Anna Louise Strong, cheerleader for Mao

Yesterday, after our posthumous look at the life of global-warming godfather Maurice Strong, we started telling the remarkable – and reprehensible – story of his distant cousin Anna Louise Strong, a small-town Nebraska clergyman’s daughter who spent three decades in Moscow, serving as a major English-language propagandist for Soviet Communism.

But Strong didn’t stay in Moscow forever.

At a meeting with Mao and others

In 1946, she visited China for the first time. There she met with Mao, who, apropos of the atom bomb, then solely in US hands, said, “In the end the bomb will not destroy the people; the people will destroy the bomb.” Years afterwards, Strong wrote that she “was so impressed by these words that I used them later for a Christmas card.” Apparently disillusioned (at least to some degree) by the USSR, Strong found new hope in Mao’s China:

Around 1950

In America we were always “God’s country,” qualified to liberate and improve the world. In Russia there was always “the perfect system,” spoiled till now by some personal devils. In China they “made mistakes,” suffered by them, acknowledged and studied them, thus planned victory.

Here at last seemed credible history of the difficult advance of Man.

Returning from China to Russia, Strong was deported to the US on charges of being a spy, after which she spent several years in Los Angeles. Even she acknowledged that it was exceedingly pleasant: “I owned a town house, a summer lodge in the mountains, a winter cabin in the desert.” Not too shabby. But the continuing draw of totalitarianism proved too powerful to resist. In 1958, at the age of 72, Strong left her comfortable life in southern California behind forever and moved to China, telling friends, “I think the Chinese know better than anyone the way for man.” The adherents of Mao’s revolution, she believed, were on the cutting edge of “man’s struggle to advance” and understood “that victory depended not on the power of weapons but on awakening the consciousness of man.”

With Mao, W.E.B. Du Bois and others, 1959

It is interesting to note that Strong’s relocation to China coincided with the beginning of the Great Leap Forward, a campaign of state terror, violence, and forced collectivization that claimed the lives of tens of millions of people. Did Strong already know about the Great Leap Forward when she decided to move to China? Was that, perhaps, the reason why she wanted to go? Was the thought of mass famine and meaningless murder in the name of The Cause just too exciting for her to miss? Her own writings contain only positive references to the Great Leap Forward, whitewashing the butchery and starvation while representing the whole thing as an economic advance.

With Zhou Enlai

In Beijing, Strong was installed in the finest flat in a particularly stately apartment block. The building had formerly belonged to the government of Italy, and had housed that country’s diplomats; after it fell into the hands of the Chinese state, it was put to use as a luxury residence for specially favored foreign friends of Mao’s regime. In addition to giving Strong a home, the government also supplied her with three servants – “a housekeeper, cook, and handy-man.” If Strong was disturbed by the utter contradiction between this exceedingly lavish, generous arrangement and the strictly egalitarian tenets of her beloved Communism, she appears never to have mentioned it in print.

During these years in Beijing, Strong was as busy as ever. She socialized with both Mao and Zhou Enlai, and she churned out book after book about China’s “revolutionary spirit,” “the struggles of oppressed peoples,” the “revolt against imperialist oppression,” “the colonial peoples’ struggle for liberation,” “the onward march of man,” etc. (Her oeuvre provides innumerable examples of the kind of empty ideological sloganeering that George Orwell inveighed against in his essay “Politics and the English Language.”) “The Chinese leaders,” we’re told, “considered her their unofficial spokesperson to the English speaking world.”

Her grave in Beijing

She finally died in Beijing, aged 84, in 1970, at the height of yet another ugly chapter in the history of Red China, namely the Cultural Revolution – a brutal bloodbath in which tens of millions of citizens were removed from their jobs, torn from their families, “re-educated,” tortured, and killed in the name of the greatness and glory of Communism. During this period, most of the regime’s resident “foreign friends” were imprisoned or executed. Not Strong. Presumably because she’d rendered such extraordinarily loyal service to her totalitarian hosts, she was, one source tells us, “one of the last ‘Old China Hands’ to remain in the good graces of the Chinese through the cultural revolution.”

Did Anna Louise Strong ever, ever write a single word in criticism of the Cultural Revolution? No. On the contrary – impossible as it is to understand, repulsive as it is to contemplate – she cheered it on lustily, just as she had the Great Leap Forward. To the very end, in short, she was a useful stooge par excellence – a woman who, born and educated in a free country, was driven by a degree of blind ideological commitment beyond imagining to spend her adult life venerating, socializing with, and celebrating in print the two most bloodthirsty mass murderers in human history. 

