Alger Hiss was innocent! (Not)

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At Democracy Project, Bruce Kesler points out today’s remarkably stupid 1,700 word Washington Post profile of Alger Hiss’s stepson by reporter Lynne Duke. Duke passes on the stepson’s childhood memories as evidence of Hiss’s innocence of Soviet espionage, to be retailed at “a conference today at New York University, where he will speak in public about the case for the first time.”
The AP provides the perfect companion piece to Duke’s walk down memory lane with Hiss’s stepson. The AP story reports that a Russian researcher who will also speak at the conference has reviewed “dozens of documents” and “has found no evidence that Alger Hiss spied or that Soviet intelligence had any particular interest in him.”
Oh, brother. Here’s a scoop. Alger Hiss was a Communist who spied for the Soviet Union. Allen Weinstein wrote the definitive history of the case nearly 30 years ago in Perjury: The Hiss-Chambers Case. Weinstein was even able to ascertain the other members of Hiss’s Communist cell. And those missing Russian documents regarding Hiss’s espionage work? Weinstein tracked them down and took a look at them (with Alexander Vassiliev) in The Haunted Wood: Soviet Espionage in America — The Stalin Era. Ron Radosh’s assessment of the NYU conference is accessible here.
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