine or actual starvation nor is there likely to be" and "any report of a famine in Russia is today an exaggeration or malignant propaganda".[21] In Ukraine, the region most affected, this man-made disaster is today known as the Holodomor.

Since the late 1960s, Duranty's work has come increasingly under fire for failing to report the famine. Robert Conquest was critical of Duranty's reporting in The Great Terror (1968), The Harvest of Sorrow (1986) and, most recently, in Reflections on a Ravaged Century (1990). Joseph Alsop and Andrew Stuttaford spoke out against Duranty during the Pulitzer Prize controversy.[22] "Lying was Duranty's stock in trade," commented Alsop. In his memoirs British journalist Malcolm Muggeridge, then The Manchester Guardian's correspondent in Moscow, talked of Duranty's "persistent lying" [23] and elsewhere called him "the greatest liar I ever knew.".[24]

What Duranty knew and when

It was clear, meanwhile, from Duranty's comments to others that he was fully aware of the scale of the calamity. In 1934 he privately reported to the British embassy in Moscow that as many as 10 million people may have died, directly or indirectly, from famine in the Soviet Union in the previous year.[25]

Both British intelligence[26] and American engineer Zara Witkin (1900–1940),[27] who worked in the USSR from 1932 to 1934,[28] confirmed that Duranty knowingly misrepresented information about the nature and scale of the famine.

There are some indications that Duranty's deliberate misdirection concerning the famine may have been the result of duress. Conquest believed Duranty was being blackmailed over his sexual proclivities.[29]

In his 1944 book, Duranty speaks in a chastened tone about his 1932–34 reporting, but he offers only a Stalinist defense of it.[30] He admits that people starved, including not just "class enemies" but also loyal communists,[30] but he says that Stalin was forced to order the requisitions to equip the Red Army enough to deter an imminent Japanese invasion[30] (a reprise of the Siberian Intervention of a decade earlier)—in other words, to save the Soviet Union from impending military doom, not because Stalin wanted to collectivize the population at gunpoint, on pain of death.[30] Although it is likely that Stalin did expect a Japanese invasion (expecting foreign attacks all the time), historians today do not accept the view that it was his sole motivation and that Stalin did not intend any cruel and ruthless political dominance of the Soviet population. Of the notion that Stalin did intend the latter, Duranty said, "What a misconception!"[30] But today that assertion of "misconception" is itself well established to be at best a self-delusion and at worst a knowing repetition of false Stalinist propaganda, the falsehood being demonstrable today in light of reams of evidence now publicly available (in the post–Secret Speech and post-Soviet eras) but not publicly available in 1944.

Calls for revocation of Pulitzer Prize, 1990–2003

The concern over Duranty's reporting on the famine in Soviet Ukraine led to a move to posthumously and symbolically strip him of the Pulitzer Prize he received in 1932.

In response to Stalin's Apologist (1990), the critical biography by Sally J. Taylor,[6] The New York Times assigned a member of its editorial board, Karl Meyer, to write a signed editorial about Duranty's work for the Times. In a scathing piece, Meyer said (24 June 1990) that Duranty's articles were "some of the worst reporting to appear in this newspaper." Duranty, Meyer said, had bet his career on Stalin's rise and "strove to preserve it by ignoring or excusing Stalin's crimes."[13] The Pulitzer Board in 1990 reconsidered the prize but decided to preserve it as awarded.[31] Four years earlier, in a review of Robert Conquest's The Harvest of Sorrow (1986), former Moscow bureau reporter Craig Whitney wrote that Duranty effectively ignored the famine until it was almost over.

In 2003, following an international campaign by the Ukrainian Canadian Civil Liberties Association, the Pulitzer Board began a renewed inquiry, and The New York Times hired Mark von Hagen, professor of Russian history at Columbia University, to review Duranty's work as a whole. Von Hagen found Duranty's reports to be unbalanced and uncritical, and that they far too often gave voice to Stalinist propaganda. In comments to the press he stated, "For the sake of The New York Times' honor, they should take the prize away."[32] The Times sent von Hagen's report to the Pulitzer Board and left it to the Board to take whatever action they considered appropriate.[33] In a letter accompanying the report, The New York Times publisher Arthur Ochs Sulzberger, Jr. called Duranty's work "slovenly" and said it "should have been recognized for what it was by his editors and by his Pulitzer judges seven decades ago."

