Feb 172010

I’ve been reading about a 60-year old show trial, the so-called Standard case (link in Hungarian), held in Communist Hungary, and decided to search for contemporary English-language articles. In the process, I came across something delightful: A 1953 issue of the Ottawa Evening Citizen. Its front-page headline: An incredible “Red offer” to free an imprisoned British businessman in exchange for a female Communist terrorist awaiting the gallows in Malaya.

The British businessman was eventually released a year later. I have no idea what happened to the Malayan woman. As to the other accused in the Standard case, several were executed, others received heavy prison terms… after the 1956 revolution, they were all released, but not rehabilitated until 1990, when Hungary’s Supreme Court declared the convictions null and void, as “no crime was committed”.

Meanwhile, I learned for instance, that in 1953 Ottawa, the daily newspaper listed two television stations: one in Montreal, one in Syracuse, N.Y., both of them broadcasting only in the afternoon and evening hours.

 Posted by at 4:42 am