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Old 07-02-2013, 02:07 PM
 
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Like lerner said, Bolshevism was viewed as a threat to the west since the early 1900's. However, to answer the question of when it became a threat in the minds of average Americans, I would have to say in the time period between February 1948 and August 29th 1949.

In February 1948 a communist coup in Czechoslovakia ended the fledgling democracy there and installed a Soviet backed communist dictatorship. The west was unprepared and was shocked at the speed of the take over. The west began to realize that all of the liberated territories were at risk of falling into the Soviet sphere.

In June 1948 the Berlin Blockade was the first west vs. east, US vs. Soviet, Democracy and Capitalism vs. Communism battle. Ironically enough, it all started over the type of currency that was to be used in West Berlin. Even though the west "won" the blockade, it signalled the end of Soviet, western allied cooperation and laid the groundwork for the division of Germany into two separate states and the division of Berlin into two separate cities.

In August 1949, mere months after the Berlin Blockade was lifted, the Soviets detonated their first atomic bomb.

From that point on, there was no mistaking that the Cold War was on and most people saw the Soviet Union and communism as the greatest threat to the world.

Last edited by NJGOAT; 07-02-2013 at 02:31 PM..
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Old 07-02-2013, 02:12 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by red4ce View Post
Interesting point. Were the tens of millions of deaths under these regimes well known to the Western public right as they were happening, or were these events only publicized afterwards by defectors and refugees?
The idea that people were suffering under these regimes was known at the time. The extent and how many people actually died are still up for debate. Most of the numbers are based on census estimates that aren't exactly accurate and many times are attributed to policies which resulted in the deaths of "x" number of people. There was certainly blood on all of those peoples hands, but in the case of Stalin, the "20 million" number is now largely seen as being way overstated. Likewise Mao's number seems large until you place it within the context of the size of the Chinese population. Pol Pot was probably the most brutal of them all in a direct killing sense.
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Old 07-02-2013, 02:26 PM
 
Location: SGV, CA
816 posts, read 1,649,924 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NJGOAT View Post
Like lerner said, Bolshevism was viewed as a threat to the west since the early 1900's. However, to answer the question of when it became a threat in the minds of average Americans, I would have to say in the time period between February 1948 and August 29th 1949.

In February 1948 a communist coup ended the fledgling democracy there and installed a Soviet backed communist dictatorship. The west was unprepared and was shocked at the speed of the take over. The west began to realize that all of the liberated territories were at risk of falling into the Soviet sphere.

In June 1948 the Berlin Blockade was the first west vs. east, US vs. Soviet, Democracy and Capitalism vs. Communism battle. Ironically enough, it all started over the type of currency that was to be used in West Berlin. Even though the west "won" the blockade, it signalled the end of Soviet, western allied cooperation and laid the groundwork for the division of Germany into two separate states and the division of Berlin into two separate cities.

In August 1949, mere months after the Berlin Blockade was lifted, the Soviets detonated their first atomic bomb.

From that point on, there was no mistaking that the Cold War was on and most people saw the Soviet Union and communism as the greatest threat to the world.
Thank you, this is the kind of answer I was looking for. I knew communism existed well before WWII but I was looking for a '9/11'-esque moment whereby communism suddenly thrust itself into the forefront of public political discourse in the Western world.
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Old 07-02-2013, 02:30 PM
 
Location: Parts Unknown, Northern California
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I am surprised that no one is connecting anti-socialism to the infamous Palmer Raids of 1919 and 1920. A fusion of hatred of immigrants along with a hatred of all leftists, especially labor unions, established the background where the majority of the country approved of these actions by Attorney General Palmer and his chief of intelligence, the young J. Edgar Hoover.

It had been the atmosphere of WW I during which protest was suppressed, with most of that protest coming from the ranks of socialist organizations, accompanied by the takeover of Russia by the Bolsheviks, which facilitated the panic about anarchy being just around the corner unless something was done. Then two waves of US domestic bombings by the Italian anarchy group the Galleanists, persuaded president Wilson to act.

What followed were raids arrests and mass deportations with a specific focus on Communist party members.

The socialist government in Russia was not even recognized as their legal government by the US until 1933.

