A talk I gave in Montreal in April 2010 has become available in Communist and Post-Communist Studies, at doi:10.1016/j.postcomstud.2011.10.001. Five cases in which the names of former secret informers who supplied information to the communist secret political police were unofficially disclosed are discussed in terms of the motivations of their authors, their timing relative to 1989 and their countries’ lustration and file access legislation, and the information they make available to the general public. After contrasting them with civil society efforts to promote transitional justice and unofficial truth projects, it becomes evident that these unofficial disclosures were animated by revenge as much as the quest for unveiling the truth about communist repression. The article talks about the Cibulka lists in Czechoslovakia, the Romanian Armageddon 7, the UDBa.net scandal in Slovenia, the Wildstein list in Poland, and the Penc internet databases in the Czech Republic, all part of what I call “vigilante justice” in post-communism. An interesting string of unofficial disclosures that have preoccupied me for some time.

Advertisements