Trotsky, Stalin or Castro: that is totalitarianism.nOnly a totalitarian regimencan “liquidate the bourgeoisie as a class”nand thus break down its resistance tonthe “expropriation.” What does thisnmean: to “liquidate the bourgeoisie asna class.”” It means not necessarily tonexterminate it down to the last person,nbut to decimate, deport, torture, scatter,nreduce its members to pariahs, in ordernto break it completely as any force ofnresistance.nProfessor Richards gives Chapter 5nthe following epigraph from Trotsky:n”A revolution, more than any othernenterprise, has to be carried through tonthe end.” But what sounds, to ProfessornRichards, like a safe, beautiful, romanticnAmerican university word—revolutionn—meant to the Chilean middle class thenthreat of extermination. The middlenclass did not want this “enterprise” tonbe “carried to the end,” as it was innRussia—indeed, to the end of murderingnTrotsky himself as well.nVery jauntily Sweet Country describesna certain beautiful hero, annexpropriator (and liquidator.”), ComandantenCarlos, “who had sent a shiver ofnfear down the backs of southern farmersn…” This is beautiful, of course.nThe trouble is that as a result, farmersn—southern, northern, Chilean, American,nGerman, Russian—begin to waitnfor their chance to “send a shiver ofnfear down the backs” of such Comandantes.nX he question which occupies thenprotagonists of Sweet Country is this:nDoes Allende match the great Castro.-*nIndeed, when Helmut says that “somehownI don’t think” Allende is the “mannthat Fidel Castro is,” Eve “felt stung bynHelmut’s remark.” She wants to believenthat great as Castro is, Allende matchesnhim.nBut if Castro sets such a loftynexample for Allende, how could thenmiddle class of Chile be sure thatnAllende was not secretly followingnCastro’s clandestine preparations fornthe “liquidation of the middle class”—nperhaps with Castro’s (that is, Soviet)naid.’ So instead of waiting to be “liquidated”n(which is even more unpleasantnthan being “expropriated,” incrediblenas this may seem to Professor Richards),nthe more brutal or fear-ridden elementsnof the Chilean middle class (and therenare such elements among, say, Americanntruckers, too) rushed out, followingnI he fall of Allendi-. to “liciuidale”nhave on literature, art, knowledge,nintelligence, humanism.”nCruelty, torture, humiliation or thenthreat of them, with respect to a certainnsocial group, produces revenge ofndefense in kind. Is this so difficult tonunderstand.’ Instead, Professor Richardsnhas written a sugary 372-page sermonn(with/>ro/eJi’/o«a/torture scenes) aboutnsweet .Mleiule and the evil react ionaries.n••Caroline Richards’s.S’,7i-(7(,(j,7«//i is a first-cla.sspoliticiii novel…. There’snbouiiil to be more than history in Professor Richards’s future.”n—New York Times Hook Reviewn”The novel is rich: the characters are articulate and complex.”n—Publishers Weeklynthose who had threatened to “expropriate”nand “liquidate” them in thenmanner of the great Castro, the greatnLenin and other such greats. The differencenis that if Allende had firstnfollowed the lofty example of thesengreats, the “liquidation” would nevernhave ended until the totalitarian nightnover Chile had become complete andnperhaps eternal. As it is, we learn fromnthe New York Times that a Chileanncourt ruled against the government’snban of a demonstration.nProfessor Richards lists her statisticsnof victims following the overthrow ofnAllende: 10,000 dead and 20,000 imprisoned,nof whom 75 percent werentortured. I am prepared to mourn everynvictim of brutality and fear. But sincenProfessor Richards gives statistics,nwould it not be fair to give the statisticsnof victims of the regime of Castronwhom, according to Eve, Allendenmatched in greatness.’nInstead, Professor Richards describesntorture in great detail. An Americannwriter I know lives in Hollywood tonwatch the demand firsthand. Threenyears ago the demand was torture, andnso he wrote books where Arabs torturenJews or vice versa. Then he sold thenmovie rights. This is called professionalism.nThe descriptions of torture bynProfessor Richards are perhaps asnprofessional. But what bearing does thisnnnsuch as Chilean truckers, prone tonmurder and torture for no reason at allnexcept their own evilness.nOweet, sweet are Allende and hisnsupporters. Eve expresses herself onlynbeautifully: “deeper even than Greekntragedy or Neruda’s poetry.” Helmutnspeaks in classical Greek to describe hisnlove for Eve. A tailor makes a speechnwhich occupies three-quarters of a pagenand ends: “For this I shall live and diena leftist.” Allende’s italicized speechnspreads over almost two pages. Then”Chilean working class” even lovesnAllende’s way of “living and dressingnlike a bourgeois,” and “never begrudgednhim his food or his women or his importednliquor.” Fidel Castro’s speech isnpresented by Professor Richards innverse as an epigraph to Chapter 13.nThis reminds one of a world-famousnSoviet composer who claimed that whatnStalin said was music.nOn the other hand, all of Allende’snenemies are not only evil, but also ugly,nlifeless, pompous, hypocritical andnrepulsive in every way possible. Thenwomen of Santiago who march againstnAllende are fat because they are rich.nAll Allende supporters speak like anuniversity library, an anti-Allende universitynprofessor’s “pronouncements”nare “crabbed.”nThe naive Manichean propagandan^ M H H M M K M I SnSeptember/October 1979n