Volume #17 - 938.|
RELATIONS AVEC L'UNION SOVIÉTIQUE ET L'EUROPE DE L'EST
La 1ère Direction de liaison avec la Défense|
à la Société Radio Canada-Service international
le 1er mai 1951|
Dear Arthur [Pidgeon],
Acting on your request of a couple of weeks ago we have prepared a memorandum on Information Policy Towards Titoism in Soviet Satellites.
The original memorandum is being sent to Mr. Dilworth and I attach a copy for your own use.
SECRET Ottawa, May 1, 1951
INFORMATION POLICY TOWARDS TITOISM IN SOVIET SATELLITES
Our information policy towards the satellites can be tersely expressed in terms of two basic purposes:
(1) Active participation in the "cold war" against Soviet imperialism and totalitarianism;
(2) The projection of Canada.
In view of the present relations between the satellites and the Western powers, including Canada, the second objective is the less important. It includes explaining Canadian policies and principles and their background, and presenting a picture of Canadian democracy, life, people, industry, etc.
The expression "cold war", for which some authorities would prefer to substitute "ideological struggle" in matters pertaining to information, is retained here as a convenient if imprecise means of grouping a number of points under a general heading and of retaining the picture of a contest leading to victory or defeat, which "cold war" evokes.
Under the heading "cold war" our information policy may be divided into three basic aims:
I-to preserve peace and check the inroads of Soviet imperialism, by
(a) strengthening the morale, faith and determination of our friends in the satellites in their opposition to the Stalinist totalitarian regimes and policies in their countries, and to the Soviet imperialism which makes the regimes possible and which, through them, exploits the satellite peoples;
(b) giving cautious encouragement to Titoist tendencies as outlined more fully below;
(c) undermining the morale, faith and determination of the people in the satellites who actively or passively support Moscow-directed policies;
(d) convincing the satellite peoples of our peaceful, unaggressive purpose;
(e) demonstrating that the Soviet Union and its willing or unwilling allies cannot hope to win a new world war;
(f) presenting the Soviet regime and its obedient satellite regimes as solely responsible for war should it come.
II-to win the war if it comes, towards which the above peace-preservation
formula would contribute
III-as a longer-term project, to
(a) help keep alive, in the satellite countries, knowledge and appreciation of liberal democracy and the civilization and code of ethics of the West;
(b) maintain belief in eventual liberation from tyranny and slavery, trying to strike a proper balance between, on the one hand, bolstering the will of the individual to fight for his freedom when the time comes, and checking trends towards fatalistic resignation, and, on the other hand, giving the false impression that liberation is at hand, or encouraging premature and doomed uprisings which would be bloodily suppressed.
The only information medium through which Canada is at present reaching any significant number of people in the satellite countries is short-wave broadcasting. The chief means of furthering the above aims, through this medium, include:
(a) giving an adequate account of what is going on in the world through a news service which is comprehensive, true and objective;
(b) identifying the satellite Communist regimes as the creatures and instruments of Soviet imperialism and as the agents for Soviet exploitation of the satellite nations;
(c) appealing to the national self-respect of subject people, without attempting to incite them to revolt;
(d) unmasking the hypocrisy of "democracy" in elections, trade unions, labour camps, religion, etc. in the Soviet Union and satellites, and the hypocrisy of Sovietinspired "Peace propaganda" and its inconsistency with the aggressive Soviet foreign policy supported by the satellites;
(e) correcting misrepresentations about Canada, NATO and the West in general;
(f) reminding listeners living under Communist tyranny that, although we have our social problems we cope with them as do other democratic nations, by bringing about social change without violence; and that the lives of our citizens are not dominated by fear and hate, police, arbitrary law decreed by a "Party elite", official kidnapping, "trials" without benefit of justice, and ubiquitous "security" organs who are a law unto themselves.
In decrying Soviet imperialism and appealing to the national sentiments of the satellites, our policy must also take into account the phenomenon known as Titoism, or national communism freed from the physical and dogmatic control of Moscow. In general we should give cautious encouragement to Titoism guided by the following considerations:
1. That we must never abandon or bargain with our principles, and that we disapprove of totalitarianism and police systems of government based on hate and fear, whether or not they are controlled from Moscow;
2. That we welcome any nation's attempt to shake off the Muscovite shackles which we consider the first step towards possible liberalization; (in referring to Yugoslavia it is possible now to point to a number of recent measures adopted by the Yugoslav Government, which are contributing to a gradual liberalization which we hope will continue);
3. That, while we are absolutely opposed to totalitarian illegality, brutality, immorality, privilege, intellectual enslavement, etc., we recognize the need for social reform in many parts of Eastern and South Eastern Europe and do not support reactionary emigre circles who wish to re-establish the status quo of 1939.
One reason for our cautious approach to Titoism is that, while it has short-term advantages in stemming the spread of Soviet imperialism and in making possible less repugnant regimes than those imposed by the Kremlin, it might in the long run develop in such a way as to present a peculiarly important threat to the Western liberal tradition. That is to say, we cannot rule out the possibility, albeit slight, that some day there might be a number of Titoist regimes in Europe in which the liberalizing process mentioned above was early arrested but which, through their cultivation of nationalism, might be more attractive to the peoples of the free world than is Soviet communism, especially if Tito should succeed in his apparent ambition to transfer the seat of communist orthodoxy and the Lenin tradition to Belgrade.