I have been very impressed with the first chapter of Witness. I wish I had been exposed to this book in high school. So far, this book has been a very powerful testimony to both Mr. Chambers conversion, and to the evil's of communism.
There have been a number of passages that have really touched me, and repeating them here would take too much space. I do want to cite a couple of brilliant passages:
I knew shortly afterwards, that, as Communists, Stalin and the Stalinists were absolutely justified in making the Purge. From the Communist viewpoint, Stalin could have taken no other course, so long as he believed he was right. The Purge, like the Communist-Nazi pact later on, was the true measure of Stalin as a revolutionary statesman. That was the horror of the Pruge -- that acting as a Communist, Stalin had acted rightly. In that fact lay the evidence that Communism is absolutely evil. The human horror was not evil, it was the sad consequence of evil. It was Communism that was evil, and the more truly a man acted in its spirit and interest, the more certainly he perpetuated evil.
From the other readings we've done, I have come to believe that Communism is the logical conclusion of statism and socialism. If so, and Communism is evil, then what does that make statism and socialism? Statism and Socialism both strive to enslave men for the best of intentions. These twin philosophies try to control the decisions of individuals because their supporters believe they know better than the common man what is best for the individual. As we have previously seen, this requires those in power make their own decisions of what is good and what people should and shouldn't have. In making that decision, they place their own values over those of the govern. They set themselves up as a god.
Before this post gets too serious, I thought one other quote would be interesting:
The important point about the Washington apparatuses is that, in the 1930's, the revolutionary mood had become so acute through out the whole world that the Communist Party could recruit its agents, not here and there, but by scores within the Government of the United States.
I feel the same could be said today of socialists in the government. I hope the same couldn't be said about communists.