Go not abroad, in search of monsters to destroy.

There’s a video clip bopping around Facebook right now – it’s apparently an interview with a former KGB operative, one Yuri Bezmenov, in 1985.  It inspired the following rant. (There.  It’s a rant.  You’ve been warned.)  The video was definitely unearthed and digitized by someone with an agenda, but watching it, I wondered who, exactly, thought it was going to help their cause. (I found out at the end.)  Here – watch the video, and see if you can guess – before the end – which of our various sets of political zealots put it together.

Bezmenov explains the idea behind psychological warfare.  As he says, the goal is “to change the perception of reality. . .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.”  He then lays out the stages of subversion:

1. Demoralization – which takes 15 to 20 years because that’s how long it takes to educate one generation of students.

2. Destabilization – 2 to 5 years.  Subverter influence throws off economy, foreign relations, defense systems.

3.  Crisis – 6 weeks

4. Normalization: the change of power structure, when the subverter moves in and takes over. (Bezmenov says it’s an ironic label; it is essentially the point of total takeover.)

Now, think back seven or eight years ago when our politics were such that the entire Occupy Wall Street movement would probably have been pepper-sprayed out of existence on day one.  They’d have been jailed, some without even their right to trial, using some clause from the Patriot Act.  They’d have been massacred by the media and labeled terrorists or dangerous extremists.  Now go back even farther, to when the big political question had to do with a blow job, rather than blowing millions of dollars.  So what changed?  Our entire country was struck dumb with terror and came together in horrified harmony for about a week. . .and then exploded into viciously sharp political fragments that haven’t yet dulled.

Since that day, have you read a single news story that you didn’t assume was biased one way or the other?

One of my brothers just sent me this article, which takes the beginning of the problem back to the fifties.  It makes sense, but I would still argue that there has been a drastic change in the last fifteen years, even compared to the previous decades of cold war.  But maybe I only feel that way because it’s the shift I was here for.

I’m going to go out on a limb and say that all of us old enough to clearly remember life before 9/11 can relate to the first three stages Bezmenov labeled.  My question is, is there really a central propaganda machine behind this mess?  If you watch this video, whatever your politics, you begin visualize your villain.  It could be Nazi/Commi/Pinko/anti-christ Obama.  It could be Osama bin Hussain Mubarak Qaddafi.  It could be the Military Industrial Complex and Wall Street.  Republicans.  Democrats. Environmentalists.  Muslims. Tea Party.  Or maybe it’s this guy.

We as a nation seem to need a Big Bad in order to get along.  As soon as one is defeated, we find ourselves another one.  It’s comforting to have the conspiracy theory, because then the bad guy can be identified and fought. Or at least blamed.  On the other hand, if the problems are just the result of a lot different powers struggling for an advantage, who fixes them, and how?  The government? Tyrrany!  The people? Confusion and hippies! (or Confusion and Racists! depending on which gang you prefer to gripe about.)   It’s such a strong habit that without an international villain, we point fingers at each other.  We like to blame our government bodies, but the squabbling in congress is only a reflection of the voters who put those people in office.  Whether there’s a secret Big Bad Subverter out there or not, maybe we need to reach a crisis point.  Maybe we can achieve a true, un-ironic normalization.  As a country have to find a way to move forward and make the necessary changes within our borders.  We need to stop wasting time assigning blame for every attempt that doesn’t work.


One Nation, Under Arms – Todd S. Purdum

G. Edward Griffin’s interview with Uri Bezmenov (Also, here is the program it looks like the video clip was pulled from.)