On this Memorial Day holiday, as we honor those who gave “their last full measure of devotion” in the defense of our great nation, it is only fitting that we distinguish between those who are sincere in their patriotism and those who only give lip service for self-serving political purposes.
In the February 14, 2017 edition of the New York Times, columnist Tom Friedman provided all the proof we need of the mainstream media’s political bias. He said, “Ladies and gentlemen, we were attacked on Dec. 7, 1941, we were attacked on Sept. 11, 2001, and we were attacked on Nov. 8, 2016. That most recent attack didn’t involve a horrible loss of lives, but it was devastating in its own way. Our entire intelligence community concluded that Russia hacked our election by deliberately breaking into Democratic National Committee computers and then, drip-by-drip, funneling embarrassing emails through WikiLeaks to undermine Clinton’s campaign…”
Since the closing days of the 2016 campaign, liberals, Democrats, and their enablers in the mainstream media have made it clear, implicitly and explicitly, that they believe the hacking was done at the request of Donald Trump and/or his advisors. Having failed Logics courses in college, they still have not concluded that, while the Kremlin may have shuddered at the thought of a Clinton presidency, it did not necessarily follow that they longed for a Trump presidency.
However, the American people must be made aware that Russian attempts at influencing the outcome of U.S. elections are nothing new, although the substance of back door diplomacy by Democrats and Republicans with Russians has been vastly different. During the Cold War era the Soviet Union carried on an intensive program to influence American public opinion; hence, the outcome of elections. Their methodology is fully exposed by Robert Moss, former editor of Foreign Report, and Arnaud de Borchgrave, former chief foreign correspondent for Newsweek magazine, in their fact-based novel, The Spike (New York: Crown Publishers, 1980).
However, it was not until the declassification of Soviet-era KGB archives during the early-mid ‘90s that the full extent of Democratic treachery was finally made known. For example, now-declassified KGB documents tell us that, in 1976, Senator Ted Kennedy offered to publicly condemn Jimmy Carter’s policy toward the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan in exchange for KGB help in his campaign to defeat Carter in the Democratic presidential primary.
Even more surprising, Carter himself was willing to jump into bed with the Soviets. KGB files show that, in the closing days of the 1980 General Election, while Carter trailed Reagan in the national polls, Carter sent a political ally, industrialist Armand Hammer, to a secret meeting with Soviet ambassador Anatoly Dobrynin at the Soviet embassy in Washington. Hammer asked the Soviets to help Carter win votes in key states by allowing Jewish “refuseniks” in the Soviet Union to emigrate to Israel. The Soviets refused to go along with the scheme. KGB files show that, in January 1984, Carter approached Dobrynin in person. In an effort to
derail Reagan’s defense buildup, Carter asked for Soviet help in defeating Reagan in his bid for reelection. However, in that election, Reagan carried 49 of the 50 states, defeating Democrat Walter Mondale by a vote of 525 to 13 in the Electoral College, the second largest electoral landslide in U.S. history. It is unlikely the Soviets gave Carter the help he requested.
But Carter, Kennedy, and Hammer weren’t the only Democrats who sought Soviet political help in U.S. elections. Declassified KGB documents show that, in 1984, House Speaker Thomas P. “Tip” O’Neill (D-MA) told Ambassador Dobrynin that it was in “everyone’s best interests” if the Soviets would help Democrats keep “that demagogue Reagan” from being re-elected. O’Neill warned Dobrynin that the “primitive instincts” of this “dangerous man” would plunge the world into war. So much for the storied “détente” between Reagan and O’Neill.
It must have amazed Andropov and Dobrynin that those prominent Democrats all viewed Reagan as more dangerous than any Communist dictator, just as Vladimir Putin must now be amazed that Obama, Clinton, Schumer, and Pelosi see Donald Trump as more dangerous than either ISIS or al Qaeda.
Historian Paul Kengor has observed that the Soviet archives show “the lengths to which some on the political left… were willing to go to stop Ronald Reagan.” In his book, The Crusader: Ronald Reagan and the Fall of Communism, Professor Kengor quotes the text of a May 14, 1983 memorandum uncovered in the declassified KGB archives by Herbert Romerstein, a well-known authority on the Venona Papers and the Soviet archives.
