Having recently finished the classic autobiography "Witness" by Whittaker Chambers, I'd just like to mention here an article that has some relevance to the book. It was written by Harry Stein and appears in today's WSJ. Stein notes how easily some on the left shift from merely holding a political position to committing outright treason. He cites the case of the recent arrests of Walter Kendall Myers and his wife Gwendolyn on charges of spying for Cuba. The point of Stein’s piece is that the Myerses are just like countless other American liberals who harbor anger toward their country.
Would others among Castro's legion of liberal admirers likewise be inclined to spy for Cuba? Probably not very many. But probably more than you think -- if they were cultivated properly, as the Myerses were, and asked very nicely. Why? Because it would be cast as work on behalf of suffering humanity, in the struggle against the forces of rapacious exploitation.
This is the romance of the left. Many conservatives wonder how seemingly intelligent souls, who recoil at the horrors of the Nazi camps or the torture cells of a Pinochet, can regard the despots of the left, many of whose murderous totals are even higher, with apparent equanimity. It is because in the emotion-fueled world of liberalism, it is words that matter most, and professed intent, not the facts.
It is a rare conservative who commits treason. The left has cornered that activity and has for quite some time, as "Witness" testifies.