Thursday, December 07, 2023

American Betrayal



"It is not simply a good book about history. It is one of those books which makes history. ... "

-- Vladimir Bukovsky, co-founder of the Soviet dissident movement and author of Judgment in Moscow, and Pavel Stroilov, author of Behind the Desert Storm.

"Diana West is distinguished from almost all political commentators because she seeks less to defend ideas and proposals than to investigate and understand what happens and what has happened. This gives her modest and unpretentious books and articles the status of true scientific inquiry, shifting the debate from the field of liking and disliking to being and non-being."

-- Olavo de Carvalho

If you're looking for something to read, this is the most dazzling, mind-warping book I have read in a long time. It has been criticized by the folks at Front Page, but they don't quite get what Ms. West has set out to do and accomplished. I have a whole library of books on communism, but -- "Witness" excepted -- this may be the best.

-- Jack Cashill, author of Deconstructing Obama: The Lives, Loves and Letters of America's First Postmodern President and First Strike: TWA Flight 800 and the Attack on America

"Every once in a while, something happens that turns a whole structure of preconceived ideas upside down, shattering tales and narratives long taken for granted, destroying prejudice, clearing space for new understanding to grow. Diana West's latest book, American Betrayal, is such an event."

 -- Henrik Raeder Clausen, Europe News

West's lesson to Americans: Reality can't be redacted, buried, fabricated, falsified, or omitted. Her book is eloquent proof of it.

-- Edward Cline, Family Security Matters

"I have read it, and agree wholeheartedly."

-- Angelo Codevilla, Professor Emeritus of International Relations at Boston Unversity, and fellow of the Claremont Institute. 

Enlightening. I give American Betrayal five stars only because it is not possible to give it six.

-- John Dietrich, formerly of the Defense Intelligence Agency and author of The Morgenthau Plan: Soviet Influence on American Postwar Policy.

After reading American Betrayal and much of the vituperation generated by neoconservative "consensus" historians, I conclude that we cannot ignore what West has demonstrated through evidence and cogent argument.

-- John Dale Dunn, M.D., J.D., Journal of American Physicians and Surgeons

"A brilliantly researched and argued book."

-- Edward Jay Epstein, author of Deception: The Invisible War between the KGB and the CIA, The Annals 0f Unsolved Crime 

"This explosive book is a long-needed answer to court histories that continue to obscure key facts about our backstage war with Moscow. Must-reading for serious students of security issues and Cold War deceptions, both foreign and domestic."

-- M. Stanton Evans, author of Stalin's Secret Agents and Blacklisted by History: The Untold Story of Senator Joe McCarthy and His Fight Against America's Enemies

Her task is ambitious; her sweep of crucial but too-little-known facts of history is impressive; and her arguments are eloquent and witty. ... American Betrayal is one of those books that will change the way many of us see the world.

-- Susan Freis Falknor, Blue Ridge Forum

"American Betrayal is absolutely required reading. Essential. You're sleepwalking without it."

-- Chris Farrell, director of investigations research, Judicial Watch

"Diana West wrote a brilliant book called American Betrayal, which I recommend to everybody ... It is a seminal work that will grow in importance." 

-- Newt Gingrich, former House Speaker 

"This is a must read for any serious student of history and anyone working to understand the Marxist counter-state in America."

-- John Guandolo, president, Understanding the Threat, former FBI special agent 

It is myth, or a series of myths, concerning WW2 that Diana West is aiming to replace with history in 2013’s American Betrayal.

If West’s startling revisionism is anywhere near the historical truth, the book is what Nietzsche wished his writings to be, dynamite.

-- Mark Gullick, British Intelligence 

“What Diana West has done is to dynamite her way through several miles of bedrock. On the other side of the tunnel there is a vista of a new past. Of course folks are baffled. Few people have the capacity to take this in. Her book is among the most well documented I have ever read. It is written in an unusual style viewed from the perspective of the historian—but it probably couldn’t have been done any other way.”

-- Lars Hedegaard, historian, journalist, founder, Danish Free Press Society

The polemics against your Betrayal have a familiar smell: The masters of the guild get angry when someone less worthy than they are ventures into the orchard in which only they are privileged to harvest. The harvest the outsider brought in, they ritually burn.

-- Hans Jansen, former professor of Islamic Thought, University of Utrecht 

No book has ever frightened me as much as American Betrayal. ... [West] patiently builds a story outlining a network of subversion so bizarrely immense that to write it down will seem too fantastic to anyone without the book’s detailed breadth and depth. It all adds up to a story so disturbing that it has changed my attitude to almost everything I think about how the world actually is. ... By the time you put the book down, you have a very different view of America’s war aims and strategies. The core question is, did the USA follow a strategy that served its own best interests, or Stalin’s? And it’s not that it was Stalin’s that is so compelling, since you knew that had to be the answer, but the evidence in detail that West provides that makes this a book you cannot ignore. 

-- Steven Kates, RMIT (Australia) Associate Professor of Economics, Quadrant

"Diana West's new book rewrites WWII and Cold War history not by disclosing secrets, but by illuminating facts that have been hidden in plain sight for decades. Furthermore, she integrates intelligence and political history in ways never done before."

