Poisoning Stalin (And FDR?)

The path that curiosity takes can be a curious thing in its own right.

I’d started from a question about FDR and had he been killed ( h/t Jason Calley in comments https://chiefio.wordpress.com/2012/01/28/floating-base/#comment-29699 )

That chain takes a long and tortuous path that eventually leads to the conclusion that there’s not a very good conclusion ;-) but the ride is interesting. One of the more interesting bits, though, is the death of Stalin. Near as I can tell, he was poisoned… and the who and why of it is also interesting.

OK, while it’s not the best way to tell a story, we’ll cover the strongest bit first. (Better storytelling is to end on the climax, but in this case I think the context of Stalin helps to understand the story of FDR.)


The Soviet man of Steel, he is loved by a few for raising Russia to world dominance and defeating Hitler. He is hated by many for the untold hundreds of thousands (to millions) he had killed on ALL sides. Yet he was a survivor. His death comes late in March of 1953. The wiki gives a more or less ‘standard view’ that he died in bed of a stroke. It does also mention that Molotov said Beria claimed to have killed Stalin. Yet fails to look into the question of “Did Molotov have ‘motive, capacity, opportunity’ to do the deed?” It is presented in a rather dismissive tone. Is that valid?


Stalin’s health deteriorated towards the end of World War II. He suffered from atherosclerosis from his heavy smoking. He suffered a mild stroke around the time of the Victory parade, and a severe heart attack in October 1945.

On the early morning hours of 1 March 1953, after an all-night dinner and a movie Stalin arrived at his Kuntsevo residence some 15 km west of Moscow centre with interior minister Lavrentiy Beria and future premiers Georgy Malenkov, Nikolai Bulganin and Nikita Khrushchev where he retired to his bedroom to sleep. At dawn, Stalin did not emerge from his room, having probably suffered a stroke that paralyzed the right side of his body.

Although his guards thought that it was odd for him not to rise at his usual time, they were under strict orders not to disturb him and left him alone the entire day. At around 10 p.m. he was discovered by Peter Lozgachev, the Deputy Commandant of Kuntsevo, who entered his bedroom to check up on him and recalled a horrifying scene of Stalin lying on the floor of his room wearing pyjama bottoms and an undershirt with his clothes soaked in stale urine. A frightened Lozgachev asked Stalin what happened to him, but all he could get out of the Generalissimo was unintelligible responses that sounded like “Dzhh.” Lozgachev frantically called a few party officials asking them to send good doctors.

The point about sending for ‘good doctors’ will matter later…

Lavrentiy Beria was informed and arrived a few hours afterwards, and the doctors only arrived in the early morning of 2 March in which they changed his bedclothes and tended to him. The bedridden Stalin died four days later, on 5 March 1953, at the age of 74, and was embalmed on 9 March. Officially, the cause of death was listed as a cerebral hemorrhage. His body was preserved in Lenin’s Mausoleum until 31 October 1961, when his body was removed from the Mausoleum and buried next to the Kremlin walls as part of the process of de-Stalinization.

It has been suggested that Stalin was assassinated. The ex-Communist exile Avtorkhanov argued this point as early as 1975. The political memoirs of Vyacheslav Molotov, published in 1993, claimed that Beria had boasted to Molotov that he poisoned Stalin: “I took him out.”

Khrushchev wrote in his memoirs that Beria had, immediately after the stroke, gone about “spewing hatred against [Stalin] and mocking him”, and then, when Stalin showed signs of consciousness, dropped to his knees and kissed his hand. When Stalin fell unconscious again, Beria immediately stood and spat.

After the Soviet Union collapsed, many old records were opened. After that all sorts of history got ‘re-written’ (or perhaps ‘written for the first time’ is more correct…)


(Yes, it’s Pravada – ‘truth’ – who’s reputation was anything but in the past. Now? Who knows…)

December 21 was the 126th birthday of Soviet leader Joseph Stalin. Historian and publicist Nikolay Dobryukha says the Kremlin archives contain documented evidence proving that Stalin was poisoned.

The discovered documents absolutely disprove all affirmations saying that Stalin died of cerebral hemorrhage caused by his poor health. These documents are the records of Stalin’s medical examination within the period of over 30 years. These documents also demonstrate that Stalin was not at all apprehensive of medical examinations and was not afraid of receiving treatment of doctors as it was rumored. It was also said that for fear to visit doctors Stalin often resorted to self-medication. In fact, highly-qualified doctors were called for in case of Stalin’s slightest indisposition and had close medical examination of the high-ranking client all day round.

Records made in September 1947 state that Joseph Stalin had initial stage hypertension, also chronic articular rheumatism and overfatigue. Doctor Kirillov made a record of Stalin’s blood pressure – 145 per 85 – which was excellent for his age of 67 at that time.
It was not true when some people stated that “Stalin was seriously ill, especially after the dramatic stress he endured during WWII”. These talks appeared as soon as bulletins about Stalin’s health were published for the first time on March 4, 1953. These official bulletins stated that on the night of March 2 Joseph Stalin had cerebral hemorrhage caused by his hypertension and atherosclerosis.

The false statements were encouraged by Lavrentiy Beria and his protйgйs Malenkov and Khrushchev as soon as they became leaders of the country.

There follows a lot of detailed intrigue (Russian authors are good at that ;-) involving the potential for a Stalin ‘double’ to have been poisoned as well, and dual reports of his taking ill in Moscow and outside of Moscow…

Some interesting details show up, including a fondness for bottled mineral water…

Many people knew that Beria was going to wage war against Stalin. His son Sergo said that father highly likely schemed something against Stalin
with the help of his supporters in law enforcement structures and with his own intelligence structure that was not controlled by any of the governmental structures.

Stalin’s bodyguards say that the leader got poisoned immediately after he drank mineral water.
Indeed, Stalin was found dead lying near a table on which a bottle with mineral water and a glass stood. The poison took effect instantaneously. Some sources state that Stalin fell down dead and others insist he fell down unconscious.

Study of the archives revealed
that on November 8, 1953 the Kremlin sanitary department wanted to hand “medicaments and three empty mineral water battles” over to the Stalin Museum. But for some reason, the department handed just two empty bottles to the Museum on November 9. What is the secret of the third lost bottle?
On the night of March 5, doctors got results of Stalin’s blood and urine tests which indicated the patient suffered from poisoning. But the doctors were afraid to tell Beria about poisoning as they feared he would blame any of them for the poisoning. Stalin’s liver was still enlarged, another factor typical of poisoning.

Early in the morning March 5, Stalin had bloody vomit as a result of which the pulse declined and the blood pressure dropped. The doctors were at a loss how to explain what was happening to the patient. All day long Stalin had bloody vomit and was in collapse several times.

In the evening on March 5, Stalin was wet through with perspiration, the pulse was thready and cyanosis intensified. The doctors gave the patient carbogene several times but the condition did not improve. At 9:40 p.m. Stalin had artificial ventilation but in vain. His death was registered at 9:50 p.m.

Internal GI bleeding is not a typical symptom of a stroke or brain hemorrhage… but GI bleeding and pain are a common symptom of poisons of several kinds.

So many folks had a reason to kill Stalin, that looking for those with ‘motive’ is more a question of looking for who did NOT have motive. Even some of his closest ‘fellow travelers’ were not too keen on him. As to ‘opportunity’, it looks like anyone with reasonable access to where he lived and the ability to ‘slip a mickey’ into his food and water bottles. Molotov, generally, had both. How about ‘capacity’? I’m pretty sure even before the age of the internet folks could find out about poisons fairly easily. But a poison that doesn’t look so much like a poison? Who could better advise on poisons than the folks that treat them. Was there some reason to think that doctors might have ‘been a bit grumpy’?


Doctors’ plot

The Doctors’ plot (Russian language: дело врачей [doctors’ affair], врачи-вредители [doctors-saboteurs] or врачи-убийцы [doctors-killers]) was the most dramatic anti-Jewish episode in the Soviet Union during Joseph Stalin’s regime, involving the “unmasking” of a group of prominent Moscow doctors, predominantly Jews, as conspiratorial assassins of Soviet leaders. This was accompanied by show trials and anti-Semitic propaganda in state-run mass media. Scores of Soviet Jews were promptly dismissed from their jobs, arrested, sent to the Gulag, or executed.

After the death of Joseph Stalin in March 1953, the new Soviet leadership declared that the case was fabricated.

Hmmmm…. So “Old Joe” was kicking up a fuss about the Jewish Doctors in Russia and sending them off to camps or killing them outright, with special emphasis on some of the best doctors in Russia, the Jewish ones. Now we know why he had to send for ‘the good doctors’, as he had set them up to be next on his ‘hit list’…

The death of Marshal Khorloogiin Choibalsan in Moscow early in 1952 concerned the aging Stalin who commented, “They die one after another. Shcherbakov, Zhdanov, Dimitrov, Choibalsan … die so quickly! We must change the old doctors for new ones.” At the end of 1952, Mikhail Ryumin indicated to his superior, Viktor Semyonovich Abakumov, Minister of State Security, that Professor Yakov Gilyarievich Etinger had committed malpractice in treating Zhdanov and Shcherbakov, allegedly with the intention of killing them. When Abakumov refused to believe the story, Ryumin went over his head directly to Stalin who saw the malpractice as part of a wider conspiracy to kill off the Soviet leadership. Under torture, prisoners seized in the Soviet investigation of the alleged Doctors’ Plot were compelled to produce ‘evidence’ to ‘prove’ that the Kremlin doctors, led by Stalin’s own physician, had in fact assassinated those mentioned by Stalin.

In a December 1, 1952, Politburo session, Stalin announced:

“Every Jewish nationalist is the agent of the American intelligence service. Jewish nationalists think that their nation was saved by the USA (there you can become rich, bourgeois, etc.). They think they’re indebted to the Americans. Among doctors, there are many Jewish nationalists.”

One of the agenda items of a December 4 meeting of the Presidium of the CPSU was “The situation in MGB and sabotage in the ranks of medical workers.” It was brought up by Stalin and vice-minister of MGB (Ministry of State Security) S.A. Goglidze. “Without me,” Stalin declared, “the country would be destroyed because you are unable to recognize enemies.” An outcome of this session was a decision to consolidate all intelligence and counter-intelligence services under the GRU, headed by S.I. Ogoltsov (later accused of organizing the killing of Solomon Mikhoels in 1948).

