United States Aid to Russia
NO MAN CAN SERVE TWO MASTERS
By HON. FREDERICK C. SMITH, Congressman from Ohio
Over Radio, July 23, 1941
Vital Speeches of the Day, Vol. VII, pp. 688-690
FELLOW Americans, the President has announced it to be the policy of our Government to give aid to Russia in her war against Germany. Supplies for Stalin are doubtless already on their way to Russia. We are told that a request will soon be made to Congress for additional billions in appropriations for the lend-lease program, much of which is to be used for aid to the Soviet Union.
Americans have been told that in our aid to England we have been promoting certain ideals, the establishment of the four freedoms, etc. Just how now can we square those ideals with the ruthless policies of the red Stalin? Should Russia, with the aid of England and America, be able to defeat the despised Hitler, what should we expect Stalin to demand at the peace table?
How, indeed, shall America enforce the four freedoms on communistic Russia?
Much as we may desire the destruction of Hitlerism, we as free Americans cannot afford to pay the price in money and blood to strengthen and enhance the power of communistic Russia.
We, who have been and are opposed to the United States entering the European war, have consistently claimed the war was not being fought for idealism, but was in fact a continuation of the age-old hatreds and struggles for power which have kept Europe embroiled in wars for centuries.
America has no place in such a war, and could contribute nothing toward a permanent peace, should she enter it, as was abundantly proven by our entry into the World War. If any proof of our position were needed, surely this struggle between Hitler and Stalin should be sufficient. Certainly no one will contend that either Stalin or Hitler are fightingfor idealism, or the four freedoms of which we have heard so much.
Assuredly the new line-up of forces in Europe should give America cause to carefully consider the implications and the likely consequences to our Nation of joining up with Stalin in this war.
I consider any alliance between our country and Russia as an act of the utmost gravity and fraught with the most dire consequences to our Nation. There is no doubt that any union between ourselves and Russia will operate strongly to encourage the further development of communism in this country. It will, I fear, do much more than this.
The association of our people with Russians in a war must have the effect of disarming the opposition which our people have been developing against communism. We cannot become partners in war with Red Russia without in some degree condoning communism.
What, for example, about the work of the Dies committee? Of what value will it be to us now? Will not all the good it has done in exposing the subversive forces which are imposing their vicious schemes upon our country be wiped out by this joining up of our Nation on the side of Stalin? Will not such an act in a large measure give immunity to the foreign agents serving Russia in the cause of communism in our country?
Certainly the communistic elements which swarm in high and low places in our Government need no longer fear this committee.
Note the effect this new alignment of ours has already had upon the leading communistic elements in our country. Before Russia and Germany engaged in this war againsteach other, and before the President made his promise of aid to Russia, those Communists vehemently protested that the war was imperialistic and that the United States should stay out of it.
Immediately following hostilities between Hitler and Stalin, and the President's promise of aid to Russia, these leading Communists immediately crawled in bed with the war group of this country who are doing everything possible to catapult us into the war.
According to newspaper reports, Robert Minor (who is perhaps as red as Earl Browder, whose place he is filling while the latter is in prison) said it was the sacred duty of the American workers to produce every article of war at the greatest possible speed for war on all fronts against Hitler.
Harry Bridges, west-coast red, told the Maritime Union at its convention in Cleveland recently that he favored helping anybody, even Tory England, if it meant helping Russia to defeat Germany. Overnight the Daily Worker, leading Communist paper, switched from its position of opposing our entrance into the war, to support of the war policy.
My fellow Americans, I ask you, are these communistic forces interested in what is best for America, or do they serve Red Russia?
Are these Communists interested in preserving our way of life, and our form of Government, or do they seek only to strengthen communism, not only in Russia, but in our own land as well?
Do they seek to build America strong for her own defense, or are they using this opportunity to weaken and destroy that which we as Americans cherish and love? The answer is all too obvious to leave any doubt.
Communism is seeking to destroy everything that opposes communism throughout the world.
What a boon, also, this alliance with communistic Russia will be to the political planners in Washington, who have drawn so much of their inspiration from the Moscowinian philosophy of nihilism.
It is when we reflect upon how well the ground is prepared in our own country for the spread and growth of communism, and the extent to which it has already infiltrated itself into our institutions and Government that we realize the dangers of this unholy alliance with Red Russia.
If our people in general only knew what this subversive cult really is, and how strongly it has already entrenched itself in our country, they would be more able, and more concerned, to protect themselves against its further spread.