Maurice Strong, dealmaker for China

We’ve been spending the last couple of days remembering Maurice Strong, the “godfather of global warning,” who died on November 27. We’ve seen that Strong was something of a New Age wacko and a champion of world government by himself and other UN elites.

Maurice Strong

But there’s more. As John Izzard noted at the Australian website Quadrant, Strong “was caught with his hand in the till.” Here’s the story:

Investigations into the UN’s Oil-for-Food-Program found that Strong had endorsed a cheque for $988,885 made out to M. Strong — issued by a Jordanian bank. The man who gave the cheque, South Korean business man Tongsun Park[,] was convicted in 2006 in a US Federal court of conspiring to bribe UN officials. Strong resigned and fled to Canada and thence to China where he has been living ever since.

Why China? Apparently Strong enjoyed a special protected status in that country because of his relative Anne Louise Strong (1885-1970), an American author and journalist who was a prolific propagandist for Communism and a friend of Zhou Enlai and Mao Zedong. (According to Izzard, she actually spent two years in an intimate relationship with Mao.)

Claudia Rosett

Claudia Rosett, a first-rate journalist and longtime UN expert, wrote in 2007 that any effort to clean up the UN after a rash of recent scandals – not just the Oil-for-Food scandal, but also scandals involving procurement fraud” and “peacekeeper rape” – must involve “a look at the long and murky career of Maurice Strong, the man who may have had the most to do with what the U.N. has become today.” In all of the darker chapters of recent UN history, stated Rosett, “Maurice Strong appears as a shadowy and often critically important figure.” Above all, she suggested, Strong’s story “illustrates the way in which the U.N., with its bureaucratic culture of secrecy, its diplomatic immunities, and its global reach, lends itself to manipulation by a small circle of those who best know its back corridors.”

As for Strong’s relocation to China, Rosett noted that the country was “a special place for Strong, a self-declared, life-long socialist.” How special? Well, consider this: although it’s “one of the world’s biggest producers of industrial pollution,” China had been profiting handsomely “from the trading of carbon emissions credits – thanks to heavily politicized U.N.-backed environmental deals.” And who arranged those deals? Who else? Maurice Strong.

FILE - In a Jan. 22, 2003 file photo, Maurice Strong, special advisor to United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan on North Korea, responds to a question outside the Security Council at U.N. headquarters in New York. The head of the U.N.'s environmental agency says Strong, whose work helped lead to the landmark climate summit that begins in Paris on Monday, Nov. 30, 2015, has died. He was 86. (AP Photo/Richard Drew, File)

Rosett painted a vivid picture of the expertise with which Strong used – and, it appears, continually magnified – his power:

Strong has developed a distinctive pattern over the years of helping to set up taxpayer-funded public bureaucracies, both outside and within the U.N., which he then taps for funding and contacts when he moves on to other projects….Through his maneuvers, Strong has nurtured the U.N.’s natural tendencies to grow like kudzu into a system that now extends far beyond its own organizational chart. In this jungle, it is not only tough to track how the money is spent, but almost impossible to tally how much really rolls in – or flows through — and from where, and for what.

One example: through a UN-created outfit called the University for Peace, Strong poured UN funds into North Korea. Of course, the purported ends were humanitarian; but in reality much of that money likely found its way into the Hermit Kingdom’s munitions programs. Rosett noted that at Tongsun Park’s trial, “it emerged in court testimony that a few years after Strong accepted from Park the check for almost $1 million funded by Baghdad, the two men had set up yet another business arrangement.”

Tongsun Park

And now he’s gone. But his work is finished; the mischief is done. Thanks in extremely large part to Strong, climate change has become a rallying cry for power-hungry elites everywhere, routinely cited by them as a legitimate reason to curb individual liberties and economic freedoms and to transfer political authority in democratic states from those countries’ citizens to the leaders of the UN and other world organizations (which are dominated, in all too many cases, by unfree and partly free nations). Not only was Strong himself a useful stooge in many respects – a champion of Chinese Communism, a tireless agitator for the UN superstate. He was also, as hundreds of adoring obituaries attest, the cause of useful stoogery in blinkered admirers around the world, who, rather than recognizing him as a singular threat to human freedom, celebrated him as a noble savior of the planet.