Here we see a gradual increase in paranoia as they ‘suck their own exhaust’ via extracting what then want to hear via torture.

But “why” does not concern us here. It’s pretty clear that Stalin was busy Whacking The Doctors and especially was getting ever more wound up in Antisemitism. There is a lot more at the link, especially details of the wide reach of the anti-Jewish moves being taken by Stalin.

At this point, the easy ‘leap’ would be to suspect Stalin’s doctors (perhaps even his OWN Doctor, whom he had accused) of having decided that “If we are already accused, and soon to be convicted, perhaps we might as well ‘do the deed’..” IMHO, that is a bit too simple. At that point in time, the accused Doctors did not have access.

How large a leap would it take, though, to get an ‘inside man’ who was able to ask those Doctors the best approach? The tasteless, odorless, colorless drug that could be slipped into his water bottle? Who would know the habits of Stalin well enough to plan the ‘what and how’? We will come to that right after we look at “After the Fall”…

What happened just AFTER Stalin was out of the picture? When no longer under the thumb of Stalin, what happened may indicate something about the motivators of the folks who stood to come to power from his passing.

Stalin’s death and the consequences

After Stalin’s death on March 5, 1953, the new leadership quickly distanced itself from the investigation into the plot. The charges were dismissed and the doctors exonerated in a March 31 decree by the newly appointed Minister of Internal Affairs Lavrentiy Beria, and on April 6 this was communicated to the public in Pravda. Chief MGB investigator and Deputy Minister of State Security M. D. Ryumin was blamed for making up the plot and was arrested and later executed.

Khrushchev’s statements

In his 1956 “Secret Speech”, Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev stated that the Doctors Plot was “fabricated… set up by Stalin”, but that Stalin did not “have the time in which to bring it to an end,” which saved the doctors’ lives. Khrushchev also told the session that Stalin called the judge in the case and, regarding the methods to be used, stated “beat, beat and, beat again.” Stalin told his Minister of State Security “[i]f you do not obtain confessions from the doctors we will shorten you by a head.” Stalin told Politburo members “You are blind like young kittens. What will happen without me? The country will perish because you do not know how to recognize enemies.” In fact, it has been suspected that Stalin’s inner circle feared for their lives. And recently an article published in a peer-review medical publication Surgical Neurology International (SNI) provides evidence supporting the long-held suspicion that Stalin was indeed poisoned with the anticoagulant Warfarin that caused his stroke. This carried out by members of his own inner circle, most likely Lavrenti Beria, and perhaps even Khrushchev, all of whom feared for their lives at the time of Stalin’s death.

So the ‘inner circle’ was also worried about an ‘off with their heads’ moment…


Vyacheslav Mikhailovich Molotov (Russian: Вячесла́в Миха́йлович Мо́лотов; 9 March, [O.S. 25 February] 1890 – 8 November 1986) was a Soviet politician and diplomat, an Old Bolshevik and a leading figure in the Soviet government from the 1920s, when he rose to power as a protégé of Joseph Stalin, to 1957, when he was dismissed from the Presidium (Politburo) of the Central Committee by Nikita Khrushchev.

So, a ‘well placed’ fellow. What kind of power had he been given? He had signed treaties. He had approved the killing of various folks at the direction of Stalin. But a seminal indicator is this one:

When Beria told Stalin about the Manhattan Project and its importance Stalin handpicked Molotov to be the man in charge of the Soviet atomic bomb project. However, under Molotov’s leadership the bomb, and the project iself, developed very slowly and Molotov was replaced by Beria in 1944 on the advice of Igor Kurchatov. When Harry S. Truman, the American President, told Stalin that the Americans had created a bomb never seen before, Stalin related the conversation to Molotov and told him to speed up development. On Stalin’s orders the Soviet government substantially increased investment in the project.

A very “trusted man” well inside the circle, with very important positions of power and authority. Why would HE ever turn against Stalin?

In the postwar period, Molotov’s power began to decline. A clear sign of Molotov’s precarious position was his inability to prevent the arrest in December 1948 for “treason” of his Jewish wife, Polina Zhemchuzhina, whom Stalin had long distrusted. Molotov never stopped loving his wife, and it is said that he ordered his maids to make dinner for two every evening to remind him that, in his own words, “she suffered because of me”. The couple were reunited by Beria upon the death of Stalin. In 1949, Molotov was replaced as Foreign Minister by Andrey Vyshinsky, although retaining his position as First Deputy Premier and membership of the Politburo.

I think we have our “motivation”…

So, let’s put some of this together:

Molotov had LOTS of ‘connections’. He had risen to great power, then was in mild decline, so would have held some resentment about that. His spouse was arrested for “treason” and he spent each night in a ritual of remembrance and sorrow. After Stalin dies, she is returned to him. I can think of no person more likely to ponder “how” to get that result.

The ‘inner circle’ were all afraid THEY would be next. Molotov would know this. His connection to the Jewish community, though his marriage, would have given him ample opportunity for ‘feed back’ about the “Doctor’s Plot” and impact on that community, and to gain advice on which drug to use. To this I would add that, IMHO, most of the medical professionals would likely have more sense of ‘kinship’ with each other than they would have ‘kinship’ feelings for Stalin. By this time most of the country must have been quite tired of the purges and killings.

To me, it is a very small ‘leap’ to suppose that Molotov ‘hatched the idea’, collected the Warfarin, and arranged with ‘fellow travelers’ to deliver the drug. The actions of the guards and nurses in their slow response and the quick release of The Doctors afterwards, the reunification of Molotov and his Wife. All speak to a simple pattern. That Beria and perhaps Khrushchev were ‘in on it’ seems possible to likely. I would expect one of them to have had the better access to the path of delivery, or the ability to ‘order’ someone to swap a bottle.


On the early morning hours of 1 March 1953, after an all-night dinner and a movie Stalin arrived at his Kuntsevo residence some 15 km west of Moscow centre with interior minister Lavrentiy Beria and future premiers Georgy Malenkov, Nikolai Bulganin and Nikita Khrushchev where he retired to his bedroom to sleep. At dawn, Stalin did not emerge from his room, having probably suffered a stroke that paralyzed the right side of his body.

“Opportunity” lands on Baria, Khrushchev, Malenkov and Bulganin. (Unless, of course, Molotov talked a member of the support staff into ‘doing the deed’…)

But it is at this point that the path goes just a bit cool. There is little left to choose one over the other, except their own words…

It has been suggested that Stalin was assassinated. The ex-Communist exile Avtorkhanov argued this point as early as 1975. The political memoirs of Vyacheslav Molotov, published in 1993, claimed that Beria had boasted to Molotov that he poisoned Stalin: “I took him out.”

Khrushchev wrote in his memoirs that Beria had, immediately after the stroke, gone about “spewing hatred against [Stalin] and mocking him”, and then, when Stalin showed signs of consciousness, dropped to his knees and kissed his hand. When Stalin fell unconscious again, Beria immediately stood and spat.

Even the New York Times has the story (though they got the attribution wrong):


New Study Supports Idea Stalin Was Poisoned
Published: March 05, 2003

Correction Appended

Fifty years after Stalin died, felled by a brain hemorrhage at his dacha, an exhaustive study of long-secret Soviet records lends new weight to an old theory that he was actually poisoned, perhaps to avert a looming war with the United States.
The 402-page book, ”Stalin’s Last Crime,” will be published later this month. Relying on a previously secret account by doctors of Stalin’s final days, its authors suggest that he may have been poisoned with warfarin, a tasteless and colorless blood thinner also used as a rat killer, during a final dinner with four members of his Politburo.

They base that theory in part on early drafts of the report, which show that Stalin suffered extensive stomach hemorrhaging during his death throes. The authors state that significant references to stomach bleeding were excised from the 20-page official medical record, which was not issued until June 1953, more than three months after his death on March 5 that year.

Four Politburo members were at that dinner: Lavrenti P. Beria, then chief of the secret police; Georgi M. Malenkov, Stalin’s immediate successor; Nikita S. Khrushchev, who eventually rose to the top spot; and Nikolai Bulganin.

The authors, Vladimir P. Naumov, a Russian historian, and Jonathan Brent, a Yale University Soviet scholar, suggest that the most likely suspect, if Stalin was poisoned, is Beria, for 15 years his despised minister of internal security.

Beria supposedly boasted of killing Stalin on May Day, two months after his death. ”I did him in! I saved all of you,” he was quoted as telling Vyacheslav M. Molotov, another Politburo member, in Khrushchev’s 1970 memoirs, ”Khrushchev Remembers.”

But Mr. Naumov and Mr. Brent dismiss Khrushchev’s own account of Stalin’s death, in the same memoirs, as an almost cartoonish distortion of the truth. With virtually everyone connected to the case now dead, the real story may never be known, Mr. Brent said in an interview this week.
Correction: March 8, 2003, Saturday An article on Wednesday about the death of Stalin and the possibility that he was poisoned by Politburo members to avert a looming war with the United States misstated the title and author of a memoir that included such a theory. It was by Vyacheslav M. Molotov, not by Nikita S. Khrushchev, and published in 1992 as ”Molotov Remembers.

The article goes on for 4 pages…

Did Beria do it on his own? Or was Molotov fingering an accomplice? Or just displacing blame for personal gain?

Nothing prevents Beria from getting Warfarin on his own. Molotov had already spent many years ‘doing nothing’. But years can wear on a man. Had Molotov ‘suggested’ to Beria, and that was why Beria was willing ‘to share’? Or was Molotov just covering his tracks?

Beria, too, had “Motive, Capacity, and Opportunity”:

His demise arrived at a convenient time for Lavrenty Beria and others, who feared being swept away in yet another purge. It is believed that Stalin felt Beria’s power was too great and threatened his own.

But that would leave the release of Molotov’s spouse and The Doctors as a minor loose end. Yes, it could be simple human kindness. It could be just ‘De-Stalinizing’ or it could simply be folks were tired of the purges and wanted to build a new, more human Russia.

