The Stalinist Legacy
The five Stalinist and the following thirty-five post-Stalinist years do not belong as part of the subject matter of this book, the history of the East-Central European region. While the short period of People's Democracy was a continuation and widening of this history, its modification and adaptation to dominant outside influences, as it had been happening so many times in the past centuries, the subsequent forty years were a radial break with this continuity. It was the autonomous region itself that became extinct and was forced to become an appendage of a basically different region.
We do not want to follow the development of its political subordination, nor to deal with the teroristic Communist dictatorship of the party-state with its bloody show trials, the structure of its command economy, and its militarization under the threat of World War III. After Stalin's death, the modified, partially reformed model of the same basic socioeconomic Stalinism could only be interrupted by soon suppressed moments of revolts in War