America's Deaf Mute Blindmen

"To attribute to others the identical sentiments that guide oneself is never to understand others."  — Gustav Le Bon

Over the past several decades, quietly, without media attention, many Americans in diverse fields of activity have been pressured into silence, and failing silence, have been removed from their positions or excommunicated from a chosen profession. These men range from historians in Department of State, top level officials in Department of Commerce, engineers working for IBM, to academics in America's leading universities.

In each case threats and pressures which led to censorship, firing, and excommunication track back to the deaf mute blindmen, and their associates in political Washington.

Who are the deaf mute blindmen?

The Russian revolutionary Vladimir Ilych (Ulyanov) Lenin coined the phrase, and whatever we think of Lenin's revolutionary philosophy, we cannot deny his genius in the analysis of capitalists and their motivations. Here is Lenin on the "deaf mute blindmen."

The Capitalists of the world and their governments, in pursuit of conquest of the Soviet market, will close their eyes to the indicated higher reality and thus will turn into deaf mute blindmen. They will extend credits, which will strengthen for us the Communist Party in their countries and giving us the materials and technology we lack, they will restore our military industry, indispensable for our future victorious attacks on our suppliers. In other words, they will labor for the preparation for their own suicide.1

The Suppressed Higher Reality

What is this "higher reality" that Lenin identifies? It is simply that the Soviet system cannot generate sufficient innovation and technology to become a world power, yet Soviet global ambitions demand that its socialist system challenge and surpass the capitalist systems of the West. Lenin deduced just before he died in 1923 that Soviet communism had an Achilles heel, a fatal defect. In a remarkable about-face Lenin then introduced the New Economic Policy, a return to limited free enterprise and a prelude to a long-lasting cooperation with Western capitalists — the deaf mute blindmen. This policy was repeated by Communist China in the early 1980s.

It is knowledge of this "higher reality" that has been ruthlessly suppressed by successive Administrations under political pressure from internationalist businessmen. The State Department, for example, has a disgraceful record of attempting to black out information and present a false picture of historical events. Under John Foster Dulles, Dr. G. Bernard Noble, a Rhodes scholar and an enemy of any attempt to change the Establishment's party-line, was promoted to take charge of the Historical Office at State Department. Two historians, Dr. Donald Dozer and Dr. Bryton Barron, who protested the official policy of distorting information and suppressing historical documents, were railroaded out of the State Department. Dr. Barron, in his book, Inside the State Department,2 specifically charged the State Department with responsibility for the exportation of military technology to the Soviet Union, and listed four examples of highly strategic tools whose export to the USSR was urged by officials of the State Department.

1. Boring mills for manufacture of tanks, artillery, aircraft, and the atomic reactors used in submarines.

2. Vertical boring mills for manufacture of jet engines.

3. Dynamic balance machines used to balance shafts on engines for jet airplanes and guided missiles.

4. External cylindrical grinding machines which a Defense Department expert testified were essential in making engine parts, guided missiles, and radar.

Bryton Barron concludes:

It should be evident that we cannot trust the present personnel of the Department to apply our agreements in the nation's interest any more than we can trust it to give us the full facts about our treaties and other international commitments.

Breathtakingly inaccurate are the only words that can describe State Department claims regarding our military assistance to the Soviet Union. The general State Department line is that the Soviets have a self-developed technology, that trade is always peaceful, that we have controls on the export of strategic goods, and that there is no conceivable relationship between our export to the Soviet Union and Soviet armaments production·

An example will make the point. Here is a statement by Ambassador Trezise to the Senate:

Ambassador Trezise: We, I think, are sometimes guilty, Senator, of a degree of false and unwarranted pride in our industrial and technological might, a kind of arrogance, if you will · . . we are ahead of the Soviet Union in many areas of industry and technology. But a nation that can accomplish the scientific and technological feats the Soviet Union has accomplished in recent years is clearly not a primitive, mudhut economy .... It is a big, vigorous, strong, and highly capable national entity, and its performance in the space field and in other fields has given us every indication that Soviet engineers, technicians, scientists, are in the forefront of the scientists, engineers, technicians of the world.