-- Jeffrey Norwitz, former professor of counterterrorism, Naval War College

[American Betrayal is] the most important anti-Communist book of our time ... a book that can open people's eyes to the historical roots of our present malaise ... full of insights, factual corroboration, and psychological nuance. 

-- J.R. Nyquist, author, Origins of the Fourth World War 

Although I know [Christopher] Andrew well, and have met [Oleg] Gordievsky twice, I now doubt their characterization of Hopkins -- also embraced by Radosh and the scholarly community. I now support West's conclusions after rereading KGB: The Inside Story account 23 years later [relevant passages cited in American Betrayal]. It does not ring true that Hopkins was an innocent dupe dedicated solely to defeating the Nazis. Hopkins comes over in history as crafty, secretive and no one's fool, hardly the personality traits of a naïve fellow traveler. And his fingerprints are on the large majority of pro-Soviet policies implemented by the Roosevelt administration. West deserves respect for cutting through the dross that obscures the evidence about Hopkins, and for screaming from the rooftops that the U.S. was the victim of a successful Soviet intelligence operation.

-- Bernie Reeves, founder of The Raleigh Spy Conference, American Thinker

Diana West’s American Betrayal — a remarkable, novel-like work of sorely needed historical re-analysis — is punctuated by the Cassandra-like quality of “multi-temporal” awareness. ... But West, although passionate and direct, is able to convey her profoundly disturbing, multi-temporal narrative with cool brilliance, conjoining meticulous research, innovative assessment, evocative prose, and wit.

-- Andrew G. Bostom, PJ Media

Do not be dissuaded by the controversy that has erupted around this book which, if you insist on complete accuracy, would be characterized as a disinformation campaign.

-- Jed Babbin, The American Spectator

In American Betrayal, Ms. West's well-established reputation for attacking "sacred cows" remains intact. The resulting beneficiaries are the readers, especially those who can deal with the truth.

-- Wes Vernon, Renew America

View Blog
Apr 12

Written by: Diana West
Saturday, April 12, 2014 12:43 PM 

Not one but several of the lowpoints of what Vladimir Bukovsky & Pavel Stroilov have called a "Soviet-style propaganda campaign" against American Betrayal, what Jed Babbin tagged a "disinformation campaign," and what M. Stanton Evans has described as my "mugging" were logged by The American Thinker website edited by Thomas Lifson.

There was the (1) unsubstantiated parroting of the lies, distortions and fabrications (all debunked here) in an otherwise positive review (which, not incidentally, included the reviewer's declaration that he was now persuaded that Harry Hopkins was an agent of Soviet influence inside the Roosevelt White House); there was the (2) rapid enforcement action by Rado. publicly whacking the positive reviewer (and, of course, my book again in one of a blizzard of Rado-Horo attack pieces); there was (3,4) not one but two other attacks posted at American Thinker by writers who actually admitted in print not to have read my book at all; and 5) lowest of all, there was Thomas Lifson himself, who actually refused to run the rebuttal I wrote in response to false and unsubstantiated attacks on my scholarship contained in (1).

An ugly chapter of an ugly saga, to be sure. It would be compounded when several other writers subsequently and separately told me that their defenses of American Betrayal -- or simply arguing for fair and honest dialogue about American Betrayal -- were turned down at American Thinker, The party line was and is clear and inviolate. Congratulations to all concerned.

Today on Twitter someone responded to a brief blog Lifson wrote about the Sovietsky posters hanging in the home of Jay Carney and Claire Shipman by urging people to read American Betrayal to understand the phenomenon. (Thank you, @southsalem.)

I don't know or care whether Lifson ever read or ever reads American Betrayal, but it is certainly the case that Western elites' zest for Communist iconography is discussed in American Betrayal as a manifestation of the callous indifference to genocidal Communist crime that marks our society, a subject deeply analyzed and weighed throughout the book. There is some measure of irony to AT's glib treatment of the topic, after everything, that somehow bears noting. 

So noted. Here, then, for weekend reading, is a short excerpt from the book where the concept is introduced. The excerpt picks up after a discussion of the wrath of the Truman administration toward Whittaker Chambers for revealing the truth about Alger Hiss when, of course, Chambers deserved a medal. If an act of national-security-saving patriotism can be sundered from plaudits, it follows that multiple acts of mass murder can be sundered from condemnation. It's all connected ....

From American Betrayal, p. 63:

Important to note is that with a twist of the timeline, Chambers could just as easily have been subjected to the “wrath” of the Roosevelt administration or the “wrath” of the Eisenhower administration. Both of these administrations shared with Truman’s the same propensity for suppression when it came to the touchy subject of domestic Communist conspiracy. In the end, this had the effect of protecting the Communist conspiracy itself. In FDR’s case, for example, the president personally tried to shut down Rep. Martin Dies’s investigations into Communist conspiracy—and later his political career.8 In Eisenhower’s case, as president he was personally involved in efforts to shut down Senator Joseph McCarthy’s quite similar investigations.9 In all such cases, as with the Hiss case, this meant that both the extent and the impact of the conspiracies were officially downplayed, denied, suppressed, and/or ignored by those elected leaders directly responsible for defending the Constitution. In each and every instance, it was the anti-Communists, the ex-Communists, and the Cassandras who were punished and castigated by the Washington Establishment, and then ostracized for their “crimes” of exposing treason.


