J. Edgar The Film Falls For KGB Disinformation

The rumor that J. Edgar Hoover was gay is repeated in the new biopic J. Edgar opening this week. And herein lies a useful lesson worth noting: Hoover's alleged homosexuality was contrived by the KGB in the 1960s.

Despite the volumes of revelations about the true nature of the Soviet Union during the Cold War, even clear-thinking Americans cannot embrace the reality that one of the KGB's key functions was to run disinformation programs to undermine leaders and institutions in the West, especially the United States - what the spy agency called the "main adversary

In the 1960s Service A and Directorate K were the key departments dedicated to destabilizing Western nations.  A large apparatus recruited agents to infiltrate government agencies, the arts, the film community, academia, think tanks and activist groups with the mission to recruit gullible leftists to the worldwide socialist revolution.  One stunning example was using Phillip Agee, a former CIA officer, to publish  names of active CIA officers and agents.

Another campaign sought to pin the JFK assassination on HL Hunt and other Texas oilmen, and later the CIA.  There was an organized campaign to discredit Martin Luther King, Jr. after he repudiated Soviet communism, and later to manufacture the conspiracy theory that the CIA introduced AIDS into the black community.

The attack by Service A on the FBI director began with forged letters connecting him the John Birch Society and leaked forged letters to columnist Drew Pearson accusing Hoover of pressing a State Department employee to turn over information on suspected leftists.

But the scheme to characterize Hoover as a homosexual was so successful it has remained in the American memory, becoming an accepted fact expressed in books, films, on campus and on television as a confirmed fact. That the new film J. Edgar continues this charade is hardly surprising, but it says more about our culture and its response to disinformation than it does to the proof that Hoover was gay.

Cambridge intelligence expert  Christopher Andrew in The Sword And The Shield, the first of two books written in conjunction with former KGB colonel Vasili Mitrokhin (Basic Books, Perseus Books Group, 1999), wrote:

"Nor is there any reliable evidence that Hoover and his deputy, Clyde Tolson, who shared his house, ever had a homosexual relationship" (p. 235).

Service A planted the rumor in an English-language news service it controlled in India from which it was willingly published  by Western media without verifying the source.  Thus the Hoover rumor, fabricated by the KGB, found its way into the lexicon of our culture where it has evolved from vicious disinformation to accepted fact -- a veritable success for the KGB and another example of the role of the failure of established media to serve as an honest broker in the affairs of the nation and the world.

People believe Hoover was gay because the thrall of utopian manifestos took precedence over  common sense in our media.  The bias in reporting began in the 1930s when the failure of capitalism during the Depression melded with the rise of the Soviet Union as the symbol of a solution that just might work when looked at by unemployed workers in bread lines. The example of the Pulitzer Prize going to Walter Duranty of the New York Times in 1937 for features he wrote extolling Soviet virtue when Stalin was starving Ukrainian peasants is a notable example.

The addiction to the "party line", no matter the reality of the human cost, took precedent over attributing sources and seeking the facts. This penchant to believe theoretical hyperbole rather than the prosaic truth of real experience has remained embedded in our media today, even after the collapse of the USSR and the revelations that proved that this great experiment to perfect mankind murdered 20 million of its own citizens.

Examples abound today, fed by conspiracy theories milled into a fine art by the KGB. Whether it's blaming the CIA for AIDS and drugs in the inner city, believing that business designs exploitation of workers, that the 9-11 attacks  were concocted by the government or that the Gulf Oil Spill was planned by BP executives and Obama officials -- we can blame our mass media for dereliction of duty caused by their love affair with Leftist cant. The suggestion of homosexuality in J. Edgar continues the long lineage of lies that continue to plague our cultural self-esteem.

See also: The Real J. Edgar Hoover and Citizen J. Edgar?

Bernie Reeves is Editor & Publisher, Raleigh Metro Magazine, and Founder: Raleigh Spy Conference