My ‘sense of it’ would have Molotov “suggesting”, perhaps even supplying some technical information and / or supplying the drug. Someone as the agent of delivery. And all of the “inner circle” glad to have Stalin out of the way… But was “someone” Beria? From the NYT article:

Less than a month later, the doctors previously accused of trying to kill him were abruptly exonerated and the case against them was deemed an invention of the secret police. No Jews were deported east. By year’s end, Beria faced a firing squad, and Khrushchev had tempered Soviet hostility toward the United States.

Beria ran the secret police who had been implementing The Doctors Plot purge…

To my mind, that narrows the field even more. Molotov would not have used Beria if Beria was the weapon bringing pain to him. (Unless, of course, he could then have Beria himself brought down…)

From the wiki on Molotov:

Following Stalin’s death, a realignment of the leadership was sought, in the course of which, Molotov’s position was strengthened. Georgy Malenkov, Stalin’s successor in the post of Premier, reappointed Molotov as Minister of Foreign Affairs on 5 March 1953. Although Molotov was seen as a likely successor to Stalin in the immediate aftermath of his death, he never sought to become leader of the Soviet Union. A Troika was established immediately after Stalin’s death, consisting of Malenkov, Beria, and Molotov, but ended when Malenkov and Molotov deceived Beria. Molotov supported the removal and later the execution of Beria on the orders of Khrushchev. The new Party Secretary, Khrushchev, soon emerged as the new leader of the Soviet Union. He presided over a gradual domestic liberalisation and a thaw in foreign policy, shown by the reconciliation with Josip Broz Tito’s government in Yugoslavia, which Stalin had expelled from the communist movement. Molotov, an old-guard Stalinist, seemed increasingly out of place in this new environment, but he represented the Soviet Union at the Geneva Conference of 1955.

So the “facts after the fact” show Khrushchev the eventual ‘winner’. The accusation of Beria weakens the strength of veracity of the memoirs of Molotov (he might well have concocted the story as a ‘tool’ to displace Beria, and clearly worked with Malenkov to deceive Beria). If “the outcome indicates the input”, it was not Beria who came out best. Both Khrushchev and Malenkov were both with Stalin on the night of his last movie. Both ‘came out well’, as did Molotov.

In the end, the pattern with the most strength is that Molotov hatched the plan, then talked one or more of the others in the ‘inner circle’ into doing a ‘bottle swap’. From that point onward, it would take very little to assure that any ‘help’ arrived slowly. After all, Stalin himself had left orders not to be awakened once he had gone to bed and had “the good doctors” moved far far away…

Khrushchev came out best, but only after some machinations. Molotov eventually is rehabilitated, but has to spend some time in the “Dog House”. Both Malenkov and Bulganin do “OK”. ANY of them or some collection of them, could easily have ‘done the deed’. Then indulged in even more fratricide after the fact. That Molotov fingers Beria would be a very convenient way of deflecting any future rumors. That Molotov only gets a modest rehab implies he had no inside information over Khrushchev. At the end of the the day, we know that Malenkov and Molotov conspired against Beria. That, to me, argues for them being ‘close’.

(Beria had as ‘problems’ not just that many of these folks had family in his jails, but also that he was advocating for closer ties to America and pointing out how much money could be had via the USA and a slightly more ‘capitalist friendly’ attitude. Odd positions for the Secret Police Enforcer to take, then again, perhaps he did not have mandatory attendance at indoctrination camp ;-)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nikolai_Bulganin has Bulganin as an ally of Khrushchev and working to displace Malinkov. That argues for old Nikita and Nikolai as being ‘close’. His promotions under Nikita act to confirm it, too.

In Russia, things are rarely as they seem, so all of this could be quite wrong. Eventually in a fit of de-Stalinizing, Khrushchev had Molotov demoted, eventually to being ambassador to Mongolia. Stalin’s daughter reports kind words from Molotov about her father, but what else could be expected?

According to Roy Medvedev, Stalin’s daughter Svetlana recalled Molotov and his wife telling her: “Your father was a genius. There’s no revolutionary spirit around nowadays, just opportunism everywhere.” China’s our only hope. Only they have kept alive the revolutionary spirit”.

So, honestly devoted, or just ‘the polite lie’?

Winston Churchill in his wartime memoirs lists many meetings with Molotov. Acknowledging him as a “man of outstanding ability and cold-blooded ruthlessness”, Churchill concluded: “In the conduct of foreign affairs, Mazarin, Talleyrand, Metternich, would welcome him to their company, if there be another world to which Bolsheviks allow themselves to go.

Might Winston have given some “Advice” to Molotov?…

So which ‘story’ is the more correct one? All of them, in concert? Beria as “Lone Wolf”, or perhaps with some helpful hints from Molotov? (Though the head of a secret police should be well versed in poisons and methods…) Molotov and Malenkov conspiring to free The Doctors (and the spouse)? Then losing out to N & N in the post event struggle… The “outcome” argues for N & N, but the “Motive” argues for M & M, while simple fear argues for Beria on his own. That M & M with Beria formed the initial post event Troika implies they were the primary focus of power and that N & N only rose to power opportunistically after the fact. That would indicate M & M as active agents and Beria as despised by all, but powerful (given HIS eventual demise). It has more possibles than a traditional Russian Novel…

But what does NOT fit the pattern is a simple stroke and natural peaceful death in bed…

( If I HAD to chose one, I’d choose M & M working together, but knowing that the other key players were also not enamored of Stalin, so not likely to interfere. Then Nikita finagles a rise to power and starts displacing folks…)


Well, if that trip to Russia was a typical complicated Russian Novel, the story of FDR is no better. I would put it in a separate posting, but the two are tied by facts and history. The original story that sent me on this ‘couple of day’ excursion into the 1940’s and 50’s was one that has Stalin asserting to FDR’s son that Churchill had FDR poisoned…

As it is even less clear, I’ll be leaving a lot of the detail in links, for exploration ‘as you like it’.

First up, FDR was in poor health for quite a long time. He had been stricken with Polio in 1921 and that can lead to a lifetime of accumulating problems. Further, he was The President during times of war. Even in peace times, young men take the office and exit 4 or 8 years later with gray hair and lined faces. There is a long litany of other health issues, any or all of which could be correct explanations of what happened to him.

Clearly there are plenty of confounding factors.


Has a pretty good litany of his reported ‘ills’. I’ll skip down to ‘the good parts’:

Two independent lines of evidence suggest FDR had a malignant melanoma excised while in the White House:

Between 1920 and 1932 FDR developed an enlarging pigmented lesion above his left eye. This lesion vanished between 1940 and 1944, leaving a scar and a sparse lateral eyebrow.

During lectures in 1963 and 1965, Dr. George Pack stated that his friend, Dr. Frank Lahey of Boston, had seen FDR in consultation in 1944 and had informed the president that he had a metastatic tumor, and advised him not to run for a fourth term.

Interestingly, FDR’s main health problem, starting around November 1944, was anorexia and weight loss. No confirmation of the melanoma theory is possible, however, FDR’s medical record is missing.

Addendum: Dr. Philip Kousoubris reports (Nov. 2003) that an older surgeon, still living in the Boston area, claims to have seen the melanoma in the pathology department at Beth Israel-Deaconess Hospital while an intern. According to this surgeon “FBI men” sequestered the sample in the safe of a Boston-area company.

GI problem During the night of November 28, 1943 FDR had an “acute digestive attack.” He was attending the Tehran conference at the time. It must have been a serious event, since there were ill-founded rumors he had been poisoned.

By January 1944 his doctors thought this had been an episode of the flu. (I have not read an account of the episode, but one wonders whether it could have been an attack of cholescystitis or an embolic event. FDR had left ventricular enlargement when first examined by a cardiologist in March 1944.)

One of FDR’s close friends dates the president’s physical decline from this event.

So how ‘ill founded’ were these rumors? And since when does it take 2 months do diagnose “flu”?

Well, it is possible that he had those symptoms as a side effect of metastasized cancer (or treatment for it). But they also bear a striking resemblance to symptoms of poisoning. From that date forward, his health decreases rapidly. In early 1945, he dies. From Tehran to Yalta it’s all down hill. With “flu” ending in ‘brain hemorrhage’…

(That a bit over a year later, AFTER re-election, he dies; is suspicious. Either his doctors were lying about how good his health was and his ability to run the country for another 4 years or it was an unexpected turn for the worse of unknown etiology. Neither is what we are told.)

The “cover story” was influenza (and since most everything has ‘flu like symptoms’ it, too, fits those symptoms. Though not the symptoms that follow; in their recurrence and duration.) That since shortly after his death, his medial records have vanished, only adds to the mystery and to the suspicion that “something was up”… That there were no other reports of folks going down with influenza and the incorrectly named ‘stomach flu’ that is typically a different illness or food that’s ‘gone off’; that also argues that it was ‘something else’.

In January 1944 FDR began complaining of headaches in the evening. “He seemed strangely tired, even in the morning hours; he occasionally nodded off during a conversation; once, he blacked out half-way through signing his name to a letter, leaving a long scrawl”.

FDR was referred to Dr. Howard Bruenn, a cardiologist at Bethesda Naval Hospital who, on March 27, 1944 found him cyanotic, breathless, with an enlarged left ventricle and a blood pressure of 186/108. Bruenn diagnosed hypertensive heart disease and wanted to give digitalis, but was prohibited by Dr. Ross McIntire, the president’s personal physician and then surgeon-general of the U.S. Navy.

With that kind of blood pressure, you expect headaches as a symptom of cardiovascular disease. Is this related to his “flu”, or just the normal process of wearing out after a life of many stresses and too many indulgences? The rest of those symptoms look to me like something else is going on. Blacking out? Nodding off?


And moving forward one year, what do we find then?

The President left the Yalta Conference on February 12, 1945, and flew to Egypt and boarded the USS Quincy operating on the Great Bitter Lake near the Suez Canal. Aboard Quincy, the next day he met with Farouk I, king of Egypt, and Haile Selassie, emperor of Ethiopia. On February 14, he held a historic meeting with King Abdulaziz, the founder of Saudi Arabia, a meeting some historians believe holds profound significance in U.S.-Saudi relations even today. After a final meeting between Roosevelt and Prime Minister Winston Churchill, Quincy steamed for Algiers, arriving February 18, at which time Roosevelt conferred with American ambassadors to Britain, France and Italy. At Yalta, Lord Moran, Winston Churchill’s physician, commenting on Roosevelt’s ill health, said that he was a dying man.

