Anne Applebaum’s new work, Twilight of Democracy, is a disconnected and overwrought pamphlet (50,000 words) with an alarmist title unsustained by the contents.1 It must be respected as the heartfelt fears of a capable historian of the Soviet Empire, a former assistant editor of the London Spectator, and a well-known commentator in Britain and the United States and also in Poland, where her husband is a former foreign minister. (I knew her at The Spectator, and as far as I am concerned, our relations remain at least civil, though we have publicly disagreed rather sharply on a number of the issues raised by this book.)


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