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The Trump Tripartite

Much like living in America in a post 9/11 world, living in in the aftermath of the Decembrist revolt brought a certain paranoia to the Russian regime. So deep was the neurosis that in 1833 Sergey Uvarov-the Minister of Education of Russia-presented the following statement of ideology:
"It is our common obligation to ensure that the education of the people be conducted, according to Supreme intention of our August Monarch, in the joint spirit of Orthodoxy, Autocracy, and Nationality. I am convinced that every professor and teacher, being permeated by one and the same feeling of devotion to the throne and fatherland, will use all his resources to become a worthy tool for the government and to earn its complete confidence." Thus began The Triad of Official Nationality (Orthodoxy, Autocracy, and Nationality). Although it is understood that interpretations of the Trinity are different than they were in the 19th century, commonalities still exist. In fact, so common are the core …

What Everyone Should Know About Repression

Revolutionary novelist Victor Serge is one of the most compelling figures of Soviet history. First published in 1926 as Les Coulisses d’une Sûreté générale, Serge set forth a manifesto which exclaimed "the epoch of civil wars has begun."

Following is an excerpt from Serge's nonfiction book "What Everyone Should Know About Repression."

In the Event of Arrest:

  • At all costs keep cool. Don’t let yourself get intimidated or provoked.
  • Don’t reply to any question without having a defence counsel present and without previously consulting with him. If possible, he should be a party comrade. If this isn’t possible, don’t say anything without really thinking about it. In the old days all the revolutionary papers in Russia published, in large type, the constant recommendation: “Comrades, make no statements! Say nothing!” As a matter of principle: say nothing.
  • Explaining yourself is dangerous; you are in the hands of professionals able to get something out of your every word. Any explanation’ gives them valuable documentation.
  • Lying is extremely dangerous: it is difficult to construct a story without its defects being too obvious. It is almost impossible to improvise. Old jailbirds write this strong recommendation on prison walls, for the revolutionary to learn from: “Never confess!”
  • Don’t try to be cleverer than them: the relationship of forces is too unequal for that.
  • Don’t let yourself be surprised or disconcerted by the classic: “We know everything!” This is never the case. It is a barefaced trick used by all police forces and all examining. Don’t believe a word of another classic ploy: “We know everything because your Comrade So and So has talked!”
  • When you deny anything, deny it firmly.
  • Remember that the enemy is capable of anything.
  • Don’t be intimidated by the eternal threat: “You’ll pay for this!” What you’ll pay for is a confession, or a clumsy explanation, or falling for tricks and moments of panic: but whatever the situation of the accused, a hermetically sealed defence, built up out of much silence and a few definite affirmations or denials, can only help.
  • You know nothing or as little as possible about the people they are asking about. In confrontations, keep cool. Don’t show surprise.Again: say nothing.
  • Never sign a document without having read it right through and understood it fully. If you have the slightest doubt, refuse to sign.
  • If the accusation is groundless – which often happens – don’t get indignant: leave it as it is rather than challenge it. Apart from this do nothing without the help of counsel, who should be a comrade.


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