Another remarkable forecast taking on new relevance in our day
As Hitler’s forces rampaged across Europe during World War ii, the world’s greatest capitalist nation, America, entered into a “strange alliance” with Britain, the greatest colonial power, and the Soviet Union, the greatest communist state. When this happened, a peculiar phenomenon occurred across America. A popular wave of emotional fervor for the Soviet Union surged.
Many influential men, magazines and newspapers began fawning over Joseph Stalin. President Franklin Roosevelt went so far as to release Communist Party-U.S.A. leader Earl Browder from prison as a means to promote “national unity” between American Communists and the general public.
During this time of trial and confusion, however, the strong voice of Herbert W. Armstrong warned the nation that both fascism and communism presented a threat to the American way of life.
Just as he warned that a fascist revival of the Holy Roman Empire would invade America, he also warned that America’s rejection of God would allow communism to weaken the country to a degree that would make it susceptible to invasion!
“Communism is a worldwide political movement, organized inside many countries,” Mr. Armstrong wrote in the April-May 1944 Plain Truth. “From official Communist literature anyone can learn, if he wishes to know the truth, that communism is a plan, in action, for the violent overthrow of capitalism and the capitalistic governments. And capitalism means democracy, since it is the democracies who control more than two thirds of the world’s capital.”
During and after the Second World War, Mr. Armstrong dogmatically proclaimed the biblical truth that Russia would not attack America militarily before the Second Coming of Jesus Christ. Instead, he revealed that Russia would wage a psychological warfare of propaganda, infiltration, subversion and demoralization. The Communist Russians would attack “our minds, our moral and spiritual values, rather than our bodies and our earthly possessions.”
“What we fail to grasp, in the struggle with Russia, is this: We are not fighting a single nation in a military war, but a gigantic worldwide, plain-clothes army, masquerading as a political party, seeking to conquer the world with an entirely new kind of warfare,” Mr. Armstrong wrote in 1956. “It’s a kind of warfare we don’t understand, or know how to cope with. It uses every diabolical means to weaken us from within, sapping our strength, perverting our morals, sabotaging our educational system, wrecking our social structure, destroying our spiritual and religious life, weakening our industrial and economic power, demoralizing our armed forces, and finally, after such infiltration, overthrowing our government by force and violence! All this, cleverly disguised as a harmless political party! Communism is worldwide psychological warfare!”
Pointing to the Scriptures, Mr. Armstrong warned of a time when end-time Israel (particularly Britain and America) would become “mixed up” ideologically “with foreigners” (Hosea 7:8; Moffatt). In particular, he pointed to Hosea 7:8-13, a passage warning that Britain and America would “seek alliances with foreign nations, forsaking God” (ibid). He further highlighted how this passage shows these foreign alliances would “eat away” America’s strength “unknown to him” (verse 9).
History and current events have since shown that America’s dalliance with Russian-style communism has perverted its morals, weakened its economic power and eaten away its strength. This is a tragic story, but America was warned!
The First Stage of Subversion
Thirty-six years after Mr. Armstrong first started warning American radio audiences about communism in 1934, kgb Agent Yuri Bezmenov defected from the Soviet Union and escaped to Canada. After his defection, Bezmenov went to great lengths to warn the people of America that they were at war with communism. Like Mr. Armstrong said, this was not a war of guns and tanks, but of ideological subversion.
According to Bezmenov, the subversion for foreign nations was so important to the Soviet kgb that most of their resources were allocated to it. “Only about 15 percent of time, money and manpower is spent on espionage as such,” he explained in an interview with G. Edward Griffin. “The other 85 percent is a slow process which we call either ideological subversion or ‘active measures.’”
Ideological subversion, Bezmenov said, is a long-term process involving four stages: 1) demoralization, 2) destabilization, 3) crisis and 4) normalization.
The first of these states, demoralization, is a reeducation program designed to “change the perception of reality of every American to such an extent that despite the abundance of information, no one is able to come to sensible conclusions in the interest of defending themselves, their families, their community and their country.”
“It takes about 15 to 20 years to demoralize a nation,” Bezmenov wrote in his book Love Letter to America. “Why that many (or few)? Simple: this is the minimum number of years needed to ‘educate’ one generation of students in a target country (America, for example) and expose them to the ideology of the subverter.”
Such Soviet reeducation methods took deep root in America during the 1960s and ’70s. Bezmenov warned that kgb agents and their socialistic “fellow travelers” would use abstract art, perverted music, pornographic images, homosexual rights, racist politics, pacifist foreign policy and socialist economics to demoralize America.