When he returned to the United States, he addressed Congress on March 1 about the Yalta Conference, and many were shocked to see how old, thin and frail he looked. He spoke while seated in the well of the House, an unprecedented concession to his physical incapacity. Roosevelt opened his speech by saying, “I hope that you will pardon me for this unusual posture of sitting down during the presentation of what I want to say, but…it makes it a lot easier for me not to have to carry about ten pounds of steel around on the bottom of my legs.” Still in full command mentally, he firmly stated “The Crimean Conference ought to spell the end of a system of unilateral action, the exclusive alliances, the spheres of influence, the balances of power, and all the other expedients that have been tried for centuries– and have always failed. We propose to substitute for all these, a universal organization in which all peace-loving nations will finally have a chance to join.”
On March 29, 1945, Roosevelt went to the Little White House at Warm Springs, Georgia to rest before his anticipated appearance at the founding conference of the United Nations. On the afternoon of April 12, Roosevelt said, “I have a terrific pain in the back of my head.” He then slumped forward in his chair, unconscious, and was carried into his bedroom. The president’s attending cardiologist, Dr. Howard Bruenn, diagnosed a massive cerebral hemorrhage (stroke). At 3:35 pm that day, Roosevelt died. As Allen Drury later said, “so ended an era, and so began another.” After Roosevelt’s death an editorial by The New York Times declared, “Men will thank God on their knees a hundred years from now that Franklin D. Roosevelt was in the White House”.

So, several things to point out. But first, what are the odds that BOTH Stalin and FDR would die of a stroke? No, don’t answer that… rich food, smoking, I know. But still…

Prior to Yalta, FDR met with Churchill in Egypt at the Cairo Conference. He was reported in reasonably good health then.

FDR at Cairo Conference

FDR at Cairo Conference

Original Image

No one says he looked “like a dying man” then. Did Sir Winston’s doctor know something “special” after Yalta? …

I would also point out that a man who can not stand to give a speech is a far different man than one who plans a trip 1/2 way around the world into a war zone to confer face to face with someone like Stalin. No, “something changed” over the course of that trip. Compare this picture from during his speech to congress in early 1945:

FDR to Congress early 1945

FDR to Congress early 1945

Yes, harsher lighting, so some of the ‘lines in the face’ are a photo technique artifact. But the cheeks look thinner, the eyes more tired. There is less “presence” to the man, and the sense of being ‘in touch’ is dimmed. That this is during a speech to congress, and he had to make the concession of staying seated to do it; that says he wanted to be on ‘top of his game’ but simply could not be.

The original link that started me on this expedition (and a duplicate of the same story) are here (and just after it):




The World War II Cairo conference between Pres. Roosevelt, Prime Minister Churchill, and Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek ended on Oct. 26, 1943. That evening I was given orders to fly a group of participants from Cairo to Tehran. Up to that time, I had not been aware that there was going to be a Big Four meeting of the Super-Powers in Tehran.

As I went out to the plane that morning to get it ready to go, two limousines came from the city. They were T. V. Soong’s Chinese delegates. I flew them to Tehran that day.

En route, I stopped at Habbaniyah in Iraq for refueling, and while on the ground an Air Force B-25 arrived with an old friend of mine flying it, and with L. Col. Elliott Roosevelt, the President’s son. I introduced him and Roosevelt to the Chinese, and vice versa.

I don’t know whether any of you ever realized this, but years later the fact that Elliott Roosevelt had gone to the Tehran conference brought up one of the most amazing untold facts in our history. I can only imagine why more had not been written about it.

Because Elliott had met Stalin in Tehran with his father in 1943, in late 1946, Gardner Cowless, publisher of LOOK magazine asked him to go to Moscow to interview Stalin.

Roosevelt accepted this offer and did interview Stalin there. At the end of a long interview, he turned to the Generalissimo and asked one more question, “Why is it that my mother has never been permitted to visit Moscow even though she has made three very formal applications for the trip?”

Stalin glared at Elliott and said, “You don’t know why?”

Elliott replied, “No!”

Quickly, Stalin responded, “Don’t you know who killed your father?”

Roosevelt-shocked-answered, “No.”

Stalin rising from his chair, continued, “Well, I’ll tell you why I have not invited her here. As soon as your father died, I asked my ambassador in Washington to go immediately to Georgia with a request to view the body.” Stalin believed that if Gromyko could see the body he would confirm that the cerebral hemorrhage that had caused his death had caused extensive discoloration and distortion.

Elliot responded that he knew nothing about that and then Stalin said, “Your mother refused to permit the lid of the coffin to be opened so that my ambassador could see the body.” Adding “I sent him there three times trying to impress upon your mother that it was very important for him to view the President’s body. She never accepted that. I have never forgiven her.”

This forced Elliott to ask this last question, “…but why?”

Stalin took a few steps around the office, and almost in a rage roared, “They poisoned your father, of course, just as they have tried repeatedly to poison me.”

“They, who are they,” Elliot asked

“The Churchill gang!” Stalin roared, “They poisoned your father, and they continue to try to poison me…the Churchill gang!”

I had heard, while in Tehran, that Roosevelt and Churchill had had a strenuous argument in front of Stalin and Chiang during the conference on the subject of decolonialization of South East Asia. I have read it in a government publication of the time. Then, this account of Elliott’s visit to Moscow in 1946 was written and signed by him and appeared in the February 9, 1986 issue of the nationwide Sunday Supplement magazine “PARADE.”

We all know that there are amazing stories that can not be found in the history books. That is what I am saying here. Most students have not been able to learn that Chiang Kai-shek was a member of this Four Power Conference in Tehran. But, I was there. I had flown the Chinese delegates there from Cairo, and I have read it in a Congressional Committee Report, “The U. S. Government and the Vietnam” Part 1-1945-1951″ by the U. S. Government Printing Office, 1984.

Both sources have been in the public domain for more than 10 years. Why haven’t we seen them, on campus, in the History books and in classes?

In 1953, in a toast before the New York Press Club, John Swinton, former Chief of Staff of the New York Times and the “Dean of his Profession” stated: (part extracted)

“If I allowed my honest opinions to appear in one issue of my paper, before twenty-four hours my occupation would be gone. The business of journalists is to destroy the truth; to pervert; to vilify; to fawn at the feet of mammon, and to sell this country and this race for their daily bread. We are the tools and vessels for rich men behind the scenes. We are the jumping jacks, they pull the strings and we dance. Our talents, our possibilities and our lives are all the property of other men. We are intellectual prostitutes.”

From my own experience, I know that there are countless journalists who could say that. Just consider what they said about Oliver Stone’s Film “JFK” and about my own book “JFK, the CIA, Vietnam and the Plot to Assassinate John F. Kennedy.”“`

L. Fletcher Prouty

I’ve quoted this in full as it is apparently out in several places and as I’m non-commercial (and, I hope, educational) it ought to fall under Fair-Use doctrine (unless that’s been repealed already 8-{)

It has a couple of salient points, but first, we do have to note that Stalin was more than a little bit paranoid. It might well have been his own people trying to poison him for some time, and only succeeding many years later; but blaming it on Churchill. Then again, given what we’ve seen of The Great Game, I don’t think I’d trust either of them to serve me dinner…

We also have to note that “not seeing a body” says little factual, while denying viewing may simply be a personal wish. (“Show my dead husband to this Bolshevik so he can gloat? No way!” comes to mind.) So Stalin is at minimum making an unjustified leap off a cliff of conclusion…


Roosevelt was pushing for the UN. He wanted an alternative to the power politics of the prior centuries, the centers of power and the influence pedaling. He wanted the UK to decolonize Asia. (And, perhaps, the rest of the world too). In short, he was advocating for An End To Empire… and to the head minister of one of the largest surviving Empires in the world. He was demanding an end to The Great Game.

To the extent this report is correct, he was demanding it and arguing over it.

Pearl Harbor ( December 7, 1941 ) was a memory, though persistent. D-Day ( June 6, 1944 ) was past, if only by a few months. Yalta was about setting expectations for how to proceed toward the post European war state of affairs, and Japan. The USA was firmly committed to The War and the end in Europe was approaching. A ‘change at the top’ would not have too great an impact (and, in fact, did not.) The “political calculus” is fairly direct.

Have one of what will be the Super Powers strongly advocating for an end to your entire Empire and “way of life”; advocating for very similar Socialist policies to those that had caused such trouble on The Continent (even if less extreme that those in Soviet Russia); or ‘roll the dice’.

I have a hard time imagining the question NOT being asked. And, once asked, how can you choose “An End To Empire” over “Good-by Old Friend”… Making the “hard but necessary decision” is a hallmark of British Character.

So, back at our triad: “Motive, Capacity, Opportunity”.

Churchill surely had motive. He could look ahead to the end of the war and know that this was a Pivot Point of history. End this war with one set of Progressive-Socialists (admittedly of the Racist sorts, though America in the 1940’s was fairly racist too… and Nationalist sort… though America was rather Nationalist too…) and let another set form a U.N. and demand an End Of Empire? Or start to “win the peace” now? Before the ideas were too far along and while there were still a few years of battle left to wash those ideas safely away?

Given how “out front” FDR was about his ideas, there was little to indicate he was in doubt about them. Less to indicate he would change his mind. And even less to indicate he recognized that saying such things openly to the person most likely to be damaged by them, and a person of power at that, was just Risky Business. In short, he was terribly Naive about how to play The Great Game.

Capacity? Churchill in particular, and the United Kingdom in general, had condemned hundreds of thousands to death. Dealing death was day to day business for them. (And, to some extent, is still so today for Great Powers. The UK was not unique in this, just more practiced from longer “time in grade”…) The Royals of Europe had been poisoning, shooting, bombing, knifing, and beheading each other (and a large variety of even less savory things) for centuries. As far as “moral barriers”, a bit of poison in the tea would be about as hard to accept as ‘tea without sugar’.

