Conquest by Terror: The Story of Satellite Europe

By Leland Stowe | Go to book overview

CHAPTER SIXTEEN
Freedom Takes the Offensive

"WHAT CAN WE DO TO HELP SATELLITE Europe's people?" someone asks. But this is merely one aspect of a much bigger question: What can we do to defend all peoples, including ourselves, against Communist infiltration and Cominform conquest? How much are we doing? How much more do we need to do?

But we must first face up to the real meaning of Soviet Russia's "cold war" against the Western democracies. Moscow began this conflict by preventing "broadly representative" governments in Rumania and Poland, early in 1945. The Soviet leaders violated their Yalta pledges almost before the ink on them was dry, thus starting the cold war. For five years their offensive has continued and the cold war now threatens to last indefinitely. Unless we fight it much harder and much more skillfully, we can still lose it.

The Stalinists were able to monopolize the offensive in the cold war chiefly because they have had long experience in psychological warfare; the Kremlin's occupants have waged a struggle for men's minds ever since 1918. From the outset they clearly understood that the cold war is a war of nerves plus a war of ideas. For such a conflict they alone possessed the strategy, the tactics, almost unlimited funds and trained technicians in vast numbers.

Because we had little experience of a war of ideas, and even less of a war of nerves, the Stalinists caught the Western governments and peoples utterly unprepared. They were infinitely

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