Mercury Rising 鳯女

Politics, life, and other things that matter

The Orlov Plan

Posted by Phoenix Woman on February 14, 2009

I was poking around the internets yesterday and was reminded of this gem of a 1961 column by humorist Art Buchwald, quoted by Atrios almost six years ago. It seems that Art wrote about this Russian spy named Serge, who was boasting to him of his espionage prowess:

“I used to be in charge of all Communist subversive activity in the United States,” he said.

“You were?” I asked in amazement.

Yes. Perhaps you have heard of the Orlov Plan?”

I admitted I hadn’t, though I explained it was because I hadn’t kept up much on subversive activities in the United States recently.

The Orlov Plan,” he said, swigging down another vodka, “was the most masterful subversive plan ever devised in the cold war. I received the Fourth Order of the Lenin Cross for it.”

“What was it?” I asked.

“I was in charge of all internal subversion in the United States from 1950 to just a few months ago. For years we had been trying to infiltrate the unions and the liberal groups, but we made little headway. We were wasting our money. The U.S. was stronger than ever, its policy towards the Soviets had toughened, and little damage was being done to American morale.

“I realized something had to be done. Then I hit upon it- the Orlov Plan.

The only people willing to wreck the United States government, I discovered, were the extreme right-wing groups. They were being ignored, and yet they were the key to all internal subversion. I laid out a plan. I would have my agents organize a program working through the extreme right wing which would stand the United States on it’s head.

First I would get the right wing to accuse President Eisenhower of being a Communist. Then I would get them to call their own high government officials traitors. Then I would see that the right wing attacked American United Nations representatives. I also would convince the right wing that Russia didn’t have atomic weapons.

Then I would encourage rumors that everyone in the State Department was either a Communist or a homosexual. I gave order to wreak havoc in the armed services by turning military officers against civilians. I even proposed they impeach Chief Justice Warren of the Supreme Court. I laid out different attacks on anyone who advocated better education or health facilities in the United States. And the topper was that anyhone who disagreed with this would be accused of being a card-holding Communist.

“When I proposed the plan in Moscow, the Kremlin thought I was crazy. But they figured they had nothing to lose. Well, you can see the results for yourself. The seeds of doubt about America are being planted by their own people, and we’ve been making more progress in wrecking the U.S. Constitution in the last few years than my predecessors have been able to do since the revolution.”

Then you mean all these extreme right-wing groups are really Communist dupes?” I asked in surprise.

“Exactly, they’re doing the Lord’s work for the Soviet Union, and most of them don’t even know it.”

Some things never change.

9 Responses to “The Orlov Plan”

  1. Doran Williams said

    This was dark humor at its best, as it carried a seed of truth. Look at the number of Troskyites who are in the neo-con movement today, and who have been responsible for selling the Iraq war to Bush and to implementing that war on the highest levels.

    Uncle Wolfie?

    There some others whose names excape me at this early hour.

  2. Doran Williams said

    What the heck is going on here? After hitting the “Submit Comment” button, but before the screen changed, I hit the “Notify me….” button. Almost immediately another screen came up with 30+ pages of photocopies of FBI letters and memos regarding Buchwald!!! I’ve tried to find the link to that page again, but cannot. Where did it go? Where did it come from?

  3. Doran Williams said

    Never mind, I found the link. Duuhhh!

  4. MEC said

    at the number of Troskyites who are in the neo-con movement today

    David Horowitz immediately comes to mind. He wasn’t in the Bush Administration, but he’s had an insidious effect on academic discourse.

  5. Stormcrow said

    That’s the problem with chronic ideologues.

    The specific ideology they cleave to is secondary. The obsession with having some magical formula you can use to just crunch out answers to impossible problems is the root cause flaw. That, and a focus on totalitarian state compulsion.

    A well-known phenomenon prior to WW II was the ease with which many committed Stalinists could be “flipped” into just as committed Fascists. And vice-versa.

    This isn’t political at bottom. It’s a personality disorder.

  6. MEC said

    I remember a friend’s astonishment when she met a schoolmate here in Detroit, years after graduation, and discovered he was a rightwing newspaper columnist. She told me he was always a raging liberal in high school. When I asked her whether their school was predominantly liberal or conservative, she gave me the expected answer that it was very conservative. Then I asked whether he was outspoken about his views, and again she gave me the expected answer that he got into a lot of confrontations, challenging people about their opinions. I told her, “There you go. He takes whatever position will get him the most attention and give him an excuse to be confrontational.”

  7. Charles II said

    Aside from those that MEC describes, I think Stormcrow is near a basic truth. What distinguishes extremists is their willingness to adopt extreme measures. Most of us are snared in the fleshpots: home, work, family, and so on. In fact, a lot of Americans tune out of politics altogether, not seeing any connection between their personal fortunes and what happens on Election Day. The idea of killing or regimenting or manipulating masses of people is completely alien to us. Extremists have in some way become estranged from the joys of the ordinary.

  8. jo6pac said

    Thanks Charles that says it all.

  9. Man, what a great catch, dude. Thanks!

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