Ultimately, Sig Gissler, administrator of the Pulitzer Prize board, declined to revoke the award. In a press release of November 21, 2003, he stated that with regard to the 13 articles by Duranty from 1931 submitted for the award "there was not clear and convincing evidence of deliberate deception, the relevant standard in this case."[34]

Literary awards

(other than Pulitzer)

  • O. Henry Awards, First Prize, 1928, for "The Parrot", Redbook, March 1928.




  • The Curious Lottery and Other Tales of Russian Justice. New York: Coward–McCann, 1929
  • Red Economics. New York: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1932
  • Duranty Reports Russia. New York: The Viking Press, 1934
  • I Write As I Please. New York: Simon and Schuster, 1935
  • Europe—War or Peace? World Affairs Pamphlets No. 7. New York: Foreign Policy Association and Boston: World Peace Foundation, 1935.
  • Solomans Cat. Grand Rapids: Mayhew Press, 1937.
  • One Life, One Kopeck – A Novel. New York: Simon and Schuster, 1937
  • Babies Without Tails, Stories by Walter Duranty. New York: Modern Age Books, 1937
  • The Kremlin and the People. New York: Reynal & Hitchcock, 1941
  • USSR: The Story of Soviet Russia. New York: J.B. Lippincott Company, 1944
  • Stalin & Co.: The Politburo, The Men Who Run Russia. New York: W. Sloane Associates, 1949



  • "The Parrot", Redbook, March, 1928.
  • ASIA Magazine, Volume XXXV, Number 11; November, 1935.
  • ASIA Magazine, Volume XXXVI, Number 2; February, 1936.

Articles submitted for 1932 Pulitzer Prize

Eleven-part series in The New York Times

  • "Red Russia of Today Ruled by Stalinism, Not Communism" (14 June 1931)
  • "Socialism First Aim in Soviet's Program; Trade Gains Second" (16 June 1931)
  • "Stalinism Shelves World Revolt Idea; To Win Russia First" (18 June 1931)
  • "Industrial Success Emboldens Soviet in New World Policy" (19 June 1931)
  • "Trade Equilibrium is New Soviet Goal" (20 June 1931)
  • "Soviet Fixes Opinion by Widest Control" (22 June 1931)
  • "Soviet Censorship Hurts Russia Most" (23 June 1931)
  • "Stalinism Smashes Foes in Marx's Name" (24 June 1931)
  • "Red Army is Held No Menace to Peace" (25 June 1931)
  • "Stalinism Solving Minorities Problem" (26 June 1931)
  • "Stalinism's Mark is Party Discipline" (27 June 1931)

Two articles in The New York Times magazine

  • "The Russian Looks at the World" (29 March 1931)
  • "Stalin's Russia Is An Echo of Iron Ivan's" (20 December 1931)


