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Ron Radosh

As David Horowitz has often said, being left-wing “means never having to say  you’re sorry.” To accept the truth means that they might have to reevaluate the belief system they have adhered to for almost half a century. That system demands a consistent anti-Americanism, a belief that although Stalin might have been bad, the system he built was nevertheless progressive. Indeed, if you acknowledge that there were Soviet spies, maybe that means that in the 1950s the concern for Communist agents in our midst was not really irrational. Maybe they live in fear finding out that anti-Communism was valid and that a witch-hunt never really existed.

It turns out that Benn Steil wrote a very good letter to the editor that, somehow, The Nation never saw fit to publish. Limited to a short 500 words, Steil nevertheless managed to skewer Boughton’s review and demolish it. Not content to wait for its publication, he turned to Forbes, where he wrote a longer rebuttal. He writes that “Boughton is now virtually alone among contemporary chroniclers of White in exculpating him – in spite of overwhelming documentary evidence, the authenticity of which Boughton does not challenge – of espionage on behalf of the Soviet Union.”

As he goes on to point out, the Venona decrypts proved that Harry Dexter White proved his complicity in espionage. Yet Boughton insists that “the cables reveal nothing more than White engaged in ‘indiscreet gossip’ with official Soviet contacts.” In fact, the 18 cables that mention White show him passing “confidential strategic information to Soviet intelligence through American moles, as well as directly to Soviet operatives, and expressing grave concern over whether and how his activities can continue to be kept secret.”

It turns out, and both Steill and Klehr and Haynes offer the information about what White really did, that Whittaker Chambers was completely accurate when he said that White was writing down and distributing classified information. As one cable from an NKVD agent said in mid 1944, “J [White] knows where his info. goes, which is precisely why he transmits it in the first place.”

Of course, even if White did it for ideological reasons — a commitment to the Soviets — his wife saw it as a way to monetarily benefit her family. Thus did the Soviets agree to give gifts to the Whites, including, it seems, paying for their daughter’s education, expenses which “may come up to two thousand a year” — a lot for the 1940s!   As for the daughter, she wrote a letter to the New York Times protesting an op-ed that Steil had written. She wrote of “old allegations of espionage against my father,” which, she added, “are once again repeated as fact.”

Perhaps White’s daughter can be excused for defending her father. Or perhaps she is embarrassed to have found out that good old Joe Stalin paid for her education because he wanted to keep the family happy so that her late father would keep on spying for the Soviet tyranny.

Will the liberal/left residents of Nationland ever learn to accept the truth? One of the main journalists who live in denial, Victor Navasky, the former editor and publisher of The Nation, is now chairman of the Columbia Journalism Review, the George T. Delacorte professor in magazine journalism at Columbia University, and one of the leading defenders of Alger Hiss. I somehow don’t think that at his perch, he is teaching his students that the magazine he once ran still subscribes to the old left-wing shibboleths he holds so dear.

With their review of Benn Steil’s book by James Boughton, it is clear that The Nation remains devoted to teaching an entire new generation all the old rationales of the old Communists and their fellow-traveling allies.

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Feral waxed poetic, but this is basically my experience as well. Ron chose to rip up Geller a few years ago. I pointed out where I thought he was wrong, and expressed aggravation that he chose to attack her personally. He then turned on me, quoting my post in an article dedicated to silencing supposedly crazy bloggers. Those who feel the need to be the 'only sane ones' are giving themselves quite a bit of credit, without reason. Radosh could have just addressed the issue of Hopkins in his piece on West, but instead called her a bunch of names.

Nor is there any need for a 'pure' conservative test. That's not the issue. It is the quality of the discourse. Don't rip up other writers, bloggers, and posters in your articles. Stick to the issues. End of story.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Hmmm, does this mean author Diana West could be right in her book American Betrayal that you cut down not long ago?
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
You know what Ron? For ONCE I would like to see someone from our side lambasting these SOBS WITHOUT having to bring up the nut jobs on the right. Do you really think by mentioning that, yeah we got a few in the nuthouse too, that the left will feel better and admit they are mistaken? Seen this over and over again. It's almost as if you need to APOLOGIZE for telling the truth and offer an olive branch before stating a few cold hard facts. And every time it is done, the left takes it for a gesture of insecurity and timidity. They have no problem dwelling in fantasy land. And they will NEVER criticize one of their own.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
All Comments   (26)
All Comments   (26)
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"I somehow don’t think that at his perch, he is teaching his students that the magazine he once ran still subscribes to the old left-wing shibboleths he holds so dear."

You would be succinctly wrong in your assumption.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
All that one needs to know about Radosh is summed up by his comment linking fringes of the left and the right. And he, you know, is in the middle! What a reasonable guy!

