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flange's avatar

What is the exact quote? - 'show me the man, i'll find you the crime.' (<-- not the exact quote)

Asked by flange (43points) March 4th, 2009

‘Show me the man, I’ll find you the crime’

this is not an exact quote; this is instead the premise of a quote. i don’t know who said it or what the exact quote is, so my questions to you are: who said this quote, and what is the exact quote?

The meaning of the quote, inasmuch as I understand it, is that everyone has skeletons in his or her closet.

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7 Answers

Ashpea9288's avatar

I’m not sure I understand what we’re supposed to be answering…

flange's avatar

what is the quote and who said it

aprilsimnel's avatar

Lavrentiy Pavlovich Beria, head of Stalin’s secret police and a right bastard. He told Stalin, “Show me the man and I’ll find you the crime.”

flange's avatar

@aprilsimnel that’s it, thanks.

Googling turns up a bunch of instances of, “Show me the man and I’ll show you his crime.” Are you aware of any source material? (probably secondary or tertiary, huh?)

Also, in my experience quite a few people have heard this quote, but most tend to think it’s a slogan of sorts of the KGB, and certainly don’t know it was spoken by Beria during his time as NKVD. Was wondering if it did in fact become a KGB slogan, officially or unofficially, or if it’s just a frequently mis-attributed quote?

aprilsimnel's avatar

@flange – Search me! It’s just one of the things I remember from my post-WWII European History class at uni.

AviLigner's avatar

“Lavrentiy Pavlovich Beria was a Soviet politician of Georgian ethnicity, Marshal of the Soviet Union and state security administrator, chief of the Soviet security and secret police apparatus under Joseph Stalin during World War II, and promoted to deputy premier under Stalin from 1941. He later officially joined the Politburo in 1946.”

I wouldn’t worry about the exact words: they were said in Russian anyway. Free v. exact translation issue. Exact translations usually don’t scan right because of differences in syntax and idioms.

BTW: I just googled it.

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