Dear Man in Grey,
You admit Stalin made mistakes. A mistake is an action that does not contribute to achieve its aim.
Now take the trial of Bukharin. (Forced confesssion, execution, for good measure sending hif wife to camps for 20 years.)
Was this a mistake, did it not achieve Stalin's aim? Who knows. However, it was a crime. The problem with Stalin is not his mistakes, but his apalling crimes.
Please admit that he comitted apalling crimes, not just mistakes. Minimizing or condoning them by calling them mistakes is insulting his victims, just as denying the holocaust insults its victims.
Did Stalin do some good? Sure. After ruling absolutely for so long, it is the minimum one can expect.
The problem with Stalin is that he was a criminal.
On top of that his crimes were so appaling that they blemished socialism so badly it will probaly never recover. Using euphimism and minimizing or condoning his crimes will not help. Maybe by squarely and unquivocally taking our distance from that criminial we may startt repair the damage. Maybe.
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