Radio Free Europe and the Rhetoric of Liberation

Introduction

On February 28, 2014 President Barack Obama publicly addressed the military mobilization of Russian forces in the Crimean Peninsula for the first time in a White House press conference. “The Ukrainian people deserve the opportunity to determine their own future,” he declared, and without explicitly specifying actions the United States would or would not take, assured Americans and Ukrainians alike that the United States “stands for the sovereignty, territorial integrity, and democratic future of Ukraine.”[1] The press conference responded to the introduction of pro-Russian armed forces into the Crimean peninsula on February 26th. Throughout March and April, pro-Russian forces continued to push into Crimea. A referendum held on March 16th, declared to be a sham by most of the West, had passed with 97% in favor of joining Russia.

International attention focused on the media presence in the region after pro-Russian forces abducted Vice journalist Simon Ostrovsky. According to the 2015 Freedom House Press Freedom Index, while Ukraine is classified as “partly free,” Crimea in particular ranks as “not free” and one of the “worst of the worst” regions for press freedom.[2] One news site in particular, though, provided much of the news coverage reaching European and worldwide audiences throughout the year. Radio Svoboda—the Ukrainian branch of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty[3]— was one of the leading news organizations with daily reports on the crisis, particularly after the launch of its Crimea-specific website in March. Operating with thirty-three journalists on the ground in Kiev throughout 2014, the Radio Svoboda website received 2.8 million page views on February 20, 2014 alone, and 150 million views throughout March and April. In April of 2014, the Broadcasting Board of Governors, the US federal agency that oversees the operations of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty and by extension Radio Svoboda, awarded the station the David Burke Award for Distinguished Broadcasting.[4]

Established sixty years prior under the United States Central Intelligence Agency, Radio Free Europe had initially been a major component of the United States Cold War media campaigns by promoting anti-communist news reports in the USSR and Soviet satellite states. While the Broadcasting Board of Governors now controls the funding and direction of the institution instead of the CIA, the idea of a United States civilian international media operating in countries with limited freedom of the press continues to reach millions of people sixty years later.[5]

The current mission statement of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty is to “promote democratic values and institutions by reporting the news in countries where a free press is banned by the government or not fully established.”[6] While the Radio Free Europe of 2015 operates in an entirely different media landscape than it did in 1950, many of the challenges in reporting on the self-determination of other countries are very similar to those at its inception. In the first decade of broadcasting, these challenges rested on the term “liberation.” In the most literal sense, liberation is the freeing of someone or something from imprisonment or oppression. While the term was occasionally used to refer to direct military intervention by the United States to free the region of Soviet control, more often than not, it was used in an esoteric sense with continuously changing connotations and implications. In the past few decades, this term has largely fallen out of the public lexicon when addressing conflicts abroad, but it was the central preoccupation of most involved with the Radio Free Europe project in the early 1950s. At a time when the recent technological innovations of the radio allowed for rapid cross-border communication not seen before, RFE/RL broadcasts became an avenue for experimenting with the dissemination of strategic political rhetoric.

This paper examines the origins of Radio Free Europe to explore the transfer and representation of American foreign policy to the citizens of Soviet satellite countries through the media. With an emphasis on liberation, I look at policy formulation in Washington, DC, and how it was interpreted by the institution and by the journalists broadcasting for Radio Free Europe. Three tiers of communication form this institution: one between Washington and Radio Free Europe directors and executives, one between directors and the émigré journalists employed by the institution, and the third between the journalists and citizens of Central and Eastern Europe through broadcasts. This paper focuses on these communication channels, and how the involved parties interpreted the discussion of liberation and how that discussion evolved over time.

Many historians have written on the varying strategies of the United States towards the Soviet satellites in this time period. In Strategies of Containment, John Lewis Gaddis traces the administrations from Truman to Reagan’s approaches to the Soviet Union and the Eastern bloc. Other works, such as Anne Appelbaum’s Iron Curtain, a history of the makings of totalitarianism in the region post-World War II, discuss the presence of Radio Free Europe in the region as a facet of United States policy. There are a number of institutional histories of Radio Free Europe written by former executives and directors of the organization. Three books form the base of the historiography about the institution; Radio Free Europe and Radio Liberty: The CIA Years and Beyond by A. Ross Johnson, Broadcasting Freedom: The Cold War Triumph of Radio Free Europe and Radio Liberty by Arch Puddington, and Cold War Radio: The Dangerous History of American Broadcasting in Europe, 1950-1989 by Richard H. Cummings. While these texts explore the origins and structural specifics of the institution in much greater detail than this paper can, their discussions are somewhat narrow in regard to the relationship between Radio Free Europe policy and on-air broadcasts.

To bring together the challenges of the three channels of communication, I look at a combination of policy documents, broadcast transcripts, and internal correspondence between journalists and Radio Free Europe officials primarily from the Hoover Institution Radio Free Europe archives at Stanford University, as well as the digitized Woodrow Wilson Center Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty collection online. From the corporate records collection housed at the Hoover, I draw on budgets, employee instruction manuals, audience research reports, and numerous letters between the staff. Most instrumental to this project, though, was the Ferdinand Peroutka Papers—an entire collection on one of Radio Free Europe’s most prominent journalists. Peroutka, a Czechoslovak journalist who had been held by the Nazis throughout World War II and then immigrated to the United States after the communist coup in 1948, joined the Radio Free Europe team in 1951 as the Czechoslovak correspondent and began hosting the weekly Sunday Night Talks.[7] In the next two decades, Peroutka became the leading voice connected to Radio Free Czechoslovakia and one of the most well respected journalists and political pundits in the entire region. The personal collection is comprised of his letters to Radio Free Europe executives, newspaper articles written on him from both American and Czechoslovak sources, and transcripts of his weekly broadcasts. Peroutka provides the third layer in how policy was interpreted as it moved from United States presidents and their close strategists and advisors to the Radio Free Europe leadership, and from them to the individual journalists projecting these attitudes to the peoples of Central Europe through their broadcasts.

In this paper, I look at the roots of liberation ideology in the earliest years of Radio Free Europe and the political theories behind it in the era of George Kennan and the advent of the Eisenhower administration. From here, I examine the messy practice of promoting liberation on-air as RFE came to find its foothold after a few years before the shaking of destalinization and the Hungarian Revolution of 1956, a profound failure and serious controversy for the station’s liberation ideas. After 1956, the station lost some popularity because of its involvement in Hungary but also became less relevant as domestic presses gained more editorial freedom in the wake of destalinization. On the ground, Peroutka adapted the topics of his shows to fill a different niche for his home audience, and from above; directors in New York experimented with changing the policy guidelines for journalists, both believing the actions in their channels would most affect those of the other. In conclusion, I look to how the history of this institution can inform us about the relationship between self-determination, liberation, and American interests abroad, and how this relationship continues to be expressed across different media platforms.

