May 10, 2018


The Ted Kennedy Scandal Worse Than Chappaquiddick (Paul Kengor, May 09, 2018, Intercollegiate Review)

For whatever reason, Senator Kennedy liked the Soviets. And he thought they liked him--when, in fact, they used him, wining and dining and duping him.

An eyewitness to this was Yuri Bezmenov, a journalist and editor for Novosti, the Soviet press agency (where he also worked for the KGB), before he defected to the West in the 1970s. Among Bezmenov's chief duties was to handle Western visitors through propaganda and misinformation. "One of my functions," recalled Bezmenov in a 1984 television interview, "was to keep foreign guests permanently intoxicated from the moment they landed at Moscow airport." He would "accompany groups of so-called 'progressive intellectuals'--writers, journalists, publishers, teachers, professors of colleges. . . . For us, they were just a bunch of political prostitutes to be taken advantage of."

Bezmenov had come to see the rotten totalitarianism of the Soviet system and was quite bothered that these Western progressives could not discern the obvious. "I did my job," he lamented, but "deep inside I still hoped that at least some of these useful idiots [would catch on]."

Among the worst of them, said Bezmenov, was Senator Ted Kennedy.

Pointing to a photo that he said showed Ted Kennedy dancing at a wedding at Moscow's Palace of Marriages, Bezmenov stated, "Another greatest example of monumental idiocy [among] American politicians: Edward Kennedy was in Moscow, and he thought that he's a popular, charismatic American politician, who is easygoing, who can smile, [who can] dance at a wedding at Russian Palace of Marriages. What he did not understand--or maybe he pretended not to understand--is that actually he was being taken for a ride." Bezmenov noted that Kennedy, in this particular instance, was participating in a "staged wedding used to impress foreign media--or useful idiots like Ed Kennedy. Most of the guests there [had] security clearance and were instructed what to say to foreigners." Bezmenov himself worked these weddings. He noted that Kennedy "thinks he's very smart," but "from the viewpoint of Russian citizens who observed this idiocy," he was "an idiot," a "useful idiot," participating in "propaganda functions like this"--a so-called wedding that was really a "farce," a "circus performance."

The Soviets saw Ted Kennedy as someone they could entertain and manipulate. And for the senator from Massachusetts, the Russian romance was ongoing. In March 1983 he reciprocated whatever wedding prize Soviet handlers gave him with a gift of his own: ridicule of Ronald Reagan's self-described "dream" of missile defense. Around this same time the Massachusetts senator also made an extraordinary private bequest to the Kremlin--and he did so quite consciously.

As we now know from a highly sensitive KGB document, the liberal icon, arguably the most important Democrat in the country at the time, so opposed Ronald Reagan and his policies that the senator approached Soviet dictator Yuri Andropov, proposing to work together to undercut the American president.

Posted by at May 10, 2018 6:35 PM