Where Have you Gone Henry Kissinger?
Where have you gone, Henry Kissinger?
A nation turns its lonely eyes to you,
wo wo wo
What’s that you say, Mr. Kissinger ‘Joltin Hank’ has left and gone away,
hey hey hey Hey hey hey”
Apologizes to Simon & Garfunkel
After reading Mike Mariani’s article entitled “Is Trump’s Chaos Tornado A Move From The Kremlin’s Playbook” in the March 28, 2107 issue of Vanity Fair Magazine, I could’t help but think of the words from Simon & Garfunkel’s 1968 song, “Mrs. Robison”, which I think was also the theme song for the hit movie, “The Graduate” also of 1968 vintage. The last verse of the song is:
“Where have you gone, Joe DiMaggio?
A nation turns its lonely eyes to you, wo wo wo
What’s that you say, Mrs. Robinson ‘
Joltin Joe’ has left and gone away, hey hey hey Hey hey hey
Paul Simon, a big fan of Micky Mantle, met DiMaggio accidentally in a New York restaurant, and the two immediately discussed the song. DiMaggio said;
“What I don’t understand, is why you ask where I’ve gone. I just did a Mr. Coffee commercial, I’m a spokesman for the Bowery Savings Bank and I haven’t gone anywhere!”
“I didn’t mean the lines literally, I thought of him as an American hero and that genuine heroes were in short supply.”
DiMaggio accepted Simon’s explanation and thanked him. They shook hands and said good night.
In a New York Times op-ed in March 1999, shortly after DiMaggio’s death, Simon discussed the meeting and explained that the line was meant as a sincere tribute to DiMaggio’s unpretentious heroic stature, in a time when popular culture magnifies and distorts how we perceive our heroes. He reflected further:
“In these days of Presidential transgressions and apologies and prime-time interviews about private sexual matters, we grieve for Joe DiMaggio and mourn the loss of his grace and dignity, his fierce sense of privacy, his fidelity to the memory of his wife and the power of his silence.”
Simon subsequently performed “Mrs. Robinson” at Yankee Stadium in DiMaggio’s honor the month after his death.
After reading the story about Simon meeting DiMaggio and what he thought of his “heroic nature” I went back to Mariani’s article one more time. In it he describes how the Russian author, Vladislav Surkov, a longtime Putin political technologist and a chief architect of the Kremlin propaganda machine, published a short story titled “Without Sky” in the literary journal Russian Pioneer. Surkov published “Without Sky” under the literary pseudonym, “Natan Dubovitsky”, by which, Mariani explains ,he is known by many Russians. Mariani also explains that “Just days after “Without Sky” was published, Russia carried out a masterstroke of the “non-linear war” described in the story — the annexation of Crimea.
Non-linear war is also known as “a continuation of politics by other means” and it is “politics by other means” which Mariani attributes to the Trump administration. As he describes “
“Trump continued sucking up media attention, picking fights on Twitter, doubling down on long-discredited lies, and sparking biweekly conflagrations. The effect is a permanent state of disorder: a de-stabilized media, an exasperated citizenry, and a fractured opposition, divided and pulled into mudslinging sideshows. In some ways, it resembles Surkov’s non-linear warfare…
While Trump may not have state-controlled media at his disposal, as Putin does, to serve as 24–7 propaganda organs both domestically and abroad, his team is finding ways to shrewdly approximate Putin’s capacity to shape narratives and create alternative realities…Trump is rupturing the journalism landscape, one land-mine tweet at a time.”
The English word disinformation, which is a deliberate lie to mislead, did not appear in dictionaries until the late-1980s. It is a translation of the Russian дезинформация, transliterated as dezinformatsiya. Trump prefers the term “he invented”, “fake news” to describe stories he does not like about him but he has learned well from his Russian handlers the technique of dezinformatsiya.
Author and former Russian TV producer, Peter Pomerantsev, says. “Experts call Surkov, and Putin’s dezinformatsiya techniques, ‘managed democracy’, maintaining the appearance and infrastructure of a democracy while controlling everything from within the administration. It is, in effect, an authoritarian regime in the guise of a democratic state.”
Who do we need more to right the ship of American foreign policy than Henry Kissinger? None of this is to say Secretary Kissinger and his colleagues did not engage in “misinformation” when they thought it advanced U.S. foreign policy interests and especially against a U.S. adversary. In fact there are stories that Secretary Kissinger, then an outside Republican adviser, called Richard Nixon, the Republican candidate for President , and alerted Nixon that a deal was in the works to begin talks to end the Vietnam war. There are few, if any, however, who have said Kissinger misinformed the U.S. public, especially for the sake of maintaining a political office. He has always been regarded as a true “statesman”
During Kissinger’s tenure in office, The word “realpolitik”, the art of pursuing realism and pragmatism in politics in foreign policy, spread throughout the government. It also became popularized, more than ever before, in the public sphere. There was a widespread fascination with the Kissingerian mind among followers of foreign policy. Not for the first time, it became common to juxtapose contemporary American foreign policy with 19th-century European diplomacy. As the historian Walter Laqueur described in Commentary magazine in 1973, one of the side effects of Kissinger’s rise to eminence was a sudden revival of interest in Lord Castlereagh and Count Metternich, triggered by Kissinger’s 1957 book, A World Restored.
At Kissinger’s 90th birthday celebrations senator John McCain, said;
“When Henry came to Hanoi to conclude the agreement that would end America’s war in Vietnam, the Vietnamese told him they would send me home with him. He refused the offer. “Commander McCain will return in the same order as the others,” he told them. He knew my early release would be seen as favoritism to my father and a violation of our code of conduct. By rejecting this last attempt to suborn a dereliction of duty, Henry saved my reputation, my honor, my life, really. And I’ve owed him a debt ever since.
So, I salute my friend and benefactor, Henry Kissinger, the classical realist who did so much to make the world safer for his country’s interests, and by so doing safer for the ideals that are its pride and purpose. And who, out of his sense of duty and honor, once saved a man he never met.” The Senator went on to say:
“his legacy is the stewardship of our nation in the most difficult of times and his continued important voice on national security issues. I know of no individual who is more respected in the world now than Henry Kissinger.”
- He is credited with Paris peace award in 1973 ending American’s Vietnam war.
- He is one who paved the way for president Nixon to visit the People’s Republic of China and open, until then, frozen, diplomatic relations.
- He is the recipient of Nobel peace award.
- He engineered an era of détente with the Soviet Union,
- The term shuttle diplomacy was created because of him when his tireless travel among the capitals of Israel, Egypt, and Syria after the 1973 Middle East war was an all-out effort to restore peace in the ravaged middle east.
- Egyptian politicians called him “the magician” for his disengagement agreements separating Israeli and Arab armies.
But he is a unique personality who holds both Nobel peace prize and accused as ‘war criminal’ and even at the age of 90, being consulted by President Obama in foreign policy matters. He is a legend.”
Sounds a lot like Paul SImon’s eulogy for Joe DiMaggio, but I doubt Secretary Kissinger has been doing any Mr. Coffee commercials!
Henry Kissinger is a true statesman and we desperately need men and women like him back to rid us of the Trumpian/Putin tyranny of disorder and dezinformatsiya that is eating the soul of our land and people.
Originally published at neutec.wordpress.com on October 8, 2017.