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The Rosenbergs' Son Condemns the War on Terror
FrontPageMagazine.com ^ | 5/12/04 | Shawn Macomber

Posted on 05/12/2004 12:52:51 AM PDT by kattracks

Last week Robert Meeropol visited the University of Maryland to excoriate the United States’ War on Terrorism.

Don’t fret if the name doesn’t ring a bell. Meeropol isn’t a mainstream figure in American politics, academia or the arts. His opinion was sought not for any particular experience or expertise he can bring to the subject. Meeropol was selected for the forum on a more superficial basis: His parents were Ethel and Julius Rosenberg, the American Communist Party members turned Soviet spies who were executed for helping Soviets acquire the secrets of the atom bomb.

Meeropol (he took the name of the folks who adopted him) has benefited from the fact that the American Left still has a soft spot for his parents, and remain convinced the couple were framed by an out-of-control U.S. government lost in the throes of McCarthyism. This myth has been desperately clung to, despite an ever growing amount of evidence that they were indeed guilty. The Rosenbergs are identified by Nikita Khrushchev in his memoirs as Russian spies? Lies! And the decoded Soviet communiqués, commonly referred to as the Verona Cables and released by the CIA in 1995, that repeatedly mention the Rosenbergs as Soviet collaborators? More lies. And former KGB agent Alexander Feklisov, the man who claimed to have had dozens of contacts with Julius, beginning in the midst of World War Two? It seems he, too, is a liar.

 

Now comes the son, angry. It probably won’t shock anyone to find out that Meeropol is not a big fan of America’s response to Islamofascism. “There are several chilling parallels between (McCarthyism) then and anti-terrorism now,” Meeropol told the University of Maryland students. “Don't think that Big Brother isn't watching,” he added.

 

Like any man obsessed with the past, Meeropol sees shades of his parents everywhere.  Before September 11 this meant mostly cavorting with “political prisoners” such as convicted cop-killers Mumia Abu-Jamal and Leonard Pelitier. But the War on Terror, sharing the same epic nature as the struggle against Communism his parents were clearly on the wrong side of, has sent him over the edge. At his University of Maryland appearance, he went so far as to compare his parents’ case with that of the man who would have been the 20th hijacker, Zacharias Moussaoui, and to describe Guantanamo Bay and the Patriot Act as modern day equivalents of the 1950s Red hunts. Never mind that McCarthy has largely been vindicated by declassified documents, both Soviet and U.S., nor that it is painfully clear that Islamic terrorists plan to strike us until we are no more.

 

“It’s an unfortunate reality that 2003 reminds me of 1953 in so many ways,” Meeropol recently told The Socialist Worker. “We don't have the Korean War. We have the war on terror – Afghanistan, Iraq, whoever’s next. In some ways, the war on terror has replaced the Cold War. The specifics of who we were opposing in the Cold War is analogous to whatever particular countries we're trying to confuse with the war on terror today. Instead of J. Edgar Hoover, we have John Ashcroft. Instead of the McCarran and the Smith Acts, we have the USA PATRIOT Act and USA PATRIOT Act II.”

 

Meeropol heads the Rosenberg Fund for Children, providing “educational and emotional” support for “targeted activist youth” and children whose parents have “suffered because of their progressive activities.” Meeropol defines “progressive activities” as any and all actions taken to further, “the belief that all people have equal worth; world peace is a necessity; people are more important than profits; society must function within ecologically sustainable limits.” It’s a nice sound bite, but in truth, the organization mostly takes children who have already suffered because they had the misfortune of being born to criminals, and reeducates them to believe that their parents were heroes and that betraying your country is admirable.

 

How Meeropol ended up at the University of Maryland peddling his conspiratorial wares and revisionist history is an interesting story that tells us quite a bit about the state of academia today.

 

Every year a “diverse campus-wide committee” chooses what the University of Maryland calls their “first-year book,” which is supposed to provide “a shared intellectual experience for faculty, staff and all first year students.” A thematically coherent program of guest speakers, films and panel discussion is then supposed to be built around it. The university promises every issue will be examined “from a number of perspectives…as a community, in dialogue with others.” After all, “Our community is stronger when we are free to challenge each other and listen respectfully,” and “free and spirited speech should be at the very heart of an academic community.”

