In This Review

Blacklisted: A Journalist's Life in Central Europe
Blacklisted: A Journalist's Life in Central Europe
By Paul Lendvai
I. B. Tauris, 1998, 256 pp.

Another autobiography that records man's inhumanity to man, this time in central Europe. In March 1944, the Nazis ordered Hungary's ruler and Hitler's ally, Admiral Horthy, to exterminate the Hungarian Jews. Thanks to his father, 14-year-old Paul Lendvai was spared the death march to Germany and obtained a protective Swiss passport. After Hitler's defeat, he joined the Social Democratic student group, a party even more radical than the Communists. He later became a Communist Party journalist and witnessed first hand the great political purges, including the trial of the former foreign minister Laszlo Rajk. In 1953, the government arrested Lendvai before releasing him when doomed reformer Imre Nagy became prime minister. After the failure of the October 1956 revolution, Lendvai fled to Vienna and worked for the Financial Times for many years. He later befriended the Austrian chancellor Bruno Kreisky and devotes a fine chapter to him in this account. This interesting memoir condemns "the Red and Brown dictatorships alike" and shows considerable generosity toward Austria.