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REVIEW: The Russian Threat

Roy McFarlane (reviewer) — June 1984

Jim Garrison and Pyare Shivpuri. Gateway Books. Distributed by Scholarly Books Services. Paperback $12.95.

“The Russians are believed to be ‘the greatest threat to peace’ by 75%of the public in virtually all of the 16 nations in the NATO alliance,”

The above statement is made in the concluding chapter of The Russian Threat. Jim Garrison and Pyare Shivpuri wrote their book to address this belief. In so doing they examine the current situations in Poland and Afghanistan, and answer the often-asked question “Do the Russians want to rule the world?”

Garrison and Shivpuri pick out the fine detail of the actions and statements of both the Soviet Union and the United States. Actions and statements which, over the decades, have increased the tensions between the world’s two most powerful nations. Tensions which lead the human race toward annihilation.

The authors are not Soviet apologists – they portray the Soviets as being collectively paranoid. The purges, show trials, mass murders and excessive cruelty of the Stalin regime are seen as the forbears of the subtler techniques of repression employing psychiatric treatment and internal exile.

Neither, however, are successive American administrations innocent of any wrongdoing. The authors detail the CIA involvement in the ousting of Salvador Allende from elected office in Chile, and they list the numerous occasions of American military intervention in Central America. And, clearly, the United States has been the pacesetter in the nuclear arms race, while the Soviet Union strives continually to keep up.

The Russian Threat is outstanding in its depth and scope. Whether the authors are discussing the relationship between each superpower and their respective alliances, the development of space-based weapons systems, or the psychological process of denial, they encompass more facts than any comparable study.

A sense of hopelessness may, on occasion, overtake the reader. The Russian Threat holds nothing back. The retelling of one woman’s story of torture by the Turkish government reveals that the human race has hot lost its capacity for barbarism – after continued beatings, hanging by her wrists from a pipe, her tormentors ran electric current through her body by way of her vagina.

If governments can sanction treatment such as this, it is conceivable that governments could sanction the use of nuclear weapons. In point of fact, both the Soviet Union and the United States have strategies which include scenarios for waging and ‘winning’ nuclear war.

A tightly-written, exceptionally readable book, The Russian Threat is highly recommended. It strips away the rhetoric and reveals the greatest threat facing humanity itself – nuclear war itself.

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