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The Red Flag: Communism and the Making of the Modern World
The Red Flag: Communism and the Making of the Modern World
by David Priestland
Edition: Hardcover

24 of 29 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Post-Lehman Brothers' analysis of Communism, 19 Jan 2010
David Priestland's `The Red Flag' is nothing short of epic. I cannot imagine an account as bold as detailing the history of global communism being anything other. With near-flawless observance to chronological development, Priestland takes the reader from the ideology's nascent origins in the turbulent politics unleashed by the French Revolution through to its codification under Marx and Engels and on to its tragic contortions during the twentieth century, concluding in its rapid retreat from the world stage following the collapse of the Soviet Union and China's adoption of the free market. What I admire about Priestland's objective is his argument that the Neo-Liberal consensus which has held sway since 1979/80 has now collapsed following Lehman Brothers' bankruptcy and the perceivable global crisis in capitalism. It's from this perspective that he presents his account of Communism, deriding Neo-Liberal arrogance following the end of the Cold War and Francis Fukuyama's misplaced declaration of the `end of history'. The book is persistent in its tone and pace, presenting the reader with an in depth assessment of the many manifestations of Communism across the globe; placing them within their national contexts and attempting to account for their peculiarities. I thoroughly enjoyed reading this and found its conclusions largely agreeable!

The American War of Independence 1774-1783 (Essential Histories)
The American War of Independence 1774-1783 (Essential Histories)
by Daniel Marston
Edition: Paperback
Price: 10.39

25 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A critique to Anglophobic vitriol, 28 Aug 2006
In response to Andrew McDonald's nationalistic, Anglophobic vitriol: I just can't understand what drives Americans to such vile contempt against the very country which provided the pre-conditions to your precious 'republic'. As previous readers have stated, this is an unbiased account of the war, balanced in favour to neither side - as all good introductions to history should be!

As for your pretentious drivel about George Washington being the greatest man of the 18th Century - I really think that's a matter of opinion. Other individuals, namely Thomas Payne, were far more influential in shaping that century. Also, I believe Washington presents a rather pallid front when one considers your point about him exhibiting greater authority and integrity than 'any' British monarch or Prime Minister - may I introduce you to the likes of Edward I, Henry V, Henry VIII, Elizabeth I, William Gladstone, Lloyd George, Winston Churchill ... the list is endless. The fact of the matter remains that the war has been distorted into a myth - propaganda. The Continentals committed far greater atrocities against their own people than the British - such as that burning people alive in a church scene in that appalling excuse for a film - 'The Patriot' (anti-Semitism and Anglophobia galore) - such an atrocity was in fact carried out by the Continental Army!

Many historians agree that Washington was not a very astute military tactician or general either - other Continental generals were far more successful in their battles. And for all the democracy and liberty you so gallantly praise; I believe the Founding Fathers considered installing him as a king of all things! Perhaps you should come back and write a proper review once you've done some more reading (from both sides of the argument) and restrain yourself from throwing juvenile insults regarding dentistry.
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