Autocratic and authoritarian governments have long employed censorship, deception and propaganda to control the people they rule and influence their adversaries. As U.S. Marines, we were “urged” to read Sun Tzu’s fifth century B.C. work, “The Art of War.” In it, the Chinese political-military strategist emphasized: “All warfare is based on deception …”
When Adolf Hitler seized power in 1933, he appointed Joseph Goebbels to head the Nazi Party’s propaganda machinery. Goebbels’ assignment: “Inform Aryan people” why they must support “our mission” and “deceive our enemies.” Goebbels did so — until his suicide on May 1, 1945.
During Joseph Stalin’s three decades in power (1922-1953), his most effective head of the Soviet Communist Party’s Central Committee Propaganda and Agitation Department was Dimitri Shepilov. Shepilov was an expert in maskirovka (misinformation/deception) and dezinformatsiya (disinformation) for military, political and diplomatic issues.
In George Orwell’s “1984,” published in 1949, he described Big Brother’s “Ministry of Truth” as one of four ministries governing the fictional nation Oceania as key to controlling everything citizens saw, heard and ultimately thought. Changing the past and skewing the present with spin and lies kept the population of Oceania submissive to government power.
Since 1789, when our Bill or Rights became part of the U.S. Constitution, no rational American sought to create anything like a Ministry of Truth in our country — until now.
On April 27, 2022, Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas informed a congressional subcommittee he has selected Nina Jankowicz to serve as executive director of a new DHS Disinformation Governance Board. In 2020, Ms. Jankowicz described stories about Hunter Biden’s laptop as “fake” prior to our presidential election. Her new title should be “Ms. Information.”
The “DHS board” is the most tyrannical proposal from a U.S. government official we know of since President Franklin Delano Roosevelt issued Executive Order 9066, creating a federal “War Relocation Authority.” On March 18, 1942, American soldiers began carrying out orders to “… take all people of Japanese descent into custody, surround them with troops, prevent them from buying land, and return them to their former homes at the close of the war.”
Within weeks, more than 120,000 American citizens who committed no crimes whatsoever were confined behind barbed wire. The rest of that extraordinary story can be seen on Tubi TV on “War Stories,” season six, episode three.
The family of one of our publishing colleagues lived through this horrific ordeal. While his father was serving in the U.S. Army, his grandfather, four uncles and their families were seized at their strawberry farm in Washington state and transported almost 1,000 miles to Manzanar Internment Camp in California.
Roosevelt’s executive order wrongfully eliminated constitutionally protected rights for more than 120,000 Japanese Americans. The Biden regime’s DHS Disinformation Governance Board threatens constitutionally protected First Amendment rights to free speech for more than 300 million American citizens.
This “Board” is yet another move by progressive authoritarians who want to transform America into a socialist utopia. They have tried to seize control over our educational system, film, media, and now, social media. Their goal is that of Orwell’s Ministry of Truth: force us all to accept, maintain and advance their full control over every aspect of our lives.
The evil of information control is being used today by Vladimir Putin. Russians don’t know how many thousands of their sons have died in Ukraine. They certainly don’t know their president has hired the mercenary Wagner Group to rape, torture and annihilate thousands of Ukrainian civilians, including women, children and elderly.
Chapter 19 of our new book, “Tragic Consequences,” takes an in-depth look at the subject of censorship and the cancel culture.
Do we want our right to free speech denied? We hope not.
Oliver L. North is a combat-decorated U.S. Marine, founder and CEO of Fidelis Publishing and Fidelis Media. Find out more about him at www.olivernorth.com. David Goetsch is a Marine Corps veteran, member of the Florida Veterans Hall of Fame, professor of business, and Christian counselor. Find out more about him at www.david-goetsch.com. Their new book, “Tragic Consequences,” is available at www.faithfultext.com.