Sunday, April 26, 2015

Book Review - Target Patton by Robert Wilcox

            Target Patton deals with the possible assassination of General George Patton.  Wilcox concludes, “No one can prove beyond a reasonable doubt that General Patton was assassinated.”  However, this meticulously researched book points to the conclusion that he was, in fact, assassinated.  Although Wilcox keeps the question open some of his critics see it as closed: “Anyone who wants to believe that Patton was assassinated is simply DEAD WRONG.”  I suppose this individual has some inside information not available to the author.

            The book reveals more than the facts surrounding Patton’s death.  Wilcox obviously did a great deal of research on this book.  He consistently ran into cases where important documents were either destroyed or otherwise unavailable.  This is a problem many researchers on this period face.  Clearly there has been an army of Sandy Bergers stuffing embarrassing documents in their socks and underwear.  This is not done when there is nothing to hide.

            Five years before Diana West’s controversial American Betrayal Robert Wilcox claimed that President Roosevelt “was basically in the Soviet’s pocket.”  He states, “There were Soviet spies in virtually every part of the U.S. government during the war, stealing secrets and influencing policy – all to aid Stalin and the USSR.”  This is a direct contradiction of respected historian Harvey Klehr’s assertion, “In our more than twenty years of archivally based research on Soviet espionage in America, we have uncovered ample documentation of Soviet intelligence obtaining American technical, military, and diplomatic information but very little indicating successful policy manipulation.”  Wilcox mentions Harry Dexter White’s role in demanding that Japan leave Manchuria, a demand that led to Pearl Harbor.  Obviously Soviet agents played an important role in manipulating U.S. foreign policy.

            FDR told William Bullitt, “Bill, I don't dispute your facts; they are accurate. I don't dispute the logic of your reasoning. I just have a hunch that Stalin is not that kind of man. Harry [Hopkins] says he's not and that he doesn't want anything but security for his country, and I think if I give him everything I possibly can and ask for nothing in return, noblesse oblige, he won't try to annex anything and will work with me for a world of democracy and peace.”  FDR was many things but he was not a naïf. 

            Finally, could the U.S. government be involved in assassinations?  That is what that great bugaboo, conspiracy theorists, believe.  Perhaps we should ask Ngo Dihn Diem, Patrice Lumumba or Fidel Castro.

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