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Unexpected Following Orders: The Death of Vince Foster review and warning from Russia

16 January 2013 No Comment

Cover of a children’s book called “Amazing Igarka.”

Below is a humbling, unexpected and eye-opening review of Following Orders from Russia written by a celebrated author who survived USSR communism. Eternally grateful to Rostislav. America, please wake-up.

Thanks to all the readers who took the time to write a review of Following Orders. I learn something new from you all.

It was immensely fascinating and, simultaneously, immensely frightening reading. For me the main horror of this magnificent work was not so in weird portraits of true Clintons, as in their being a clear product of a thorough negative selection. Until recently I thought that this unnatural process is a sure sign of the Communist system, where decent citizens had no chances at all to enter the ruling elite, local or national: all the chances belonged to the utterly dishonest, corrupt and shameless. Of course, no political system in the world owns a 100% guarantee against liars or criminals, but I believed that only the totalitarian regimes relied entirely on that sort of “elite”. Seems, I was wrong (if to exclude the dreadful idea of the USA totalitarian transformation).

In my USSR the main instrument for the accursed negative selection was the common fear of many ugly things, like labor camps, psycho-prisons, exile or dire poverty. But Ms Peschmann shows that VIP cards can be as effective tools of negative selection too – and she shows it with a great skill and a great disdain! Her vivid picture of numerous assistants of chief assistants of chief consultants, always ready to be active silent accomplices in the boss’ crimes, made me shudder: I felt myself rather inside Kremlin, not inside the White House! Well, I must say that the first lesson in parting with my naïve idealism was not “Following Orders”, but Clint Eastwood’s fine movie “Absolute Power”, where the White House was also populated only by the fiendish products of the Negative Selection, from president to his lowest staff. But it was a fictional story, so I wasn’t sure about its connection with reality. Now I am sure. Thanks both to this honest author’s excellent research and to the post-elections U.S. reality, which, I think, is even more expressive than both “Follow Orders” and “Absolute Power” jointly are. My old USSR had absolutely no place too for the leaders like Sarah Palin or Allen West – but it would undoubtedly welcome Ms. Peschmann’s type of heroes with all the enthusiasm any highly-professional Negative Selection deserves! Rostislav, Saint-Petersburg, Russia.

Read more reviews here.

May we all learn the lessons of Rostislav story of the USSR and Igarka. Igarka became famous for its constant resistance to the Communists’ pressure even in the years when it was the end-station for Stalin’s ill-famous GULAG project of the Arctic Circle railway construction. As an epigraph, worthy of this town’s unusual history, Rostislav used for his book Walt Whitman’s words:

TO The States, or any one of them, or any city of The States,
Resist much, obey little;
Once unquestioning obedience, once fully enslaved;
Once fully enslaved, no nation, state, city, of this earth, ever
afterward resumes its liberty.

As Rostislave wrote me: “My Igarka was keeping herself alive only thanks to this resistance. There was quite a lot of exiled Christians of many denominations among other exiles, “enemies of the people” too, and their common way of life was also in full harmony with Whitman’s wise advice, being expressed in our old-believers’ ancient proverb (in my modest translation): “God is almighty, but it doesn’t mean that you are permitted to be all-weak”. I’m proud of my years there!