New York City
|Alma mater||University of Wisconsin|
|Occupation||Writer, professor, historian|
|Known for||Rosenberg espionage case|
Ronald Radosh (born 1937) is an American writer, professor, historian, former Marxist, and neoconservative. He is known for his work on the Cold War espionage case of Ethel and Julius Rosenberg and his advocacy of the state of Israel.
His most recent book, co-authored with his wife, scholar Allis Radosh, is "A Safe Haven: Harry S. Truman and the Founding of Israel", published by HarperCollins in 2009.
Radosh was born in the Lower East Side of Manhattan. His parents, Reuben Radosh and Ida Kretschman, were Jewish immigrants from Russia. He has stated that his earliest memory is of being taken to a May Day parade in New York's Union Square.
During the 1940s and 1950s, he attended the Little Red School House and Elisabeth Irwin High School, both of which were private schools attended mainly by the children of New York's Communists. He also attended the Communist-run Camp Woodland for Children in the Catskill Mountains. His memoirs vividly describe school-day encounters with Mary Travers, Woody Guthrie and Peter Seeger. On June 19, 1953 he demonstrated in Union Square with other members of the Labor Youth League against the execution of Julius and Ethel Rosenberg.
Radosh began attending the University of Wisconsin–Madison in the fall of 1955. He has said that his desire at the time was to study history, which Karl Marx considered queen of the sciences, and to become a leader in America's communist movement. Despite being raised to always defend the actions of the Soviet Union, Radosh developed a close friendship with Prof. George Mosse, a Jewish refugee from Nazi Germany and anti-Stalinist.
In 1959 he arrived at the University of Iowa intending to work towards his master's degree. Despite being raised as a red diaper baby in a Stalinist family, Radosh was shocked by revelations of the dictator's crimes which began to be released during the Khrushchev thaw. Although he had been a leader of Madison's Labor Youth League, he eventually broke with the Soviet-backed Communist Party USA of his parents and became a founding father of the American New Left. Radosh's fondness for the writings of Isaac Deutscher enraged the Madison Communist Party cell. Their attempts to bring him back into the Party line was a major part of Radosh's break with Communism. In 1963, he returned to New York City with his wife and children.
When Norman Thomas died in 1967, I wrote what may have been the only published negative assessment of his life. Most obituaries heralded Thomas as the nation's conscience, a man of principle who had turned out to be right about a great deal. Of course, Thomas was against the war in Vietnam; he had made a famous speech in which he said he came not to burn the American flag but to cleanse it. But for radicals like myself, that proved that he was a sellout. His opposition to the war was so tame, I argued, that he actually helped the American ruling class. I claimed that Thomas' opposition to LBJ's bombing campaign was only a "tactical" difference with the President. Thomas' chief sin, in my view, was to have written that he did not, "regard Vietcong terrorism as virtuous." He was guilty of attacking the heroic Vietnamese people, instead of the United States, which was the enemy of the world's people. My final judgment was that Thomas had "accepted the Cold War, its ideology and ethics and had decided to enlist in fighting its battles" on the wrong -- the anti-communist -- side.
Radosh is currently an Adjunct Fellow at the Hudson Institute in Washington, D.C., and professor of history emeritus at Queensborough Community College of the City University of New York. His commentaries on the Rosenbergs and other topics have appeared in The New Republic, The Weekly Standard and National Review, and the blog Frontpagemag.com. His memoirs are entitled Commies: A Journey Through the Old Left, the New Left, and the Leftover Left.
In the 1983 book, The Rosenberg File, he and co-author Joyce Milton conclude that Julius Rosenberg was guilty of espionage and that Ethel was aware of his activities. A second edition in 1997 incorporates newly obtained evidence from the former Soviet Union. Radosh also condemns prosecutorial misconduct in the case.
Ronald Radosh married Alice Schweig on the summer of 1959. He recalls, "Our wedding was on Labor Day weekend, and after the ceremony we drove into New York to spend one night in town. We celebrated our wedding by watching the annual proletarian Labor Day parade that still marched through downtown New York." They separated in 1969 and later divorced.