Opportunity? That Churchill had plenty of opportunities to use his ‘friendship’ to ‘slip a little something’ into a beverage is clear. These two hung out together at several “conferences” and many other meetings during this time. A ‘slow poison’ that could be delivered in several doses and places was easily possible. As Warfarin was not yet developed, and the dicoumarol that was known is slightly bitter (and takes a modestly large dose), I suspect something else was used. “What?” will have to remain a “dig here!” for now (as this posting is WAY too long already..) Then again, “gin and tonic” is a bit bitter, as is coffee, so perhaps dicoumarol could be worked in over several meals… But I suspect some older, more trusted material, would more likely be chosen.

Yes, motive, capacity, and opportunity were all present.

Then we have the odd ‘coincidence in time’ that FDR meets Churchill in Cairo (and they argue), then at Tehran (and he gets sick) then again at Yalta (and gets worse), then again afterwards; and at each step FDR gets worse. (Another ‘dig here’ would be to find out if any other meetings happened after that date, and were any more ‘flu’ episodes to follow).

Some Conclusions

OK, some quick conclusions:

Unless there is an autopsy (and even that might be inconclusive this many years on) we will never know if there is evidence of being poisoned. All we really have is one very sick man who suddenly got much sicker. The time-line and symptoms could match cancer that had spread to the bowl (and elsewhere?). I have personal history with family members that attests to how this can have onset-to-end measured in a few months.

Add to that the worries of one significantly paranoid Stalin and it makes for a good yarn.

However, we can’t conclude much beyond that.

For my money, I can’t quite imagine reporting to The Royals that they were scheduled for The Dustbin Of History by this “colonial” and NOT having some kind of plan to deal with it… The “moral compass” of leadership of most countries (and substantially all Empires, or they would not have become empires) is simply broken.

And yet, any decent observer might simply have noticed his melanoma, noticed his decay, and simply counseled patience.

Some Links, and a summary of each

The Health Angle:


A very detailed and well thought out analysis of the medical details that concludes malignant melanoma in the brain.

Again: I can easily see that as possible. Yet, many of the symptoms and evidence would be just as at home with different kinds of poisonings… The door is neither shut, nor fully opened…

Some Chronology Links:

the morning of December 7, 1941 (December 8 in Japan)

November 22–26, 1943

from 28 November to 1 December 1943


D-Day June 6, 1944

held February 4–11, 1945

A View From The CIA

IF you click on the next link, remember to wave hello to the nice CIA folks

You DO have a camera on your computer or cell phone, don’t you? ;-)


Not too surprising, even the CIA has a page on FDR. And equally unsurprising, it explores the issue of ‘bugging’ of the conferences:

A Different Take on FDR at Teheran
Raising Questions

Warren F. Kimball

Gary Kern’s piece, “How ‘Uncle Joe’ Bugged FDR”—published in Studies in Intelligence, vol. 47, no. 1 (2003)—nicely summarizes what we know about electronic eavesdropping done by Soviet intelligence at the Teheran and Yalta conferences. The story Kern tells is well known, although he has dug up some excellent atmospherics from recent memoirs and Russian literature. There is no question that Roosevelt was bugged at Teheran and Yalta, as the sources published over the years that I cite below indicate. Kern concludes that FDR’s failure to react stemmed from a combination of “profound ignorance of the Bolshevik dictatorship … and wishful thinking,” a resuscitation of the hoary FDR-as-naif argument that has been around since the Second World War.

According to Kern’s references, Sergo Beria, who was one of the “listeners” at the Teheran Conference, said Stalin had him listen to Roosevelt’s conversations to determine the president’s attitude regarding opening a second front, since Churchill “was against it.” But what are Beria’s recollections of what FDR had to say? “During his conversations with his collaborators [advisors] Roosevelt always expressed a high opinion of Stalin ….” They know we are listening, commented Stalin, “yet they speak openly!” When Beria claimed that the microphones were too well hidden to be spotted, Stalin marveled: “It’s bizarre. They say everything in fullest detail ….”[2] One can read that as FDR-the-naive or as FDR-the-shrewd, who knew full well that his words were heard and used the opportunity to try to convince the Soviet leader that the West was not dedicated to the overthrow of his government.

Few accuse Winston Churchill of naiveté, especially about the Soviet Union, yet his quarters, at Yalta and during previous meetings with Stalin, were also wired by the Soviets. In August 1942, during the prime minister’s first stay in Moscow for meetings with Stalin, Churchill received warnings that his rooms were bugged. He was skeptical, but he played to the secret listeners by calling the Russians “lower in the scale of nature than the orang-outang,” intending that they-know-that-he-knew.[3] I have found no record of the British telling the Americans of the eavesdropping that took place in Moscow in 1942, but a nation that shared the ULTRA secret would certainly have shared its knowledge of Soviet electronic eavesdropping. Since the so-called servants at Teheran were clearly carrying sidearms under their uniforms, as Kern points out, it was obvious to all that service was not their primary task.

It goes on for a fair amount more. Even the bibiography is interesting as it has things like the statement that Beria was planting bugs:

[7]Beria also refers to planting bugs in gifts presented to Averell Harriman, presumably when he was US ambassador in Moscow during the war. Beria, 100.
[9]Churchill used a more flowery phrase—”the right to guide the course of history is the noblest prize of victory”
—but the meaning was the same as Stalin’s. Warren F. Kimball, Forged in War (New York: Morrow, 1997), 209.

And how would Churchill have felt about having that “noblest prize” carted off by FDR and his UN / decolonialization ideas?…

More on Bugs and a bit on Health


That link has a rather fascinating story of the degree to which Stalin had the conference locations bugged. That Churchill and FDR supposedly knew they were bugged, and how you can use that kind of information to your own advantage. BUT, this also implies that Stalin might well have had some more “inside” information about any plans to poison FDR. Only the listening station translators and Stalin are likely to have known for sure, but still… It present opportunities for Stalin to perhaps have had a bit of ‘special’ information founding his paranoia…

A sample:

* Divergence in goals between the U.S. and British. FDR was annoyed the prior fall when Churchill spoke privately to Stalin about their respective “spheres of influence” (e.g., 90% Russian influence in Hungary, an equivalent amount for Britain in Greece). At the same time, Churchill was peeved that FDR was treating him more as what, in modern terms, might be called a “wingman” rather than an equal partner with the Americans and Soviets.

FDR’s Rapid Deterioration

The state of FDR’s health can use extended discussion. How bad was he, anyway? Did he end up yielding more than he would have under normal circumstances?

The major value in the piece, outside the information about spying and taps, is just the continued theme of UK as “wingman” in the eyes of FDR, and wishing to ‘divide the world’ with Stalin in The Great Game. How long can a power that sees itself as “Central” accept the subtle ‘Snub of indifference’ before deciding it needs to take action for its own interests?

All in all, a very good read. It, too, talks about the “influenza” in Tehran, but also says he became sick in Yalta as well…

But the long, arduous journey to Yalta so tired FDR that he was sick within 48 hours of his arrival. His daughter shared with her husband the fears of the President’s doctors about his “ticker”—which, she explained in alarm, was worse than they had known to date. FDR’s blood pressure had risen so dangerously high that his doctors urged that he not work more than four hours a day. Yalta involved so many matters—and so many different disputes to arbitrate among the Allies—that relaxing was well-nigh impossible.

In the year before, in the midst of his reelection campaign, FDR’s doctors had become increasingly concerned about his health. He had never really bounced back from the attack of influenza he experienced at his earlier summit with Churchill and Stalin at Teheran. A year and a quarter later, matters were far worse.

So, simply pushing himself far too hard for someone in frail health, or something more sinister? What are the odds that TWICE he would go to a summit with Churchill and get sick shortly AFTER arriving (and not in transit)? A mystery that has no answer. And MUST it be an exclusive “or”?…

A Couple of More For Background


Discussion of FDR as “the dying president” with some photos.

This next one is an interesting read, but hard to place into the narrative:


It gives a fair amount of insight into how these various conferences were seen by different players and what kind of thinking processes happen. That one also has an interesting picture of FDR in it, looking worn.

FDR at Yalta

FDR at Yalta

Even the footnotes have some ‘good stuff’ in them, like a pointer to more detail on the Stalin ideas:

39. For the text of these and other messages exchanged between FDR and Stalin, see Stalin’s Correspondence With Churchill, Attlee, Roosevelt and Truman, 1941-45. (New York: E.P. Dutton, 1958). Stalin’s suspiciousness was proverbial. For a graphic example of this trait of his personality, see Elliott Roosevelt, “Why Stalin ‘NEVER FORGAVE’ Eleanor Roosevelt”, Parade Magazine, February 9, 1986, 14-17. In late November of 1946, during a Kremlin interview granted to Elliott Roosevelt by Stalin, the Soviet dictator charged that “the Churchill gang” poisoned FDR and that this gang “continue to try to poison me”. Indeed, the thought that Stalin had, at the very least, pronounced paranoid tendencies has occurred to several Western biographers of the Soviet leader. For greater details, see the outstanding two-volume biography of Stalin by Robert C. Tucker.


A link (with a very dark graphical theme) that explores the melanoma thesis, purporting to find brain involvement via an analysis of reading patterns during a speech where some words were omitted (indicating visual field reduction). But the leap from that to melanoma, instead of brain infarct, is a bit much. That claim that FDR was not fit to run, when he did, for a 4 th term is likely true (regardless of cause).

Deeper Into The Melanoma Thesis


The home page for the book that explores the melanoma thesis. Has some rather nice photos and evidence on it. It presents a fairly well reasoned analysis that clearly shows significant medical issues, even before Yalta, and details such things as the progression of his circulatory issues and his probable melanoma surgery. An example from the opening:

Saturday, November 5, 2011
Pearl Harbor by Steven M.Gillon. FDR and Cocaine

My co-author Eric Fettmann, who has read an advance copy of a new FDR book by Steven M. Gillon entitled “Pearl Harbor” discusses certain aspects of FDR’s health. I’m told in particular he theorizes how Dr. McIntire treated FDR on a daily basis with nasal medicine for his “sinus” condition that contained cocaine. He further notes that a number of physicians confirmed that cocaine was commonly employed at this time. In the 1960’s when I was an operating room technician, before med school, cocaine was routinely employed as an anesthetic for nasal treatments and still is today.

Further down is a discussion of the hidden medical treatment of Grover Cleavland (one has to wonder how they would take to computerized medical records being mandated sent to the government…) and then this bit:

published on the front page of the Chicago Tribune, the following account of Franklin Roosevelt’s (who died of cancer at age 63) health on the day after his death. Trohan lived to the ripe old age of 100 and was never publically villified for his article. Presidential physician Ross McIntire simply ignored it, as did the American public.