See also


  1. ^ Choma, Lidia. "Holodomor Facts and History".
  2. ^ Meyer, Karl E. (June 24, 1990). "The Editorial Notebook; Trenchcoats, Then and Now". The New York Times. Retrieved September 30, 2016.
  3. ^ Elizabeth A. Brennan and Elizabeth C. Clarage, Who's who of Pulitzer Prize Winners, p. 71 [1].
  4. ^ Taylor, Sally J. (1990). Stalin's Apologist. Oxford University Press. pp. 28–50.
  5. ^ Crowley, Aleister (1954). Magick Without Tears (PDF). Ordo Templi Orientis. p. 38. Retrieved 24 June 2017.
  6. ^ a b c Taylor, Sally J. (1990). Stalin's Apologist. Oxford University Press.
  7. ^ Walter Duranty, Duranty Reports Russia (New York: Viking Press, 1934)
  8. ^ Walter Duranty, Duranty Reports Russia (New York: Viking Press, 1934), 238.
  9. ^ Duranty, Walter (June 24, 1931). "Stalinism Smashes Foes in Marx's Name". The New York Times. Retrieved September 30, 2016.
  10. ^ Steinberg, Jacques (October 23, 2003). "Times Should Lose Pulitzer From 30's, Consultant Says". The New York Times. Retrieved September 30, 2016.
  11. ^ Роговин, В.З. «Была ли альтернатива». Том 6. XIII. Сталин и сталинизм глазами белой эмиграции
  12. ^ "Costa book awards 2007: Young Stalin by Simon Sebag Montefiore". The Guardian. January 3, 2008. Archived from the original on September 1, 2013. Retrieved September 30, 2016.
  13. ^ a b c "The Editorial Notebook; Trenchcoats, Then and Now". The New York Times editorial on Walter Duranty, 1990-06-24
  14. ^ Malcolm Muggeridge, Chronicles of Wasted Time. Vol 1, The Green Stick, London: Fontana (pbk), p. 286. The articles appeared on 25, 27 and 28 March 1933.
  15. ^ Gordon W. Morrell, Britain confronts the Stalin Revolution: the Metro-Vickers crisis, Ontario: Wilfrid Laurier University Press, 1995.
  16. ^ Assignment in Utopia By Eugene Lyons.
  17. ^ a b Conquest, R. Reflections on a Ravaged Century, Oxford University Press, New York. 1986, p. 320.
  18. ^ John Ezard Blair's babe: Did love turn Orwell into a government stooge? The Guardian, June 21, 2003]
  19. ^ Davies, Joseph E. Mission to Moscow. Garden City Publishing, Garden City, NY, 1941
  20. ^ Robert Conquest, The Great Terror, 1968, p. //.
  21. ^ Pulitzer-Winning Lies the Weekly Standard
  22. ^ Stuttaford, Andrew (7 May 2003). "Prize Specimen – The campaign to revoke Walter Duranty's Pulitzer". National Review. Archived from the original on 19 May 2003.
  23. ^ Malcolm Muggeridge, Chronicles of Wasted Time: Vol 1 The Green Stick, London: Fontana (pbk), 1975, pp. 282–285.
  24. ^ Leroux, Charles (25 June 2003). "Bearing Witness". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved 26 April 2015.
  25. ^ "Fellow travelers and useful idiots", The New Statesman, 8 May 2017.
  26. ^ The Foreign Office and the famine: British documents on Ukraine and the Great Famine of 1932–1933 (Studies in East European nationalisms). "Duranty ... manipulated the official palaver so successfully that it was possible to interpret his article in several ways", p. xxx.
  27. ^ Ingraham, Joyce (November 23, 2004). "Zara Witkin". Retrieved September 1, 2013.
  28. ^ An American Engineer in Stalin's Russia: The Memoirs of Zara Witkin, 1932–1934, University of California Press.
  29. ^ P. Murphy, The Collective Imagination: The Creative Spirit of Free Societies, Ashgate Publishing, 2012, p. 25.
  30. ^ a b c d e Duranty 1944, pp. 188–199
  31. ^ anon, N.Y. Times Urged to Rescind 1932 Pulitzer, in USA Today, October 22, 2003, as accessed April 16, 2016 (article authored by The Associated Press (copyright 2005 (unknown if revised in 2005))). Mentioned, without decision date, in anon, New York Times Statement About 1932 Pulitzer Prize Awarded to Walter Duranty, as accessed April 16, 2016.
  32. ^ "N.Y. Times urged to rescind 1932 Pulitzer", retrieved February 2, 2008
  33. ^ Reported in The Washington Times "National" section, October 22, 2003.
  34. ^ "Statement on Walter Duranty's 1932 Prize"


in chronological order

  • Muggeridge, Malcolm (1934) — Winter in Moscow
  • Conquest, Robert (1968) — The Great Terror: Stalin's Purge of the Thirties
  • Crowl, James W. (1981) — Angels in Stalin's Paradise: Western Reporters in Soviet Russia, 1917–1937; A Case Study of Louis Fischer and Walter Duranty. Washington, D.C.: The University of America Press (1981), ISBN 0-8191-2185-1
  • Conquest, Robert (1986) — The Harvest of Sorrow: Soviet Collectivization and the Terror-Famine
  • M. Carynnyk, B.S. Kordan and L.Y. Luciuk, eds. (1988) — The Foreign Office and the Famine: British Documents on the Great Famine of 1932–1933 in Soviet Ukraine. Limestone Press
  • Taylor, Sally J. (1990) — Stalin's Apologist, Walter Duranty: The New York Times Man in Moscow, Oxford University Press ISBN 0-19-505700-7
  • Luciuk, Lubomyr Y. (2004) — Not Worthy: Walter Duranty's Pulitzer Prize and the New York Times, Kashtan Press ISBN 1-896354-34-3

External links

Defence of Stalin's purges

Pulitzer Prize articles by Walter Duranty

The Pulitzer Prize controversy

1932 Pulitzer Prize

The following are the Pulitzer Prizes for 1932 .