 

As usual, the rhetoric doesn’t live up to the reality. 

 

The 2003-2004 selection is Dead Men Walking by Sister Helen Prejean as a core text for a “yearlong look at the death penalty.” Meeropol was brought to the university as part of this program jointly by the university-sanctioned First Year Book Program and the Campaign to End the Death Penalty. Organizers promised his lecture, “An Execution in the Family: Learning from the Rosenberg Case,” would cover both “his parents' death sentence at the height of the McCarthy era,” and “the dangers of similar hysteria in the political climate of post 9/11 America.”

 

One might imagine the death penalty and the War on Terror to be separate topics, but in the world of leftist politics everything is interconnected. Opposition to one bit of orthodoxy is tantamount to rejecting all the tenants of the leftist faith.

 

Previous events weren’t much more balanced. There was a panel discussion entitled, “From California to Louisiana to Maryland: The Struggle to End Executions,” featuring a death row inmate on speaker phone; Black Panther Party member and former California death row inmate Shujaa Graham; an attorney for several death row inmates; and a Steering Committee member of Amnesty International’s Program to Abolish the Death Penalty. And just in case anyone had any illusions about what side of the issue this panel falls on, the advertisement for the event plainly spells it out: “Racism, class bias and injustice run rampant throughout the United States of America's death penalty system.” (Wait! I thought there was going to be a debate!)

 

Other events included “letter writing against the Death Penalty and Violence Against Women. “Food provided! The chance to go lobby the Virginia state legislature in favor of a bill imposing a moratorium on executions. This would hopefully wet your appetite for the tour of Baltimore’s death row. Some anti-death penalty speakers are scheduled to come back a second time. Yet, the yearlong program could only muster one two-hour debate that included Paul Rosenzweig of the Heritage Foundation defending the death penalty.

 

The year before the program looked at hate crimes using The Laramie Project, the book about Matthew Shepard as a text. The year before that it was Blessing the Boats, a book of poetry by Lucille Clifton, defying “the pejorative Western myth that women of color are incompetent, impotent, and inadequate.” She is somehow able to do all this without using any capital letters or punctuation.

 

Nevertheless, a perusal of both years’ events turns up nothing suggesting any real discourse on these issues. It isn’t much of a surprise. After all, it can be difficult to have a “free and spirited debate” in a room full of people who think exactly as you do.

In this sort of pseudo-intellectual environment, Meeropol is able to get away with such uninspired drivel as, “This is the land of the free and the home of the brave. But they want us to be more afraid, and they don't want us to be free.” Meeropol’s life is an exercise in denial, and, he has spread this virus to the children who come under his tutelage. When it comes to his own country, Meeropol can only believe the worst, and, sadly, just as his parents before him, he has ended up on the wrong side of history.


Shawn Macomber is a staff writer at The American Spectator and a contributor to FrontPage Magazine. He also runs the website Return of the Primitive.


TOPICS: Front Page News; News/Current Events; US: Maryland; War on Terror
KEYWORDS: anncoulter; antiamericanism; armsrace; atomicbombsecrets; callawaaambulance; cheeseandwhine; coldwar; communist; espionage; ethelrosenberg; fifthcolumnists; juliusrosenberg; nuclearthreat; nuclearweapons; prodictator; robertmeeropol; rosenbergs; saddamite; socialism; socialists; soldusout; sovietunion; spies; stalin; treason; umd; unclejoestalin; waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa; waronterror; wot

1 posted on 05/12/2004 12:52:51 AM PDT by kattracks
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To: kattracks
Fruit doesn't fall far from the tree, it would seem..
2 posted on 05/12/2004 12:54:07 AM PDT by ambrose (AP Headline: "Kerry Says His 'Family' Owns SUV, Not He")
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To: ambrose
Fruit doesn't fall far from the tree, it would seem.

