Book Reviews / Th e Soviet and Post-Soviet Review 38 (2011) 231–245 243 Luc Duhamel, Th e KGB Campaign against Corruption in Moscow, 1982-1987 (Pittsburgh: University of Pittsburgh Press, 2010). xviii + 249pp., $26.95 (pb), ISBN 978-0822961086. If the Soviet system was able to produce anything to the highest qualitative and quantitative standards, it was corruption. In some ways, this was a humanizing and moderating force, allow- ing ordinary Soviet citizens access to goods and services that would otherwise have been denied them. Th is is the most tattered shred of silver lining, though, as in the main corruption was debilitating, dysfunctional and delegitimizing. Th e widening gulf between egalitarian rhetoric and predatory and exploitative reality (for in the long run corruption always beneﬁ ts the power- ful), the distortions this overlaid onto the planned economy and the scope it gave cabals of oﬃ cials to ignore and divert central policy, all contributed immensely to the decay of the USSR. Corruption helped empower the economic bureaucracy of the Soviet state, and in this study Duhamel in particular examines Moscow’s two largest trade organizations: the Chief Administration of Trade ( Glavtorg ) and the Administration of the Moscow Fruit
The Soviet and Post Soviet Review – Brill
Published: Jan 1, 2011
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