It includes two ‘thumbnail’ sized images of the newspaper article that are in fact quite large and readable once you click on them, so don’t ignore the ‘too small to read things’, click them instead… Of most interest to me is that this article asserts his decline began at the Tehran conference. So perhaps a bit of ‘dig here’ starting at about that time, so see if any meetings were held with Churchill then that also had a ‘touch of flu’ might be in order…

FDR Trib Page 1

FDR Trib Page 1

FDR Trib Page 2

FDR Trib Page 2

Another in the same mold


The Scandals of FDR


What would a peek at FDR be without a “Scandal Sheet”? This one pretty much claims he was only slightly worse than Stalin. Then again, a quick look over it didn’t turn up anything he clearly did not do… At any rate, nice fodder for ‘future digging’ so I’m preserving the link here. A fun example? OK:

U.S. Population (1935)…120,000,000
46,000,000 Eligible for Old Age Pension
30,000,000 Children prohibited from working
30,000,000 Government employees
13,999,998 Unemployed

Left to produce U.S. wealth = 2
Just you and me – and I’m all worn out!

It’s nice to know that someone ELSE is also focused on the question of “who is producing the wealth” ;-)

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About E.M.Smith

A technical managerial sort interested in things from Stonehenge to computer science. My present "hot buttons' are the mythology of Climate Change and ancient metrology; but things change...
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29 Responses to Poisoning Stalin (And FDR?)

  1. pouncer says:

    When you tire of (though I doubt you’ll “finish”) research on FDR you might want to consider the evidence that Woodrow Wilson was similarly assassinated… “stroke” is surprisingly common, isn’t it?

  2. Jason Calley says:

    Ricin often causes flu like symptoms, and is both easily made and essentially undetectable. The main problem with positing it as having been used for FDR is that it is normally fatal in only two or three days. Perhaps a series of smaller doses spread out over a time…

  3. adolfogiurfa says:

    @E.M. You surprise us everyday. What a versatility in themes for your blog. Don´t you sleep?

  4. There is and perhaps always has been murderous intrigue in high places, and few brave (foolish?) enough to risk speaking out:

    “If I allowed my honest opinions to appear in one issue of my paper, before twenty-four hours my occupation would be gone. The business of journalists is to destroy the truth; to pervert; to vilify; to fawn at the feet of mammon, and to sell this country and this race for their daily bread. We are the tools and vessels for rich men behind the scenes. We are the jumping jacks, they pull the strings and we dance. Our talents, our possibilities and our lives are all the property of other men. We are intellectual prostitutes.” – John Swinton, former Chief of Staff of the New York Times (1953)


    Today a great mystery is unfolding: Western nations are collapsing, as post-Climategate (Nov 2009) events revealed official “stone-walling” on decades of deceit about the Sun – the source of Earth’s heat and its elements.

    http://dl.dropbox.com/u/10640850/20110722_Climategate_Roots.doc **

    The intrigue started in 1972 when meteorites first revealed evidence that Earth’s heat source is the same nuclear furnace that made our elements and spit them out five billion years (5 Gyr) ago in a supernova explosion [Nature 240, 99-101 (1972)]

    Click to access XenonInCarbonaceousChondrites.pdf

    The intrigue thickened in 1975 when major research universities (U Chicago, Harvard, Caltech) and NAS members started to hide, avoid, or manipulate experimental evidence that:

    a.) The inner region of the Solar System initially consisted almost entirely of Fe, O, Ni, Si and S. These formed rocky planets (like Earth) and ordinary meteorites. The inner region of the Solar System contained very few light-weight elements (H, He, C and N). Comets and meteorites brought these elements in later, depositing them on outer layers of Fe-rich planets.

    b.) The outer region of the Solar System initially consisted almost entirely of H, He, C and N. These formed gaseous planets (like Jupiter) a carbon-rich inclusions of meteorites, including tiny colloidal diamonds. The outer region of the Solar System contains most actinide elements (Th, U and Pu). Comets and meteorites carried some of these elements inward later, depositing them on outer layers of Fe-rich planets.

    c.) Numerous measurements since 1972 confirm: Fe, O, Ni Si and S were made near the pulsar core on which the current Sun reformed; Actinide elements (Th, U and Pu) and all other elements heavier than Bi (element #83) were made further away from the pulsar by the r-process in the outer region of the supernova where lightweight elements were abundant.

    I too may disappear, and I am grateful for a few brave souls here who may continue to solve the mystery.

    With kind regards,
    Oliver K. Manuel
    Former NASA Principal
    Investigator for Apollo

    ** This pdf dropbox file worked at home, but not in my office today

    Click to access Climategate_Roots.pdf

  5. R. de Haan says:

    You’re a most productive “research journalist” E.M.
    Were you to fill a column in the NYT, no doubt in my mind, they would sell more papers.

    But who wants to write for the NYT these days?

    We all know that conspiracy theories sell well.
    Just take JFK.

    Even authors like Stephen, famous for high volume book sales has jumped the
    subject writing a 1.000 page novel on the subject, only 20 years after Oliver Stone produced his famous movie on the subject based on “The Plot That Killed Kennedy” by Jim Marrs.

    Still thinking about the book exposing the biggest conspiracy of our times?

    Oliver K. Manual has my take on the personal risks that come with any Government/establsment exposure.

    Numerous people have disappeared over the past decade and today only a Twitter message can get you in trouble these days.

    Still, I really think you should explore your talents and write about the Mother of Conspiracies.

    What would be interesting is to have a novel in the same blog style as you wrote this article. I really think this will sell and make you a bundle. Having a good selling book in the market is only step one.
    The real money comes with the translations and the movie rights.
    Conspiracy plots involving the USA not only sell well in Europe and the US but also in Japan, China and Russia.

    Besides that, Hollywood today is out of idea’s.

    This is the right time.

  6. E.M.Smith says:


    Surprisingly often the answer is “no, I don’t”… For example, ‘the compulsion’ had me putting this posting together over about 24 continuous hours. Sleep came about 4:30 am. I’m now commenting at 10:30 am. I’ve already been up and about and made coffee…

    After ‘enough’ of those, the “sleep hump” is too empty and I have a 12 hour+ “night”. Repeat…


    Oh Boy… yet more ‘connections’ ;-)

    “The night is young”?


    The more I learn of history and the more I watch the machinations of Climategate and the UN:

    To more obvious to me it becomes that there is great deception in government, even to today, and little interest in honesty, truth, or morals in general…

    @Jason Calley:

    One of my (HYPOTHETICALLY!!!) favorite poisons is colchicine


    widely used in creating new varieties of plants (as it screws up division of the genes in the nucleus).

    It tends to cause different symptoms in different folks (at modest doses) and can even make some folks feel better (such as gout – there’s a controversy over the FDA awarding a monopoly approval on that use long after it was in common use for decades… see the wiki) in very low doses.

    Yet it screws up cell devision. In very large doses is has more narrow indications (kidney failure) also listed in the wiki.


    Long-term (prophylactic) regimens of oral colchicine are absolutely contraindicated in patients with advanced renal failure (including those on dialysis). Ten to 20% of a colchicine dose is excreted unchanged by the kidneys. Colchicine is not removed by hemodialysis. Cumulative toxicity is a high probability in this clinical setting. A severe neuromyopathy may result. The presentation includes a progressive onset of proximal weakness, elevated creatine kinase, and sensorimotor polyneuropathy. Colchicine toxicity can be potentiated by the concomitant use of cholesterol-lowering drugs (statins, fibrates). This neuromuscular condition can be irreversible (even after drug discontinuation). Accompanying dementia has been noted in advanced cases. It may culminate in hypercapnic respiratory failure and death. (Minniti-2005)


    Side-effects include gastrointestinal upset
    and neutropenia. High doses can also damage bone marrow and lead to anemia. Note that all of these side-effects can result from hyperinhibition of mitosis.

    A main side-effect associated with all mitotic inhibitors is peripheral neuropathy, which is a numbness or tingling in the hands and feet due to peripheral nerve damage that can becomes so severe that reduction in dosage or complete cessation of the drug may be required. Microtubules are involved in vesicular transport. Peripheral nerves are among the longest in the body. Brownian motion is not significant enough in these peripheral nerves to allow vesicles to reach their destination. Thus, they are susceptible to microtubule toxins.


    Colchicine poisoning has been compared to arsenic poisoning; symptoms start 2 to 5 hours after the toxic dose has been ingested and include burning in the mouth and throat, fever, vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain, and kidney failure. These symptoms may set in as many as 24 hours after the exposure. Onset of multiple-system organ failure may occur within 24 to 72 hours. This includes hypovolemic shock due to extreme vascular damage and fluid loss through the GI tract, which may result in death. In addition, sufferers may experience kidney damage, resulting in low urine output and bloody urine; low white blood cell counts (persisting for several days); anemia; muscular weakness; and respiratory failure. Recovery may begin within 6 to 8 days. There is no specific antidote for colchicine, although various treatments do exist.

    Certain common inhibitors of CYP3A4 and/or P-gp, including grapefruit juice, may increase the risk of colchicine toxicity.

    Notice in particular the GI “issues” and that it can cause significant vascular damage. Just the symptoms FDR reported and the problem that was increased after his trip. Nice to note, too, is that delivery in grapefruit juice lets you enhance the effect. (So if your target likes grapefruit juice, he will go down when others do not, useful if you BOTH have to drink…)

    What happens if mid-scale doses are given over many days or multiple exposures? Well, one person has told me it causes failure of “whatever is wrong in you, so poison 10 people via the common coffee pot, you get 10 causes of death”. I don’t have any proof of that, but it was from a ‘usually reliable source’… That assertion could use a bit of a ‘dig here’ to validate…

    Just on theoretical grounds, I could see that. Each person would have different sets of cells screwed up. Those dividing most / fastest would be the ones most trying to ‘repair’ something ELSE that was a problem. It’s getting the dose right that would be the problem… but I’m sure it could be done ‘with practice’.