This question drove me further past the pat narratives that have sufficed for too long. It is particularly pertinent today as we watch the same Establishment forces coalescing anew to suppress logical and, indeed, patriotic questions about hostile Islamic penetration of the U.S. government particularly since 9/11.10 When did this ugly stuff really get going? A related question: When did anti-Communism itself—the philosophical and political drive against state domination of the individual—become a radioactive inheritance of perceived bigotry and mass hysteria to be passed down, gingerly, generation to generation? It must be here where the origins of our indifference to the plight of the anti-Communist witnesses and to Cold War victory and Communist crime lie. What I was looking for, then, was the beginnings of the greatest propaganda coup and flimflam operation in history: the hocus-pocus transformation of liberty-loving anti-Communism into a force of repression to be reviled—not always by the people, who were reflexively anti-Communist, but certainly by the elite expression of public conscience. There was a flip side to the phenomenon, too: the hocus-pocus transformation of totalitarian Communism into a force of liberalism, later liberation, to be shielded or even fully embraced by that same public conscience. It was almost as if a giant syringe of novocaine had been injected into the body politic at some unknown point and with permanent effect: the numbed sensibility that reflexively reviles the evil of Hitler but calmly accepts that of Stalin, Mao, and other Red thugs and killers. Among the many manifestations of this weirdly insenate state, my symbolic favorite is the eye-catching frequency with which Warhol’s silkscreen of Chairman Mao pops up as an aspect of chic in lavishly decorated homes, glorious fruits of the freeish market as celebrated in four-color, glossy shelter magazines. And no, irony is not a fig leaf for the mass murderer over the mantelpiece. His pride of place is more evidence of internal rot and betrayal....


It is also, as the book explains, more evidence of the disconnect between cause and effect, facts and conclusions, which is so much an aspect of the intertwining relationship of lies and double standards and departures from reality that held the US in thrall to the USSR. Increasingly, we rely on cant -- much like something to be found in Mao's Little Red Book, as a matter of fact.

Below, from p. 239, one of my distillations, which I'd wager suits the Carney-Shipman household -- and other media-elite households -- to a T. In fact, I just looked up a column I wrote back in 2003 noting the Warhol portrait of Mao over the fireplace of a home belonging to a Newsweek/Wall Street Journal couple, at that time recently returned home from Beijing and featured in Vogue. The couple was having problems Americanizing ther son, it seemed, whom they had enrolled in St Ann's School in Brooklyn, a school so Left-wing, I noted at the time, it featured third graders' portraits of Lenin on the website. I just checked the school site, and eleven years later, it still does. 


From American Betrayal:

...Sterling’s comment is testament to the awesome powers of “the belief” in the Big G-Goodness of the “Left,” the political, cultural catchall term we use to encompass all abstractions and ideologies of the revolutionaries and “reformers” who were, and are, naive or egotistical or zealous or power-mad enough to force utopian transformation on the rest of us by government fiat, by mandatory “inclusiveness,” by police-backed diktat. The Left is all and only about social harmony by command performance. We can chalk up at least one hundred million murders to its most successful alumni, as tallied by The Black Book of Communism, but the animating spirit of “the Left” still retains its glow, its catechisms archaic but basically unchanged, the faith long having become a hardwired reflex:

Left, Good; Right, Bad.

“The people,” good; We, the People, “imperialist.”

Individuals (especially businessmen), greedy.

Hollywood Blacklist, bad.

Hollywood Ten, martyrs (except “squealer” Dmytryk).

Elia Kazan, Judas.

Communists: persecuted freethinkers. Have you left no sense of decency?

"McCarthyism": repression.

Mao, expensive decorative art.

Che Guevara, fashion statement.

Ho Chi Minh, agrarian.

Mommy, who’s Ho Chi Minh, and what’s an agrarian?

Scratch Ho. The signposts recede from view, but the direction is fixed, which is why the phrase “evil empire” still triggers that patronizing chortle to make Pavlov proud and earn his dog a cookie. How Neanderthal can you get? says the roll of the eyes. No answer is necessary because our minds have been battened down against logic and morality both. Seventeen a year, ten a month, a thousand a month, forty thousand a month . . . Solzhenitsyn’s moral calculus, like Conquest’s compendia of Communist slaughter, or Bentley’s eyewitness evidence of Communist treason, or Bukovsky’s “détente” nightmare in psychiatric hospitals and prisons, remains beyond our ken and comprehension, much like Solzhenitsyn himself, who was virtually locked out of the White House in the summer of 1975. Twenty-four years later, Elia Kazan had to be sneaked into a side door to receive his special Oscar to avoid pro-Communist (pro-hundred-million- killed?) protesters in front of a Los Angeles theater. In the meantime, Solzhenitsyn never really got inside with his story, the one he always wanted to tell us Americans....


Some people still don't want that message to be heard -- and certainly don't want to weigh its implications.

Tough luck.

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