I believe nothing is needed so much in this country as a true understanding of what really constitutes communism. The usual definitions of communism were formulated at a time when little or nothing was known of the real operation of this cult. Now, however, we have before us the grand experiment of communism. For nearly 25 years Russia has been operating under this political scheme, on a scale, and in a way, that leaves no doubt of what communism really is, not in theory but in action.
So if we wish to know what communism really is and what it does to the lives of the people, individually and collectively, how it affects their institutions and way of life, all we need to do is to look at Russia.
One can now see in Russia what really happens where communism is in complete control, the starvation and massacre of millions of people; millions more confined in concentration camps; the ruthless tearing from their hearths of members of families and banishment to distant places, possibly to perish from cold and want; the destruction of all labor rights, and the institution of conscript labor; the wholesale murder of the clergy and destruction of churches.
In short, communism in Russia reduced a hundred and sixty million people to an indescribable state of barbarism.
At the same time that we note what Russia is and has done, it may help us to understand better where we are headed for by making a few comparisons.
The Bolsheviks in Russia confiscated all the people's gold and silver money and forced them to use print currency.
Our Government also confiscated all our gold money and forced us to use print currency.
Communism in Russia nationalized all the banks.
Our Government also is now well on its way to complete ownership and control of all banks.
The Communist government in Russia fixes by decree all prices and wages.
Government price fixing also is developing rapidly in this country and threatens now to include wages.
In Russia all homes are owned by the Government.
The United States Housing Authority now has a plan under way which, if continued, also will lead to complete Government ownership of all homes.
Communism in Russia operates through a gigantic bureaucracy. Is it not true our Government has developed also into a gigantic and all-powerful bureaucracy?
Thus it is seen that the foundation has already been well laid in the United States for the full development of communism.
A dangerous fallacy prevails among our people that communism establishes itself by the violent overthrow of government. This was largely true of Russia, but in our country the principal means by which communism has entrenched itself is by deception, by concealing its true aims, Government control and regulation, under the cloak of the public good.
We see in the 49-cent wheat penalty a perfect example of how this deception operates. Certain farmers are penalized, not for what they might plant in the future, but for wheat which they had planted a year ago and were already harvesting.
By a long series of deceptive pieces of legislation and false propaganda the farmers, and a good part of Congress, have been blinded to the real purpose of the political planners of the triple A farm program.
Always they claimed this program would be voluntaryŚnever compulsory. Now, when they have succeeded in getting sufficient power, they come out into the open and reveal it to us that their real aim always has been to make the farm program compulsory for all farmers.
By the most cunning and sinister scheming they succeeded in setting up what, in my opinion, history will designate as one of the worst injustices and frauds that ever was perpetrated upon any people, namely, the so-called wheat-marketing-quota referendum. This scheme was so devised by the political planners as to make certain its passage; in fact, they could almost count the votes before they were cast. Less than 1 in 6 farmers in the United States were permitted to vote. Only 7 per cent of the farmers of the United States voted for the so-called quotas.
The laws that set the referendum up were so cunningly framed that if the marketing quota carried the farmers who had signed up with the triple A would receive high Government loans on their wheat, but if the referendum failed they would receive no Government loans on their wheat.
Here was a strong inducement to the few farmers who were allowed to vote to cast their ballots for the marketing quota. At the same time this set-up acted as a powerful threat that they would be punished if they voted the wheat-marketing quota down.
Thus were the few farmers who voted "yes" in the referendum completely deceived and tricked into voting the 49-cent penalty onto their own neighbors and friends and making compulsory for all farmers the triple A farm program. If this penalty is allowed to stand it will strongly tend toward totalitarian regimentation of all farmers.
Nearly every segment of our economy is now infested with communistic elements which are undermining it. It is, as stated, only when we realize how far this subversive cult has already insinuated itself into our whole scheme of life that we can appreciate the danger of tying ourselves up in a war with Communist Russia.
Communism is a real threat to America today. Our entrance into the war would greatly increase that danger.
America now has no business trying to straighten out the world. We have all we can possibly do to prevent our own self-destruction.
As true Americans our first duty is to preserve our own country, our freedom, our Constitution, and our form of government. Let us defend America not only from aggressors from without but from those forces within our borders that insidiously seek her destruction. In defending communism in Russia we are defending communism in the United States. No man can serve two masters. We cannot serve both liberty and communism. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.