For years the liberals have mercilessly excoriated those Senators and Congressmen of the 1940s and ‘50s who tried to warn the American people about Communists holding high positions in our government. Liberal writers and activists have ground out an endless tirade about what they call a “witch hunt” against allegedly innocent victims.
Now, Time magazine has given us proof that the Franklin D. Roosevelt Administration was crawling with Soviet agents. Those traitors weren’t just spies stealing secret documents; they were Soviet agents who made decisions that profoundly influenced the course of world events for the benefit of the Soviet Union.
The truth has finally come in from the cold in the new book KGB: The Inside Story by Oleg Gordievsky, the most senior and influential Soviet official ever to escape and defect to the West. We thank Time magazine for conveniently summarizing this revelation, which has more drama, mystery, intrigue, unforgettable characters, and high stakes than could ever be created by a fiction writer.
Gordievsky didn’t write the book as an expose: he empathized with and attributed good motives to the U.S. traitors who worked in the Soviet underground in Washington, D.C. But the facts he presents, based on first-hand knowledge, paint a picture of the most successful secret war ever waged by one government against another, and of the highly-place quislings in the Roosevelt administration who helped it to function.
The Soviet apparatus included the number 2 man in the State Department, Alger Hiss; the number 2 man in the Treasury Department, Harry Dexter White; the number 2 man in the Office of Strategic Services (the predecessor to the CIA), Duncan Lee; and, most important, the number 2 man in the White House, Harry Hopkins, as well as another very high White House official, Lauchlin Currie.
The most sensational of all Gordievsky’s revelations was that the KGB considered Harry Hopkins, FDR’s closest and most trusted adviser, as “the most important of all Soviet wartime agents in the U.S.” Gordievsky described how the Soviets pandered to Hopkins on his trip to Moscow by providing him with special luxuries, including a personal bombshelter equipped with champagne, caviar, chocolate, and cigarettes.
Although Gordievsky personally thought that Hopkins was an “unconscious agent,” there is no denying his important influence. He developed an “extraordinary admiration for Staling,” and then helped to persuade FDR to give Staling everything he wanted at the 1943 Teheran Summit, including eastern Poland, the Baltic states, and part of Romania.
As the right-hand aide to Secretary of State Edward Stettinus Jr., Alger Hiss was the most influential player at the Yalta Summit of 1945, where the Soviets cemented control of Eastern and strategic positions in the Far East. Hiss conferred with Stettinus first thing every morning and after dinner every evening. Hiss and Harry Hopkins sat directly behind President Roosevelt at the Yalta meetings.
As the right-hand aired to Secretary of the Treasury Henry Morgenthau, Harry Dexter White gave the KGB samples of the occupation currency which the United States printed for postwar Germany, plus the engraving plates and ink, so that the Soviets could counterfeit the currency printed by our own Bureau of Engraving and Printing. When the Soviets rolled the presses, we couldn’t differentiate the money they printed from our own, and this gave a massive subsidy to the Russians, courtesy of the American taxpayers.
Just as Hiss was the first Secretary General of the United Nations, White (together with Lord Keynes of Britain) was the dominant figure at the 1944 Bretton Woods Conference which set up the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank. White became the IMF’s first U.S. executive director.
Gordievsky detailed how Whittaker Chambers was the key link between the Soviet espionage apparatus and the underground Communist agents who held positions on the federal payroll. In addition to the top agents mentioned above, Gordievsky identified Harold Ware, John Abt, Less Pressman, Charles Kramer, Donald Hiss (Alger’s brother), Henry Collins, Victor Perlo, Henry Julian Wadleigh, Nathan Witt, George Silverman, and Nathan Gregory Silvermaster, plus the atom bomb spies Klaus Fuchs, David Greenglass, and Julius and Ethel Rosenberg.
Gordievsky’s revelations prove there is no way that the Joseph McCarthys and other Congressional investigators could possibly have exaggerated Soviet penetration of our government. The treachery was worse than even they suspected.