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Cornell & The Cold War

The irony evident in the two part article in Cornell [1] Alumni Magazine (July-September 2010), on “Cornell in the Cold War” by Professors Glen Altshuler and Isaac Kramnick, made me laugh. The subtle-as-a-sledgehammer attempt to appear scholarly while ridiculing conservative anti-Communists was also disturbing. For example, they describe Dean Malott (Cornell’s last conservative president): “Publically, Malott, the self-proclaimed conservative, defended dissent and free thought” as if that is something a conservative would never do when he defended the admitted Communist professor, Phillip Morrison.

Malott called upon “thinking citizens to stand behind the principles of freedom of thought and expression.”  I wonder what Malott would think of Cornell’s College of Arts and Sciences today?

At the June 2007 Reunion, walking to a lecture with Professor Ted Lowi, I asked him, “Is the faculty’s token conservative professor still here?” Without hesitating he said “Yes and no. Jeremy (Rabkin) is moving to George Mason University.”

The proof is undeniable. The left has proven its hostility to a diversity of ideas in the College of Arts & Sciences. No conservatives are allowed.

If the authors were serious scholars, they would have consulted primary resources such as the now available Soviet archives and declassified FBI files. These documents include the intercepted transmissions between Moscow and their spy chiefs and agents in the USA.  They would have discovered that Joe McCarthy was right on virtually every person he accused of undermining our government and institutions.

I was fortunate enough to have been shown some of these declassified FBI files by M. Stanton Evans [2] when he was researching his book Blacklisted by History, The Untold Story of Senator Joseph McCarthy and his Fight against America’s Enemies. In it is irrefutable proof that people like J. Robert Oppenheimer were identified by Communist leaders as party members and that Alger Hiss was a Soviet spy.

The authors should have done some serious research rather than ignore the tremendous loss of academic diversity of ideas that has transpired since the so called “McCarthy scare.” A little intellectual objectivity by these authors would have been appreciated.

James F. Davis is the president of Accuracy in Academia.

If you would like to comment on this article, e-mail mal.kline@academia.org [3].