Roots of Liberation

“This station daily pierces the iron curtain with truth, answering the lies of the Kremlin,” a forty-year old Ronald Reagan confidently proclaimed in a 1951 television Crusade for Freedom promotional video calling for public donations to Radio Free Europe.[8] Created during Reagan’s time as president of the Screen Actors’ Guild and FBI informant of the Hollywood Blacklist era, the commercials reached many across the country eager to do their part to fight the Kremlin. Among these viewers was a young Richard H. Cummings, future security director of Radio Free Europe and author of the book Cold War Radio. In the book, Cummings credits seeing these commercials in childhood as influencing his later decision to pursue a career at the organization.[9]

While the commercials called for donations to the pledge campaign, the allotted budget for Radio Free Europe ($8.7 million dollars in 1951, roughly equal to $60 million in today’s dollars[10]) was sufficient to cover operations. Rather, the public donations fit into a branding of the campaign as a collaborative, American undertaking. The previous year, just as the new broadcasting facility in Munich was beginning daily reports, President Dwight D. Eisenhower had introduced the Crusade and the station in a Labor Day Speech. In the 1950 speech, Eisenhower describes the “campaign sponsored by private American citizens to fight the big lie with the big truth.”[11] The following day, newspapers across the country published reports of excited citizens willing to join the effort and sign Eisenhower’s Freedom Scroll.[12] The speech and the Reagan commercials extolled the idea of individual American citizens working together for this new enterprise—an enterprise backed by a cut and dry paradigm: Kremlin equals lies; America equals truth.

While the Crusade for Freedom campaign was one of the first public solidifications of this attitude at the time, these ideas had been developing since the end of World War II. In 1946, American diplomat George Kennan sent the now famous “Long Telegram” back home to President Truman from his post in the USSR, with the warning that “world communism is like a malignant parasite which feeds only on diseased tissue.[13]” Kennan proclaims that the United States must lead the world in opposing the Soviets by ensuring the “health and vigor of our own society.[14]” At the time of his writing, the Soviet Red Army had “absorbed” Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania into the Soviet Union and was occupying the eight countries which came to be known as the “bloc:” East Germany, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Poland, Romania, Bulgaria, Albania, and Yugoslavia.[15] The fear that this “parasite” would continue to spread past this area preoccupied American politicians and diplomats. The following year, Kennan coined the term “containment”—the idea that, rather than directly combatting communism at any cost, the United States should focus on ensuring it did not spread. Containment, which came to be the governing Cold War ideology of the Truman administration, allowed for a range of responses that could shift depending on the area with which the United States determined to be of the most importance at the time.

Two years later, as Soviet control over the Central and Eastern European states had tightened, Kennan authored a memorandum on “Organizing Political Warfare” for the United States Policy Planning Committee and the National Security Council, introducing the idea of a “Liberation Committee.” The government-funded committee, he outlines, should be comprised of “trusted private American citizens” and should strive to “provide an inspiration for continuing popular resistance within the countries of the Soviet world; and to provide a potential nucleus for all-out liberation movements in the event of war.[16]” Throughout the memorandum, he describes other mechanisms for promoting anti-communism groups and subversive elements within the Soviet-controlled countries, continuously invoking “American tradition” as the basis for the plans. The private-public enterprise of the liberation committee, for example, follows the “traditional American form: organized public support of resistance to tyranny in foreign countries.[17]” Through this reasoning, liberating the peoples of the Soviet satellite states continues a tradition of opposing tyranny abroad, rather than introducing a particularly new or revolutionary concept. This rhetorical strategy, likely employed to garner the necessary administrative and domestic support for the plan, was not without faults though; as the people the plan advocated liberating also came to believe in the American “tradition of liberation.”

The subject of the memo has added significance, as George Kennan is most famously associated with the policy of containment, not liberation. While Kennan strongly opposed the creation of any definitive foreign policy statement stemming from his views, and so this document may not be the most representative of his legacy, it demonstrates the pervasiveness of the liberation conversation at this time.[18] The following year, the National Committee for Free Europe (later renamed the Free Europe Committee) was created. While the outlines for the committee do not follow Kennan’s suggestions exactly, they do seem to express many similar sentiments. The Committee, in its original mission, aims to aid those anti-communist and anti-fascist leaders in useful occupations that have left their home countries for political reasons.[19] Specifically, the committee aims to “engage in efforts by radio, press, and other means to keep alive among their citizens in Europe the ideals of individual and national freedom.[20]” After the formation of the committee itself, members turned to planning for the broadcasting station, and in particular, which émigrés and groups would be selected to represent what would then become Radio Free Europe. After a few brief months of broadcasting out of New York, a period former Radio Free Europe director A. Ross Johnson refers to as the “poison factory” because of the incredibly negative nature of the early broadcasts, the Committee purchased the Munich facility and rebranded as a “surrogate broadcasting” station.[21] Compared to the hands-on effort of CIA agents and American directors in New York, “surrogate broadcasting” meant that the American government provided the infrastructure and air space (and quite a bit more, especially in terms of suggested themes), but the émigré journalists did their reporting and broadcasting themselves.  In 1951, around the same time as the airing of the Reagan commercials in homes across the country, the Office of Policy Coordination described Radio Free Europe’s Soviet-specific sister project, Radio Liberty, as a “program of Russians speaking to Russians, not the U.S. government speaking to the Russians.[22]

In Strategies of Containment, John Lewis Gaddis argues that, under Truman and Kennan, “process triumphed over policy” through their focus on restraining Soviet economic and military strength without much regard for long-term policy or goals.[23] When President Dwight Eisenhower took office in 1951, though, there was an increased focus on ideology in foreign policy development, particularly under the influence of Secretary of State John Foster Dulles and his brother, CIA director Allen Dulles. One of Eisenhower’s first foreign policy acts was Operation Solarium—a program designed to study three potential courses of action that the administration could consider adopting regarding Eastern Europe: continuing containment, deterrence, and lastly, liberation. According to Gaddis, while the official, public strategy remained containment; Eisenhower’s “New Look” foreign policy incorporated all three of these courses. It is the third that is particularly interesting to this study of Radio Free Europe, as it encompassed “political, psychological, economic, and cover means to ‘roll back’ Soviet influence areas.[24]” The idea of psychological warfare, while not novel to this time period, did develop in a new sense under Eisenhower and the influence of the Dulles brothers. “The most conspicuous example of ‘psychological warfare’,” Gaddis writes, is “Dulles’ ‘liberation’ strategy for Eastern Europe.[25]” This strategy, though, was not clearly defined or outlined anywhere and, some argue it did not actually exist to the degree Gaddis suggests.

