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New Left Review I/109, May-June 1978


Roy Medvedev

Bukharin’s Last Years

The beginning of 1936 did not yet seem to presage any tragedy, either for Nikolai Ivanovich Bukharin or for our country as a whole. It is true that Kirov’s assassination, and a number of closed political trials, at one of which Zinoviev and Kamenev were sentenced to long terms of imprisonment, had created a state of continuous tension. Nevertheless, it still remained possible for many former members of the Zinovievite and Trotskyist oppositions to avoid repression by once again publicly repenting their past ‘sins’. And in the case of former ‘Right’ oppositionists, including Bukharin himself, more often than not even such expressions of repentance were not demanded.

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