The Cold War, KAL-007 & Communism: Intelligence Secrets Revealed
CHAPTER 1 – Origins of the cold war (1945)
Chapter 2 – communisT Blockade: the berlin Airlift (1948)
Chapter 3 – “Hot” Cold war: The Korean War (1950-1953)
Chapter 4 – Nuclear: The Cuban Missile Crisis (1962)
Chapter 5 – a cold war loss: vietnam (1965-1975)
Chapter 6 – Intelligence: airborne reconnaissance (1950-1978)
Chapter 7: Fifth air force: intelligence (1982-1983)
chapter 8: KAL-007 Shootdown (1983)
chapter 9: epilogue
Origins of the Cold War
On July 17, 1948, Major General William J. “Wild Bill” Donovan, Wartime OSS Director, declared, “The place to make a stand against Russia is right here in Berlin. This is not a Cold War. It is Hot as Hell.” But the U.S. was tired of war and had already lost more than 400,000 lives against the Axis (Germany, Italy and Japan).
By the time the Allies (United States, Britain and the Soviet Union) met for The Potsdam Declarations, many lives had been lost and it was time for death to end. But the Communists had greater possibilities for expansion at the same time.
I n the years to come, the world would see an “Evil Empire” raise its head to barter, over-throw and financially support any country that would oppose Capitalism. It would be Potsdam where Joseph Stalin, President of the Politburo (the “senate” of Communism), would demand Eastern European countries remain under his control. Britain and the U.S. would keep control of Western Germany and the Soviets would control Eastern Germany, Poland, Outer Mongolia, South Sakhalin Island and the Kurile Islands.
So begins the battle between the Western Powers and the Eastern Bloc. The Cold War with the Soviet Union was in full swing. It had been ever since the end of World War II. It was 1983, nearly thirty years since the Soviets entered Berlin, Germany, and Hitler committed suicide. It was nearly thirty years of Capitalism trying to hold back the forward motion of Communism.
In its original form, Communism’s basic principles spread the wealth and the power among workers.
At the end of the Bolshevik (or Red A.K.A. Communist) Revolution in 1917, the Bolsheviks appealed to workers everywhere to overthrow their governments: “We summon you to this struggle, workers of all countries. There is no other way. The crimes of the ruling classes in this war have been countless. These crimes cry out for revolutionary revenge.”
The Bolsheviks envisioned a classless society in a warless world. They talked of a vast expansion of democracy – a democracy for the poor and the powerless. They said they would abolish private property, allocate control of the workplace to the workers themselves, fairly distribute the fruits of production, and give the peasants the land on which they labored. In short, they wanted the workers to empower themselves.
Such revolutionary skirmishes had broken out all over Europe since Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels first published the Communist Manifesto in 1848. This time, however, the Bolsheviks won. There was only one problem with the Red Army’s victory: the administrators of Communism became corrupt.
“Power tends to corrupt and absolute power corrupts absolutely.” – British Historian Lord Acton (John Emerich Edward Dahlberg, 1st Baron Acton) in a letter to Bishop Mandell Creighton in 1887.
I t was Vladimir Ilich (V.I.) Lenin who led the Communist and won the Red Revolution in 1917. The people of Russia followed Lenin strictly on the principles of Communism – strictly for a better life and for better opportunities. The problem was that Lenin and his revolutionary leaders found something else. Suddenly, they were in control of an entire nation and its wealth. After years of their own families’ struggles for a decent living, the leaders distributed the wealth to themselves, and their family and friends, under the banner of the Communist Party and the named leadership society: The Politburo.
Now the rest of the Soviet Union felt betrayed. They realized that the promises of Communism wouldn’t happen overnight. But over time, the citizens of former Russia knew that they’d been duped and that instead of a tsar owning all the wealth, an elite military group owned it. Their lives hadn’t changed. In fact, they were probably worse off.
Voiced outcries began to be heard, and the Politburo, now unwilling to relinquish their newfound wealth, wanted to maintain their new status quo.
