Those of us who served in the U.S. armed forces during the Cold War were under the impression most of the communists were behind the Iron Curtain. Silly us.
Granted, your typical 80s era soldier stationed in then West Germany, as I was, wasn’t thinking much about ideology. German beer, German girls, and more German beer were foremost on our minds. Lofty notions were best left to the higher ups. But we did have a more than vague idea that the bad guys were somewhere to the East. Oh sure, there were Cubans, Chicoms, and Norks. Though our specific bad guys were the Soviets and their Warsaw Pact little buddies. If push ever came to shove and the balloon went up, they’d be the ones interrupting our beerfests and dates with frauleins. So naturally, they were the enemy.
When the Iron Curtain fell in 1989 and the Soviets gave up the ghost on Christmas Day 1991, we thought: Finally gotcha commies. We win…We spoke too quickly.
For while we were amusing ourselves on a two year expense paid sometimes European vacation, while simultaneously saving the Free World from the godless Marxist hordes, the nation that was ostensibly paying us to be there was brewing up its own special brand of homegrown communists.
In American pop culture, in academia, in newsrooms, and in the media, the idea was taking shape that the kind of socialism we had just beat was not that bad at all. In started with the deification of Gorbachev and ended up with him, not the true victors Reagan, Thatcher, and John Paul II, getting credit for ending the Cold War. Oh yes, what a statesman Gorby was! Reagan, just a lucky dunce. Uh huh. Right.
It’s led in thirty years to one of our two major political parties being effectively controlled by socialists, our colleges being infested with Marxist ideology, and the hammer and sickle being proudly flown in the streets by groups like Antifa, an organization run and sponsored by Democrats.
What was it all for, those over four decades America spent all over the world fighting the Cold War? 100,000 men dead in Korea, Vietnam, and elsewhere just so the Marxist bacillus could find a warm home in the very place we were ultimately trying to keep safe from it. The country that spent countless piles of treasure and numberless buckets of blood sending soldiers, sailors, airmen, and Marines all over the globe to oppose communism couldn’t keep it out of its own news networks and faculty lounges. Thus irony of ironies, here we are.
The modern conflict against the domestic heirs of Stalin is still tepid, but getting hotter by the day. The enemy is not crouching in a foreign rice paddy or over the next hill. They march on our streets and threaten our neighborhoods. They work for the Democrats and probably get their resources from a foreign intelligence agency. So once more we will fight them. So once more, but it could take a while, we will beat them.