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  1. Joined
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    12 Dec '16 18:071 edit
    All this talk of Trump and Russia reminds me of the secret letter Ted Kennedy sent the USSR in the 1980's

    Picking his way through the Soviet archives that Boris Yeltsin had just thrown open, in 1991 Tim Sebastian, a reporter for the London Times, came across an arresting memorandum. Composed in 1983 by Victor Chebrikov, the top man at the KGB, the memorandum was addressed to Yuri Andropov, the top man in the entire USSR. The subject: Sen. Edward Kennedy.

    “On 9-10 May of this year,” the May 14 memorandum explained, “Sen. Edward Kennedy’s close friend and trusted confidant [John] Tunney was in Moscow.” (Tunney was Kennedy’s law school roommate and a former Democratic senator from California.) “The senator charged Tunney to convey the following message, through confidential contacts, to the General Secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, Y. Andropov.”

    Kennedy’s message was simple. He proposed an unabashed quid pro quo. Kennedy would lend Andropov a hand in dealing with President Reagan. In return, the Soviet leader would lend the Democratic Party a hand in challenging Reagan in the 1984 presidential election. “The only real potential threats to Reagan are problems of war and peace and Soviet-American relations,” the memorandum stated. “These issues, according to the senator, will without a doubt become the most important of the election campaign.”

    Kennedy made Andropov a couple of specific offers.

    First he offered to visit Moscow. “The main purpose of the meeting, according to the senator, would be to arm Soviet officials with explanations regarding problems of nuclear disarmament so they may be better prepared and more convincing during appearances in the USA.” Kennedy would help the Soviets deal with Reagan by telling them how to brush up their propaganda.

    Then he offered to make it possible for Andropov to sit down for a few interviews on American television. “A direct appeal … to the American people will, without a doubt, attract a great deal of attention and interest in the country. … If the proposal is recognized as worthy, then Kennedy and his friends will bring about suitable steps to have representatives of the largest television companies in the USA contact Y.V. Andropov for an invitation to Moscow for the interviews. … The senator underlined the importance that this initiative should be seen as coming from the American side.”

    Kennedy would make certain the networks gave Andropov air time–and that they rigged the arrangement to look like honest journalism.

    Kennedy’s motives? “Like other rational people,” the memorandum explained, “[Kennedy] is very troubled by the current state of Soviet-American relations.” But that high-minded concern represented only one of Kennedy’s motives.

    “Tunney remarked that the senator wants to run for president in 1988,” the memorandum continued. “Kennedy does not discount that during the 1984 campaign, the Democratic Party may officially turn to him to lead the fight against the Republicans and elect their candidate president.”

    Kennedy proved eager to deal with Andropov–the leader of the Soviet Union, a former director of the KGB and a principal mover in both the crushing of the 1956 Hungarian Revolution and the suppression of the 1968 Prague Spring–at least in part to advance his own political prospects.

    In 1992, Tim Sebastian published a story about the memorandum in the London Times. Here in the U.S., Sebastian’s story received no attention. In his 2006 book, The Crusader: Ronald Reagan and the Fall of Communism, historian Paul Kengor reprinted the memorandum in full. “The media,” Kengor says, “ignored the revelation.”

    “The document,” Kengor continues, “has stood the test of time. I scrutinized it more carefully than anything I’ve ever dealt with as a scholar. I showed the document to numerous authorities who deal with Soviet archival material. No one has debunked the memorandum or shown it to be a forgery. Kennedy’s office did not deny it.”

    Why bring all this up now? No evidence exists that Andropov ever acted on the memorandum–within eight months, the Soviet leader would be dead–and now that Kennedy himself has died even many of the former senator’s opponents find themselves grieving. Yet precisely because Kennedy represented such a commanding figure–perhaps the most compelling liberal of our day–we need to consider his record in full.

    Doing so, it turns out, requires pondering a document in the archives of the politburo.

    When President Reagan chose to confront the Soviet Union, calling it the evil empire that it was, Sen. Edward Kennedy chose to offer aid and comfort to General Secretary Andropov. On the Cold War, the greatest issue of his lifetime, Kennedy got it wrong.

    Peter Robinson, a research fellow at the Hoover Institution at Stanford University and a former White House speechwriter, writes a weekly column for Forbes.
  2. Joined
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    12 Dec '16 18:08
    But Ted Kennedy was a Patriot cuz he has a "D" by his name. 😵
  3. Joined
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    12 Dec '16 18:09
    If the Senate does its job, then it doesn't matter much what Trump does about Russia. His appointments need to be approved.

    I think Trump is in bed with the Russians when it comes to business deals. We'll see who he picks for Secretary of State and who the Senate will approve.
  4. Joined
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    12 Dec '16 18:141 edit
    Originally posted by Eladar
    If the Senate does its job, then it doesn't matter much what Trump does about Russia. His appointments need to be approved.

    I think Trump is in bed with the Russians when it comes to business deals. We'll see who he picks for Secretary of State and who the Senate will approve.
    The number of vermin that take office in the US is frightening.

