31 July 2020 — Monthly Review Press
by John Marciano
Diana Johnstone, Circle in the Darkness: Memoir of a World Watcher (Atlanta: Clarity Press, Inc., 2020), 435 pages, $24.95, paperback.
The back cover of Diana Johnstone’s Circle in the Darkness calls the memoir “a veteran journalist’s lucid, uncompromising tour through half a century of contemporary history,” one that “recounts in detail how the Western Left betrayed its historical principles of social justice and peace and let itself be lured into approval of aggressive U.S.-NATO wars on the fallacious grounds of ‘human rights.’” Indeed, it is. Diana Johnstone’s fiercely courageous and independent reporting, historical analysis, and activism have stayed the course while managing to chalk up a veritable army of opponents: establishment Democrats, infantile 1960s New Leftists, would-be French student revolutionaries, identity politics adherents, influential U.S. and French intellectuals, Serbian-hating neoliberals promoting Responsibility to Protect (R2P) wars, NATO, and the U.S. National Security State. The people and institutions that have been exposed by Johnstone’s accurate reporting reveal just how well she’s been doing.