Angela Davis - Criticism By Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn

Criticism By Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn

In a New York City speech on July 9, 1975, Russian dissident and Nobel Laureate Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn told an AFL-CIO meeting that Davis was derelict in supporting prisoners in various socialist countries around the world, given her stark opposition to the U.S. prison system. He claimed a group of Czech prisoners had appealed to Davis for support, which he said she refused to offer.

Solzhenitsyn stated, "Little children in school were told to sign petitions in defense of Angela Davis. Although she didn't have too difficult a time in this country's jails, she came to recuperate in Soviet resorts. Some Soviet dissidents–but more important, a group of Czech dissidents–addressed an appeal to her: `Comrade Davis, you were in prison. You know how unpleasant it is to sit in prison, especially when you consider yourself innocent. You have such great authority now. Could you help our Czech prisoners? Could you stand up for those people in Czechoslovakia who are being persecuted by the state?’ Angela Davis answered: `They deserve what they get. Let them remain in prison.’ That is the face of Communism. That is the heart of Communism for you.” In a speech at East Stroudsburg University in Pennsylvania, Davis denied Solzhenitsyn's accusations.

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