No doubt. Hmm...maybe there's a case for arguing that Leftist leanings are a genetic defect? 8 o

3 posted on 05/12/2004 12:55:34 AM PDT by Prime Choice (I'd question John Kerry's patriotism if I thought for a moment he had any...)
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To: ambrose
The nut doesn't fall far from the tree.
4 posted on 05/12/2004 12:55:53 AM PDT by Jeff Chandler (Why the long face, John?)
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To: kattracks; All
The Rosenberg Case- Spies, Scapegoats, or something inbetween?
5 posted on 05/12/2004 1:17:37 AM PDT by backhoe (Just an old Cold Warrior, draggin' his BAR into the Sunset...)
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To: kattracks
The offspring of two of the most notorious traitors to the United States has always been a major influence in my life (NOT)...

Who gives a flip what this character thinks or says and even moreso, what kind of institution would even consider having this person in to speak to anyone???

All the nuts aren't in the trees OR on the ground...
6 posted on 05/12/2004 1:18:42 AM PDT by Iscool
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To: kattracks
Oh. I thought they were Irving Rosenberg from 6th grade.
7 posted on 05/12/2004 2:58:16 AM PDT by Chi-townChief
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To: Chi-townChief
later read bump
8 posted on 05/12/2004 3:03:35 AM PDT by rbmillerjr
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To: kattracks
Verona Cables = Venona Cables

Cf. http://www.nsa.gov/venona/index.cfm
9 posted on 05/12/2004 3:21:14 AM PDT by Lonesome in Massachussets (Uday and Qusay are ead-day)
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To: kattracks
As a wise person said on a previous post about a Nova special on the Rosenbergs ( http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/772181/posts):

Airing Ethel Rosenberg's son's claim that his mother was "murdered in cold blood by this government" is unspeakably callous. He in not a disinterested party and is hardly in a position to be objective. His mother's life might have been spared if she, or her husband, had named other Soviet agents. Some find her behavior heroic. But if she loved her son, won't she have been more concerned about assuring that he had a home to grow up in and less in the progress of international communism? The future will work itself out, without the exertions of any one of us, but our children need us uniquely to ensure their future. As parents, the Rosenbergs were failures. Sacrificing your children to some messianic ego trip is no more noble than sacrificing them to drugs or alcohol. But don't tell her son that.
10 posted on 05/12/2004 3:32:40 AM PDT by Lonesome in Massachussets (Uday and Qusay are ead-day)
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To: Prime Choice
Being a jew, Meeripol would still be spouting this "solidarity forever" crud as an Al Qaeda rep. happily slit his throat from ear to ear on live feed video for the benefit of it's Arab street audience.
The only thing keeping him from this fate is the US Armed Forces. He is a fool.
11 posted on 05/12/2004 3:55:43 AM PDT by finnigan2 (My more advanced)
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To: Lonesome in Massachussets
And lest we forget ... the United States shipped to the USSR, in the Spring of 1943, ten of tons of nuclear materiel - including enriched uranium. This is long before the Trinity Test.

Yup, those shipments were done under the aegis of the Lend-Lease Program ... Harry "the Hop" Hopkins (aka - alter ego to FDR) was the director of said Lend-Lease program.

Known now ... via Venona documents ... Hopkins was USSR agent "No. 19."

So it goes ... and also recall that Ted Hall was never prosecuted. And who was/is "Quantum?"

12 posted on 05/12/2004 4:35:30 AM PDT by jamaksin
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To: kattracks
Breeding always tells, doesn't it.
13 posted on 05/12/2004 4:41:19 AM PDT by vandykelastone (Nuts to Governor Goober: let's get serious now!)
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To: kattracks
“There are several chilling parallels between (McCarthyism) then and anti-terrorism now,” Meeropol told the University of Maryland students. “Don't think that Big Brother isn't watching”

Uh....

I think we all agree that 911 happened because somebody WASN'T watching.

Sheesh!

