that has only been (partially) broken withrnby Mrs. Thatcher—capitulation to thernenemy.rnAt a time of radical upheaval, this isrnnot good enough. Britain is breaking up,rnand nobody is protesting. Her Majesty’srnLoyal Opposition must oppose, or theyrnare being neither loyal nor an opposition.rnNot only must they oppose, butrnthey must oppose uncompromisingly.rnThe patriotic opposition must regain itsrnconfidence and speak out using emotivernlanguage and bold tactics. Those whornlove Britain and the West must do bothrn”that which deserves to be written” andrnthat which needs to be done.rnDerek Turner is the editor of RightrnNOW!, published in London.rnLetter FromrnFlorencernby Andrei NavrozovrnLeonardo’s Flying MachinernThis is probably my last letter from Florence,rnand I must say that it is with somewhatrnmixed feelings that I turn my backrnon the treasury of the Renaissance. Oh,rnsure, I tried to like living here. I tried itrnthe way the French writer Andre Giderntried to like living in Stalin’s Moscow,rnreasonably confident that he would notrnhave to live there forever, but nonethelessrnwinding up his stay with a dirty rottenrnslanderous expose, hi his case, ifrnmemory serves, revelation came at thernsight of a fellow’s badly mangled fingersrnwhich, he suddenly realized, had beenrncrushed in the vice of doctrine, hi myrncase, it was the umpteenth glimpse, in arnsouvenir-shop window, of Leonardo’s flyingrnmachine, coupled with the suddenrnrealization that the damn thing didn’t fly.rnIs there anyone out there who has not,rnat one time or another in the course of arnwretched life poisoned by Enlightenmentrnmyths, looked with cowardly reverencernat that absurd drawing? Medici’srnFlorence and Stalin’s Moscow havernmuch in common. Both were designedrnfor propaganda purposes, and each in itsrnown way retains the power to intimidaternthe skeptic. It has taken me severalrnmonths to see that the silly contraptionrndidn’t fly, never flew, and would probablyrnbe more likely to fly if it were designedrnby a lunatic on the run from arnmental asylum, by a marauding Rumanianrnsoldier the morning after he pilferedrna substantial wine cellar, or by FredrnFlintstone in one of his less practicalrnmoods. And the catapult! At least Stalin’srnweapons were the best of their kind,rnwhile Leonardo’s catapult would notrnhurt a Luccan fly, and not because ofrnhow big them flies grow out there inrnLucca. Yet every gift shop in Florencerncan offer you, at the price of about $200rnU.S., a miniature replica of this pacifistrndream made of handsomely varnishedrnmahogany.rnAt first, I reasoned away the awkwardrnrealization the way one usually reasonsrnaway such realizations, by analogy. IfrnUccello’s “Rout of San Romano,” say, orrnMichelangelo’s “David,” were the equivalentsrnof IS-8 (the heavy tank “losif Stalin,”rnlater known as T-10) or of a MiGrn(the fighter designed for Stalin by Mikoyanrnand Gurevich), then the flying machinernand the catapult were somethingrnlike Stalinist architecture, or the giganticrneffigy of “The Worker and the PeasantrnWoman” at the Exposition of thernAchievements of the People’s Industry inrnMoscow. While I was reading the technicalrnspecifications of the T-IO, in arnjane’s Defence chart comparing it withrnthe main tanks of the West, the analogyrnheld. But then, looking at the “David,”rnwith its bovine neck, its outsize hands,rnand its spirit of arrogant hyper-realism, itrnoccurred to me that this humanist masterpiecernwas too literally like “The Workerrnand the Peasant Woman” for the analogyrnto support itself And straight awayrnall around me the past of Florence beganrncrashing into the world’s present, in arnscene from a Hollywood movie about Atlantisrnstarring Kirk Douglas and a volcanornof bosomy blondes.rnModern propaganda is a lot like modernrnart, in the sense that both sell dysfunctionalrnversions of ordinary things, includingrnfood and clothing, to a culturallyrnintimidated audience that never dares tornask why the representation is not labeledrnaccordingly. If you see an electric ironrnthat irons shirts, this is an iron; if you seernan electric iron that does not iron shirtsrn(especially when it is 100 feet high andrnstands in front of an office building withrnan address like 1000 Federal Plaza), thisrnis a work of contemporary sculpture.rnSimilarly, liberty is often a good thing,rnequality has its uses, and in the context ofrnGhristian morality a place for fraternityrncan obviously be found; but “liberty,rnequality, fraternity” is political propagandarndesigned to deceive and to misleadrn(and to hide the reality of broken fingersrnfrom visiting Frenchmen). There was anrnold Soviet joke about a shopper who asksrnfor a kilo of hunter’s sausage, and is toldrnthat this is the display. “No hunter’s? Allrnright, I’ll have a kilo of the display,” hernmurmurs with habitual resignation. Thernpoint is that it was in Medici’s Florencernthat modern propaganda was born.rnIt had to have been born here because,rnalthough in name a republicrnsince 1293, by the middle of the 15tlirncentury, Florence was being ruled byrnCosimo de’ Medici, and after his deathrnby his son and grandson, as by “a King inrnall but name.” This “name” business isrnat the very heart of the matter. Thus wernnote that the Tornabuoni, Florentinerngrandees who gave their daughter Lucreziarnin marriage to Cosimo’s son andrndynastic successor Piero, had changedrntheir name from Tornaquinci, having sornaltered their coat of arms as “to evade therndisadvantages attaching to their birth.”rnIn other words, the blatantly gapingrncleavage between reality and appearance,rnin a place where noblemen had tornchange names and renounce their aristocraticrnpast before being eligible for participationrnin public life, had to be camouflaged,rnand camouflaged well. It wasrnrepublican art that introduced perspectiverninto painting, and made verisimilitudernits aesthetic aim. And it was republicanrnpolitics that produced politicalrnpropaganda as the panacea for the ills ofrnoligarchic dictatorship.rnThe parallel between the “master ofrnthe country,” as Aeneas Silvius de’ Piccolomini,rnlater Pope Pius II, alternativelyrncalled him, and Stalin goes well beyondrnCosimo’s legendary self-effacing modestyrn(he held office for a total of 90 daysrnduring his 50 years in power) and hisrnfamously acerbic, indeed rather Caucasian,rnsense of humor (asked to introducerna law forbidding priests to gamble,rnhe said that it would be better to begin byrnforbidding them loaded dice), both necessaryrnqualities for coming to power, asrnthey both did, through the imperceptiblyrngradual subordination of an existing politicalrnapparat. There is their total unscrupulousness,rnin all things great andrnsmall: Stalin, a Great Russian chauvinistrnof his own making, entrusted the designrnMAY 1999/37rnrnrn