A. Ross Johnson writes in his book that, “liberation was a long-term aspiration, never a policy that guided RFE broadcasts… ‘liberation’ was American political rhetoric, never U.S. foreign policy.[26]” Throughout the book, Johnson continuously reaffirms this claim—especially when it later comes to the 1956 Hungarian Revolution—which clearly contradicts Gaddis’s theory of Eisenhower embracing liberation aspects after Operation Solarium. As a former RFE director, Johnson may have a stake in preventing unnecessary responsibility from being placed on the shoulders of Radio Free Europe. Yet a 1954 policy document lists one of the primary objectives of the institution “to give the people of the captive countries reason to hope for liberation.[27]” While A. Ross Johnson may argue that this was pure rhetoric and that giving people a “reason to hope” does not constitute actual policy handed down from the administration, the journalists tasked with transmitting these messages on air may not have interpreted them in that way, especially formal policy statements like the one from 1954.

Ferdinand Peroutka, as expressed in his correspondence with RFE officials, appeared to believe promoting liberation was an official stance of the institution. In a 1952 letter to Radio Free Europe chief Mr. Galantiere, Peroutka outlines what he sees as the station’s tasks. “Answer the question of arming, the question of appeasement, and of the liberation of satellites sustained by the common will of the American people.[28]” The questions are repeated throughout Peroutka’s correspondence with Radio Free Europe officials and seem to be a point of internal conflict regarding his role in translating the directives of the United States to the people of Czechoslovakia. In 1954, he writes again to Mr. Galantiere; “95% of the Czechoslovak population believed, up to the present, in a liberation continued but by war.[29]” Johnson’s questioning of whether or not liberation was official policy seems much less important when examined with this in mind: if it was believed to be actual policy by those listening to Radio Free Europe and Radio Liberty, it is not any different in impact than had it been official policy.

Liberation In Messy Practice

The 1953 report of the death of Soviet leader Joseph Stalin was heralded as one of Radio Free Europe’s most successful broadcasts at the time—they broke the news more than six hours earlier than the communist state news.[30] The ideological changes after his death, in particular following Nikita Khrushchev’s 1956 denunciation of  Stalin’s crimes and the overall harshness of the regime, led to a period of “thaw” including the easing of restrictions of domestic press within satellite countries. Media sources within these countries began to include more local news, a wider array of voices, and less censorship by the communist administration. For Radio Free Europe, this meant that much of their daily broadcasting became less unique and less relevant, as sources closer to the listeners were able to break the same stories.

In 1955, Peroutka prepared a summary for Radio Free Europe in the wake of a Four Powers meeting. The document details the differing attitudes towards liberation of Western officials he had encountered. He writes that, from an American perspective, any “liberation policy” is no longer different from the policy of containment. “Still, for psychological reasons,” he advises, “it is better to refer to the containment policy as liberation policy.[31]” While official policy of liberation may no longer exist, the support for continuing to refer to it would come from Radio Free Europe. Communication of this policy by Peroutka and his colleagues to listeners, this report suggested, was more important than accurate transmission of policy from the United States government to the journalists.

Peroutka then goes on to discuss what he believes is a more promising term—“self-liberation.” Increasing in popularity and use right around this time, especially by Western politicians, self-liberation is perhaps even more abstract of a term than liberation. “Self-liberation is not possible, but self-liberating movements of the masses behind the Iron Curtain are.” This, of course, has significant challenges as self- is predicated on the idea of the internal mobilization and lack of external control and can therefore not be adopted as any “official policy” by the United States. The term is particularly useful in that it does not imply commitment to any anti-administration groups or actions within the Soviet satellite states. Peroutka ends the memo with the two ideas he believes are “certain” at this time: first, that “it is not possible to promise liberation behind the Iron Curtain” but also that, “the hope of liberation can absolutely not be abandoned within the Eastern bloc or else the millions will assimilate into the monolith.[32]” Reckoning these two goals with one another is essentially impossible, which he acknowledges, but he does provide recommendations for economic sanctions and political moves the United States could take to demonstrate a dedication to opposing the communist regime and encouraging internal opposition movements within Central and Eastern Europe. These sanctions, writes Peroutka, send a clear and reassuring message to those opposing the regimes domestically but do not carry the weight or expectation of military assistance or more forceful intervention.

At this same time, questions of station credibility often tied to the “liberation” attitude troubled many within the institution. In yearly Audience Research Reports, RFE and RL representatives would meet with groups of station listeners from the different broadcast countries who for specific reasons were able to travel to West Germany. While the institution acknowledges that this was not exactly the most representative sample of the actual listener composition, comparing the reports from year to year does create a picture of how attitudes towards the station formed over the years of its broadcasting. On the whole, these reports are overwhelmingly positive about Radio Free Europe’s programming and suggest high levels of trust in the reporters by listeners. The 1955 Report, though, while still complimentary, does include a few more serious concerns than seen in earlier years. Many respondents noted that, more than occasionally, RFE broadcasts turned out to be false.[33]

Ferdinand Peroutka also addresses the concern in this same year. In one 1955 letter, Peroutka informs the New York bureau of his correspondence with friends back in Prague who have written to him warning that “RFE is losing the confidence of our people because of the false reports it broadcasts.[34]” 1955 was characterized by attempts at smoothing out many of the wrinkles still in the broadcasting system, wrinkles which would run much deeper the following year as these two issues—the extent to which liberation would be promoted on-air and how the truth of the broadcasts were verified—came to head the following year in the Hungarian Revolution.