Mr. Armstrong also warned of this infiltration of America. “I was saying over the air, and writing, back in 1934, that the Communist unwavering strategy was, as a first offensive toward world domination, propaganda,” he wrote in a 1980 issue of the Worldwide News. “They began sowing the seeds of their Communist atheistic education all over the United States—especially among college professors and students.”
“They invaded American university campuses, full force,” he continued, “and the U.S. universities trustingly let them in.”
Seeing the bigger picture, Mr. Armstrong warned that demoralization tactics originated from a higher source than Karl Marx or the kgb. “[C]ommunism is the devil’s effort, through his demon-inspired human tools, to take from us this greatest national and economic blessing God ever conferred on any people!” he wrote in the January 1949 Plain Truth. Even though the Soviet Union fell before its subversion efforts could progress to the stage of “destabilization” and “crisis,” the effects of Satan-inspired psychological demoralization tactics are still very much alive in America today.
Corruption of Modern Education
After the collapse of the Soviet Union, documents from the Soviet archives revealed the Communist Party-u.s.a. received $2 million to $3 million a year from the Kremlin to further its subversion activities.
Most of the efforts put forth by the Kremlin, the U.S. Communist Party and their “fellow travelers” went not toward traditional espionage, but toward the infiltration of American education. According to Yuri Bezmenov, the main methods of Soviet demoralization were: student exchanges with Moscow; the flooding of college campuses with Marxist literature; international seminars with Soviet participation; the infiltration of universities with radical leftists (often unknowingly under the guidance of kgb subverters); and the establishment of Communist-staffed newspapers and the organization of “study groups” to disseminate Soviet propaganda.
“Before World War ii the Communist Party in the United States was making great headway,” Mr. Armstrong wrote in the April 1980 Plain Truth. “They began infiltrating the colleges and universities. If they could not ‘convert’ professors, they worked on students who would become teachers later. Thus they were recruiting teachers to teach their doctrine all over the United States.”
According to a former staff director of a Senate investigations subcommittee, in the years between 1935 and 1953, the Communist Party “enlisted the support of at least 3,500 professors—many of them as dues-paying members, many others as fellow travelers, some as out-and-out espionage agents, some as adherents of the party line in varying degrees, and some as the unwitting dupes of subversion” (J. B. Matthews, “Communism and the Colleges,” American Mercury, May 1953).
The ultimate goal of communism is a “utopian” society where every individual is completely reliant on society (as the Communist Party). This is why the Marxist-Leninist concept of education emphasizes “mass character” and “collectivism” over “individual abilities.” For a collectivist society to truly succeed, it needs more than just a generation of people who don’t want to support themselves: It needs a generation of people who cannot support themselves!
This is the direction America is going. In the words of Bezmenov, “The American romance with state-run education as encouraged by kgb subverters has already produced generations of graduates who cannot spell, cannot find Nicaragua on a world map, cannot think creatively and independently. I wonder if Albert Einstein would have arrived at his Theory of Relativity if he had been educated in one of today’s American public schools. Most likely he would have ‘discovered’ marijuana and variant methods of sexual intercourse instead.”
Wrecking the Economy
“Communism, of course, is many things,” Mr. Armstrong wrote in the February 1962 Plain Truth. “It is a doctrine …. It is a revolutionary program. It is relentless class war. It is a radical philosophy of history. It is a radical philosophy of society. It is a social system. It is an economic system. It is a political strategy. It is a world conspiracy.”
As “an economic system,” communism pits the poorer classes against those who have been economically more successful by calling for the redistribution of wealth from the property-owning class to the wage-labor class. To accomplish this redistribution of wealth, Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels wrote in The Communist Manifesto that private land ownership must be abolished, a heavily progressive income tax must be instituted, and all factories and financial institutions must be nationalized.
The mantra of Marxist economics is: “From each according to his ability, to each according to his need.” In other words, the wealth of those with more “ability” is redistributed to those with more “need.” This philosophy directly contradicts Jesus Christ’s teaching, represented in the parable of the pounds (Luke 19:12-27), in which each of Christ’s servants is rewarded differently based how much he actually produced with what he was given.
The main reason Marxism doesn’t work is that human beings lack incentive to work when they don’t receive the full benefits for their labor. The Soviet Union fell because of Russia’s enthusiastic embrace of Marxist-Leninist economics. As Russian economist Grigory Yavlinsky, an adviser to Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev, once said: “The Soviet system is not working because the workers are not working.”