14 posted on 05/12/2004 4:50:01 AM PDT by 11th Earl of Mar
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To: kattracks
Well well well. Guess he'll be getting an invitation to Chappaquiddick any day now.
15 posted on 05/12/2004 4:59:26 AM PDT by OldFriend (LOSERS quit when they are tired/WINNERS quit when they have won)
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To: OldFriend
Oops, make that Chappaqua! my apologies.
16 posted on 05/12/2004 5:00:11 AM PDT by OldFriend (LOSERS quit when they are tired/WINNERS quit when they have won)
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To: kattracks
Activist against "Violence Against Women" as if ANYONE is FOR that?????

Does he ever admit that his parents were GUILTY????
17 posted on 05/12/2004 5:51:09 AM PDT by buffyt (Kerry is a Flop Flipper, he Flips Flop, all the Flop that he Flips, is well Flipped Flop!)
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To: Lonesome in Massachussets
http://www-hoover.stanford.edu/pubaffairs/newsletter/99summer/venona.html

Several books have been published recently about the penetration of the U.S. government by Soviet intelligence operations during the 1930s and the 1940s. The coauthors of one of those books, Venona: Decoding Soviet Espionage in America, visited the Hoover Institution on June 14 to discuss their book and its revelations.

The Venona project was a U.S. government operation to intercept and decrypt coded messages sent during World War II between the Soviet embassies in America and Moscow. John Earl Haynes, a twentieth-century political historian at the Library of Congress, and Harvey Klehr, a professor at Emory University in Atlanta, examined Venona documents as well as recently opened Soviet archives in Russia. They concluded that Soviet espionage during World War II was thorough and hostile.

“The Venona documents provide a guide to an extraordinarily pervasive campaign by the Soviet Union to obtain secrets from the United States,” Klehr said, adding that the effort and money devoted to the spying was “remarkable.”

Only recently declassified, the Venona files reveal not only the extent of Soviet spying but also the close ties between Soviet intelligence and the American Communist Party, despite the surveil-lance of the Communists by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and other security agencies.

“Enthused with idealism and a com-mitment to a better world, Communists often approached espionage on behalf of the Soviet Union as a calling,” Klehr said. “Unlike spies largely motivated by a desire for personal monetary gain and or coerced by fear of exposure, Communists were reliable and dependable.”

The decrypted Venona cables confirm the guilt of Julius Rosenberg, whose code name was “Liberal” and who gave atomic secrets from the Manhattan Project to the Soviet Union.

Haynes credited Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan (D-N.Y.) with getting the Venona files declassified.

Venona: Decoding Soviet Espionage in America is published by Yale University Press. Haynes and Klehr are also coauthors of The Soviet World of American Communism (with Kyrill M. Anderson) and The Secret World of American Communism (with Fridrikh I. Firsov).
18 posted on 05/12/2004 5:58:20 AM PDT by buffyt (Kerry is a Flop Flipper, he Flips Flop, all the Flop that he Flips, is well Flipped Flop!)
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To: buffyt
The VENONA project http://www.cvni.net/radio/nsnl/nsnl6venona.html

On 1 February 1943, the U.S. Army's Signal Intelligence Service, a forerunner of the National Security Agency, began a small, very secret program, later codenamed VENONA. The object of the VENONA program was to examine and possibly exploit, encrypted Soviet diplomatic communications. These messages had been accumulated by the Signal Intelligence Service (later renamed the U.S. Army Signal Security Agency and commonly called "Arlington Hall" after the Virginia location of its headquarters) since 1939 but had not been studied previously. Miss Gene Grabeel, a young Signal Intelligence Service employee, who had been a school teacher only weeks earlier, started the project.

The accumulated message traffic comprised an unsorted collection of thousands of Soviet diplomatic telegrams that had been sent from Moscow to certain of its diplomatic missions and from those missions to Moscow. During the first months of the project, Arlington Hall analysts sorted the traffic by diplomatic mission and by cryptographic system or subscriber.

Initial analysis indicated that five cryptographic systems, later determined to be employed by different subscribers, were in use between Moscow and a number of Soviet overseas missions. It also became apparent that one system involved trade matters, especially Lend-Lease. The other four systems appeared to involve the Soviet Foreign Ministry in Moscow in communication with its missions abroad.