I n came Joseph Stalin. Lenin had died in 1924, and by 1929, Stalin was the new dictator of the Soviet Union. He knew how to handle opposition, create a secret service – the KGB – and turn the opposition against each other with more false promises. Once you have infiltrated society with your eyes, ears and “posted rewards” for dissenters, people will turn on each other from the resultant fear. And Stalin knew how to instill fear: if you oppose, die.
During Joseph Stalin’s reign of the Communist Politburo, more than eight million people were reportedly executed. This time, it wasn’t because they were a foreign or despised people like the underlying reasons for Hitler’s, Japan’s, or Kosovo’s atrocities. This time, citizens opposed the wealth and power of their own leadership in the Politburo. This time, people died at the hands of their own self-proclaimed “saviors.”
Once Stalin had internal threats under control, it was time to move Communism worldwide. By this time, the Politburo had successfully captured control of all the natural resources of the Soviet Union. So why not increase that wealth while building a network of allies against Capitalism and any other future adversaries?
The Politburo did this in three ways:
they would persuade the leaders of other countries by showing how they could increase their own power and wealth;
they would offer them protection and equipment against neighboring enemies;
they would move their military in and take over the country without the consent of anyone.
In 1945, the democratic leaders who went to finalize World War II in Potsdam were rudely awakened. Communism now laid claim to most of Eastern Europe, the northern islands of Japan, and by 1954 North Korea and North Vietnam. Suddenly, Communism was encroaching on free nations. Nearly overnight, this World War II ally was a direct threat to the Free World.
C ommunism’s movement needed to be stopped, but the world was tired of fighting after two world wars in fewer than thirty years. So instead of following General George Patton’s advice to move on the Soviet Union at the end of the war, the democratic nations conceded to the Potsdam declarations made by the U.S.S.R..
So began the Cold War. From the end of World War II until the so-called fall of the Soviet Union in 1989, many hot “Conflicts” were fought against the spread of Communism. There was the Berlin Airlift shortly after World War II; Korea in the early 1950’s; Cuba in the early 1960’s; and Vietnam in the later 1960’s through 1975.
The Cold War Begins
The Yalta Conference is often cited as the beginning of The Cold War. This meeting of the “Big Three” took place between February 4-11, 1945 at the former palace of Czar Nicholas on the Crimean southern shore of the Black Sea.
S talin’s army had reached the Oder River and was poised for the final attack on Berlin, but on February 3, Stalin ordered a pause while the Yalta Conference was in session.
His occupation of Poland was complete, and he possessed command of the largest army in Europe: 12 million soldiers in 300 divisions.
Eisenhower’s 4 million men in 85 divisions were still west of the Rhine River and strategic bombing had devastated German cities. The last untouched, major city in Germany was destroyed on February 13 when Churchill sent his bombers over Dresden.
U.S. President Roosevelt appeared weak and tired in photos of the Yalta Conference, and he would present his Yalta report t o Congress on March 1 while sitting down. Two months later, Roosevelt was dead of a massive cerebral hemorrhage. His physician, Dr. Howard Bruenn, has written that although FDR suffered from high blood pressure, there was no evidence that his health impaired his abilities at Yalta.
Critics would accuse Roosevelt of a “sell-out” at Yalta, of giving away Eastern Europe to Stalin, of “secret deals” with a ruthless dictator.
Bert Andrews in the New York Herald Examiner wrote about four secret deals: Russia’s demand for $20 billion in reparations from Germany; for Poland to the Curzon Line; for three seats in the United Nations; and for territory in the Far East including Outer Mongolia, South Sakhalin Island and the Kurile Islands.
Stalin did not hold free elections in Eastern Europe and the American press turned increasingly hostile to Russia. However, as Robert Dallek has pointed out in “Franklin Roosevelt and American Policy,” FDR was hoping the future United Nations organization would be the place to deal with Stalin, not Yalta. He told Adolf Berle, “I didn’t say the result was good. I said it was the best I could do.” Both Roosevelt and Churchill recognized the reality of Soviet power in 1945.
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