“American Betrayal” - As Reviewed By Cheryl Gatesworth

The Secret Assault on Our Nation's Character


October 7, 2013 - San Francisco, CA - PipeLineNews.org - J. Diana West, well known columnist and author, has written a carefully crafted and meticulously footnoted book, “American Betrayal: The Secret Assault on our Nation's Character.” In it she presents her studied conclusion that the United States was under de-facto Soviet occupation during the presidencies of President Franklin D. Roosevelt and Harry S. Truman. She deals primarily with the administration of the former and to a lesser degree with that of the latter, as well as analyzing subsequent events. Ms. West provides chapter and verse (and extensive footnotes) on what can only be characterized as the Soviet direction of American war policy. Guilty were not only actual American agents recruited by the KGB (then NKVD) and the GRU (then OGPU), but also the coterie of fellow travelers, collaborators and doltish cadre of “useful idiots.”

Editor’s note: Given the length and depth of Ms. West's book and her impressive treatment of the issues and events with which she deals, the scope of this piece will necessarily be somewhat limited.

As is the case today, those who were aware of the danger facing America from internal subversion largely kept silent. Relying extensively on the declassified (1995) Venona transcripts (which retroactively decrypted Soviet coded “top secret” material between 1943 and 1948); the archives of the Soviet Union offered by General Dmitri Volkoganov (1991), information provided by Soviet defectors and the investigations of other authors, West exquisitely documents her thesis.

Ms. West also chastises the historians of the period and those who followed for whitewashing the issue. Thus, the historical record has been intentionally “sanitized” to hide and/or avoid the overwhelming evidence of a well thought out - and successful - plot carried out by the Soviet Communists to infiltrate the FDR/Truman administrations, despite the voluminous evidence provided by the decoded Soviet dispatches.

In the process, West unmasks these main-stream “historians” as politically motivated apologists.

The true heroes of the times - Whittaker Chambers, Elizabeth Bentley, the now increasingly vindicated Senator Joseph McCarthy and Soviet defector Viktor Kravchenko are not dealt with objectively - when they are mentioned at all. In a fair reading of what really happened during these pivotal years, these few brave individuals were the only ones telling the truth.

As a by-product of this process, the Paul Reveres of the time have been relegated to the inglorious status of mere footnotes in history books. Indeed, they are often referred to disparagingly with the intent of mitigating their credibility. The usual reference is simply that Bentley and Chambers were former Communists. Senator McCarthy is still treated as if he had horns and a tail.

These brave few are among the giants who should have monuments dedicated to their actions.

Analyzing the cataclysm of World War II and its aftermath, West arrives at a disturbing, but highly plausible conclusion; she makes the case that the Soviet Union was the only true winner in that conflict.

Though it was the United States and Great Britain who saved Europe from the brutality of Adolph Hitler, FDR acted quickly to undo those hard-fought gains, acquiescing to the brutal USSR when Stalin moved to annex - as client states - much of Europe.

As a result the United States was then forced to fight a costly Cold War with a Soviet enemy emboldened by Roosevelt’s passivity.

Invoking the colorful Hans Christian Anderson fairytale of "The Emperor’s New Clothes," the author draws a striking comparison between the United State’s failure to contain Stalin’s post-war aggression and the seeming inability of contemporary American political leaders to deal with the existential threat posed by Islamic jihadism today.

Unfortunately, very few people and even fewer political leaders will admit that the emperor has no clothes.

Within the Roosevelt administration there was perhaps no stronger voice supporting “conciliation” with the Soviets than Harry L. Hopkins, whose central role in the shaping of American-Soviet foreign policy is routinely underplayed in the history of the period - often referred to as merely an “assistant to the president.”

Rather than being what many historians characterize as but one of many presidential assistants, Hopkins was virtually a co-president and importantly, privy to considerably more information than was Roosevelt himself.

Hopkins not only exerted a tremendous influence in matters of state, he was the conduit to the President. It became the norm during FDR’s unprecedented lengthy tenure [12 years] that important matters be presented first to Hopkins and only then be passed on to the president.

Thus, the “mere advisor” became the unchallenged gatekeeper.