According to the memorandum, written by Viktor Chebrikov, Chairman of the Committee on State Security of the USSR (KGB), to Yuri Andropov, General Secretary of the Communist Party Central Committee, he (Chebrikov) was visited by former U.S. Senator John Tunney (D-CA) on May 9-10, 1983. Tunney, a private citizen, was on a highly sensitive mission for a close friend and former senate colleague, Sen. Ted Kennedy. The purpose of his mission was to enlist the Kremlin in a grand scheme to defeat Ronald Reagan and other Republicans in the 1984 U.S. elections.
In his memorandum, Chebrikov quoted Tunney as saying that Kennedy was convinced that the chilly relations between the U.S. and the Soviet Union were due to Reagan’s unwillingness to modify his strategic plan to win a final Cold War victory over the Soviet Union. As Tunney described Kennedy’s view to Chebrikov, Reagan’s only weakness was rooted in issues related to war and peace and Soviet-American relations. Can anyone spell T-R-E-A-S-O-N?
Kennedy asked Andropov to consider inviting him (Kennedy) to Moscow for a personal visit in July 1983. The primary purpose being to provide the Soviets with “talking points” related to the issue of nuclear disarmament, so that they’d be “better prepared and more convincing during appearances in the U.S.” Kennedy felt that, in order to influence the American people, it would be helpful to have Andropov submit to a series of television interviews with American networks.
Tunney assured Chebrikov that, “if the proposal is recognized as worthy,” Kennedy and his political allies would take the necessary steps to have representatives of the major U.S. networks contact Andropov to schedule interviews. Specifically, he suggested that the head of ABC, Elton Raul, and “television columnists Walter Cronkite or Barbara Walters could visit Moscow.”
Kennedy also suggested a series of televised interviews, in the U.S., in which members of the Soviet military could convince the American people of the “peaceful intentions of the USSR.”
But the Soviets weren’t the only targets of Democratic treachery. In an effort to reverse the spread of communism in Central America and the Caribbean, the Reagan administration proposed a $14 million humanitarian aid package for the anti-Communist Contra guerillas in Nicaragua. But then, just days before the Senate was to vote on the aid package, and just five months after they were first elected to the U.S. Senate, Senators John Kerry (D-MA) and Tom Harkin (D-IA) flew to Managua for an impromptu meeting with Nicaragua’s Communist dictator, Daniel Ortega. The purpose of the meeting was to find a political rationale for voting against the Reagan aid package, and to find positive things to say about the communist regime.
Before returning to Washington, the amateur diplomats had extracted a “promise” from Ortega that he would “moderate his policies.” Kerry boasted, “We believe this is a wonderful opening for a peaceful settlement without having to militarize the region.”
Unfortunately for Kerry, as he was basking in the afterglow of his freelance diplomatic mission Ortega was on his way to Moscow to arrange a $200 million loan from the Soviets. While Kerry worked in Washington to deny aid to freedom-loving Nicaraguans, Kerry’s new friend, Daniel Ortega, was in Moscow raising money with which to oppress freedom-loving Nicaraguans. When the Reagan aid proposal was voted on it was defeated on a straight party line vote. Democrats were solidly opposed to humanitarian aid for the anti-communist Contras.
One would think that Trump defenders and congressional Republicans would be using the Democrats’ sordid history with the Russians to defend against the unrelenting attacks on Trump, but they don’t. They remain inexplicably silent. So, as Donald Trump begins his second hundred days in the White House, he is beset by media reports of covert communications with the Putin regime in Moscow. And without a shred of evidence of actual wrongdoing, the mainstream media report every instance of Democratic calls for his impeachment.
As Thomas Jefferson wrote to newspaper editor John Norvell on June 11, 1807, “Nothing can now be believed which is seen in a newspaper… I really look with commiseration over the great body of my fellow citizens, who, reading newspapers, live & die in the belief, that they have known something of what has been passing in the world in their time… I will add, that the man who never looks into a newspaper is better informed than he who reads them; inasmuch as he who knows nothing is nearer to truth than he whose mind is filled with falsehoods & errors.”
Did the Russians hope to derail Hillary Clinton’s “coronation” as President of the United States? Yes! But it does not necessarily follow that they looked forward to a Trump presidency. So, who hugs the Russian bear? We’ll never know by consulting the mainstream media. The only way we can know is by consulting the KGB archives.
Paul R. Hollrah is a retired government relations executive and a two-time member of the U.S. Electoral College. He currently lives and writes among the hills and lakes of northeast Oklahoma’s Green Country.