Monday, May 05, 2003

But before McCarthy was brought down, he brought down scores of people, historians say. Many had some degree of leftist politics or sympathies in their past, but none were traitors or spies.

The documents being made public now were the hearings he held behind closed doors. Some of those witnesses were later called before public panels, where McCarthy asked his trademark question, "Are you now or have you ever been a Communist?"

But some of the secret witnesses were never called again in public. But they didn't necessarily stay secret either. McCarthy often briefed reporters on the secret proceedings -- at least his version of the proceedings. Many people's careers were destroyed simply because he had summoned them to testify.

From an AP story at This is mostly hyperbolic balderdash. The truth is that McCarthy was a reckless, drunken fool. But, as we now know from the KGB files opened after the Cold War, there was substantial penetration of the American government by Soviet intelligence, using agents placed there during the war years when the USSR was America's ally. Among the secrets betrayed by these agents was the fact of the existence of the atom bomb and, later, the detailed plans of how to build the weapon itself. In other words, much to the chagrin of the Leftist media and Liberal apologists for Communism around the world, McCarthy was largely correct in many of his basic accusations. I should also note that this was no secret to many of his contemporaries, no less a Liberal icon than Robert F. Kennedy attended McCarthy's funeral and openly wept.


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