I Confess: The Truth about American Communism


This book is a faithful and resolutely candid account from the inside--and what is more important, from the top--of a vital phase of recent American history. The history is secret, and might well have remained so but for the extraordinary poise and courage of this man, Ben Gitlow, and his ultimate recovery of clear vision and unmixed devotion to his ideals. A thousand congressional investigations could not expose the facts exposed in this book. A thousand research experts, convinced of them, could not make them convincing. The work of the Communist Party in the United States has involved a series of fanatical crimes, not only against American law or American "ism," but against the party's own principles and ideals-- against the working class. Nothing less than a confession by one of those guilty of leadership in these crimes of insane zealotry could adequately reveal them.

In every case where the author describes an event or situation with which I had personal contact--and that means a good many both here and in Moscow--his statement of the facts, in so far as that can be separated from political or personal feelings toward them, is unassailable. In a number of cases he lays bare the essentials more objectively than I could. His book is true history. Every judicious person from the inside to the remote fringes of the Communist movement, whether he says so or not, will know that it is. Personally I failed to detect on any vital issue the dominance of any motive other than that of unmitigated truthtelling.

Of course Ben Gitlow's judgments of men and their motives are his own, and they must be. Human motives are rarely single, and I am not sure the author has always borne in mind that his opponents, like him, were moved in their factional maneuvers, and their dirty trickery in general, by super-zealotry as well as . . .

Additional information

Publisher: Place of publication:
  • New York
Publication year:
  • 1940


An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.