The complete information, including hundreds of real messages, can be found on the site of the National Security Agency. Interesting stuff! Check URL.

19 posted on 05/12/2004 5:59:45 AM PDT by buffyt (Kerry is a Flop Flipper, he Flips Flop, all the Flop that he Flips, is well Flipped Flop!)
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To: buffyt
“Enthused with idealism and a com-mitment to a better world, Communists often approached espionage on behalf of the Soviet Union as a calling,” Klehr said. “Unlike spies largely motivated by a desire for personal monetary gain and or coerced by fear of exposure, Communists were reliable and dependable.”

No nation in the history of espionage had better human assets than the Soviet Union between 1933 and 1956. Thousands of highly educated, highly placed people all over the world who served the Soviet Union out of pure idealism. The Red Orchestra, Richard Sorge, the Cambridge Group, an as yet undiscovered Oxford Group, etc.

A downside of espionage is that the people you are dealing with are generally traitors and resentful failures and degenerates or are using you to serve their own agenda (like Chalabi) so what they say must be viewed with extreme caution. Idealists, on the other hand, will do their best to give you anything they can.

20 posted on 05/12/2004 7:43:02 AM PDT by Sam the Sham
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To: vandykelastone
Breeding always tells, doesn't it.

Precisely! The problem with the gene pool is that there are no lifeguards. Or, like father, like son. Father was an atomic spy, son is obviously an atomic a**hole!

21 posted on 05/12/2004 8:04:53 AM PDT by albertp (Malice in Blunderland, The Wizard of Odd, and Gullible's Troubles, too!)
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To: kattracks
“There are several chilling parallels between (McCarthyism) then and anti-terrorism now,” Meeropol told the University of Maryland students.

Yes!!! McCarthy was concerned about America's enemies destroying us. Anti-terrorism today is fighing America's enemies before they can destroy us. Chilling!!!

22 posted on 05/12/2004 9:36:38 AM PDT by Toddsterpatriot (Quit yer whining)
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To: kattracks
I lived across the hall in the same college dorm as Meeropol.
23 posted on 05/12/2004 9:43:17 AM PDT by js1138 (In a minute there is time, for decisions and revisions which a minute will reverse. J Forbes Kerry)
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To: kattracks
letter writing against the Death Penalty and Violence Against Women.

Doublethink in action.

Just how many on Death Row are there because they committed violent acts against women?

(But it's aways the fault of those Dead White Males. I forgot.)

24 posted on 05/12/2004 10:01:48 AM PDT by George Smiley (Is the RKBA still a right if you have to get the government's permission before you can exercise it?)
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To: kattracks
The year before the program looked at hate crimes using The Laramie Project, the book about Matthew Shepard as a text.

Remember Jesse Dirkhising, the teen who was tortured, raped and brutally murdered by a monogamous 'homosexual' couple

(can't mention one without remembering Jesse!)

I would love to attend a rosenberg speech. Every time he mentioned McCarthy I'd stand up and cheer.

25 posted on 05/12/2004 10:26:06 AM PDT by John O (God Save America (Please))
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To: kattracks
“It’s an unfortunate reality that 2003 reminds me of 1953 in so many ways,” Meeropol recently told The Socialist Worker.

"For one thing, I'm doing everything I can to distribute classified military information from the US to hostile foreign powers," Meeropol said. /sarcasm

26 posted on 05/12/2004 10:36:01 AM PDT by <1/1,000,000th%
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To: kattracks
The Rosenbergs' Son Condemns the War on Terror

Well, if there are still some old DNA samples from Ma and Pa Rosenberg...
looks like molecular biologists have a start in the search for the rat
gene for congenital traitors.
27 posted on 05/12/2004 10:41:49 AM PDT by VOA
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To: ambrose

He doesn't look like a leftist does he? Well...maybe just a little.

28 posted on 05/12/2004 10:45:02 AM PDT by ErnBatavia (Because Democrats are liars, they assume Republicans are too...)
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