    It was in common use in England for plant mutation / breeding…

    Botanical use

    Since chromosome segregation is driven by microtubules, colchicine is also used for inducing polyploidy in plant cells during cellular division by inhibiting chromosome segregation during meiosis; half the resulting gametes, therefore, contain no chromosomes, while the other half contain double the usual number of chromosomes (i.e., diploid instead of haploid, as gametes usually are), and lead to embryos with double the usual number of chromosomes (i.e., tetraploid instead of diploid). While this would be fatal in animal cells, in plant cells it is not only usually well tolerated but in fact frequently results in plants that are larger, hardier, faster-growing, and in general more desirable than the normally diploid parents; for this reason, this type of genetic manipulation is frequently used in breeding plants commercially.

    When such a tetraploid plant is crossed with a diploid plant, the triploid offspring will usually be sterile (unable to produce fertile seeds or spores), although many triploids can be propagated vegetatively. Growers of annual triploid plants not readily propagated must buy fresh seed from a supplier each year. Many sterile triploid plants, including some tree and shrubs, are becoming increasingly valued in horticulture and landscaping because they do not become invasive species. In certain species, colchicine-induced triploidy has been used to create “seedless” fruit, such as seedless watermelons (Citrullus lanatus). Since most triploids do not produce pollen themselves, such plants usually require cross-pollination with a diploid parent to induce fruit production.

    Colchicine’s ability to induce polyploidy can be also exploited to render infertile hybrids fertile, for example in breeding triticale (× Triticosecale) from wheat (Triticum spp.) and rye (Secale cereale). Wheat is typically tetraploid and rye diploid, with their triploid hybrid infertile; treatment of triploid triticale with colchicine gives fertile hexaploid triticale.

    When used to induce polyploidy in plants, colchicine cream is usually applied to a growth point of the plant, such as an apical tip, shoot, or sucker. Also, seeds can be presoaked in a colchicine solution before planting. Another way to induce polyploidy is to chop off the tops of plants and carefully examine the regenerating lateral shoots and suckers to see if any look different.[20] If no visual difference is evident, flow cytometry can be used for analysis.

    Doubling of plant chromosome numbers also occurs spontaneously in nature, with many familiar plants being fertile polyploids. Natural hybridization between fertile parental plants of different levels of polyploidy can produce new plants at an intermediate level, such as a triploid produced by crossing between a diploid and a tetraploid, or a hexaploid produced by crossing between a diploid and an octoploid.

    That’s where I first got interested in it (due to my interest in polyploid vegetables / grains and making interspecies crosses).

    Oh, and it’s been ‘known’ for a long time…

    The plant source of colchicine, the autumn crocus (Colchicum autumnale), was described for treatment of rheumatism and swelling in the Ebers Papyrus (ca. 1500 B.C.), an Egyptian medical papyrus.[5] The use of the bulb-like corms of Colchicum for gout probably traces back to ca. 550 A.D., as the “hermodactyl” recommended by Alexander of Tralles. Colchicum extract was first described as a treatment for gout in De Materia Medica by Pedanius Dioscorides in the first century CE. Colchicum corms were used by the Persian physician ibn Sina (Avicenna) and other Islamic physicians, were recommended by Ambroise Pare in the sixteenth century, and appeared in the London Pharmacopoeia of 1618. Colchicum plants were brought to America by Benjamin Franklin, who suffered from gout himself and had written humorous doggerel about the disease during his stint as Envoy to France.

    So I’d put my money on a bit of crocus extract…

  7. kakatoa says:


    Good thing FDR wasn’t worried about how to pay for wind and solar facilities. It looks like Spain’s gov’t has changed their minds on supporting cost ineffective green projects.

  8. @R. de Haan (19:14:53) :

    I agree: Now that Michael Crichton is gone, E.M. Smith is one of few with the talents to write and expose the Mother of Conspiracies.

    Knowledge of computers is essential:

    The internet may be the most effective weapon. It is no coincidence AGW was promoted by someone who thought he invented the internet.

    The novel might be written in the blog style used here and then made into a movie.

    Now is the right time, and E.M. Smith is the right person.

  9. E.M.Smith says:


    Yeah, something about a 20%+ nominal unemployment and a 40%+ real rate, coupled with nobody lending them more money at less than a punitive rate… kind of ‘focuses the mind’…

    @R. de Haan & Oliver:

    Well, (blush!), I’m just ‘being me’! …

    OK, you’ve convinced me to think about it ;-)

    My daughter is a lit.major and I’m a little reluctant to ‘enter her turf’ as writing is what makes her special. Her brother and cousin – genetic 1/2 sibling as moms are twins – both have a laundry list of Honors coming out of college, while for her it is writing awards. It’s a non-trivial thing to want to leave to her, her ‘special place’ of honor… No kid wants a parent to either show them up, or ‘tag along’…

    Maybe I could rough draft it and ask her to co-author…

    Per US Homeland screwups:

    It’s not just foreigners… We had a US Senator pulled out of line for a ‘pat down search’. The machine had beeped. He asked to be re-screened in the machine. (One of the TSA folks said they thought the machine was programmed for random beeps sometimes to cause ‘random’ patpats… this has now raised the question of if this is deception of the public to prevent them complaining about random searches as ‘the machine flagged you’ makes you feel guilty…)

    All this caused said Senator to refuse the patpatpat… So he got put in a ‘special room’ and told NOT TO LEAVE. He then picked up his cell phone from the basket to tell his office he would miss the public engagement scheduled for the other end of the trip. THAT caused TSA to rail at him that, having TOUCHED HIS STUFF, everything had to be kicked up a notch…

    Eventually Rand Paul got a re-screen and onto an airplane…

    Now, if a US Senator is treated like Terrorist Dirt, what hope does Joe or Jane Sixpack have if they don’t want a patpatpatpat-squeeze all over their bodies?

    Behaviour that sends teachers to prison, managers to the poorhouse after enriching the lawyers, and parents to Government Reeducation or prison; that’s business as usual for the TSA.

    And folks wonder why I drive instead of fly whenever possible…

    Per the article on “Tweet your way to expulsion”:

    I had an example of that recently. I said to someone “I decided that your husband should do that”. I had meant the more British like version (as, when a 1/2 bottle of Red into it, I revert to the first learned from Mom Britishisms more… though of an archaic 80 years ago form as that’s when she learned to speak) of, roughly “Having thought about it, I reached the conclusion that most likely, were it to be done, your husband was the one likely to do that”. She heard the American version: “I CHOSE that it OUGHT to be your husband to do that”.

    Yes, me picking him as obligated / selected caused some disjoint for a day or two. Then I figured it out and explained how Americans use “should” for “ought” and “were to” for “should”; and that “Churchill decided Hitler would invade Poland” had no ‘intentionality’ in it. It was ‘coming to understand’ not ‘I am the decider’… (In fact, the whole ‘passive vs intentionality’ thing is opposite).

    As Churchill said “Two people separated by a common language”…

    (And don’t even get me started on “who gave to whom” and “Sears was the store Johnny was going to” … Is it really THAT hard to say “Johnny was going to the Sears store. ” Sigh…)

    Add to that the fact that many folks in America don’t even speak American properly (what with Spanglish and Ebonics now officially protected…) and good luck getting a native speaker of Ebonics to understand “I want to destroy Bourbon Street” from a British Slang perspective… (Maybe if you said “destroy” as in “hammered”, like, you know, I wanna git hammared hard t’nite.)

    At any rate… Maybe I’ll start with a small magazine article under a pseudonym… so the family doesn’t need to know.

  10. Jason Calley says:

    @ E.M. “So I’d put my money on a bit of crocus extract…”

    Crocus?! A poison from the crocus? I had no idea! I just mentioned this to my wife (who knows of such things) and she was unaware of it — but said, “Of course saffron is from the crocus; they harvest the stamen. They were originally from Spain — and are from Spain now as well, but for a while they were growing crocuses in England in the town of Saffron. That is where it gets its name from. They don’t grow there now though; too cold.” I asked her, “When was that?” “Oh, gee, 13th, 14th Century. It got too cold after that…” Yes, the MWP.

    At that point she launched into a hypothetical menu for poisoning someone. “I would serve broiled grapefruit. No one does that one any more. You slice a chilled grapefruit and sprinkle it with brown sugar — I would put the poison just under the sugar — and then broil until the sugar melts. Serve immediately. It is like baked alaska, cold inside, hot outside with a glaze similar to creme brule. There were some very nice dishes back in the 1920s…”

    She is an interesting person.

  11. R. de Haan says:

    So it runs in the family…

    Just go for it.
    Inspiration everywhere.
    Just watch Calente and Jones getting all worked up with the most fantastic
    plots you can imagine. I really enjoyed the video’s. It’s worth a book on it;s own.

    As I said, this is the right time.
    Just take the Paul’s as one of your lead figures (you need the good and the bad)
    There is no successful novel without the good and the bad and take it from there. people also love the David against Goliath plot. It’s all there right in front of your eyes.

    Just start writing and let yourself get inspired by what develops.

    Nobody can look into the future but I really think matters are going down an increasingly slippery slope now with plenty of action.

    Oliver is with me on this too. Now get on to it, life is too short.


  12. E.M.Smith says:

    @Jason Calley:

    You got me… Actually Honestly laughing out loud uncontrollably…

    One of my favorite phrases is “I like them, they are an interesting person” ;-) with just that emphasis on the word interesting that tells you they are, um, ‘unexpected’…

    That, and the ‘set up’ of how to make a gourmet delicacy out of a poison… The kind of thing I’d think to do ;-) I mean, if you MUST do someone in, you can at least make it a pleasure for them … 8-0

    I can imagine a nice slice of Bear Liver that gives Vitamin-D poisoning, fried in Castor Oil – with the Ricin still in it. Topped with “Butter Sauté of Death Cap” comes to mind… and “Jimson Weed Julip – made with methanol laced rum and warfarin” has a nice ring to it… , served with a side of slow cooked kidney bean chili … – cooked below about 200 F they taste fine, but a toxin in them is not broken down… I think I need to stop now… It would be WAY too easy to get carried away with the idea of a dinner where every single dish was tasty and deadly… but just note that potatoes that are left in the sun and turn green make solanine toxin… so we have our starch – St. Patties Green Spuds…

    (In my defense, my Mum took me to every Hitchcock movie as they came out and I was raised with the ORIGINAL Fairy Tails from The Brothers Grimm… so it’s not my fault ;-)

    @R. de Haan:

    Yes, it does. In BOTH families…

    It would mean a bit less presence here, though… Keyboard can type into one page or the other at a time, not both…

    Maybe I could do serial installments here, like those 1930-40 type ‘serials’…

    Then Jones was called to congress to testify, he felt clammy and hot at the same time. WHY was he called? Did they know about The Letters? Climbing the marble steps of the Capital, he felt his chest tighten when he saw Talbloke entering ahead of him with a laptop in hand. A vague dizziness started to swirl…
    TO BE CONTINUED – next week, same time, same station ;-)

  13. Amen!

    I saw disaster coming almost four decades ago, in government deception about Earth’s heat source – the Sun, but I had no idea what was happening until official responses to Climategate emails and documents (Nov 2009) revealed why science was being abused and how widespread the problem is now!