Chrystal Callahan

Chrystal Callahan , is a Toronto-born American Canadian visual artist, photographer, journalist and fashion model.

Denial of the Holodomor

Denial of the Holodomor (Ukrainian: Заперечення Голодомору, Russian: Отрицание Голодомора) is the assertion that the 1932–1933 Holodomor, a man-made famine in Soviet Ukraine, did not occur or diminishing the scale and significance of the famine.

This denial and suppression of information about the famine was made in official Soviet propaganda from the very beginning until the 1980s. It was supported by some Western journalists and intellectuals. It was echoed at the time of the famine by some prominent Western journalists, including Walter Duranty and Louis Fischer. The denial of the man-made famine was a highly successful and well orchestrated disinformation campaign by the Soviet government. According to Robert Conquest, it was the first major instance of Soviet authorities adopting the Big Lie propaganda technique to sway world opinion, to be followed by similar campaigns over the Moscow Trials and denial of the Gulag labor camp system.Only in the post Soviet era, independent Ukraine has officially condemned the Holodomor as an act of genocide against the Ukrainian people. The causes, nature, and extent of the Holodomor remain topics of controversy and active scholarship, including the debate over whether or not it constitutes genocide.


Duranty may refer to:

Louis Edmond Duranty (1833–1880), French journalist and art critic

Walter Duranty (1884–1957), British journalist

Gareth Jones (journalist)

Gareth Richard Vaughan Jones (13 August 1905 – 12 August 1935) was a Welsh journalist who first publicized in the Western world the existence of the Soviet famine of 1932–33.

History of Russian journalism

The History of Russian journalism covers writing for newspapers, magazines, and the electronic media since the 18th century. The main themes are low levels of literacy, censorship and government control, and the emphasis on politics and political propaganda in the media.

Kitty Wintringham

Katharine Wise Wintringham (10 February 1908 – 1966) was an American political activist, best known for her activities in the United Kingdom.

Born Kitty Bowler in Plymouth, Massachusetts, Wintringham studied at Bryn Mawr College. There, she became involved in anti-fascist activity, joining the League Against War and Fascism and the International Labor Defense.In 1936, Bowler travelled to Europe. She first went to the Soviet Union, where she had a brief relationship with Walter Duranty, then to France, and on to Barcelona. This was during the Spanish Civil War, and she met Tom Wintringham, representative of the Communist Party of Great Britain (CPGB) in the city. Wintringham taught Bowler journalism skills, while Bowler assisted him by delivering messages and acting as his unofficial secretary. The two fell in love, but Wintringham was already married, and the CPGB disapproved of Bowler as she was not a communist, and they considered her to be unreliable. Bowler claimed that, when she delivered a message from Wintringham to London, she asked that they recall Wintringham, but Harry Pollitt, leader of the CPGB, responded by saying he should "go up to the front line, get himself killed to give us a headline".Bowler returned to Spain and took on various journalistic assignments. However, early in 1937, she was detained on the orders of André Marty on suspicion of being a spy, and expelled from the country. Wintringham was shot in the leg the following month, and she was allowed back into Spain to help nurse him. However, the CPGB ordered Wintringham to stop associating with Bowler, and in July she was again expelled from Spain, on this occasion returning to the United States.

Wintringham recovered from his injury, but was shot again in August, and was sent back to the UK to receive treatment. Once he had recovered, the couple set up home together in London, leading to Wintringham's expulsion from the CPGB. They married in 1941, once Wintringham's divorce was complete.Kitty worked as a journalist in the UK. She and Tom joined the left-wing 1941 Committee and were founders of its successor, the Common Wealth Party. However, Kitty strongly disagreed with leading member Richard Acland over his advocacy of Christianity. She stood for the party in Midlothian and Peebles Northern at the 1945 UK general election, but took only 6.4% of the votes cast. Vincent Geoghegan considers this to be the only seat where the party put up a candidate against Labour and affected the final result, although this meant that the Conservatives won the seat.After World War II, Kitty gave birth to a child, Benjamin, and focused on bringing him up. Tom died suddenly in 1949 and, a few years later, Kitty moved to Hawaii, but she later returned to the UK. She committed suicide in 1966.