Senator Muskie: So that the urge towards increased trade with Eastern European countries has not resulted in a weakening of the restrictions related to strategic goods?

Ambassador Trezise: I think that is an accurate statement, Senator.

Now we have, we think, quite an effective system of handling items which are in the military area or so closely related thereto that they become strategic items by everybody's agreement.

In fact, at the very time Trezise was making the above soothing statement, critical shipments of strategic materials and equipment were going forward to the Soviet Union. The so-called Export Control laws were a leaky sieve due to outright inefficiency in Departments of State and Commerce.

Censorship has enabled politically appointed officials and the permanent Washington bureaucracy to make such unbelievably inaccurate statements without fear of challenge in Congress or by the American public.

The State Department files are crammed with information concerning U.S. technical and economic assistance to the Soviet Union. The author of this book required three substantial volumes (see Bibliography) just to summarize this assistance for the years 1917-1970. Yet former Secretary of State Dean Rusk, presumably acting on the advice of State Department researchers, stated in 1961, "It would seem clear that the Soviet Union derives only the most marginal help in its economic development from the amount of U.S. goods it receives." A statement flatly contradictory to the massive evidence available in departmental files.

In 1968 Nicholas de B. Katzenbach, Assistant Secretary of State, made a statement that was similarly inconsistent with observable fact, and displayed a fundamental lack of common-sense reasoning:

We should have no illusions. If we do not sell peaceful goods to the nations of Eastern Europe, others will. If we erect barriers to our trade with Eastern Europe, we will lose the trade and Eastern Europe will buy elsewhere. But we will not make any easier our task of stopping aggression in Vietnam nor in building security for the United States.3

In fact, aggression in South Vietnam would have been impossible without U.S. assistance to the Soviet Union. Much of the key "European" technology cited derives from U.S. subsidiaries.

Jack N. Behrman, former Deputy Assistant Secretary for International Affairs at the Department of Commerce, repeated the same theme on behalf of the Commerce Department:

This is the old problem of economic dependency. However, I do not believe that Russia would in fact permit herself to become dependent upon imported sources of strategic goods. Rather she would import amounts additional to her strategic needs, thereby relieving the pressure on her economy by not risking dependence.4

In fact, Jack Behrman to the contrary notwithstanding, Soviet Russia is the most dependent large nation in modern history, for wheat as well as technology.

Here's another statement from former Secretary of Commerce Maurice H. Stans:

Q: Is there danger of this country's helping the Russians build a war potential that might be turned against the interests of the free world?

A: Under the circumstances, we might be very foolish not to accept business which could create jobs in the United States, when refusing to sell to the Soviet Union would in no way deter their progress.5

Suppression of Information

Information suppression concerning Soviet relations with the United States may be found in all administrations, Democrat and Republican, from President Wilson to President Reagan. For example, on November 28, 1917, just a few weeks after the Petrograd and Moscow Bolsheviks had overthrown the democratic and constitutional government of Russia, "Colonel" House (then in Paris) intervened on behalf of the Bolsheviks and cabled President Wilson and the Secretary of State in the "Special Green" cipher of the State Department as follows:

There has been cabled over and published here [Paris] statements made by American papers to the effect that Russia should be treated as an enemy. It is exceedingly important that such criticisms should be suppressed...6

Suppression of information critical of the Soviet Union and our military assistance to the Soviets may be traced in the State Department files from this 1917 House cable down to the present day, when export licenses issued for admittedly military equipment exports to the USSR are not available for public information. In fact, Soviet sources must be used to trace the impact of some American technology on Soviet military development. The Soviet Register of Shipping, for example, publishes the technical specifications of main engines in Russian vessels (including country of manufacture): this information is not available from U.S. official sources. In November 1971, Krasnaya Zvezda published an article with specific reference to the contribution of the basic Soviet industrial structure to the Soviet military power — a contribution that representatives of the U.S. Executive Branch have explicitly denied to the public and to Congress.