After Nikita Khrushcev’s “Secret Speech,” in which he denounced the many crimes of Stalin, was released to the press, countries across the region underwent leadership changes and reforms to rid much of the heavily entrenched Stalinism. In 1956, student protests in Budapest blossomed into a national uprising against Soviet control of the country and in support of Prime Minister Imre Nagy, who days earlier had announced Hungary’s withdrawal from the Warsaw Pact. On November 4th, Soviet forces entered the country with tanks to crush the rebellion and kidnap Nagy to the Soviet Union. Roughly twenty-five hundred Hungarians were killed in the process.[35] That same day, as Soviet tanks were crossing the Hungarian border, a Radio Free Europe on-air press review highlighted an article from the London Observer, which had confidently declared “the pressure upon the government of the U.S. to send military help to the freedom fighters will become irresistible.[36]” After quoting this piece, the Hungarian broadcaster added, “in the Western capitals a practical manifestation of Western sympathy is expected at any hour.” This broadcast has since been accused by many of providing misleading information suggesting United States support for resistance fighters. After the news spread of how bloody the crushing of Budapest by the Soviet troops had been, Radio Free Europe came under considerable fire for their role.

To this day, the 1956 broadcasts remain one of the most significant controversies the institution has faced. In fact, A. Ross Johnson’s book began as the 2006 article “Setting the Record Straight: Role of Radio Free Europe in the Hungarian Revolution of 1956,” which seeks to defend the institution against criticism that has continued well into the present day.[37] Much of his article is in response to Charles Gati’s book Failed Illusions, a portion of which was published in The New York Times in October of 2006, including the claim that “RFE kept encouraging its Hungarian listeners to keep fighting for all they sought and more—whether these goals were realistic or not.[38]” Anne Appelbaum, in her 2008 book Iron Curtain: The Crushing of Eastern Europe, is even more critical of RFE’s Hungarian broadcasts and their representation of American political interests:

The Hungarian service of Radio Free Europe, based in Munich and staffed by angry émigrés, egged on the revolutionaries. But despite his earlier calls for the ‘rollback’ of communism and the ‘liberation’ of Eastern Europe, the hawkish American secretary of state, John Foster Dulles, could do no better than send the Soviet leaders a message: “We do not see these states [Hungary and Poland] as potential military allies.[39]

In the immediate aftermath, the United States government ordered multiple official investigations into the broadcasts in question. A preliminary memorandum from the Free Europe Committee dated November 12th opens with the following statement: “the degree to which the West…encourages the captive peoples to resist or change the present regimes whilst at the same time…is not willing or able to assist them in a situation like that in Hungary, presents serious questions which ought to be realistically thought through.[40]” This is one of the most direct challenges to the institution’s practices from an internal source at this point in time, yet the suggestion for this to be “realistically thought through” is not a punitive condemnation, considering the problematic nature of encouraging resistance but not being willing to assist when that resistance comes to head. Two weeks later, the CIA prepared its official review of the situation, which reached two primary conclusions. “RFE broadcasts were generally consistent with U.S. policy toward the Satellites,” the report states, and “RFE did not incite the Hungarian people to revolution.[41]” While this decisive verdict may have been in line with policy of the time, it does seem to prematurely end the conversation and questions posed by the FEC memorandum and—much more strongly—by external critics of RFE concerned with its practices.

After the revolution and crushing, Ferdinand Peroutka addressed the matter in his November 17, 1956 Sunday Night Talk. In one of his most declarative and forthright statements, and much more directly than the CIA or RFE leadership, he stated: “We here are a broadcasting station—not a liberation army.[42]” He then moved on to more optimistic tones quickly, though: the Hungarian Revolution is much broader than the defeat; the very existence of the uprising signaled the growth of democracy behind the Iron Curtain.[43]

At this time, Radio Free Europe’s main challenge was the need to offer something different than the state news sources while simultaneously communicating to listeners that RFE’s aim was not liberation through direct intervention. While perhaps the institution was in support of self-liberation (discussion on this term became more mixed after the Hungary broadcasts and the thaw), it was certainly not—as Peroutka stated—a liberation army. Its livelihood rested on journalists like Peroutka convincing the people of Eastern Europe of this without making the impression that the Americans were turning their backs on them. In the following years, Ferdinand Peroutka’s broadcasts significantly shifted their scope and focus to encompass more international news and fewer domestic politics and affairs.

Soft Liberation: A Journalist Adapts

“Eleven years is a long time; not many things remained in their place,” Peroutka writes in his 1961 report to the Radio Free Europe board of directors entitled “The Political Situation.[44]” “RFE has a cleverer competitor now,” he writes of the evolution of the Communist state radio post-Stalin, noting the increased scope of their broadcasting and higher approval by citizens in the satellite states. Specifically in the wake of the Hungarian Revolution, and a perceived attitude of “passivity” by the Americans, the opinion of RFE has dropped in the satellite states. “The hope that was so lively when RFE was beginning and so closely allied to faith in the West’s superior might, is fading.[45]” According to Peroutka, discerning what the United States’ goals and tactics were towards the region at this point was “more difficult than it used to be to stimulate hopes of a not too distant liberation.[46]” This concern seems to influence the uncertainties he has of Radio Free Europe’s role as much as, if not more than, the death of Stalin. Not only was Radio Free Europe daily news less novel when it also came from stations at home, but the conclusive American rhetoric Peroutka used for inspiration had dwindled.

An undated, unsigned report in Peroutka’s personal correspondence file from around this time makes explicit policy suggestions for Radio Free Europe in the wake of destalinization.[47] The memo discusses how RFE’s ability to report scandals that listeners were unaware of due to the censorship of the domestic press led to its early popularity, but now “the position is reversed: now RFE learns about matters from domestic sources.[48]” The report suggests new programs such as “Read the NY Times with Us,” which would bring news from America and around the world to listeners in Central and Eastern Europe.[49] These programs would also be more beneficial from the station’s perspective, as “not a word of propaganda would have to be added…the listener would gradually be shifting onto a different level.[50]” Radio Free Europe should pursue international and cultural reporting, the report concludes, if it wishes to retain listeners who are receiving more and more of their news from local sources.

As early as 1957, Peroutka began adjusting the topics of his shows in line with the suggestions in this report. On April 6th of that year, he opened his broadcast with a description of the view of Carnegie Hall from his New York office and broadened that to a more general discussion of the merits of the American tax system.[51] On April 20th, his broadcast focused on civil rights in the United States, comparing his status in Czechoslovakia as much less than that of African-Americans. (“The Negro in America enjoys every civic right,” he announces, in a rather out-of-touch declaration).[52] From 1961 through 1965, though, his Sunday Night Talks centered on the struggle for independence in Algeria and Laos, American involvement in Vietnam, and the Cultural Revolution in China. Much less often came discussion of Czechoslovak news and politics, and entirely absent were the rallying cries to rise up against the administration so common in his early years on the air.

