Firing Line with William F. Buckley Jr. “The Decline of Anti-Communism”

Firing Line Videos, Hoover Institution, taped on June 29, 1967, uploaded to YouTube on August 13, 2010.

Guest: Fred Schwarz


Buckley introduces his guest as a full-time anti-Communist who “has never made it easy for his critics. He is infuriatingly sober and . . . he has shown an understanding of the humorous dimension of it all.” This show offers a rich discussion between two deep students of the subject, starting with Schwarz’s brilliant account of Nikita Khrushchev’s denunciation of Stalin in 1956. Schwarz: “What it revealed about Khrushchev and his allegiance to communist doctrine is possibly more significant than what it revealed about Stalin. . . . Now, how did [Khrushchev] discuss their [Stalin’s victims’] guilt or innocence? He didn’t mention one of them by name. . . . He got right to basic communist fundamentals: he said, I investigated their class of social origin, and 60 percent were working class . . . therefore it is inconceivable that there could have been 70 percent treasonable. . . . And in that one statement, Khrushchev revealed that he was a fundamental Marxist-Leninist in exactly the same mold as Stalin.”