How the revelations of Anatoliy Golitsyn a generation ago bear urgent relevance for the West today.
Frontpage Interview’s guest today is Jason McNew, a veteran of the United States Air Force and an IT Professional who works for the federal government in Washington, D.C. He has been studying communism, asymmetric warfare, and the works of Soviet defectors for over 10 years. He his a regular contributor to American Thinker, and his work has been cited on numerous other websites, including WND, Hot Air, and The Blaze. He can be reached at [email protected].
FP: Jason McNew, welcome to Frontpage Interview.
I would like to talk to you today about Anatoliy Mikhaylovich Golitsyn, the famous Soviet KGB agent who defected to the CIA in 1961. This man’s revelations have much relevance to the threats the United States faces today.
Let’s begin by you telling us a bit about Golitsyn and why what he had to say is still vitally important for the West to heed.
McNew: Thank you for having me Dr. Glazov. It’s an honor for me to have an opportunity to talk with you here at Frontpage.
Golitsyn was a Russian KGB Major who, as you point out, defected from the Soviet Union to the West in 1961. He walked into the American embassy in Helsinki, Finland, and requested to see the CIA station chief there. Golitsyn himself provided the name of this station chief, information which should have definitely been unknown to him. He further offered secret documents from the nearby Soviet embassy, and stated that more information would be forthcoming if he and his family could be immediately evacuated to the United States. Along with his wife and daughter, Golitsyn left Finland on Christmas day of 1961, aboard a US military aircraft.
While there were many Soviet defectors during the Cold War, the majority of them were providing (knowingly or not) information which was purposefully designed by the Soviets to mislead their main enemy, the United States and its CIA. It wasn’t until 1984 with the publication of his first book, New Lies for Old, that Anatoliy Golitsyn became known to the public. His book, most of which had actually been written before 1980, was ridiculed and ignored.
By 1991, the Berlin Wall had been torn down and the USSR was dissolved by Gorbachev -- events which Golitsyn had written about several years prior (in the last chapter of New Lies for Old.) In total, there were nearly 150 predictions in the last chapter of the book, and over 90 percent of them eventually proved to be correct. This seems impossible based on what our accepted notions of rationality are, however it must be kept in mind that communists (and their strategies) are “differently rational,” if you will.
The re-emergence of communism now (albeit with all manner of different names) craves explanation. Clearly communism did not just “die” in 1991 as everyone was led (told) to believe. Golitsyn’s works are the key to understanding how the ancient principles of Sun Tzu (warfare based on deception) can be practically applied as a comprehensive national strategy. This is exactly what the Soviets (and now “neo-Soviets”) have done. By “neo-Soviets” I mean Vladimir Putin and his ilk in the Kremlin and Lubyanka.
FP: Tell us about some of Golitsyn’s most significant predictions.
McNew: Golitysn has now become (somewhat) famous for having warned in advance that the USSR was going to break itself up as part of a strategic ruse. On page 339 of his book New Lies for Old, there appears the following paragraphs:
The "liberalization" would be spectacular and impressive. Formal pronouncements might be made about a reduction in the communist party's role: its monopoly would be apparently curtailed. An ostensible separation of powers between the legislative, the executive, and the judiciary might be introduced. The Supreme Soviet would be given greater apparent power, and the president of the Soviet Union and the first secretary of the party might well be separated. The KGB would be "reformed." Dissidents at home would be amnestied; those in exile abroad would be allowed to return, and some would take up positions of leadership in government.
There would be greater freedom for Soviet citizens to travel. Western and Unitized Nations observers would be invited to the Soviet Union to witness the reforms in action.
Sakharov might be included in some capacity in the government or allowed to teach aboard. The creative arts and cultural and scientific organizations, such as the writers' unions and Academy of Sciences, would become apparently more independent, as would the trade unions. Political clubs would be opened to nonmembers of the communist party. Leading dissidents might form one or more alternative political parties
So here we have over a dozen very specific predictions, all of which later proved to be completely correct – and this is only a small excerpt of the total.
One of the more interesting predictions which we still see playing itself out on the world stage today, is Golitsyn’s assertion that North American influence in Latin America would be undermined. This is blatantly obvious in Hugo Chavez’s Venezuela, the recent readoption of a socialist constitution by Bolivia, and also the entrance into the BRIC alliance by Brazil (to name a few).
FP: It does appear that communism did not really “die” in 1991 as the West portrayed and understood its death. Indeed, the Soviets did have some kind of plan and it has something to do with Putin and his gang being in power today. Expand on this for us.
McNew: In 1959 Nikita Khrushchev boasted to a US cabinet member “You Americans are so gullible. No, you won’t accept communism outright, but we’ll keep feeding you small doses of socialism until you’ll finally wake up and find you already have communism. We won’t have to fight you. We’ll so weaken your economy until you’ll fall like overripe fruit into our hands.”
As Jeff Nyquist points out, “It is noteworthy that Khrushchev did not say, “You will live under communism.” He also did not say, “Your children will live under communism.” He told his American opposites that their grandchildren would live under communism. Khrushchev was admitting that Moscow’s plan was a long-range plan, involving decades of work.”
In a July 1984 memoranda to the CIA, a year before Mikhail Gorbachev took power, Golitsyn had specifically fingered Gorbachev as being the intended replacement for Konstantin Chernenko. Golitsyn later provided insights on the eventual replacement of Boris Yeltsin as well, describing Russian hostilities in Chechnya "not as a likely cause of a military coup, but as a possible planned prelude to a change of government." When Yeltsin stepped down unexpectedly in 1999, this gave rise to Vladimir Putin. Due to Putin’s very forceful handling of the war in Chechnya, he easily won election to the Presidency a few months later, riding a wave of renewed Russian nationalism.
The current “President” of Russia is of course Dmitry Medvedev, but even the very naïve “mainstream” media here in the US understands that it is Putin who is actually pulling Russia’s strings. There is also a lot of cynicism about the fairness of elections in Russia, and there is much speculation that Putin will run again (and win) in 2012, since the Russian Constitution does not prevent him from doing so. So what we have is a decades-long pattern of “continuity of leadership” in the former Soviet Union, and now in Russia. It would be simply impossible to execute a long range strategy like Golitsyn describes, in a real democracy where the national direction can change every 4 or 8 years. Vladimir Putin has himself admitted to being made “in the Soviet mold.” Putin is a communist and is the logical extension of the Soviets long range plans.
So, it appears that Khrushchev was right in his assertion that we in the US would be eat the communist elephant one socialist bite at a time.
FP: Jason McNew, thanks for joining Frontpage Interview.
To see the Symposium Secrets of Communism's "Collapse," click here.