This international focus seems to support the propositions set forward in the undated document about a broadening focus on international events to support Radio Free Europe’s relevance. But also, focusing on other countries—even ones going through their own liberation struggles—temporarily removed the focus from liberation within Eastern Europe. Shifting to international stories proved beneficial not only because it provided listeners with new information, but also because it removed some of the pressure of reporting on internal issues, especially in the wake of the Hungarian Revolution. In the next two decades, as those in Washington, DC were forced to examine many of the operational practices Ferdinand Peroutka had attempted to answer in his work for them years earlier, Peroutka himself left the station to author five books, including The Democratic Manifesto (his ideological response to The Communist Manifesto) before his death in 1978 in New York.

Soft Liberation: The Institution Adapts

Throughout the 1960s, as seeming evidence of some insecurity about the future of the institution in a changing domestic political environment, the United States government ordered more comprehensive studies of Radio Free Europe’s operations. As public opinion moved away from the antagonistic attitude towards the Soviet Union of the 1950s, many questioned what role Radio Free Europe would fill in the long-term future. United States foreign policy was quite different by the 1960s as it had been at the conception of Radio Free Europe in 1949. In 1963, John F. Kennedy used the term “détente” for the first time to describe the relaxing of tensions between the Soviet Union and the United States.[53] More formally adopted by President Richard Nixon and Secretary of State Henry Kissinger in the following years, the détente period loosely refers to the years between 1963 and 1979 in which the Soviet Union and the United States increasingly negotiated with one another.[54] While John Lewis Gaddis argues that détente was not a substantively different goal then containment, as both aimed to alter Soviet behavior, this new strategy did encourage negotiations despite ideological differences.[55]

The first of these reports was authorized in 1960, while the Cold War was considered quite “hot,” and was tasked to the President’s Committee on Information Activities Abroad, referred to as the Sprague Committee after Chairman Mansfield Sprague. Overall, the report stated, the institution has been slow to adapt to the changes in the Soviet world, and much more frequent reexaminations of its progress was needed to ensure it keeps up with political and technological advances.[56] It also highlighted the “dependence on refugee or émigré script writers and announcers who have had difficulty adjusting their personal aspirations and resentments to our broadcast policy.[57]” The report concluded with hope for the future, with an official recommendation in support of continued government funding of the institution, as long as it is accompanied by an increased frequency of performance reviews.

In the years following this report, domestic support for sweeping anti-communist rhetoric and policies by the government dwindled in large part due to the Vietnam War and revelations of CIA funding for the National Students Association and other organizations abroad. As early as 1964, the book The Invisible Government discussed Radio Free Europe and Radio Liberty in its chapter entitled “Black Radio.” However, it was three more years before the CIA connection was revealed by other media sources and, eventually, confirmed by a politician.[58] On January 21, 1967 Senator Clifford Case from New Jersey delivered a speech to congress publicly discussing the funding of RFE/RL.[59] In this speech, he cited earlier statements from Lyndon B. Johnson that “no federal agency shall provide covert financial assistance or support, direct or indirect, to any of the nation’s educational or voluntary organizations” as support for the separation of the CIA and Radio Free Europe.[60]

Amidst growing discussion over the ethical implications of the funding for the stations later that year, another report—authored by the Radio Study Group this time—was issued. It echoed many of the same sentiments as the Sprague Committee report had seven years previously, but pushed concerns about the association with the CIA further. In its policy suggestions, the report states “it will not be feasible to deny government support of the radios, and we propose that such support without identifying CIA explicitly as the source.” It is clear that at this point, the group was aware of the negative public opinion implications of disclosing the CIA connection. The stations should not be regarded as permanent, it states, but they are “not incompatible with a policy of bridge-building.[61]”  Despite its discussion of the potential pitfalls in the government-funding model, the report ultimately advises that it does not see Radio Free Europe or Radio Liberty able to continue operations without this government support. “It will not be feasible to deny government support of the radios, and we propose that such support (without identifying CIA explicitly as the source) continues,” the report ends.[62]

In December of 1967, Director of Central Intelligence Richard Helms approved “surge funding” (increased support) for Radio Free Europe and Radio Liberty through 1969.[63] In the next two years, he predicted, the funding structure would likely become a bigger point of contention in the political arena, and the surge funding would ensure that Radio Free Europe and Radio Liberty could continue to operate through 1968 midterm elections. Funding was extended in 1969 though, in an effort to leave the decision up to the next presidential administration.

Shortly after taking office in 1971, Richard Nixon signed a proposal by the Office of Management and Budget that recommended eliminating Radio Liberty’s funding altogether, and maintaining only a very small budget for reduced Radio Free Europe operations. Particularly interesting is the reasoning in the report to support the decision; that the institution “no longer stresses the need to liberate the Soviet Union from communism.[64]” According to A. Ross Johnson, this characterization of the Radio’s role was indicative of a “fundamental misunderstanding” of the roles of RFE and RL by a new Budget Office unfamiliar with its workings.[65] Perhaps this document is an anomaly, and there was some misunderstanding by the office. Still though, the idea that funding could be cut because the radio is failing to stress liberation enough suggests that, as late as 1971, liberation was a worthy goal and an assumed function of the radio to at least some in the Nixon administration.

After outrage within Radio Liberty and Radio Free Europe over the cuts, President Nixon agreed to reconsider his position and took the debate to Congress. On June 30, 1971, after days of debate on the floor, Congress passed a resolution to end CIA direct assistance for Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty. The following day, the CIA issued its official declaration, stating that it would cease all funding and other forms of support to both stations effective immediately.[66] In March of the following year, Nixon signed Senate Bill S-18, which designated the State Department the agency now responsible for all of the activities of RFE/RL.[67] The extent to which this change actually altered day-to-day operations of the institution is debatable, but similar to the debate over the use of liberation, the rhetoric and image purported by the decision proved as important to its continued existence as actual policy.