    It's amazing we still have a country.
  5. Germany
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    12 Dec '16 18:27
    This story pertains to a fact-check PolitiFact did on a Limbaugh claim.

    http://www.politifact.com/punditfact/statements/2015/mar/13/rush-limbaugh/limbaugh-ted-kennedy-undercut-reagan-back-door-lin/

    Tunney denies being involved and the accuracy of the memo is disputed.
  6. Subscriberno1marauder
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    12 Dec '16 18:33
    Originally posted by whodey
    All this talk of Trump and Russia reminds me of the secret letter Ted Kennedy sent the USSR in the 1980's

    Picking his way through the Soviet archives that Boris Yeltsin had just thrown open, in 1991 Tim Sebastian, a reporter for the London Times, came across an arresting memorandum. Composed in 1983 by Victor Chebrikov, the top man at the KGB, the memoran ...[text shortened]... at Stanford University and a former White House speechwriter, writes a weekly column for Forbes.
    What is at issue is whether Chebrikov's account of the overture is accurate. Tunney told Sebastian it was "[barnyard expletive deleted]", alleging that Kennedy had no intention of running in 1988, that electoral politics weren't discussed, and that he didn't give the Soviets advice on staging a PR blitz in the United States.

    https://www.reddit.com/r/AskHistorians/comments/3sjj9z/was_it_true_the_ted_kennedy_was_mentioned_by_a/

    Of course, it's not like a KGB guy would lie.
  7. Joined
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    12 Dec '16 18:40
    Originally posted by no1marauder
    What is at issue is whether Chebrikov's account of the overture is accurate. Tunney told Sebastian it was "[barnyard expletive deleted]", alleging that Kennedy had no intention of running in 1988, that electoral politics weren't discussed, and that he didn't give the Soviets advice on staging a PR blitz in the United States.

    https://www.reddit.com/r/A ...[text shortened]... was_it_true_the_ted_kennedy_was_mentioned_by_a/

    Of course, it's not like a KGB guy would lie.
    Do you have any proof that the KGB man lied?

    Hmm?

    What would be the purpose?
  8. Subscriberno1marauder
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    12 Dec '16 18:44
    Originally posted by whodey
    Do you have any proof that the KGB man lied?

    Hmm?

    What would be the purpose?
    The article cited by KN gives sufficient evidence to make his claims dubious.
  9. Behind the scenes
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    12 Dec '16 18:451 edit
    Originally posted by whodey
    All this talk of Trump and Russia reminds me of the secret letter Ted Kennedy sent the USSR in the 1980's

    Picking his way through the Soviet archives that Boris Yeltsin had just thrown open, in 1991 Tim Sebastian, a reporter for the London Times, came across an arresting memorandum. Composed in 1983 by Victor Chebrikov, the top man at the KGB, the memoran ...[text shortened]... at Stanford University and a former White House speechwriter, writes a weekly column for Forbes.
    This is all well and good, but the fact remains we don't know the extent of Donald Trump's dealings or influence regarding Russia (and influence runs both ways!). This all may amount to nothing, or it may represent something deeper and worth investigating. Donald Trump is not helping this situation by being so secretive with his tax returns.

    Oh, and by the way Whodey: This has little to do with having a "D" or "R" after one's name. If Hillary Clinton had won despite refusing to release her tax returns, and she had business dealings with Russia, the fair and balanced folks at Fox news would be going into major eruptions right now.
  10. Joined
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    12 Dec '16 18:47
    Originally posted by mchill
    This is all well and good, but the fact remains we don't know the extent of Donald Trump's dealings or influence regarding Russia (and influence runs both ways!). This all may amount to nothing, or it may represent something deeper and worth investigating. Donald Trump is not helping this situation by being so secretive with his tax returns.
    It's all part of the vast right winged conspiracy Hillary talked about.

    I guess it beats Pizzagate.
  11. Joined
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    12 Dec '16 18:48
    Originally posted by no1marauder
    The article cited by KN gives sufficient evidence to make his claims dubious.
    Dubious? Like denying you made any e-mails on your private server that might give away secret information that might harm the country in which you reside?

    Can we say that this was not a lie AND not dubious as well?
  12. Subscriberno1marauder
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    12 Dec '16 18:50
    Originally posted by whodey
    It's all part of the vast right winged conspiracy Hillary talked about.

    I guess it beats Pizzagate.
    It's amusing that you discount the CIA's evidence of Russian hacking and other measures done to help Trump, but take the word of a KGB official at face value.
  13. Joined
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    12 Dec '16 18:52
    Originally posted by no1marauder
    It's amusing that you discount the CIA's evidence of Russian hacking and other measures done to help Trump, but take the word of a KGB official at face value.
    What does the CIA have to do with the word of the KGB official?
  14. Subscriberno1marauder
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    12 Dec '16 18:57
    Originally posted by whodey
    What does the CIA have to do with the word of the KGB official?
    It just shows your blatant hypocrisy; you're willing to believe anything (or perhaps say anything) that supports your extreme political ideology. If that means accepting a KGB official's words at face value even though there are good reasons to doubt it, you're fine with it.

    If that means ignoring the mountain of evidence that the Russians worked to help elect Trump, you're fine with that.
  15. Joined
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    12 Dec '16 18:58
    Originally posted by no1marauder
    It just shows your blatant hypocrisy; you're willing to believe anything (or perhaps say anything) that supports your extreme political ideology. If that means accepting a KGB official's words at face value even though there are good reasons to doubt it, you're fine with it.

    If that means ignoring the mountain of evidence that the Russians worked to help elect Trump, you're fine with that.
    Why would the KGB want to lie about that?

    What would be the motive?
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