List of Pulitzer Prizes awarded to The New York Times

Since 1918, The New York Times daily newspaper has won 125 Pulitzer Prizes, a prize awarded for excellence in journalism in a range of categories.

List of alumni of Emmanuel College, Cambridge

This is a list of alumni of Emmanuel College, Cambridge.

Marjorie Muir Worthington

Marjorie Muir Worthington (1900 – February 17, 1976) was an American author of novels and short stories.

Mark von Hagen

Mark von Hagen (born 1954) teaches Russian, Ukrainian, and Eurasian history at Arizona State University. He was formerly at Columbia University. He is the author of Soldiers in the Proletarian Dictatorship: The Red Army and the Soviet Socialist State, 1917-1930 (Cornell, 1990); co-editor (with Andreas Kappeler, Zenon Kohut and Frank Sysyn) of Culture, Nation, Identity: the Ukrainian-Russian Encounter, 1600-1945 (Toronto, 2003); and has co-edited (with Jane Burbank and Anatoly Remnev) the title Geographies of Empire: Ruling Russia, 1700-1991 (Indiana, 2004). He has written articles and essays on topics in historiography, civil-military relations, nationality politics and minority history, and cultural history.

Von Hagen was educated at Georgetown University, Indiana University-Bloomington, and Stanford University, where he received his Ph.D. He has also taught at Stanford University, Yale University, the Free University of Berlin, and the Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales (Paris). He served as Associate Director and then Director of the Harriman Institute (1989–2001). In the School of International and Public Affairs at Columbia, he chaired the task force on review of the school’s curriculum, headed its Inter-regional Council, and served as director of the master’s program in international affairs.

He is on the editorial boards of Ab Imperio and Kritika. Von Hagen serves (and has served) on several professional association boards (the National Council for Eurasian and East European Studies, the American Association for the Advancement of Slavic Studies, and the Association for the Study of Nationalities, among others). He is also a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the Human Rights Watch Eurasia Steering Committee. He serves as a consultant for the Russian Archives Project of Primary Source Microfilms (Gale Group). From 2002 to 2005 Von Hagen was president of the International Association for Ukrainian Studies.

Prof. Mark von Hagen was also commissioned by The New York Times to write an independent assessment of New York Times correspondent Walter Duranty and his reporting on the Soviet Union after the newspaper received a letter from the Pulitzer Prize Board regarding allegations of Duranty's cover up of communist genocide.

The Ukrainian Weekly reports as follows:

In the letter, the board said it was responding to "a new round of demands" that the prize awarded to Mr. Duranty in 1932 be revoked, The New York Times reported. The letter asked the newspaper for its comments on Mr. Duranty's work.

As part of its review of Mr. Duranty's work, The New York Times commissioned Dr. von Hagen, an expert on early 20th century Soviet history, to examine nearly all of what Mr. Duranty wrote for The New York Times in 1931.

"After reading through a good portion of Duranty's reporting for 1931, I was disappointed and disturbed by the overall picture he painted of the Soviet Union for that period," Dr. von Hagen wrote. "But after reading so much of Duranty in 1931 it is far less surprising to me that he would deny in print the famine of 1932-1933."

Asked if his opinion of Mr. Duranty's reporting would change if he were to examine only those 13 articles for which Mr. Duranty won the Pulitzer Prize, Dr. von Hagen replied with a resolute no. The reporting for which he won the Pulitzer Prize was "quintessential of the problems of Mr. Duranty's analysis," Dr. von Hagen said. The professor said that Mr. Duranty's award "diminishes the prize's value."

Mr. Jones (2019 film)

Mr. Jones is a 2019 drama film directed by Agnieszka Holland. It was selected to compete for the Golden Bear at the 69th Berlin International Film Festival.

Oscar Cesare

Oscar Edward Cesare (October 7, 1883 – July 25, 1948) was a Swedish-born American caricaturist, painter, draftsman and editorial cartoonist.