The Nation is not fringe left, any more than Alinsky, Ayers, Obama, or the NYT. That is the left. To say that the Nation is fringe is to say that there is a worthy element about the left. There is not. You believe in the bracing contest of liberty, or you do not. Few do. There's a fringe for you, Ron.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
So, where are the Verona Papers of today? How many of our current crop of 'leaders' are pure Commie-Marxist?
I think it would be a very thick book.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Ronnie, The Nation has no reason to deny that Harry Dexter White was a Soviet agent because being a Soviet agent during WW2 is not seen as being bad.

So, Boughton has no reason to defend him on that count. He is only insisting, on principle, that his detractors get the facts straight.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment

Ron Radosh’s first sentence reminds us of why we are scared of the Reds.

"Harry Dexter White, the assistant secretary of the Treasury and the man who created the postwar financial structure and the International Monetary Fund, was arguably the top Communist spy working in our top government agencies during the New and Fair Deal days." Harry Dexter White also designed and organized the World Bank.

As far as I know, the implications that a Stalinist Soviet Communist agent designed and organized these two international financial and economic institutions which centrally control significant amounts of credit in the world has never been examined. It would seem likely that a Stalinist Soviet Communist agent would design and organized financial and economic institutions that reflect his Marxist values, ideas, beliefs, and the view of the world and advance his Marxist-Stalinist goals and objectives.

It is totally unrealistic to think that either will be disbanded or reformed but it would be useful to explore the economic and political impact of Stalinist Soviet Communist designed and organized institutions on the world economy and the US which is the primary funder.

This may be one of Ron Radosh’s most important posts. “In Denial” by Harvey Klehr and John Earl Haynes expands on the anti-anti-communist’s efforts to obfuscate the truth which Ron Radosh has so clearly stated. PJMedia has a larger audience. Ron Radosh reminds us not to forget.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Ron is such a great guy. Here's the subject line of an email he sent to Diana West: "Conrad Black Tears You Apart"

Here's the content of the email: "Sorry to upset you once again, Diana, but I'm afraid you've lost, big time."

I'm so pleased that Ron is posting here at PJ Media. Such a decent and respectable person.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Not sure how you got this, but if so, it makes me feel better about the heartburn involved in clashing with Radosh. PJM should be ashamed for publishing him; instead, he is 'inner circle' and anyone who offends him gets stepped on.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
It is true that the right also has very extreme radicals....so what? Our universities, public schools, our entire national media establishment and federal government, and almost half of our population have not been brainwashed into active participation in bringing our nation down by the "right wing nuts." So, there's right wing nuts....what have they done to destroy our everyday life? The left wing radicals have led us to near oblivion - yes, we allowed it to happen by being "gentlemen" and terrifying to me personally, I believe we may have become a nation of such sissies that we cannot now bring ourselves to make the decisions and face the choices we must make to save our country. I pray that I am wrong, but it appears we are too pusillanimous to decisively act for our own survival. May our children forgive us.

Remember BENGHAZI!
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
"Like their counterparts on the far-right fringe, the Nation left also ignores evidence, even though it has demonstrated beyond any reasonable doubt that White was indeed a Soviet agent."

This is too easy. Mr. Radosh focuses his attention today on HDWhite and whispers not a peep about Harry Hopkins. Is White the sacrificial lamb. We'll all say that HDW is a spy/influence pedlar for Stalin, but heaven forbid that we should even hint that Harry Hopkins' reputation, who slept and ate at the WH and was in effect FDR's right-hand man for 3.5 years, should be challenged as to his sympathies. I challenge you, Mr. Radosh, to acquire three thinking Americans, let's say an airline pilot, an electrical engineer, and an accountant. Sit them down and provide them with the evidence DW has laid out as to the activities of HH -- but not stating the time, the place, or the names of any of the principals. Give them the facts, but hide the particulars: Lend-Lease; Stalin; Russian/Soviet Embassy -- etc. etc. Provide equivalents. Be creative. Now ask them if HH (BB, LL, or whatever pseudonym you like) was acting in the best interests of his nation or of a third party.

What is it about the likely infiltration by Stalin via HH that has you so defensive?
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Stop the circular firing squad for Pete's sake! That includes you too Ron.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Hmmm, does this mean author Diana West could be right in her book American Betrayal that you cut down not long ago?
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
I don't think so...I think there are two extremes (both of which I believe Ron Radosh rejects). One extreme alleges that there were no Communist infiltrators in FDR's administration (the position taken by Leftist authors at *The Nation*); then, on the other extreme, one encounters authors who allege that the whole FDR administration was so beholden to Communists that it was a de facto "occupation". Both these extremes ignore evidence and adhere to a rigid, blinkered ideology.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
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