they been guests somewhere. They were very English
about it. This break did a lot to keep up morale."
While they were still able to get together, British and
American p.o.w.'s who hadn't seen a square meal for a
long time would engage in animated discussion of each
other's choice dishes. Some fellows filled notebooks with
such recipes when they were supposed to be writing
Brainwashing Defined and Analyzed
Through many disclosures, brainwashing was revealed
as a political strategy made up of two processes: (1) The
conditioning or softening-up process, primarily for control
purposes; (2) An indoctrination or persuasion process, for
conversion purposes. They can be conducted simultaneously, or one can precede the other. The Communists
are coldly practical about it: Only results count. They
operate strictly within the framework of "dialectical materialism, which recognizes only power.
The sole reason that the Bed hierarchy concerns itself
with indoctrination is for Party discipline, their only protection. Thex want to make sure that their followers do
not grab the first opportunity to turn against them. That
is their eternal nightmare, the problem they have been
unable to solve and never can — short of creating a "new
Soxiet iii.m" with the instinctive obedience of a termite
instead of a free xvill.
Communism, as practiced in real life — and brainwashing amply proves this — has nothing to do with the word
as defined by the dictionary. The Party's own name is one
of its striking examples of double-talk. Communism is a
sheer power system, gang rule with modern appliances.
As long as the individual member submits unquestion-
ingly, he is a "disciplined Party member." The retention
of his own individuality by a single person is recognized
as a deadly menace to the whole monolithic structure.
The methods used to make "learning" and confession
palatable are borrowed freely from three sources: evangelism, psychiatry, and science. The language and ideals
in each of these fields were taken over and given new
meanings, new interpretations. Brainwashing is a combination of fake evangelism and quack psychiatry in a set-
tiii" of false science. It is a system of befogging the brain
so ,i person can be seduced into acceptance of what otherwise xvould be abhorrent.
Hunger is an ever-present element in brainwashing cases
and ranges from planned malnutrition to outright starvation. Diet deficiencies are cunningly thought up by diet
specialists whose job it is to keep meals scientifically
The usual Communist tactic is to provide just enough
fooel for survival but not enough for adequate brain functioning. The p.o.w. camp in Korea, nicknamed Pak's Palace, was under rigid mind-enfeebling dietary rules. That
xx as a specialized institution. Soviet Russians were attached
to it. P.o.w.'s sate them in Russian Army uniforms.
Pak's Palace worked closely with brainwashing establishments directly under Soxiet Russian inquisitors in
Manchuria, to which some prisoners were transferred for
advanced treatment. In Pak's Palace, the minimum amount
of rice a man could eat anel still survive was carefully
tabulated and then cut by one-third.
Back from Communist
prison, Robert A. Voge-
ler, American businessman who was captured and brainwashed
in Hungary, speaks
at a news conference
his return, at New York 5
WIDE WOULD PHOTO
Looking back over their experiences, ex-prisoners were
able to see how cunningly the hunger motive was used.
Amounts of food ladled out were adjusted to effects
desired, like a treatment, without relation to available
supplies. Fooel was apportioned according to a man's
resistance qualities. This was even done openly. Every
p.o.w. in Korea knew th.it the boys who collaborated got
extras. An additional spoonful of cabbage in a bowl of rice
can become the most important thing in the world to a
man, inciting any sacrifice. In the same camp, some ate
better while others starved. Without a word said, this constituted a powerful argument and pressure.
Fatigue is another of the chronic conditions under
brainwashing. No more insidious poison exists than fatigue,
and no worse torture than prolonged fatigue. Its wean ing,
debilitating effects are maddening. Most people at some
time have gone for 24 hours without sleep. Many have
survived several days in a row with very little sleep. But
kept up, this cracks the finest mind and drives the
strongest person insane. Suicide is a welcome relief.
Tenseness is another chronic state artificially aroused.
The prisoner is thrust into an iron-curtained compartment
inside an iron-bamboo curtain, the prey to petty, fearsome
hints and warnings, with no means of checking any detail-
Tenseness has many forms and the Reds take advantage of tlie-m all. They range from uncertainty and frustration to hopelessness.
No matter whether the- man I interviewed came from3
satellite country in Europe or from Heel China, his brain-
washers had told him that be had been deserted and
betrayed by country, church, anel friends, so that he noV
stood all alone. This was impressed on Robert Vogeler in
Budapest until he trieel unsuccessfully to climb oxer a railing anel hurl himself to death from the awful loneliness-
This, too, was told to Robert T. Bryan, Jr., the China-born
American lawyer in Shanghai. The- p.o.w.'s in Korea tol'1
me the same.
The hopelessness-inevitability line permeates (jiiiini'1'
nist strategy everywhere the Heels go, whether in an international conference as at Geneva, or in a torture chambe*
in a grim Leningrad prison. Communist strategy, often
incomprehensible otherwise, makes sense when analyze4'
from the standpoint of hopelessness-inevitability.
Confess your guilt, cleanse yourself, anel you will he
accepted into our paradise, the-y seem to say. Thex funnel
Facts Forum News, December, 1956