The KGB Campaign against Corruption in Moscow, 1982-1987

The KGB Campaign against Corruption in Moscow, 1982-1987 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 http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png The Soviet and Post Soviet Review Brill

The KGB Campaign against Corruption in Moscow, 1982-1987

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Publisher
BRILL
Copyright
© 2011 Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands
ISSN
1075-1262
eISSN
1876-3324
D.O.I.
10.1163/187633211X589187
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

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

Journal

The Soviet and Post Soviet ReviewBrill

Published: Jan 1, 2011

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