Pulitzer Prize for Correspondence

The Pulitzer Prize for Correspondence was awarded from 1929 to 1947.

Sig Gissler

Sig Gissler is an adjunct professor of journalism at Columbia University and the former administrator of the Pulitzer Prizes.

Ukrainian Canadian Civil Liberties Association

The Ukrainian Canadian Civil Liberties Association (UCCLA) is an independent, non-partisan educational and research organization. Established in 1986 after the Civil Liberties Commission (affiliated with the Ukrainian Canadian Congress) was disbanded, its members – all of whom are volunteers – have been particularly active in championing the cause of recognition, restitution and reconciliation with respect to Canada's first national internment operations, helping secure a redress settlement in 2008 with the Government of Canada along with the Ukrainian Canadian Congress and the Taras Shevchenko Foundation (see They have also challenged allegations about "Nazi war criminals" hiding in Canada, have exposed the presence in Canada of veterans of the NKVD/SMERSH/KGB, have helped raise public awareness about Soviet and Communist war crimes and crimes against humanity (in particular about the genocidal Great Famine of 1932–1933 in Soviet Ukraine, the Holodomor), and have made numerous public representations, articulating the interests of Canada's Ukrainian community. The first chairman of the CLC/UCCLA was John B. Gregorovich, a lawyer. The current chairman is Roman Zakaluzny; the immediate past president was Professor Lubomyr Luciuk.UCCLA's members meet annually during conclaves held in different cities across the country, often co-ordinating their meeting dates with the unveiling of trilingual historical markers commemorating the internment operations at different camp locations or otherwise recalling important individuals or events in Ukrainian and Ukrainian Canadian history. The association and its supporters have also placed two dozen trilingual markers and four statues across Canada, in Ukraine and in France honouring the Ukrainian Canadian Victoria Cross recipient, Cpl Filip Konowal; recalling the contributions of Ukrainian Canadian servicemen and women during the Second World War (London, England); and honouring the Welsh journalist, Gareth Jones, who exposed the truth about the Holodomor. UCCLA has also commissioned a number of articles and books that have been distributed internationally dealing with the Holodomor, Anglo-American perspectives on the question of Ukraine's independence, the Ukrainian nationalist movement before, during and after the Second World War, and Soviet crimes against humanity and war crimes. In 2003–2004, UCCLA campaigned to have the 1932 Pulitzer Prize of Walter Duranty, the New York Times correspondent in Moscow from 1922 to 1934, revoked. Duranty wrote in 1933, during the Great Famine, that "there was no famine" and criticized articles by other Western journalists as "failed predictions of doom for the Soviets".Its most recent campaign (which began in the late winter of 2010) has been about ensuring that all 12 galleries in the publicly funded Canadian Museum for Human Rights are thematic, comparative and inclusive – rather than elevating the suffering of any one or two communities above all others. To that end the association has distributed thousands of protest postcards nationally and published a notice raising their concerns in The Hill Times (31 January 2011). Some of UCCLA's critics have tried to censure or even call for the silencing of its voice in the public debate over the proposed contents and governance of the tax payer funded Canadian Museum for Human Rights. One of UCCLA's most recent campaigns (February 2016) involves an appeal to the Minister of Canadian Heritage, the Honourable Mélanie Joly, requesting her intervention to help save and re-consecrate the internment camp cemetery at Spirit Lake (La Ferme), Quebec.

UCCLA continues to be a volunteer organization supported by the donations and efforts of thousands of Canadians of Ukrainian heritage.

Useful idiot

In political jargon, a useful idiot is a derogatory term for a person perceived as a propagandist for a cause whose goals they are not fully aware of, and who is used cynically by the leaders of the cause. The term was originally used during the Cold War to describe non-communists regarded as susceptible to communist propaganda and manipulation. The term has often been attributed to Vladimir Lenin, but this attribution is unsubstantiated.

William Bolitho Ryall

William Bolitho Ryall (1891–1930) was a South African journalist, writer and biographer who was a valued friend of prominent writers such as Ernest Hemingway, Noël Coward, Walter Lippmann and Walter Duranty. He wrote under the name ‘William Bolitho’ but was known to his friends as ‘Bill Ryall’. He died on 2 June 1930 at the age of 39 just as his reputation was being established.

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