August 6, 2009

FROM THE ARCHIVES: WHAT PART OF EXODUS 22:18 DO WE NOT UNDERSTAND?:

Roll Out the Red Carpet (RON RADOSH, October 24, 2007, NY Sun)

Throughout their active years in Hollywood, the Ten defended every twist and turn of the party line, going from anti-fascists to peace activists overnight when the Nazi-Soviet Pact was announced. They also supported the Soviet invasion of Finland and were silent about, or approved, the Great Purge trials of the 1930s.

The Ten swore their allegiance to Stalin and justified and supported the worst murders and crimes committed by the Soviet Union. As Trumbo himself acknowledged, he was not shocked by Khrushchev's revelations, at the 20th Congress of the Communist Party in 1956, of Stalin's crimes over the decades. Trumbo knew the truth years earlier. His own library had the works of Koestler, Orwell, Gide, even Whittaker Chambers. Yet he never said a word about the truth, and defended what he knew was indefensible. The Ten regarded the real enemy as America and its "fascist" foreign policy; Stalin may have been evil, but they considered him on the right side of history.

By the time HUAC got to them, the communists and fellow travelers in Hollywood had actually been collapsing; their once warm welcome had dried up. Liberals such as Melvyn Douglas and Ronald Reagan knew them for what they were, and led an effective fight against them within the industry. Stars like Olivia de Havilland broke with the party's main wartime front group, and spoke out publicly about the Soviet-created Cold War and about the need for liberals to have nothing to do with communists. There could be no unity, she said, with those "who are more interested in taking orders from Moscow and following the so-called Party line."

Many of the "friendly witnesses" who cooperated with HUAC, men such as Elia Kazan and Budd Schulberg, had learned from their own life experience that if the communists succeeded, America could end up like the Soviet Union. They knew how communist commissars kept their members in line, denying them their freedom of speech and keeping them from supporting any position not approved by Moscow.


America is a better place for having not tolerated such advocacy of evil.


[originally posted 10/24/07]

Posted by Orrin Judd at August 6, 2009 12:25 AM
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