Internally, Radio Free Europe experimented with its own image modification strategies. The years following these reports, coinciding with a somewhat thawed relationship between the United States and the Soviet Union, saw increased autonomy of journalists working with Radio Free Europe and Radio Liberty. This attitude was short-lived, though, as a series of Russian broadcasts believed to be anti-Semitic and anti-American in 1975 and 1976 led to a reexamining of the recent changes in employee policies. An updated policy manual had been released in 1974, and had relaxed much of the language about promoting western-style democracy through radio programming. In response to the outcry, Radio Free Europe Vice President Walter Scott created a side-by-side comparison of the 1971 and 1974 official program policy guidelines. The 1974 policy manual, he writes in the attached letter to director Sig Mikelson, “played a role in triggering the unprecedented and disruptive ferment which has taken place in the Russian service.[68]” Some journalists, Scott argues, took the manual’s relaxed language as a sign of the “weakening of American management’s positions as to the exercise of control over the basic thrust of programming and the exposition of democratic principles.” In the document following the letter, he highlights the key areas in the 1974 guidelines and places them next to their more pro-American, pro-democracy aims in the 1971 manual. For example, the “Purpose” section in 1971 read that RFE and RL were “dedicated to the task of helping citizens of the USSR in their efforts to achieve freedom from dictatorial rule,” whereas the 1974 “Purpose” section read that the institution was a “professional medium committed to the principle of free information as embodied in the United Charter and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.[69]” The emphases of these statements (freedom from dictatorial rule to free information) are clearly different from one another, and the international focus of the 1974 manual is noteworthy in its continuation towards an international focus to shift the burden of responsibility away from the United States.

In the Broadcasting Objectives section, an entire paragraph of the 1971version describes the “Ultimate Goal” as seeing “all the people’s of the USSR acquire the opportunity to live in freedom with truly democratic political institutions.” While the 1974 manual does include a Broadcasting Objectives section that echoes some of the other goals present in 1971—the broader objective of the dissemination of free information, for example—the “Ultimate Goal” paragraph is removed.[70] Scott created this document, he explained, to guide the creation of the new policy guidelines and a manual that would help avoid broadcasts of the sort that provoked this discussion. The creation process of the next round of policy guidelines lasted for many more years than perhaps Scott expected: a preliminary guide was released in 1982, but it was not until 1987 that the directors, government officials, and journalists finally agreed upon a final set of revised program policy guidelines.

The dozens of drafts and letters exchanged about these new guidelines sum up some of the most pressing questions Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty had faced since its inception thirty years earlier—what languages should they broadcast in? Is “self-determination” an acceptable term to continue to use? By the time that this new manual was released, the geopolitical landscape had again entirely changed. The 1987 Professional Code opens with the following statement: “The essence of RFE/RL’s mission is the practice of independent, professional, and responsible broadcast journalism in order to provide uncensored news.[71]” By 1987, the tone is much closer to the 1974 international focus on responsible journalism as opposed to adamant support of democracy in undemocratic regimes. While the concerns Scott notes in his 1976 letter and report may have fizzled a decade later, the extensive discussions they prompted about journalist autonomy and the rhetoric of self-determination and autonomy demonstrate the continued challenges remaining since the drafting of the first policy documents in 1950.

Conclusion

Three years later, RFE/RL would contribute extensive—yet not always factually accurate—reporting on the fall of the Soviet Union and the democratic revolutions across the region. Most famously, a Radio Free Czechoslovakia broadcast during the first days of the November 1989 protests in Prague reported that state police had killed a student protester; later proved to be completely false. While the misstep raised similar concerns to the 1956 Hungarian broadcasts, potential controversy over the broadcast was overshadowed by the success of the demonstrations, and the sheer enormity of political overhaul at this time period. After the fall of the Soviet Union, the entire foundation of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty needed to be reexamined. Although some bureaus had begun to be established outside of Europe at this point, all of the journalists and infrastructure was geared towards Central and Eastern Europe. Since 1989 though, coverage has expanded to more than fifty countries “struggling to overcome autocratic institutions, violations of human rights, centralized economics, ethnic and religious hostilities, regional conflicts, and controlled media,[72]” and the headquarters have since moved from Munich to Prague. The structure of the institution also changed dramatically in 1994 when President Bill Clinton ended State Department funding and control. To replace it, he created the Broadcasting Board of Governors, a bi-partisan agency that oversees RFE/RL, as well as other American radio operations, and receives funding from Congress each year.[73]

With the exception of the crisis in Ukraine this past year, European coverage has diminished considerably since the mid 1990s, with an increased focus on the Middle East.

RFE/RL now operates “Under the Black Flag,” a blog on their website which tracks the Islamic State (IS) in Syria and Iraq.[74] Many stories in this collection of reports focus on those leaving their home countries of the former Soviet Union to join IS forces in Iraq and Syria. Bill Clinton’s decision to detach the institution from the State Department was designed to depoliticize RFE/RL. The stories published today, while always political because of the conflict areas they focus on, have a more detached, objective nature than the calls-to-action Peroutka broadcasted in his early reports. Perhaps the largest shift for the continued operations of RFE/RL, though, has been the decline of the radio in general and the advent of digital social media. The United States’ tradition of free press—the same tradition heralded as reason for establishing this institution—has always been ideologically at odds with the idea of a state-controlled media. The pluralistic, participatory media of today makes the very idea of a state agency controlling a media outlet—particularly one that yields considerable political and military power at home and abroad—seem archaic. However, the State Department’s current efforts to combat IS on social media seem to have adopted practices from the earliest days of Radio Free Europe.

In 2014, the Center for Strategic Counterterrorism, a division of the US State Department, launched the social media campaign Think Again Turn Away on Twitter, Tumblr, Facebook, and YouTube.[75] Through blurbs of 140 characters or less, @ThinkAgainTurnAway aims to sway those on Twitter—primarily teenage boys in the Middle East—on the fence about joining Islamic organizations such as IS. Extremist Islamic terrorist groups are increasingly relying on social media to recruit new members, and maintain active presences themselves, and if the United States does wish to enter this ideological battle, social media is an important arena. It is not apparent that the State Department is entering this arena in the most productive way, though. The account has been highly criticized for its practice of responding directly to the tweets of IS members and supporters, therefore disseminating their message to a wider audience. As Director of the international terrorism research center SITE Intelligence Group Rita Katz writes in her scathing review of the program “The State Department’s Twitter War with ISIS is Embarrassing,” the engagement has often been tactless on the part of the State Department—in particular she cites a conversation the account entered into with one former ISIS member about Abu Ghraib, not exactly a convincing argument for American moral supremacy.[76]

Recent tweets from the department focus on petty rumors about individual leaders within IS in a way reminiscent of the early “poison factory” years at Radio Free Europe[77]: “ISIS leader Abu Waheeb ‘appeared on many occasions wearing Adidas or Nike sneakers,’ even as ISIS bans Nike apparel.” In another recent post, the account responds to a pro-IS photo collage posted by an Iraqi account that has now been removed with the following messages:[78] “Photos are old. Why does ISIS need to resort to recycling state propaganda photos? Must not perform enough good deeds.”

