Rumoured Robert Conquest quote

I\’ve seen this around a bit but would love to be able to actually source it.

Robert Conquest talking about the Soviet Union, the Gulags and the economy. After the rubble had been sorted through he said:

\”I told you so, you fucking fools\”.

So, anyone got the source?

8 comments on “Rumoured Robert Conquest quote

  1. Amis (pere) said that Conquest said it, offering it as a title of a new edition of one of his books. Conquest then sort-of-said that he hadn’t said it, that Kingsley’s attribution was rather creative. Later Conquest confessed that he might have said it, but in private, rather than to a publisher.

    My memory is so imperfect that I can remember this but can’t remember where I learned it. But it might well have been from Professor Google.

  2. Yes, Ian, but I’ll swear that (well, not really, but my imperfect memory says that) in an interview Conquest later admitted that he might perhaps have said it, but not in the context that Amis alleged.

  3. Can’t let the opportunity pass up to quote Robert Conquest’s compression of Jacques’s Seven Ages of Man, also in Kingsley Amis’s Memoirs. According to KA, you only need to see it once to remember it forever. See if it works for you.

    Seven ages, first puking and mewling,
    Then very pissed off with one’s schooling,
    Then f-cks and then fights,
    Then judging chaps’ rights,
    Then sitting in slippers, then drooling.

  4. Dearieme’s link to the FT lunch article implicates both the Amis’s in the dissemination of this priceless pearl of wisdom.

    One of Conquest’s other claims to fame, as ex Laureate Andrew Motion describes in his bio of Larkin, was as the guy who sourced a reliable supplier capable of satisfying Larkin’s taste for ‘Miss Whiplash’ style porn.

  5. Pingback: Le Monde: “Bush was not the problem, 0bama is not the solution” « Spin, strangeness, and charm

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