Man’s inhumanity to man is no new development. It is as old as the murder of Abel, an act no worse than the indignities to which some people in our world are being subjected today.
Two incidents highlight man’s dehumanization of man in our time. In the book My Testimony Anatoly Marchenko describes what goes on in Soviet prison camps today. His account of the indignities and brutalities visited on Soviet citizens brings tears to the eyes. He tells of some persons who had been so dehumanized that they pretended they were trying to escape so their guards would shoot them to death. Others actually mutilated themselves to express their revulsion of the system and of its criminal leaders (Lenin, Stalin, Khrushchev, and others), a striking testimony to the tenacity of the human spirit even after a man has been starved, beaten, and grossly degraded.
The second incident concerns Anatoly Kuznetsov, a well-known Soviet author who defected to the West on July 30. Kuznetsov was not an escapee from a prison camp, and his body bore no marks of physical maltreatment. But his wounded spirit, no longer able to endure the total loss of freedom and personal integrity to think and to write, drove him to flee from a secret-police state within which there was no hope of deliverance. Each of these accounts makes it clear that the Soviet “paradise” is a prison camp, subhuman and malevolently brutal, where freedom is dead. One Soviet writer has said, “Fear is the only freedom left to us, the freedom to fear.”
What is true in the Soviet Union is true in other lands as well. The Chinese have known nothing but repression, brain-washing, and curtailment of even the most elementary freedoms. The people of Franco’s ...1
Already a CT subscriber? Log in for full digital access.
Have something to add about this? See something we missed? Share your feedback here.
Subscribe to Christianity Today and get access to this article plus 65+ years of archives.
- Home delivery of CT magazine
- Complete access to articles on ChristianityToday.com
- Over 120 years of magazine archives plus full access to all of CT’s online archives
- Learn more