Meanwhile, the Soviet Union, mainland China, and the international communist conspiracy were steady, unwavering, and clearly focused on their goal. As Soviet leader Khrushchev stated while speaking to representatives of western European NATO nations, “we will bury you.”
While the USSR was intent on ending liberty, some American leaders hoped that it would be possible to turn the communists into friends by helping them. This led to paradoxical behavior: sending various forms of material aid to a power structure which could never, and would never, desire anything except for the destruction of the personal and political freedoms which constitute the United States.
In 1964, John Stormer wrote:
The examples are endless. The failure of Russian agriculture has historically been communism’s weakest “link.”
As agricultural efforts in the Warsaw Pact countries, and other communist states around the world, persistently failed, hunger threatened to destabilize the communist dictatorship.
Thus unsettled, the oppressed people in those dictatorships might have a chance to throw off the shackles of tyranny. The failure of agriculture in the Soviet Socialist regions might undermine the harsh reign of totalitarianism and create an opportunity for freedom.
The worst thing that could happen to the oppressed victims of communism would be for someone to enable the communists by propping up their agricultural systems by means of artificially discounted grain imports.
But some political leaders in the United States hoped to lessen the human suffering in the USSR and simultaneously encourage friendly relations with the communists - and they hoped to do this with offers of cheap grain.
“So, in 1961,” Stormer goes on to write, an Ohio Congressman named D.L. Latta could inform his constituents that
Officials in the U. S. Department of Agriculture and the Commerce Department agreed to sell surplus wheat to the Soviet Union for $.62 per bushel less than the baker who bakes your bread pays for it. Only quick action by an awakening public stopped this folly which would have supplied wheat to ease food shortages and the resultant unrest against the communists in the Soviet Union. The officials who initiated the program are still holding responsible government positions.
Congressman Latta’s statement shows how well-intentioned efforts to ease human suffering actually supported the regime which cause the suffering.
So it was that ordinary American taxpayers ended up funding homicidal totalitarians like Khrushchev and Castro. Some U.S. diplomats thought that support from America would somehow change the minds of dictators who committed a nearly endless string of human rights violations. As Stormer notes,
Much American aid to communists is hidden in U.S. grants to the United Nations and its specialized agencies. For example, the United Nations Special Fund is giving Castro, the communist dictator of Cuba, funds to bolster his agricultural programs. The American who heads the fund, Paul Hoffman, approved the grant, and the U.S. taxpayer is paying 40% of the total bill of $1.6-million. The grant was made just after the attempted invasion of Cuba failed in April 1961.
Happily, despite such well-intentioned but wrong-headed actions, there were enough American policy makers who saw the communists accurately. Over the decades of the Cold War, the U.S. took a stand, even if inconsistently, to defend personal freedom, to defend individual political liberty, and to defend property rights.
The American stance was solid enough eventually to cause the USSR to bankrupt itself, as it finally did by 1990/1991, and collapse its economy by trying to keep parity with U.S. weapons technology.
The Soviets spent themselves into an economic breakdown by attempting to keep pace with U.S. defense technology development.