War and the Minds of Men

War and the Minds of Men

War and the Minds of Men

War and the Minds of Men

Excerpt

The swiftly rushing tempo of the present day has a disconcerting way of turning great enterprises into trifles and elevating small tasks into opportunities of arresting size. Until recent years, the whole idea of achieving international ends by reaching the minds of people at large was scarcely a respectable subject for specialists in high politics. The statesmen of the world conducted their business in the arena of diplomatic negotiation or, as a last resort, in the realm of military contests. When public support was desired for a particular policy it was sought through the press or the carefully timed speeches of top statesmen.

The only inter-governmental effort to align the people of the world on the side of peace and order was through UNESCO, a young international agency that was largely ignored by the important policy makers of most countries and left to the unpolitical hands of educators, scientists and artists.

Ironically enough, it was the aggressively minded dictators who first sensed the immense potentialities of this field of activity and learned to bend it to their purposes. To them it was not, of course, a means of enlisting the informed support of free men on the side of peaceful policies but rather an instrument for gaining political influence over other countries by subversion.

When the Soviet leaders embarked on a program of expanding their power over neighboring countries, they were aware that the traditional diplomatic machinery offered them no promising opportunities for significant political . . .

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