While most of the tweets denounce the organization for their acts of mass violence, the tweets like those above, which seem designed solely to provoke rather than actually provide meaningful information to the public, do not reflect well on the professionalism of the State Department. The ideology behind the account’s existence, that the United States has an obligation to confront the messages of our “enemies” even if the messages are not initially aimed at us, recalls early Radio Free Europe rhetoric about “answering the lies of the Kremlin.” An occasionally fumbling United States media campaign attempting to “answer the lies” of IS seems to be the 2015 Radio Free Europe. And with that connection come the same questions and dangers as those of the 1950s. Is it the role of the State Department to address the peoples the US determines are “victims” of an enemy regime or organization? Do tweets necessitate engagement and support? Could tweets crafted by the State Department imply a commitment to fighting IS that may not actually exist?

In discussing Radio Free Europe with people, primarily those alive in the 1950s and 1960s, I am struck by how it is so often considered a relic of the American Cold War propaganda machine and not something with a visible presence today. Beyond its continuous operations out of Prague and coverage of events around the world, it has also laid blueprints for state-level use of media for other ventures. The Think Again Turn Away campaign is asking their journalists and policy makers to strive for the similarly impossible goals Peroutka outlined sixty years ago: America must show those in foreign countries that there is another way—a better, more democratic way—than what they are being told, yet we cannot, and should not, always pledge to these actions. In 1956, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty realized the dangers and impossibility of their original goals, and spent the next three decades attempting to continue “the fight” through means less destructive to the American image abroad. While the individual journalists and policy directors within the institution may have successfully worked towards figuring this out internally, as a country, we continue to search for ways to responsibly exercise soft power abroad.

 

Stephanie Thornton graduated from the University of California, Berkeley in 2015.


 

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Endnotes

[1] “Transcript of Obama’s Remarks on Ukraine,” The New York Times, February 28, 2014.

[2] “RFE/RL’s Ukrainian Service,” Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty. <http://www.rferl.org/info/ukrainian/197.html.>

[3] A note on naming: Radio Free Europe and Radio Liberty, while both conceived under the Free Europe Committee, were separate organizations until 1976 although shared some governance and guidelines. Established three years after Radio Free Europe, Radio Liberty focused was primarily concentrated in the Soviet Union and broadcasting in Russian, while Radio Free Europe covered the other countries of the region. This paper will primarily refer to Radio Free Europe (RFE), although does include some discussion of Radio Liberty (RL) in the years before 1976. RFE/RL will be used to refer to the institution post-1976.

[4] “RFE/RL’s Ukrainian Service,” Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty. <http://www.rferl.org/info/ukrainian/197.html.>

[5] “Frequently Asked Questions,” Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty. <http://www.rferl.org/info/faq/777.html#section5.>

[6] “Mission Statement,” Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty. http://www.rferl.org/info/mission/169.html.

[7] “Ferdinand Peroutka,” Free Europe Committee News Bulletin, June 1960, Ferdinand Peroutka Papers, 1935-1978. Collection 84052, Hoover Institution Archives.

[8] “Crusade for Freedom Commercial Ronald Reagan,” 1951, Published April 5, 2012. <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qayE8Rhwc_8.> Accessed January 26, 2015.

[9] Richard H. Cummings, Cold War Radio: The Dangerous History of American Broadcasting in Europe, 1950-1989 (Jefferson: McFarland Publishing, 2009), 1.  

[10] “US Government Monies Provided to Radio Free Europe and Radio Liberty,” Report to the Committee on Foreign Relations United States Senate, May 1972, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty Corporate Records. Collection 2000C71, Hoover Institution Archives.

[11] Dwight Eisenhower “Crusade for Freedom Speech,” September 4, 1950, Denver, Pre-Presidential Speeches Dwight D. Eisenhower Presidential Library Archives. <http://www.eisenhower.archives.gov/index.html.>

[12] Richard Cummings, “Labor Day, Crusade for Freedom, and Radio Free Europe,” Cold War Radio Broadcasting, August 31, 2012.  <http://coldwarradios.blogspot.com/2012/08/labor-day-crusade-for-freedom-and-radio.html.>

[13] George Kennan, “Long Telegram,” February 22, 1946, National Security Archive: George Washington University. <http://nsarchive.gwu.edu/coldwar/documents/episode-1/kennan.htm.>

[14] George Kennan, “Long Telegram.”

[15] Anne Appelbaum, Iron Curtain: The Crushing of Eastern Europe 1944-1956 (New York: Anchor Books, 2012).

[16] George Kennan “Organizing Political Warfare,” April 30, 1948, Woodrow Wilson Center Digital Archives. <http://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/114320.>

[17] George Kennan, “Organizing Political Warfare.”

[18] John Lewis Gaddis, Strategies of Containment, (New York: Oxford University Press, 1982). 95.

Kennan’s reluctance to a definitive policy statement is somewhat “ironic” as NSC-68 was written almost immediately after his resignation and was pretty much exactly that.

[19] “Understanding between the Office of Policy Coordination and National Committee for Free Europe,” October 4, 1949, Woodrow Wilson Center Digital Archives. <http://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/114332.>

[20] Ibid.

[21] A. Ross Johnson, Radio Free Europe and Radio Liberty: The CIA Years and Beyond (Washington, D.C.: Woodrow Wilson Center Press, 2010), 40.

[22] “Radio Liberty Objectives Outlined,” August 25, 1951, Office of Policy Coordination, Woodrow Wilson Center Digital Archives.

While the document particularly discusses Radio Liberty and operations in Russian, the attitude expressed in it is evident of an overall shift away from the “poison factory” model.

[23] John Lewis Gaddis, Strategies of Containment, 127.

[24] John Lewis Gaddis, Strategies of Containment, 144.

[25] Ibid,153.

[26] A. Ross Johnson, Radio Free Europe and Radio Liberty: The CIA Years and Beyond, 54.

[27] “United States Government Policy for Radio Free Europe and Radio Liberty,” July 22, 1954.

[28] Ferdinand Peroutka letter to Mr. Galantiere, November 20, 1952, Ferdinand Peroutka Papers, 1935-1978. Collection 84052, Hoover Institution Archives.

[29]Ferdinand Peroutka letter to Mr. Galantiere, January 11, 1954, Ferdinand Peroutka Papers, 1935-1978. Collection 84052, Hoover Institution Archives.

