An Accidental Journalist: The Adventures of Edmund Stevens, by Cheryl Heckler

By Cheryl Heckler

Idealistic American Edmund Stevens arrived in Moscow in 1934 to do his half for the development of foreign Communism. His task writing propaganda ended in an unintentional occupation in journalism and an eventual Pulitzer Prize in 1950 for his uncensored descriptions of Stalin s purges. The longest-serving American-born correspondent operating from in the Soviet Union, Stevens started his journalism profession reporting at the Russo-Finnish conflict in 1939 and used to be the Christian technological know-how display screen s first guy within the box to hide combating in international battle II. He pronounced at the Italian invasion of Greece, participated in Churchill s Moscow assembly with Stalin as a employees translator, and distinct himself as a correspondent with the British military in North Africa. Drawing on Stevens s memoirs in addition to his articles and correspondence, Heckler sheds new mild on either the general public and the personal Stevens, portraying a reporter adapting to new roles and conditions with a ability that newshounds at the present time may well good emulate.

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He repudiated and reversed the NEP and assumed total control over all aspects of the economy. In 1929, the country launched Stalin’s first Five-Year Plan, a ridiculously ambitious plan to transform the nation into an industrial, economic, and social powerhouse. Approved by the Communist Party’s annual congress in April 1929, this plan called for increasing industrial output by 250 percent, electric power production by 400 percent, and agricultural production by 150 percent. As part of his plan, Stalin transformed the country’s agriculture through collectivization, which called for land owned by individual peasants to be combined into larger cooperative farms known as a Kholkhoz.

Along with volunteers from Communist groups throughout Europe and Russia who fought for the Loyalists. The Fascists and Nazis lined up to help the Nationalists. In July 1936, the Comintern urged support for the Loyalists, fearing that Russia would be more vulnerable to Nazi invasion if the Nationalists won. At the same time, though, Stalin hesitated to provide direct military aid. Eventually, Russia provided arms, money, aircraft, and military supplies. 9. Edmund Stevens, memoirs, 22–24. 010 p1c1 (27-44) 38 9/18/07 5:59 PM Page 38 An Accidental Journalist • • • Prior to the purge, the attitude toward foreigners was fairly relaxed.

Stevens was not only fluent in four languages but also adept at switching roles, perhaps another clear benefit of his strong liberal arts background, his unorthodox upbringing and early overseas travels, his profound wanderlust, and his lack of professional journalistic indoctrination. In fact, his unorthodox training as a journalist probably made it easier for him to switch roles as life required. Stevens’s ability to adjust his role depending on circumstances and opportunities is a skill most journalists today might learn from.

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