Even today U.S. assistance to the Soviet military-industrial complex and its weapons systems cannot be documented from open U.S. sources alone because export license memoranda are classified data. Unless the technical nature of our shipments to the USSR is known, it is impossible to determine their contribution to the Soviet military complex. The national security argument is not acceptable as a defense for classification because the Soviets know what they are buying. So does the United States government. So do U.S. firms. So do the deaf mute blindmen. The group left out in the cold is the American taxpayer-voter.

From time to time bills have been introduced in Congress to make export-license information freely available. These bills have never received Administration support. Nonavailability of current information means that decisions affecting all Americans are made by a relatively few government officials without impartial outside scrutiny, and under political pressure from internationlist businessmen. In many cases these decisions would not be sustained if subjected to public examination and criticism. It is argued by policy-makers that decisions affecting national security and international relations cannot be made in a goldfish bowl. The obvious answer to this is the history of the past seventy years: we have had one catastrophic international problem after another — and in the light of history, the outcome would have been far less costly if the decisions had been made in a goldfish bowl.

For instance, little more than a decade after House's appeal to Wilson, Senator Smoot inquired of the State Department about the possible military end-uses of an aluminum powder plant to be erected in the Soviet Union by W. Hahn, an American engineer. State Department files contain a recently declassified document which states why no reply was ever given to Senator Smoot:

No reply was made to Senator Smoot by the Department as the Secretary did not desire to indicate that the Department had no objection to the rendering by Mr. Hahn of technical assistance to the Soviet authorities in the production of aluminum powder, in view of the possibility of its use as war material, and preferred to take no position at the time in regard to the matter.7

Congressional action in the Freedom on Information Act and administrative claims of speedy declassification have not changed this basic situation. Major significant documents covering the history of the past seventy years are buried, and they will remain buried until an outraged public opinion puts some pressure on Congress.

Congress has on the other hand investigated and subsequently published several reports on the export of strategic materials to the Soviet Union. One such instance, called "a life and death matter" by Congress, concerned the proposed shipment of ball bearing machines to the USSR.8 The Bryant Chucking Grinder Company accepted a Soviet order for thirty-five Centalign-B machines for processing miniature ball bearings. All such precision ball bearings in the United States, used by the Department of Defense for missile guidance systems, were processed on seventy-two Bryant Centalign Model-B machines.

In 1961 the Department of Commerce approved export of thirty-five such machines to the USSR, which would have given the Soviets capability about equal to 50 percent of the U.S. capability.

The Soviets had no equipment for such mass production processing, and neither the USSR nor any European manufacturer could manufacture such equipment. A Department of Commerce statement that there were other manufacturers was shown to be inaccurate. Commerce proposed to give the Soviet Union an ability to use its higher-thrust rockets with much greater accuracy and so pull ahead of the United States. Subsequently, a congressional investigation yielded accurate information not otherwise available to independent nongovernment researchers and the general public.

Congressional investigations have also unearthed extraordinary "errors" of judgment by high officials. For example, in 1961 a dispute arose in U.S. government circles over the "Transfermatic Case" — a proposal to ship to the USSR two transfer lines (with a total value of $4.3 million) for the production of truck engines.

In a statement dated February 23, 1961, the Department of Defense went on record against shipment of the transfer lines on the grounds that "the technology contained in these Transfermatic machines produced in the United States is the most advanced in the world," and that "so far as this department knows, the USSR has not installed this type of machinery. The receipt of this equipment by the USSR will contribute to the Soviet military and economic warfare potential." This argument was arbitrarily overturned by the incoming Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara. Secretary McNamara did not allow for the known fact that most Soviet military trucks came from two American-built plants even then receiving equipment from the United States. The Transfermatic machines approved by McNamara had clear and obvious military uses — as the Department of Defense had previously argued. Yet McNamara allowed them to go forward.

