In Austria, The Fall Of an Extremist

There are few political obituaries more enjoyable to write than that of Joerg Haider, so I won’t resist the temptation: As of yesterday, Haider, the Austrian politician who came bouncing onto the political scene a few years ago wearing Spandex bicycle shorts, denouncing immigrants and spouting carefully crafted nuggets of Anschluss nostalgia, is officially a spent force. Continue reading “In Austria, The Fall Of an Extremist”

After the Gulag

In 1955, the Russian writer Yuri Dombrovsky returned home to Moscow after twenty-five years in Soviet camps and exile—twenty-five years “out there”—to discover that he had not, after all, been completely forgotten. He was handed a rehabilitation document, given a grudging pension, assigned a single room in a communal apartment. Although few of his works would ever be published again, he was allowed to rejoin the Writer’s Union. Most of his colleagues there shunned him. Continue reading “After the Gulag”