Hopkins was a leftist extremist, a true “fellow traveler.” His ideology was pointedly characterized by General George C. Marshall: “Hopkins' job with the President was to represent the Russian interests. My job was to represent the American interests.”

Marshall’s views on this matter must be taken seriously; he served as Army Chief of Staff, Secretary of State, and finally as Secretary of Defense under both Roosevelt and Truman. He made the above statement regarding Hopkins to his biographer, Forrest Pogue, on January 22, 1957.

Cutting to the heart of the matter, West persuasively argues that Hopkins was the Soviet agent referred to in the Venona papers as “source 19.”

More about this later.

Though Hopkins died in 1946, his legacy lived on, most notoriously, the mark left by his dictatorial control of the lend-lease program, under which the United States provided England and other allied nations with strategic war materiel.

After the collapse of the Hitler-Stalin Pact and the German invasion of Russia in June 1941, Hopkins decreed that the demands of the USSR - double crossed by their former partner in war and on that basis now folded into the program - were to take precedence over all others, including the needs of the United States. Lend-lease was sold to the American public [which was strongly isolationist, pre Pearl Harbor] as a way of avoiding direct participation in the European conflict. The theory was to provide the tools of war to those who were doing the fighting for us.

Continuing with lend-lease, we come to the testimony of Major George Racey Jordan before Congress from 1949 to1950. Major Jordan was responsible for the transshipment of lend-lease materiel from the United States to the USSR from an airfield in Great Falls, Montana.

During his testimony, Jordan leveled two very serious charges against Hopkins. The first arose from the Major’s interception of a note, initialed by Hopkins and affixed to a map, the legend of which was “Oak Ridge Manhattan Engineering District.”

Oak Ridge was the location of America’s most secret war project, the then “super-high-tech” uranium enrichment complex which was a vital component in our effort to develop the atomic bomb. At the time, Major Jordan was unaware of this project. Another item was the carbon copy of a note containing the words “cyclotron” and “deuteron” and phrases such as “energy produced by fission,” and “walls five feet thick.”

More suspicious still was a telephone call to Major Jordan from Hopkins during which the latter referenced a “certain shipment of chemicals” which would soon arrive at Great Falls. Jordan was told not only to expedite the shipment but to discuss it with no one and to see that there was to be no official record. His Soviet counterpart, a Colonel Anatole Kotikov, when queried by Jordan about this, referred to the coming shipment as “bomb powder.”

The Soviets were in the loop.

This “USSR First” policy produced seriously hampered our war effort. As an example, it stranded 150,000 American and Filipino troops on Corregidor and Bataan in their fourth month of resistance to the Japanese.

General Douglas MacArthur in his1962 book, Reminiscences, drew much the same conclusion.

Also, the United States, in supplying materiel to the USSR, required U.S. ships to sail North Atlantic routes to arrive at the Soviet port of Murmansk. Their presence in those waters put them at heightened risk of attacks by the German Navy and the Norway based German Luftwaffe.

West also tells in detail the story and subsequent cover-up of a war crime - the execution of more than 22,000 Polish officers by Soviet troops. This took place in the Katyn Forest in1940 after the Communists had invaded Poland in1939. She notes our active collaboration in selling “The Big Lie” - our willingness to parrot The Soviet’s denials that they committed the atrocity.

By suppressing the truth regarding Katyn, the Roosevelt administration entered “into [a] criminal conspiracy with the Soviet Union.”

Within a few weeks of Germany's invasion of Poland from the West in September 1939, the USSR invaded Poland from the east, occupying the area which included the Katyn Forest in 1940. The Soviets realized that any plans they had for ruling Poland after hostilities ended could be thwarted by the highly educated officer corps. The mass grave was discovered by the invading Nazis in April 1943. They immediately realized that it was the work of the Soviets and that they would be blamed instead. Both the Polish government in exile in London and the German army asked the International Red Cross in Geneva to investigate. The latter would not comply until all three parties to the investigation agreed.

Unsurprisingly, the USSR refused.