Despite the economic disaster that befell the Soviet Union, and Herbert Armstrong’s numerous warnings, a shocking number of American economists cling to this socialist movement with Marxist traditions. The current political environment of the United States exalts many Communist ideals. There is even compelling evidence connecting the current president to some of the biggest names in America’s Communist history.
Herbert Armstrong warned that Communist economics would sap America’s strength and weaken its economic power. “Satan is not a visible red devil with tail, horns and a pitchfork,” he wrote in the October 1951 Plain Truth. “The real Satan is invisible. The world doesn’t see him or recognize his works. … It doesn’t grasp the diabolical deception of communism—Satan’s economic delusion, employing propaganda based on false economies as its first arm of attack ….”
The Marxist Plot to Abolish the Family
Herbert Armstrong warned that Communist subversion would use “every diabolical means” to pervert “our morals,” wreck “our social structure,” and destroy “our spiritual and religious life.”
Perhaps the most “diabolical” of these means is the Marxist plot to destroy the family. The Communist Manifesto calls the family a capitalist institution based “on private gain.” Marriage, it says, is but the “hypocritical” concealment of private prostitution. The authors hoped and predicted that both “bourgeois family” and “bourgeois marriage” would disappear with the vanishing of private capital.
Throughout the 1960s and into the ’70s, Soviet front groups were working throughout America to boost the destruction of traditional marriage. Federal Bureau of Investigation informant Larry Grathwohl penetrated the revolutionary Communist group Weather Underground. After palling around with Bill Ayers, Bernardine Dohrn and their crew for months, Grathwohl wrote his report, “Bringing Down America: An fbi Informer With the Weathermen.” The report reveals that the Weather Underground network was determined to abolish monogamous marriage, which they viewed as a repressive remnant of male and white supremacy.
In his book The Naked Communist, author Willard Cleon Skousen identified 45 Communist goals for the ideological subversion of America. These goals were read on the floor of Congress on January 10, 1963. Among them are: discrediting the family as an institution; encouraging promiscuity and easy divorce; emphasizing the need to raise children away from the negative influence of parents; promoting pornography; and presenting homosexuality as “normal, natural, healthy.” These are all designed to advance the destruction of marriage and family.
Under the influence of Marxist philosophy and Soviet subversion tactics, American educators have spent decades trumpeting sexual liberation, militant feminism and homosexual rights. All this has been done under the banner of freedom, but the truth is that these movements have served as Trojan horses in a far more sinister plot to abolish marriage and destroy the nuclear family!
In Karl Marx’s words: “Communism abolishes eternal truths, it abolishes all religion, and all morality, instead of constituting them on a new basis; it therefore acts in contradiction to all past historical experience.”
Or, in Mr. Armstrong’s words, “Communism is the vulture of decadent, dying politics, religion, and society” (Plain Truth subscriber letter, Nov. 24, 1967).
Herbert Armstrong elaborated in a 1979 World Tomorrow television broadcast. “Now, Satan has a kingdom; he’s the god of the world and he’s the invisible ruler of the world and the whole world is under his sway, by God’s permission,” he said. “Satan can’t do anything God does not permit because high above all rule is that of God, and God is permitting certain things for a reason that we learn by experience.
“Jesus said, ‘If a kingdom be divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand’—and that’s a good thing to remember. If the United States gets divided too much between the idea of freedom and the idea of communism, this country could not stand.” Now, over three decades later, it is evident that the United States is very much divided between “the idea of freedom and the idea of communism.”
Because the American people rejected God and allowed Satan-inspired Communist philosophy to creep into the nation, God will allow this experience to teach America the natural consequences of broken law!
Talk of equality sounds noble, but Herbert Armstrong warned that Communist “equality” was only a means to an end. “As fostered by the Soviet Union,” he wrote in 1949, “communism is launched as a worldwide class struggle, pitting the poorer class against those who have been economically more successful, arousing class prejudice, stirring up race hatreds. While they pretend to stand for peace, they engender only strife, and they feed like a vulture on poverty, discontent, discouragement, confusion and chaos.”
He warned, “Communism is the devil’s effort, through his demon-inspired human tools, to take from us this greatest national and economic blessing God ever conferred on any people!” (Plain Truth, January 1949).
Looking at America today, you have to admit once again that he was right!