Tom Fife: The First Time I Heard Of Barack [ESSAY & AUDIO INTERVIEW]
During the period of roughly February 1992 to mid 1994, I was making frequent trips to Moscow, Russia, in the process of starting a software development joint-venture company with some people from the Russian scientific community. One of the men in charge on the Russian side was named V. M.; he had a wife named T.M.
By Tom Fife
V. was a level-headed scientist while his wife was rather deeply committed to the losing Communist cause – a cause she obviously was not abandoning.
One evening, during a trip early in 1992, the American half of our venture were invited to V. & T.s Moscow flat as we were about to return to the States. The party went well and we had the normal dinner discussions.
As the evening wore on, T. developed a decidedly rough anti-American edge – one her husband tried to quietly rein in.
The bottom line of the tirade she started against the United States went something like this:
“You Americans always like to think that you have the perfect government and your people are always so perfect. Well then, why havent you had a woman president by now? You had a chance to vote for a woman vice-president and you didnt do it.”
The general response went something along the lines that you dont vote for someone just because of their sex. Besides, you dont vote for vice-president, but the president and vice-president as a ticket.
“Well, I think you are going to be surprised when you get a black president very soon.”
The consensus we expressed was that we didnt think there was anything innately barring that. The right person at the right time and sure, America would try to vote for the right person, be he or she black or not.
“What if I told you that you will have a black president very soon and he will be a Communist?”
The out-of-the-blue remark was met by our stares. She continued, “Well, you will; and he will be a Communist.”
It was then that the husband unsuccessfully tried to change the subject; but she was on a roll and would have nothing of it. One of us asked, “It sounds like you know something we dont know.”
“Yes, it is true. This is not some idle talk. He is already born and he is educated and being groomed to be president right now. You will be impressed to know that he has gone to the best schools of Presidents. He is what you call “Ivy League”. You dont believe me, but he is real and I even know his name. His name is Barack. His mother is white and American and his father is black from Africa. Thats right, a chocolate baby! And hes going to be your President.”
She became more and more smug as she presented her stream of detailed knowledge and predictions so matter-of-factly – as though all were foregone conclusions. “Its all been thought out. His father is not an American black so he wont have that social slave stigma. He is intelligent and he is half white and has been raised from the cradle to be an atheist and a Communist. Hes gone to the finest schools. He is being guided every step of the way and he will be irresistible to America.”
We sat there not knowing what to say. She was obviously very happy that the Communists were doing this and that it would somehow be a thumbing of their collective noses at America: they would give us a black president and hed be a Communist to boot. She made it quite obvious that she thought that this was going to breathe new life into world Communism. From this and other conversations with her, she always asserted that Communism was far from dead.
She was full of little details about him that she was eager to relate. I thought that maybe she was trying to show off that this truly was a real person and not just hot air.
She rattled off a complete litany. He was from Hawaii. He went to school in California. He lived in Chicago. He was soon to be elected to the legislature. “Have no doubt: he is one of us, a Soviet.”
At one point, she related some sort of San Francisco connection, but I didnt understand what the point was and dont recall much about that. I was just left with the notion that she considered the city to be some sort of a center for their activity here.
Since I had dabbled in languages, I knew a smattering of Arabic. I made a comment: “If I remember correctly, Barack comes from the Arabic word for Blessing. That seems to be an odd name for an American.” She replied quickly, “Yes. It is African”, she insisted, “and he will be a blessing for world Communism. We will regain our strength and become the number one power in the world.”
She continued with something to the effect that America was at the same time the great hope and the great obstacle for Communism. America would have to be converted to Communism and Barack was going to pave the way.
So, what does this conversation from 1992 prove?[/h3]
Well, its definitely anecdotal. It doesnt prove that Obama has had Soviet Communist training nor that he was groomed to be the first black American president, but it does show one thing that I think is very important. It shows that Soviet Russian Communists knew of Barack from a very early date. It also shows that they truly believed among themselves that he was raised and groomed Communist to pave the way for their future. This report on Barack came personally to me from one of them long before America knew he existed.
Although I had never before heard of him, at the time of this conversation Obama was 30+ years old and was obviously tested enough that he was their anticipated rising star.