- Ethel was critical in getting her brother, David, a machinist at Los Alamos, NM, to turn over documents and drawings that confirmed what they were already receiving from nuclear physicists such as Klaus Fuchs and Ted Hall.
- Ethel was trusted by at least two KGB spies, Semyon Semyonov and Alexander Feklisov. Masters of espionage tradecraft, Soviet spies awarded their trust to only the most loyal and dedicated American operatives.
- Ethel was present when Julius had meetings with spy ring members such as Joel Barr and Nathan Sussman. The couple’s small apartment was often used for meetings and the exchange of purloined documents.
- As the FBI closed in on the Rosenberg spy ring in the aftermath of revelations from physicist Fuchs, chemist Harry Gold, Greenglass and other Americans caught in the web of lies, Ethel was quickly assigned the task of collecting incriminating evidence and keeping it from law-enforcement authorities.
- After Julius was arrested and imprisoned, he informed another prisoner, Eugene Tartakow, an FBI plant, that Ethel assisted him on many of his spy projects.
Sunday, November 29, 2015
The Stalinist left is still trying to rewrite history about the Rosenberg's. Their devotion to the evil Communist cause cost untold lives.
Obama’s presidency isn’t over until the end of next year, yet rumors already are swirling about who he might pardon.
One name in particular keeps surfacing: Ethel Rosenberg, a dedicated communist and convicted espionage conspirator.
Willing to die for the Soviet cause along with her husband, Julius, in 1953, she is now receiving belated honors by misguided individuals and organizations that are more comfortable with claims based on emotional propaganda than actual historical evidence.
The current campaign was sparked by her brother and co-conspirator, David Greenglass, who later said he lied about Ethel’s involvement to protect his wife, Ruth. It was Ruth, not Ethel, who typed his notes about aspects of the highly secret Manhattan atom-bomb project that were turned over to KGB operatives.
There’s a New York City Council proclamation calling for an “Ethel Rosenberg Day of Justice in the Borough of Manhattan,” and a forthcoming segment of “60 Minutes” that will endeavor to show Ethel received an unfair trial and never should have been executed.
This is true — the trial was not a model of American jurisprudence and she was not deserving of execution.
But a presidential pardon would be wrong. Whatever the trial’s faults, Ethel was a staunch Soviet supporter and integrally involved in her husband’s espionage activities.
I and many other scholars who have studied the extensive Rosenberg case record are uniform in the belief that Julius Rosenberg had directed a highly efficient coterie of like-minded electrical engineers who stole military and industrial secrets from their employers and secreted them to Julius’ Soviet handlers. Critical items such as computers, anti-aircraft weapons, jet engines and the proximity fuse (which would eventually be used to shoot down an American U2 plane) were all passed to Soviet intelligence officers. Ethel was aware of all of it.
Over the last 20 years, the Venona files — long-secret decrypts of Soviet messages between Moscow and their agents in America — and the more recent release of KBG documents after the fall of the Soviet Union, the Vasiliev Papers, have greatly helped document the scope and depth of Soviet espionage in America. Only the comfortably ignorant can now deny the extent of the damage done or who the players were. Ethel’s role should no longer be in question.
Granted, Ethel Rosenberg wasn’t a spy master. But she was a devoted Communist who betrayed her country, assisted in her husband’s criminal activities and was very willing to die in the electric chair rather than admit her guilt.
The former Soviet Union may very well have good reason to honor her, and possibly even some Russians today, but a presidential pardon would be a disservice to those who fought totalitarianism and respect historical truth.
Allen M. Hornblum is the author of “The Invisible Harry Gold: The Man Who Gave the Soviets the Atom Bomb” (Yale, 2010).
I hereby indict the Jewish Communists of the 1950's and now. They are totalitarian Communists first and Jews someplace lower in rank. Here is a history lesson for those who missed it the first time around.