The Bolshevik Boogey Man was already the Boogey Man well before WW II.
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Old 07-02-2013, 02:40 PM
 
Location: The Triad (NC)
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Originally Posted by red4ce View Post
but I was looking for a '9/11'-esque moment whereby X suddenly changed/did Y...
Very little in history or world events works like that.
In time, with retrospect and deeper understanding, 9/11 won't be seen that way either.
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Old 07-02-2013, 03:16 PM
 
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Originally Posted by j_k_k View Post
If I sound like Fred Phelps to you, or you drew the inference that I myself felt any of that, you're not intelligent or perceptive enough to discuss seriously with, but you are rude and insulting enough to be insulted back in kind. I'm thinking that anyone with the faintest tad bit of perceptiveness can see that my description of our history of national enemy-designation is a sarcastic and unflattering analysis of our national need to find the Emmanuel Goldstein of the day. At no point did I suggest that I actually joined in or endorsed the hate.

Gods, the tragedy of education's downfall in this country. Every day a new foolishness to bear.

Ah, so you weren't speaking for yourself, your family, or friends, but rather for a nation of 330 million men, women, and children from a vast array of backgrounds and ideologies that, if they started the day they were born, any single primate could barely begin to completely understand a lifetime later.


Fred Phelps walks around declaring GOD HATES (insert target here)!!!, while you are declaring AMERICA HATES (insert target here)!!!. In both cases, you have used your personal, subjective interpretations to apply a human emotion (hatred) to larger entities. Fred Phelps believes his God is a wrathful, bigoted and omnipotent uber-jerk cursing anyone who disagrees with him. You seem to believe the United States is some sort of caricature of a neo-imperialistic, ignorant, hate mongering defender of injustice that can't exist for 5 minutes without finding some brown people or eastern types to focus its robber baron Eye of Sauron on. That United States sounds like an awful place, and I'd never want to live there. Thank goodness I don't have plans on relocating to the inside of your skull.

Last edited by lerner; 07-02-2013 at 03:33 PM..
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Old 07-02-2013, 04:16 PM
Status: "Trump - excepting Jorgensen, the least of multiple evils" (set 22 days ago)
 
Location: Nescopeck, Penna. (birthplace)
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To those of us who view economic and personal liberty as unitary and inseparable, collectivism, the idea that the rights of any individual can be trampled in the name of some common good, is the primary, and mortal enemy of all human progress. Those who subscribe to the idea that vague, loosely-defined notions of "humanity, mankind, society, the silent majority" -- call it whatever you wish, can overrule individual liberty are capable of all manner of opression whent their ideas are harnessed to the monopoly of force granted to the state (government).

Naziism, Fascism, Communiism, Socialism, Radical Islam, and "Establishment" vs "true" (Voltaire-style) Liberalism are all variations of collectivism. After World War II, Stalin merely replaced Hitler as the most prominent threat to the development of mature democracy, governed by parliamentary pluralisdm
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Old 07-02-2013, 05:21 PM
 
Location: Aloverton
6,564 posts, read 12,915,195 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lerner View Post
You seem to believe the United States is some sort of caricature of a neo-imperialistic, ignorant, hate mongering defender of injustice that can't exist for 5 minutes without finding some brown people or eastern types to focus its robber baron Eye of Sauron on. That United States sounds like an awful place, and I'd never want to live there.
Well, I guess we have evidence you're learning, with remedial tutelage and careful assistance to connect the dots. Miracles do occur. However, I should have pointed out that in WWI and WWII, Germans (of any citizenship) came in for plenty of hate, and they looked a lot like the majority in the US, so it wasn't like the designated enemy was required to be of a different race. It helped, though. And while a fair bit of the labor movement had roots in eastern Europe, much of it wasn't. That particular 'hate of the present day' was more economic than anything (as I pointed out in terms most probably grasped without any hand-holding).

So when are you emigrating, if you don't like it here?
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Old 07-02-2013, 06:40 PM
 
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Originally Posted by MrRational View Post
Very little in history or world events works like that.
In time, with retrospect and deeper understanding, 9/11 won't be seen that way either.
Indeed the first true Islamist terror attack on the West was in 1983.
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Old 07-02-2013, 08:15 PM
 
Location: moved
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Bolshevism (which became officially Communism as its junior alternative, Menshevism, withered) became the West's boogeyman almost immediately after the Bolshevik revolution of November 7, 1917. The immediate trigger was the Bolsheviks' exiting from WW1, suing for a humiliating peace with the Germans. To the Western allies, this was cowardice and treason, as the unilateral exit of their erstwhile ally meant greater hardships for the remaining allies in trying to defeat the Central Powers. A little-known factoid: in 1918, a military force of Americans, British and others landed on Russian territory, with the express purpose of aiding anti-Bolshevist forces in the Russian Revolution; see for example Allied intervention in the Russian Civil War - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia . These "allies" eventually retreated in various circumstances, thus adding military defeat as another reason to hate the Bolsheviks.
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