Shortly after the Nazi discovery in the Katyn Forest, they invited an international ad-hoc group of European experts to examine the bodies. This group dated the deaths to the time of the Russian occupation. The condition of the corpses and diaries, newspapers and personal correspondence found in the mass grave were conclusive proof to them of Soviet guilt as it should have been for the rest of the world.

As the news became known about the events which took place in the Katyn Forest, Elmer Davis, chief of the Office of War Information (OWI), continued to broadcast - virtually unadulterated – the Soviet line. As Ms. West points out earlier in her book, the OWI was staffed with documented communists, collaborators and sympathizers, often taking an even more pro-Soviet position than that emanating from the White House - quite a high benchmark to surpass. That point of view - that Big Lie - was accepted by the American public, including the vast majority of journalists to whom the public relied on for truth, until 1951.

The Roosevelt White House having been bullied into suborning perjury alongside the Soviets pulled even English Prime Minister Winston Churchill into the conspiracy.

In 1990 the former USSR removed all doubt regarding the Katyn forest massacre, admitting its solitary role in the massacre.

The last episode of Ms. West's book this author will examine is her narrative dealing with “Operation Snow.” Soviet agent Vitaly Pavlov ran Operation Snow and wrote about it in Russian in an article (1995) and a book (1996) revealing all the details.

Operation Snow was a successful ploy by the Soviet Union to avoid an anticipated attack by Japan, and therefore a war on its eastern borders, by diverting Japanese aggression toward the United States. It seems certain that not only did Stalin have advanced knowledge of the attack on Pearl Harbor, but that his NKVD operators had successfully accomplished an infiltration of high circles in both Tokyo and Washington. In Washington, Soviet agent Harry Dexter White, in place in the Treasury Department, and celebrated Soviet operator Victor Sorge, assigned to Tokyo, used their considerable influence to turn Japan's aggressive appetites toward American interests.

In Washington, White was responsible for inserting into the text of cables to Japan language written to insult them by his USSR handlers. It was intended to divert Japan from its planned attack on the Soviet Union and instead provoke them to attack the now hostile United States. Soviet troops no longer needed in the east were sent to the rescue of Moscow. Possibly this was the point where German hopes for a victory in Russia were thwarted.

“American Betrayal,” contains controversial claims which have engendered a good deal of surprisingly hostile and personal attacks which in some circles is intended to pass for criticism.

Surprisingly, much of it has coming from conservative sources, notably David Horowitz’ Front Page Magazine. Let’s examine Ronald Radosh’s acidic review published this August, as exemplary of this criticism.

In addition to the viciousness of the attacks, in many critical areas the reviews are factually inaccurate. I fully read the critique written by Radosh after I read the book and before I read Ms. West's rebuttal to Radosh.

When Ms. West wrote of America as being occupied she made it clear that obviously she did not mean it in the literal sense which normally connotes a military takeover. She used the term de-facto occupation, an “occupation” in kind if you will, indicative of the tremendous influence that pro-Soviet agents and sympathizers in the State and Treasury Departments exerted.

Apparently Professor Radosh took the word “occupation” literally, leaving Ms. West open to charges of paranoia and justifying the title of his review, “McCarthy on Steroids.” Surely as a professor he should appreciate the use of de-facto as a modifier and the information contained in the Venona transcripts have provided irrefutable proof that Soviet agents had wormed their way into Roosevelt’s high-level bureaucracy. These people weren’t in the Department of Wild Life and Fisheries; they were positioned where they could exert the most influence, and they accomplished that mission. Also, the Russian moles were in a position to provide entre to like minded individuals into these departments. Perhaps Professor Radosh should reveal how many Soviet agents and collaborators in his opinion - needed to be in sensitive positions of influence before he would consider the government de facto-occupied or “occupied” by the Soviets.

Nor did Ms. West regard Winston Churchill as a communist dupe as Professor Radosh implies. She regarded him as exactly what he was - a junior partner in the Allied forces who had no choice but to acquiesce - to go along to get along.

West expresses outrage over the capture of American POWs from Nazi prison camps by the Soviets when the USSR entered those areas. Under the most basic rules of warfare these men should have been repatriated, and under the most basic contract between a nation and its soldiers, the United State should have accepted nothing less than 100% repatriation.

