Home > Uncategorized > Maxim Gorky: Perfidious Albion at war

Maxim Gorky: Perfidious Albion at war

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Anti-war essays, poems, short stories and literary excerpts

Russian writers on war

Maxim Gorky: Selections on war

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Maxim Gorky
From The Specter (1938)
Translated by Alexander Bakshy

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“You must not be offended, Mr. Creighton, but of course you realize that the English are not very well liked, and deservedly so. A hundred and two years ago, at Waterloo, your soldiers finally extinguished the blaze of the French Revolution. You take pride in this dubious service to a Europe which you prevented from becoming united states. For I am convinced that exactly that union was Napoleon’s objective. During these hundred years you, ‘an aristocratic race,’ the nation of compromise, the people of unsurpassed hypocrisy and supreme indifference to the fate of Europe, you, the amusingly conceited people, have succeeded in enslaving so many nations that it is said five Indians work for every Englishman – and this is exclusive of others whom you have enslaved.”

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“I knew an Arab scholar once, who said: ‘An Englishman in Europe is a fox; in the colonies he is the beast which no name fits.’ You regard the Germans as highwaymen and brutes. But it was your government which helped the Prussians to rout the French, which supported them against Austria, which supported Bismarck…”

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