[30] “Czechoslovakia Audience Response to Western Broadcasts and Leaflets, 1954-1955,” Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty Corporate Records. Collection 2000C71, Hoover Institution Archives.

[31] Ferdinand Peroutka, “Summary of Liberation,” June 1955, Ferdinand Peroutka Papers, 1935-1978. Collection 84052, Hoover Institution Archives, 1-2.

[32] “Summary of Liberation,” Ferdinand Peroutka Papers, 7.

[33] “Audience Research Report: 1955-1956,” Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty Corporate Records. Collection 2000C71, Hoover Institution Archives.

[34] Ferdinand Peroutka letter to Mr. Egan, July 15, 1955, Ferdinand Peroutka Papers, 1935-1978. Collection 84052, Hoover Institution Archives.

[35] Anne Appelbaum, Iron Curtain: The Crushing of Eastern Europe, 450.

[36] A. Ross Johnson “Setting the Record Straight.” December 2006. Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, 11.

[37] A. Ross Johnson, “Setting the Record Straight.”

[38] Charles Gati, “Failed Illusions,” The New York Times, October 29, 2006.

[39] Anne Appelbaum, Iron Curtain: The Crushing of Eastern Europe, 457.

[40] “Rethinking the Role of the Free Europe Committee,” November 12, 1956, Wilson Center Digital Archives. <http://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/114744.>

[41] “Review of RFE Hungarian Broadcasts,” November 26, 1956, Wilson Center Digital Archives. <http://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/114782.>

[42] Ferdinand Peroutka “Weekly Commentary,” Radio Free Czechoslovakia, November 17, 1956, Ferdinand Peroutka Papers, 1935-1978. Collection 84052, Hoover Institution Archives, 1.

[43] Ibid, 3.

[44] Ferdinand Peroutka, “The Political Situation,” April 17, 1961, Ferdinand Peroutka Papers, 1935-1978. Collection 84052, Hoover Institution Archives, 1.

[45] Ibid, 3.

[46] Ibid, 5.

[47] I came across this document in the Peroutka Papers Collection at the Hoover Institute in a file with the 1961 Political Situation Report. While it seems probable that Peroutka authored it at well, it is written with a seeming detached tone towards the actual broadcasts that I would assume it is written by an outside consultant. It is clearly written post-1956 as it references the Hungarian broadcasts, and I would estimate it to be written close to 1961 because of how similar the suggestions and questions are to Peroutka’s in “The Political Situation.”

[48] Undated, unsigned document. Ferdinand Peroutka Papers, 1935-1978. Collection 84052, Hoover Institution Archives.

[49] Ibid, 12.

[50] Ibid, 13.

[51] Ferdinand Peroutka, “Ferdinand Peroutka’s Talk,” April 6, 1957 Radio Broadcast, Ferdinand Peroutka Papers, 1935-1978. Collection 84052, Hoover Institution Archives.

[52] Ferdinand Peroutka, “Ferdinand Peroutka’s Talk,” April 20, 1957 Radio Broadcast, Ferdinand Peroutka Papers, 1935-1978. Collection 84052, Hoover Institution Archives.

[53] John F. Kennedy, “Address at the University of Maine,” October 9, 1963, The American Presidency Project, University of California, Santa Barbara. <http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/index.php.>

[54] John Lewis Gaddis, Strategies of Containment, 286.

[55] Ibid, 287.

[56] “Sprague Committee Critical of Radio Free Europe and Radio Liberty,” December 1960, Woodrow Wilson Center Digital Archives. <http://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/115040.>

[57] Ibid.

[58] A. Ross Johnson, Radio Free Europe and Radio Liberty: The CIA Years and Beyond, 204.

[59] Ibid, 205.

[60] Press, CQ, ed. Congress and the Nation,1965-1968 Volume II: The 89th and 90th Congress. 2nd

  1. Washington, D.C: CQ Press., 1969, 852.

Johnson issued this statement after the disclosure of CIA funding for the National Students’ Association sparked outrage.

[61] “Report of Radio Study Group on the Future of Radio Free Europe (RFE) and Radio Liberty (RL),” September 8, 1967, Woodrow Wilson Center Digital Archives. <http://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/115107.>

[62] “Report of Radio Study Group on the Future of Radio Free Europe (RFE) and Radio Liberty (RL),” September 8, 1967.

[63] “CIA Implementation of 303 Committee Decision on Funding and Continuation of Radio Free Europe and Radio Liberty,” December 21, 1967, Woodrow Wilson Center Archives. <http://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/115110.>

[64] A. Ross Johnson, Radio Free Europe and Radio Liberty: The CIA Years and Beyond, 208.

[65]Ibid, 208.

[66] “CIA Ends All Involvement with Radio Free Europe and Radio Liberty: A Timeline,” September 19, 1972, Woodrow Wilson Center Digital Archives. <http://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/115135.>

[67] Ibid.

[68] Walter Scott, Letter to Sig Mikelson, 1976, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty Corporate Records. Collection 2000C71, Hoover Institution Archives.

[69] Walter Scott, Letter to Sig Mikelson, Attached Memo “1971 Compared to 1974.”

[70] Ibid.

[71] Radio Free Europe Professional Code, 1987, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty Corporate Records. Collection 2000C71, Hoover Institution Archives.

[72] “Mission Statement,” Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty. http://www.rferl.org/info/mission/169.html.

[73] “Broadcasting Board of Governors,” All Gov, 2015. http://www.allgov.com/departments/independent-agencies/broadcasting-board-of-governors?agencyid=7292#historycont.

[74] “Under the Black Flag,” Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, http://www.rferl.org/archive/under-the-black-flag/latest/17257/17257.html.

[75] Think Again Turn Away social media sites include: <https://www.youtube.com/user/ThinkAgainTurnAway>; <https://www.facebook.com/ThinkAgainTurnAway; https://twitter.com/ThinkAgain_DOS>; <http://thinkagainturnaway.tumblr.com.>

[76] Rita Katz, “The State Department’s War with ISIS is Embarrassing,” TIME Magazine, September 6, 2014. <http://time.com/3387065/isis-twitter-war-state-department/.>

[77] Think Again Turn Away Twitter Feed, April 28 2015, 8:40 am. <https://twitter.com/ThinkAgain_DOS/status/593016684488830976.>

[78] Think Again Turn Away Twitter Feed, March 2, 2015, 7:06 a.m. <https://twitter.com/ThinkAgain_DOS/status/572412777475661825.> 

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