“Actually, as Plokhy [S. M. Plokhy] shows, the Soviets treated American POW's fairly well” writes Mr. Radosh.

Excuse me?

Apparently Mr. Plokhy and Professor Radosh simply accept this horrendous behavior as a fact without moral implications, that American citizens were imprisoned for life in the USSR. One wonders if Plokhy and Radosh are similarly cavalier regarding the cruelty of the Gulag death camps?

Professor Radosh takes Ms. West to task over her references to the shipments of uranium to the USSR under the cover of lend-lease.

He writes, “Ms. West also insists that Lend-Lease was a crucial “rogue operation” orchestrated by Hopkins and the NKVD...”

In actuality West believes it was a rogue operation orchestrated by Harry Hopkins, Armand Hammer and Harry Dexter White. With that cast of characters, would Professor Radosh be surprised if the NKVD was in the loop?

Professor Radosh demonstrates his reviewing sleight of hand when he implies that Diana West told her reading audience that we sent the USSR sufficient uranium to produce an atomic bomb from the single shipment he mentions. Actually, Ms. West indicates in her book that during Senate testimony General Leslie Groves admitted that we could not be sure how much of the material went to the Soviet Union.

Professor Radosh continues his carping about the mention in "America Betrayal" that uranium was transshipped to the Communists. He informs us that the first nuclear device detonated by the USSR was not fueled by uranium but was a plutonium bomb. Does Radosh believe that plutonium is made of fairy dust? Plutonium is ordinary uranium (such as the USSR received) exposed to intense radiation from still more uranium, that powers the breeder reactor which forces an additional neutron into an ordinary uranium atom. And this plutonium breeder relies on tons of otherwise useless precision aluminum tubing like that which was shipped to the USSR, in place of guns and butter, with remarkable foresight, courtesy of Hopkins' lend-lease.

In her rebuttal West writes: “My italics underscore the historical fact that a U.S. government program run by a suspected Soviet agent of influence procured three-quarters of a ton of uranium (including Manhattan-Project-embargoed uranium) and other atomic materials for Stalin. Additionally, as George Racey Jordan writes in “From Major Jordan’s Diaries,” his memoir of Lend-Lease, “It seems. fair to take into account not merely what the Russians got, but what they tried to get.”

Professor Radosh also attacks West for identifying Harry Hopkins as “source 19” in the Venona transcripts. He claims that this is the linchpin of Ms. West's thesis. It is nothing of the sort. An analysis of Hopkin's actions and those actions of Soviet agents in place as asserted in Venona and other sources are the building blocks of her book. Professor Radosh asserts that “source 19” was actually Laurence Duggan.

Ms. West devoted only two pages to the identification of “source 19” as Hopkins and provided citations. Her rebuttals can be found in numerous places including Breitbart.com, and I will leave it to the reader to determine the truth by reading both sides of the controversy.

In the final analysis it’s really not that important to define exactly what role Harry Hopkins played in this serious breach of national security. Was he “source 19,” a deliberate Soviet agent, an enabler or just extremely stupid.

All result in the same end-game.

Likewise why waste time psychoanalyzing Hopkins to determine why he embraced Marxism-Leninism. Hopkins isn’t on trial, and it is not necessary to sift through his possible motives to determine whether he committed an indictable offense. His sympathy during his tenure as co-president was clearly with the Soviet Union; that was his Holy Grotto, and it became the beneficiary of his actions.

West noted that President Roosevelt had a vision of the world in which the USSR and the United States were converging. He reasoned, “if we could only wait until the convergence was complete, world peace would be achieved.” But President Roosevelt’s oath of office swore him to protect the United States from enemies foreign and domestic.

He did neither, instead during these desperate years, he catered to the needs and demands of the USSR.

So the world didn’t live up to his vision?


The world is as it is and Roosevelt and Hopkins’ effort to fashion themselves as princes within their twisted world-view failed miserably. They did however manage to alter the course of history to the detriment of the West, making the brutality of the Cold War their legacy.


©2013 Cheryl Gatesworth, PipeLineNews.org LLC. All rights reserved.