(This is a special report from the AIM Center for Investigative Journalism)
Trevor Loudon, the author of a new book on socialist penetration of the Democratic party and the U.S. Congress, says, “Perhaps the most damaging aspect of this entire NSA scandal is the way the U.S. and international left have used the leaks to turn the American right into a battering ram against U.S. military intelligence capabilities. Historically it has always been the far-left that has sought to castrate U.S. government intelligence capabilities—always using ‘civil liberties’ as a lever.”
Loudon is the New Zealand blogger who broke the story of Frank Marshall Davis, the Communist Party member and suspected Soviet espionage agent, who was a mentor for a young Barack Obama during his growing-up years in Hawaii.
His new book, The Enemies Within: Communists, Socialists and Progressives in the U.S. Congress, is the much-anticipated follow-up to his first volume, Barack Obama and the Enemies Within.
As someone whose KeyWiki site serves as an authoritative encyclopedia on the left, Loudon has a lot to say about the continuing controversy over NSA leaker Edward Snowden. He gave this columnist his comments on how the story has developed and who is behind it.
“When Edward Snowden first made his revelations,” Loudon notes, “it wasn’t the left who first rushed to his support—it was the right, including Glenn Beck and Michael Savage. It was completely understandable. In the wake of Obama’s IRS and Associated Press scandals, Snowden’s revelations were seized on by many on the right as one more example of President Obama’s tyrannical bent. Hundreds of bloggers, commentators and grass-roots activists sprang immediately to Snowden’s defense, even after it became clear that Snowden was hopping from one enemy-controlled territory to another.”
But Loudon points out that some conservative media personalities, such as Lee Stranahan at Breitbart’s Big Journalism site, analyzed the evidence as it came in, noting that the real motive of those behind Snowden was to “attack the military via the NSA and criticize America’s attempts to defend itself from terrorism…”
Loudon’s new book is being released as the blogger from New Zealand travels throughout the United States on a speaking tour. One of the many members of Congress he analyzes in his excellent book is far-left Democratic Rep. John Conyers (MI), who teamed up with Republican Tea Party Congressman Justin Amash (MI) to sponsor a bill to gut the NSA’s terrorist surveillance powers. The bill almost passed the House.
Loudon says that Rep. Amash, chairman of the House Liberty Caucus, is a patriot whose conservative credentials are beyond question. However, “he should ask himself why an out and out socialist like Conyers would want to limit the powers of the NSA,” Loudon says. “Conyers has a more than 40-year history of collaborating with the Communist Party, and almost as long with the Democratic Socialists of America.”
This association raises “red flags,” he says. Loudon points to how the Communist Party (CPUSA), which was funded by Moscow and engaged in espionage against the U.S. Government, created a front group, the National Committee to Abolish the House Un-American Activities Committee. The House Committee was a target because it had held numerous hearings exposing the activities of the CPUSA and its front groups.
Loudon’s research shows that Frank Wilkinson, who was jailed in 1961 for defying the House Committee on Un-American Activities, was “a vocal foe of the FBI’s supposedly tyrannical and out-of-control Director J. Edgar Hoover.” Wilkinson was in fact a 40-year veteran of the Communist Party USA, an affiliation common to most of his organization’s leading supporters. And it turned out that Wilkinson’s FBI dossier was more than 130,000 pages long.
Loudon comments: “J. Edgar Hoover’s memory has been invoked several times in the current scandal as an example of someone who used government-gathered intelligence to harass and blackmail his personal enemies. As an effective opponent of communist subversion, J. Edgar Hoover suffered a decades’ long campaign of slander and denigration from the left. The fact that Hoover had 130,000 pages of information on a pro-Soviet communist activist, who led a long and successful campaign against one of the country’s most important anti-subversive organizations, proves that information gathering does not necessarily lead to inappropriate use of that information.”
Another figure involved in the anti-FBI campaign was Frank Donner, the former director of the ACLU’s Project on Political Surveillance. Donner’s FBI file, turned over to this columnist, is over 1,500 pages long.
As we have pointed out, Donner worked with the Center for National Security Studies (CNSS), which is now active against the NSA, to undermine the intelligence-gathering capabilities of the U.S. Government. Donner, like Wilkinson, had a lot to hide, since he was a member of the CPUSA who traveled to Russia and had contacts with Russian espionage agents. He wrote several books attacking U.S. intelligence agencies, including the NSA. He especially hated the House Committee on Un-American Activities, which grilled him on his CPUSA activities. He took the Fifth. But Donner had the last laugh, as the committee and its successor, the House Committee on Internal Security, were abolished in the 1970s.
The same forces are now working against the NSA.