Yet another calculated deception of the American public can be traced to the Johnson Administration. In 1966 the U.S. Department of State produced a beautiful, extravagantly illustrated brochure of American hand tools. This was printed in Russian, for distribution in Russia, with a preface — in Russian — by Lyndon Johnson. Requests to the State Department for a copy of this brochure went unanswered. The book is not listed in official catalogues of government publications. It is not available or even known to the general public. No printer's name appears on the back cover. The publisher is not listed. The author obtained a copy from Russia. Here is the preface:

Hand Tools — USA9

Welcome to the "Hand Tools — USA" exhibit — the eighth consecutive exhibit arranged for citizens of the Soviet Union.

At this exhibit you will see samples of various hand tools currently manufactured in the United States — tools that facilitate manual work and make it possible to produce better-quality industrial goods at a much lower cost.

Since the very early days of the history of our country, Americans of all ages have worked with hand tools. In industry and at home, in factories and on farms, in workshops and schools, the hand tool has become indispensable in our lives.

Some of these tools have retained their original simplicity of design; others have acquired entirely new forms and are now used to perform new functions.

We sincerely hope that this exhibit will lead to a better understanding of the American people and their way of life.

/s/ Lyndon B. Johnson

Why all the secrecy? Imagine the public reaction in 1966, when the Soviets were supplying the North Viets with weapons to kill Americans (over 5,000 were killed that year), if it had become known that the State Department had published lavish booklets in Russian for free distribution in Russia at taxpayers' expense.

However, the point at issue is not the wisdom of publication, but the wisdom of concealment. The public is not told because the public might protest. In other words, the public cannot be trusted to see things in the same light as the policymakers, and the policymakers are unwilling to defend their positions.

Further, what would have been the domestic political consequences if it had been known that a U.S. President had signed a document in Russian, lavishly produced at the taxpayers' expense for free distribution in Russia, while Russian weapons were killing Americans in Vietnam with assistance from our own deaf mute blindmen? The citizen-taxpayer does not share the expensive illusions of the Washington elite., The political reaction by the taxpayer, and his few supporters in Congress, would have been harsh and very much to the point.

The Deaf Mute Blindmen

The key party interested in concealment of information about our export to the Soviet Union is, of course, the American firms and individuals prominently associated with such exports, i.e., the deaf mute blindmen themselves.

In general, the American public has a basic right to know what is being shipped and who is shipping it, if the Soviets are using the material against us. The public also has a right to know about the personal interests of presidential appointees and previous employment with firms prominent in trade with the USSR.

Until recently, the firms involved could publicly claim ignorance of the use to which the Soviets put imported Western technology. It is not a good claim, but it was made. From the 1970's on, ignorance of end-use is not a valid claim. The evidence is clear, overwhelming, and readily available: the Soviets have used American technology to kill Americans and their allies.

The claim that publication of license information would give undue advantage to competitors is not the kind of argument that an honest businessman would make. It is only necessary to publish certain basic elementary information: date, name of firm, amount, destination in the USSR, and a brief statement of the technical aspects. Every industry has a "grapevine" and potential business in an industry is always common knowledge.

In any event, suppose there was adverse comment about a particular sale to the Soviets? Is this a bad thing? If our policies are indeed viable, why fear public opinion? Or are certain sectors of our society to be immune from public criticism?

Soviet dependency on our technology, and their use of this technology for military purposes, could have been known to Congress on a continuing basis in the 1950s and 1960s if export license information had been freely available. The problem was suspected, but the compilation of the proof had to wait several decades until the evidence became available from Soviet sources. In the meantime, Administration and business spokesmen were able to make absurd statements to Congress without fear of challenge. In general, only those who had already made up their minds that Soviet trade was desirable had access to license information. These were the deaf mute blindmen only able to see their own conception of events and blind to the fact that we had contributed to construction of Soviet military power.

In 1968, for example, the Gleason Company of Rochester, New York shipped equipment to the Gorki automobile plant in Russia, a plant previously built by the Ford Motor Company. The information about shipment did not come from 'the censored licenses but from foreign press sources. Knowledge of license application for any equipment to be used to Gorki would have elicited vigorous protests to Congress. Why? Because the Gorki plant produces a wide range of military vehicles and equipment. Many of the trucks used on the Ho Chi Minh trail were GAZ vehicles from Gorki. The rocket-launchers used against Israel are mounted on GAZ-69 chassis made at Gorki. They have Ford-type engines made at Gorki.