In October, 1975 Radosh married Allis Rosenberg, an American History Ph.D., with whom he has co-authored two books. The couple reside in Martinsburg, West Virginia. Radosh's son Daniel is an author, blogger and staff writer for The Daily Show with Jon Stewart.
Controversy over American Betrayal
In 2013, Radosh objected to a positive review at Front Page Magazine of Diana West's anti-communist American Betrayal: The Secret Assault on Our Nation’s Character, in which West argued that infiltration of the American government by Stalinist agents and fellow-travelers had significantly altered Allied policies in favor of the Soviet Union during the Second World War. The positive review was removed on Radosh's objection and was replaced with Radosh's own highly critical review entitled "McCarthy on Steroids." which described West as a deluded and historically inept conspiracy-monger. West posted a response to Radosh's review at Breitbart.com and later received the support of the Soviet dissident Vladimir Bukovsky.
- American Labor and United States Foreign Policy. New York: Random House, 1969.
- Debs. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall, 1971.
- A New History of Leviathan: Essays on the American Corporate State. Editor, with Murray Rothbard. New York: E.P. Dutton, 1972.
- Prophets On The Right: Profiles of Conservative Critics of American Globalism. New York: Simon and Schuster, 1975.
- The New Cuba: Paradoxes and Potentials. New York: Morrow, 1976.
- The Rosenberg File: A Search for Truth. With Joyce Milton. New York: Holt, Rinehart and Winston, 1983; Reissued with new introduction: New Haven: Yale University Press, 1993.
- Divided They Fell: The Demise of the Democratic Party, 1964-1996. New York: Free Press, 1996.
- The Amerasia Spy Case: Prelude to McCarthyism. With Harvey Klehr. University of North Carolina Press, 1996.
- Commies: A Journey Through the Old Left, the New Left, and the Leftover Left. San Francisco: Encounter Books, 2001.
- Spain Betrayed: The Soviet Union in the Spanish Civil War with Mary R. Habeck and Grigorii Nikolaevich Sevostianov. New Haven: Yale University Press, 2001.
- Red Star Over Hollywood: The Film Colony's Long Romance With The Left. With Allis Radosh. San Francisco: Encounter Books, 2005.
- A Safe Haven Harry S. Truman and the Founding of Israel. With Allis Radosh. New York: HarperCollins, 2009.
- The Sandbagging of Robert "KC" Johnson
- Why Conservatives Are So Upset with Thomas Woods's Politically Incorrect History Book
- Books in Review. The Black Book of Communism: Crimes, Terror, Repression
- Ronald Radosh, Commies; A Journey through the Old Left, the New Left, and the Leftover Left, Encounter Books, 2001. Page 1.
- Ronald Radosh, Commies; A Journey Through the Old Left, the New Left, and the Leftover Left, Encounter Books, 2001. Page 1.
- Commies, Chapter 2, "Commie Camp", pages 15-24.
- Commies, Chapter 3, "The Little Red Schoolhouse," pages 25-48.
- Commies, pages 47-48.
- Commies, pages 49-50.
- Commies, pages 51-52.
- Commies, pages 65-82.
- Commies, pages 78-79.
- Commies, pages 89-90.
- Commies, page 90.
- Commies, page 63.
- Commies, page 103-106
- Commies pages 113, 119-120
- http://www.breitbart.com/Big-Government/2013/09/26/Its-worse-than-a-conspiracy-it%20-s-consensus Why Academics Hate Diana West
- Comprehensive list of articles, Hudson Institute.
- The Two Faces Of Ronald Radosh, AntiWar.com.
- Haunted by the Cold War, Part II, The Nation, October 8, 2001.
- A Fellow Traveling, The Nation, July 16, 2001.
- McCarthyism Debate between Ellen Schrecker and Ronald Radosh.
- C-SPAN Q&A interview with Radosh, July 12, 2009