Pravda starts as an underground revolutionary Bolshevik newspaper. After the revolution, it becomes the official newspaper (with Izvestia) for the Communist Party. Its name stands for the word "truth." Propaganda can be even worse than censorship. Censors keep facts from the public; propagandists twist facts into lies. Under a state-controlled press system, the government can order newspaper editors to print stories the editors know are not true. Early on, Russian revolutionary leaders realize they can force newspapers to print only the simple concepts, slogans and ideas of Bolshevism.

Trotsky reading Pravada.   Trotsky photo again, defaced.
Trotsky, left, reads Pravda, the Bolshevik newspaper he once edited. In 1925, Stalin ousts Trotsky as commissar of war. At right, a citizen has scratched Trotsky's picture from his own history book, as part of the citizen's "personal responsibility" to support the Communist Party.





The Commissar Vanishes
Communism and Propaganda
The News in Russia
Reinventing the Bolsheviks
Stalin Controls his Image
The Art of Deception
The Soviet Message
Death is Not the End