Thus, a screen of censorship vigorously supported by multinational businessmen has withheld knowledge of a secret shift in direction of U.S. foreign policy. This shift can be summarized as follows:

1. Our long-run technical assistance to the Soviet Union has built a first-order military threat to our very existence.

2. Our lengthy history of technical assistance to the Soviet military structure was known to successive administrations, but has only recently (1982) been admitted to Congress or to the American public.

3. Current military assistance is also known, but is admitted only on a case-by-case basis when information to formulate a question can be obtained from nongovernment sources.

4. As a general rule, detailed data on export licenses, which are required to establish the continuing and long-run dependence of the Soviet military-industrial complex on the United States, have been made available to Congress only by special request, and have been denied completely to the American public at large.

In brief, all presidential administrations, from that of Woodrow Wilson to that of Ronald Reagan, have followed a bipartisan foreign policy of building up the Soviet Union. This policy is censored. It is a policy of suicide.

Persistent pressure from nongovernmental researchers and knowledgeable individuals has today forced the Administration to at least publicly acknowledge the nature of the problem but still do very little about it. For instance, in an interview on March 8, 1982, William Casey, Director of the Central Intelligence Agency, made the following revealing statement:

We have determined that the Soviet strategic advances depend on Western technology to a far greater degree than anybody ever dreamed of. It just doesn't make any sense for us to spend additional billions of dollars to protect ourselves against the capabilities that the Soviets have developed largely by virtue of having pretty much of a free ride on our research and development.

They use every method you can imagine — purchase, legal and illegal; theft; bribery; espionage; scientific exchange; study of trade press, and invoking the Freedom of Information Act — to get this information.

We found that scientific exchange is a big hole. We send scholars or young people to the Soviet Union to study Pushkin poetry; they send a 45-year-old man out of their KGB or defense establishment to exactly the schools and the professors who are working on sensitive technologies.

The KGB has developed a large, independent, specialized organization which does nothing but work on getting access to Western science and technology. They have been recruiting about 100 young scientists and engineers a year for the last 15 years. They roam the world looking for technology to pick up.

Back in Moscow there are 400 or 500 assessing what they might need and where they might get it — doing their targeting and then assessing what they get. It's a very sophisticated and farflung operation.10

Unfortunately, Mr. Casey, who pleads surprise at the discovery, is still concealing the whole story. This author (not alone) made this known to Department of Defense over 15 years ago, with a request for information to develop the full nature of the problem. This exchange of letters is reproduced as Appendix A. Nothing was done in 1971. In the past 15 years there has been a superficial change — the Reagan Administration is now willing to admit the existence of the problem. It has not yet been willing to face the policy challenge. Until the deaf mute blindmen are neutralized, our assistance for Soviet strategic advances will continue.


1Quoted in Joseph Finder, Red Carpet (Holt, Rinehart and Winston, New York, 1984), p. 8

2Bryton Barron, Inside the State Department (New York: Comet Press, 1956).

3House of Representatives, To Amend the Export-Import Bank Act of 1945 (Washington, DC, 1968), p. 64.


5U.S. News & World Report, December 20, 1971.

6See Antony Sutton, Wall Street and the Bolshevik Revolution {New York: Arlington House, 1974).

7U.S. State Dept. Decimal File, 861.659-Du Pont de Nemours & Co/5.

8U.S. Senate, Committee on the Judiciary, Proposed Shipment of Ball Bearing Machines to the U.S.S.R. (Washington, 1961).

9Author's translation from Russian of brochure for "Hand Tools -- USA" exhibit.

10United States Senate, Transfer of United States High Technology to the Soviet Union and Soviet Bloc Nations Hearings before the Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, 97th Congress Second Session, May 1982, Washington, D.C., p. 55.