It is noteworthy that in 2012, the Soros-funded Open Society Institute (OSI) held one of its panel discussions, “National Security Secrecy and Surveillance: Defending the Public’s Right to Know,” to organize opposition to the NSA. The name of one panelist, Tim Shorrock, rang some bells for me. I had covered his work with CounterSpy, an anti-CIA publication, back in 1983. CounterSpy had exposed Richard Welch as a CIA agent before his murder by terrorists in Greece. Shorrock told me, “Every once in a while, you’re going to release a name of somebody who may be the target for somebody. That’s something that happens when you do investigations.”
At the time, Shorrock told me that he favored the abolition of the CIA, adding, “I don’t think the KGB is a threat.” He also said, “I support a lot of what the Cuban government does.”
In 2009, when we focused critical attention on Glenn Greenwald getting an award named in honor of leftist journalist and identified Soviet agent I.F. Stone, Shorrock came to Greenwald’s defense, recalled my interview of him, and denounced me as “a longtime McCarthyite and deranged right-winger, who has been seeing reds under every bed since he was probably an infant.”
Greenwald, now with the British Guardian, would emerge this year as Edward Snowden’s handler.
Turning his attention to this case, Trevor Loudon notes that reports indicate that in March 2013, when he sought a job with NSA contractor Booz Allen Hamilton at an NSA facility in Hawaii, Snowden presumably signed the required classified-information agreements and would have been well aware of the law and potential penalties for breaching laws regarding the information he would have access to. Nevertheless, Snowden broke these agreements and has been charged with espionage. He has been granted political asylum in Russia.
Before taking the job in Hawaii, Loudon notes, Snowden had already been in contact with Greenwald and filmmaker Laura Poitras, who serve together on the Board of the Freedom of the Press Foundation, a funder of WikiLeaks.
This is a critical point, reflecting the fact that Snowden could not have engaged in espionage without the help of others, including left-wing networks based in the U.S. Accuracy in Media has reported that the Freedom of the Press Foundation “is made possible by the fiscal sponsorship of the Foundation for National Progress,” the publisher of Mother Jones magazine, which is backed by several prominent liberal foundations, including the Open Society Institute of billionaire George Soros.
Loudon noted statements Greenwald delivered at an international communist conference, including that “the only thing that can truly strengthen America’s national security is a weakening of America.” Loudon responded that “He openly wants to see America weakened militarily. What better way to weaken America militarily, to the advantage of Islamic terrorism, than to weaken or destroy the NSA?”
Loudon, who broke the story of former White House official Van Jones’ Marxist background, says many left-wing groups backing Edward Snowden have one thing in common—they hate and distrust America. “Many of them have ties to Marxist or anti-American groups,” he says. “Some are linked to international communist fronts. Several are tied to hostile foreign regimes. Their agenda in most cases is to weaken America’s defenses. Attacking and weakening the NSA would be cheered on by America’s enemies all over the globe.”
“The United States has always had its enemies in Congress and the media,” says Loudon. “What is of most concern is that millions of American patriots, motivated by genuine constitutional concerns, have been turned into attack dogs against one of their few remaining effective means of national defense. America’s enemies must be laughing uproariously over this. Political influence on NSA, if any, should indeed be questioned. The constitutionality of its methodology should be debated. But Americans need to turn their guns on those who would gut the NSA, not those would defend it.”
The outcome of the Bradley Manning case sheds light on the nature of WikiLeaks and its collaborators. Manning, a former Army intelligence analyst, was convicted in July of espionage for stealing and leaking classified information to WikiLeaks, and has now apologized for damaging America’s national security. “I am sorry that my actions hurt people,” he said. “I’m sorry that they hurt the United States.”
Manning had supporters on the left and right, including former Congressman Ron Paul, who called him a “hero.” A left-wing group that includes Jeff Cohen and Norman Solomon has proposed that Manning receive the Nobel Peace Prize.
Cohen, a professor of journalism at Ithaca College, is the head of the institute that gave that award named after Soviet agent of influence I.F. Stone to Glenn Greenwald. Solomon, who unsuccessfully ran for Congress as a Democrat, was endorsed in that run by Greenwald.
Greenwald endorsed Rep. Rush Holt in New Jersey’s special Senate Democratic primary election on August 13th, and even appeared on Holt’s behalf in an online town hall meeting. But Holt came in third, with only 17 percent of the vote, getting trounced by Cory Booker.
Still, as Loudon’s nearly 700-page book demonstrates, the Marxists have a strong presence in the Democratic Party. His detailed account of “Communists, socialists and progressives in the U.S. Congress” is the work of an investigative reporter covering the stories that are just ready and waiting to be exposed by the U.S. media.
The irony is that a blogger from New Zealand has to do the job for us.
- A partial list of Trevor Loudon’s speaking dates can be found here.