26 July 2012
I Miss My Enemies
I first saw the magazine, "Soviet Life" (1956-1991) when I was assigned to G-2 Intelligence at XVIII Airborne Corps. G-2 was filled with brilliant officers. A few spoke Russian and had been involved in covert operations behind the Iron Curtain. They were, in my estimation, the most rounded and interesting men and women I ever worked with. Ever.
I was trained in Soviet tactics and weapons at Aberdeen Proving Ground and in turn trained elements of the 82nd and the 101st Airborne Divisions how to kill Soviets and their Warsaw Pact brothers. I also became infatuated with Russia and Russians, as those who study their enemies sometimes do.
"Soviet Life" was a quid pro quo publication for the US propaganda magazine, "Amerika" that was distributed in the Soviet Union and seen, by last count, three people from the Soviet Union. Actually, I've never met anyone from the USSR who saw Amerika magazine. But then, they didn't have to. According to Niall Ferguson, we won the Cold War with blue jeans.
"Like ice melting in the stream- I can't hold on to how I used to be"
I miss "Soviet Life" and, to be honest, I guess I miss having an enemy. You know, without Grendel, Beowulf was just another Meade swilling Geat.