The Russians are coming
|This article does not cite any references or sources. (December 2007)|
The Russians are coming is a phrase attributed to United States Secretary of Defense James Forrestal in 1949. In full, Forrestal said "The Russians are coming. The Russians are coming. They’re right around. I’ve seen Russian soldiers."
Forrestal allegedly uttered those words while suffering from mental illness, not long before purportedly committing suicide. The allegation originated with Forrestal's bitter political enemy, columnist Drew Pearson, and has been verified by no other person. This is what Townsend Hoopes and Douglas Brinkley have to say about the episode in their 1992 book, Driven Patriot, the Life and Times of James Forrestal:
Pearson had, in fact, decided to fire his heaviest ammunition in a radio broadcast on April 9. He charged that Forrestal, awakened by the sound of a fire siren (on the night of April 1 at Hobe Sound), had rushed out of his cottage screaming, “The Russians are attacking.” He defined Forrestal’s condition as “temporary insanity.” In subsequent newspaper columns he asserted that Forrestal made three suicide attempts while in Florida – by drug overdose, by hanging, and by slashing his wrists. According to a later statement by [Navy psychiatrist Captain George] Raines, all of these assertions were lies.
– pp. 455–456.
Uses of the phrase
- As the title of a song by Val Bennett (which was itself a reggae version of Paul Desmond's classic jazz song Take Five)
- The title of the movie The Russians Are Coming, the Russians Are Coming was inspired by this phrase.
- As the title of a documentary – five of Russia's most promising young television reporters took a journalistic tour of small towns across the United States. 
- The title of an episode of the first series of Only Fools and Horses.
- The title of a book by Irish writer Denis Sugrue, Limerick Leader, Sept. 2010, "Limerickman falsely accused of being a 'KGB spy reveals all about his ordeal"
- The Russians Are Coming! The title of a book by English writer Erik Gustafson (2014) ISBN 9781291800678
- The title of a book by Russian Canadian writer Lily Alex  PublishAmerica (Jan, 2003) Language:English  ISBN 1591294584 
- The title of a composition by Robert Volkmann
- An allusion to the phrase is made in the film The Spy Next Door