An expat in Moscow who will be known to some of you, Ian Mitchell, has just published a book (his fourth) which ought to find a wide readership here since it is about law, judges and the ways in which the rule of law is upheld. Though Ian is writing about Scotland, he includes a lot of material about the American and English legal systems, and a long chapter about the famous Engineersâ Trial in this city in 1933. Six British engineers working on the electrification of the Soviet Union under the first Five Year Plan were accused of both spying and âwreckingâ.
The subtitle of Ianâs book is, âShow me the judge and Iâll tell you the lawâ. He shows how this applies to Scotland, the United States and England, but also, surprisingly, how it applied in 1930s Moscow. The person who was ultimately in control of the court was not the oily, half-Latvian sadist, Vassily Ulrikh, who sat in the judgeâs chair, but Stalin himself, who orchestrated all aspects of the performance. Even in the USSR it was true to say: âShow me the judge and Iâll tell you the law.â
Available on Amazon and Kindle, just type in: The Justice Factory