    Click to access Climategate_Roots.pdf

    Today society is, in my opinion, in collapse and we are trapped with the world leaders who created this mess – like rats on a sinking ship, . . .

    Unless someone with talents like E.M and his daughter have the courage to work for a common good for all concerned.

    Since selfishness, self-centeredness is the root of the problem, I will be campaigning from the sidelines for a solution like that used by Mahatma Gandhi and Nelson Mandela:

    Our greatest obstacle may be unwillingness to follow spiritual principles and forgive and work together with our enemies for the mutual benefit of all.

    Click to access No_Fear.pdf

    I will do what I can to assist from the sidelines, E.M., if you decide to undertake this unselfish task.

    With kind regards,

  14. E.M.Smith says:


    Took me a couple of ‘click throughs’ to find out you have a book at Amazon:


    Way to go!

  15. gallopingcamel says:

    It would take me a couple of months to put something like this post together and I would not be able to make it half as interesting.

    Somehow you can publish two such posts per week. I know you find time to drink beer but do you ever sleep?

  16. E.M.Smith says:


    Well, as I said to Adolfo, sometimes I don’t… ;-)

    I get ‘on a roll’ and just can’t stop until it is done. This post, for example was about 24 hours non-stop. Saw the first link, started “sorting out” and then “assembled the understanding”… followed by “pull it together, edit. and go” (that finished at about 4 am …)

    Then comes a day or two of trying NOT to get another idea in my head that demands an answer while I mope around and try to get some sleep / nap….

    In programming we called it a “Coding Frenzy” and every programmer seems to know what they are. You finally get rolling, and it’s better to not try to stop / restart, so you just PUSH…

    As to ‘interesting’: IMHO, that’s not me, it’s the material. I just follow the interesting threads and tie it together at the end… So the ‘muse’ of “did Churchill do it?” gets asked, and the rest is just “find the patterns” in the material. If it was about Nixon and China I doubt I could make it interesting no matter how hard I tried… ;-)

  17. TGSG says:

    Ok this was just one damn fine read! Thanks Chiefio.

  18. @E.M.Smith (05:36:57)

    Thanks. A famous scientist, Dr. Glenn T. Seaborg, agreed in 1998 to help organize the 1999 conference after being reminded that:

    1975 experimental data that required local element synthesis in the Sun was misrepresented as:

    a.) Evidence of superheavy element fission by U Chicago scientists,
    b.) Injections from a nearby supernova by a Harvard astrophysicist, and
    c.) Interstellar grains by scientists at Caltech, Rice, U Chicago, Wash U

    1983 summery of data on lunar, meteoritic, terrestrial, and solar material confirmed nine (9) theoretical stages of mass fractionation in the Sun, each successively enriching the abundance of the lighter isotopes of mass (L) in the solar wind, relative to the abundance of the heavier isotope of mass (H) in the solar wind by the square-root of H/L

    1995 experimental data from the Galileo probe of Jupiter confirming local element synthesis in the Sun was hidden and misrepresented at the Lunar Science Conferences until the head of NASA was captured on CSPAN camera in 1998 and publicly released the data.

    Nobel Laureate Seaborg died before the symposium, and astrophysicist Geoffrey Burbidge graciously presented the keynote address.

  19. Pascvaks says:

    Although it would be “Greek” (or Spanish) to 99% of the population of the World who have no idea who FDR, Uncle Joe, Churchill, Chiang Kai-shek, DeGaulle, Eisenhower, Mao, Nguyễn Sinh Cung (Ho Chí Minh), or anyone else was way back then, it sure sounds like the makings of one of the best comady movies ever by some wit like Mel Brooks, “Who Killed Uncle Joe?” Imagine, everybody (and their little brother too) is out at the end of WWII trying to get a leg up on the New World Order, or retain their Old Position, and everyone has killer teams out trying to reshape the landscape of Global Politics by trying to kill off each other. From what little we’ve read about internal Soviet hanky-panky, imagine what was happening in diplomatic circles. I hear some say the French Monarch (DeGaulle) was out to remake everything and everybody. I always liked history, but I could never resist “filling in the blanks”. Thanks again Chiefio!

  20. adolfogiurfa says:

    But, who really cares? More important human beings die every minute on earth.

  21. adolfogiurfa says:

    @E.M: About such a“Coding Frenzy”: Every athlete would tell you what the call the “second air”, which they got after being almost exhausted and suddenly, after crossing such an “interval” they connect with a new source of energy. This phenomenon follows exactly the Law of the octave,where in increasing pitch the second and higher DO ,”C”is reached.
    Remember the “ram pump” example?…two check valves…

  22. E.M.Smith says:


    You are most welcome! ( I just wish I had access to the secret parts of the record so I could answer the last couple of steps… )


    For a while I’d wondered why you were putting “neutron sun” or “iron sun” stuff in climate postings. Eventually I got enough clue to realize that the “unstable” and “pulsar” parts mattered. If the sun has variable output and is driving things, the whole “CO2 destabilizing a stable system” myth goes out the window…

    You might consider putting a rhetorical question in your posts of that sort asking “If the Sun were not a stable H2 burner, but were an oscillating and quasi-stable Neutron star, what would that do to the CO2 thesis?”


    Sort of a Pink Panther meets “Mr. and Mrs. Smith” ? (“Mr. and Mrs. Smith is that movie where a married couple find out both are ‘hit men’ when they accept contracts that turn out to be on each other… Budget for Ammo ALONE was $250,000 per the TV lead in…)

    So we have all these heads of state each trying to take over, and occasionally bumping off the wrong person (via a bit of ‘left over’ food or a stray beverage…) while various semi-inept assistants try to arrange to get the right folks in the right place with the right hit teams, and just keep not quite making it… With the sporadic object ‘nearby’ blowing up… Occasionally folks “on the same side” find out who’s poisoning whom, and get “That Look” of “Et to Brute?”

    With, of course, the inevitable ‘making up’ at the end… and then some random in the background keels over dead and they look at each other…
    fade out…

    Yeah, I could see that working ;-)


    It’s not quite the same as a ‘second wind’ (which has been pretty much identified metabolically – IIRC it’s when lactic acid oxidation starts). This is more that it can take 6 hours just to get all the meanings of all the variables and such loaded into your brain (you really DO need to keep track of a huge amount of stuff…) and if you stop after only writing 2 hours of ‘new code’, the next day you get to repeat. 2 hours / day of progress… BUT, if you just whack on it all night long, you get another 8 hours of progress out of that 16 hours. So it’s a question of 10 for 16 or 4 for 16… So most software folks just push it on through to the point where they can naturally stop… Then take a long weekend off to sleep… ;-)

    But I’m pretty sure the psychology of ‘the push’ is similar in both, even if the metabolics and ‘why do it’ change.

    Why do I care? Well, aside from just wondering “Who dun it?”, it’s nice to know just how close our ‘friends’ really are, or are not. Plus I do like to understand how things really work in the world. So I can watch, oh, film of a ‘gathering of thieves’ at the UN and watch for who does / does not drink the same beverages as everyone else…

    Basically, it’s not so much caring about who dies, or even who ‘wins’, so much as it is learning to see how the game is played so I can enjoy watching the current version better…

  23. R. de Haan says:

    @ E.M “@R. de Haan:

    Yes, it does. In BOTH families…

    It would mean a bit less presence here, though… Keyboard can type into one page or the other at a time, not both…

    Maybe I could do serial installments here, like those 1930-40 type ‘serials’…

    Then Jones was called to congress to testify, he felt clammy and hot at the same time. WHY was he called? Did they know about The Letters? Climbing the marble steps of the Capital, he felt his chest tighten when he saw Talbloke entering ahead of him with a laptop in hand. A vague dizziness started to swirl…
    TO BE CONTINUED – next week, same time, same station ;-”

    That’s the way to go.
    You publish your raw research on this blog.
    You get the input from your friends here to refine the views and conclusions to have it “book ready”.

    This way you create a totally new kind of book, a Blog Book.

    If you publish the links in the book you can sell tt together with an interactive version by adding a CD or selling it as an interactive e-book.

    I’m sure Apple will come up with an interactive e-book reader.

    But you have to collect all the linked data to a separate web site.

    This to prevent the dead link that occur over time.

    Last week I spend some time on the blog of the late John Daily.
    Dead links all over the place.

    This has to be prevented.

    So you have a blog where you publish your basic research and refine it.
    You have a site where you publish all the original articles, graph’s photo’s and video’s that remain accessible even if the original link goes dead and you have the book with an interactive dvd version.

    You sell the book, sell the interactive version, the licenses for the foreign translations, movie rights and presentations.

    This could be big business if you ask me.

    A good start would be to protect the concept I sketched as a working concept by claiming the intellectual rights to this working process (you have my blessing) and take it from there.

    Maybe Apple, currently sitting on billions of US dollars is interested in the concept of an interactive e-book and is willing to sponsor you.

    It would be an interesting challenge with Al Gore on Apple’s board.

    On the other hand, I think you can quite easlily find a publisher willing to pay some upfront money for the publishing rights.

    If you write down the basic plan into a format the format and refer to this blog so they can read some of your articles I think you can have money in the bank short term.

    You can try the pubisher(s) Michael Chrichton worked with.

    Believe me when I say they are anxiously waiting to fill the gap Chrichton left when he passed away in terms of dollars and cents.
    For his publishers Crichton was a gold mine.

  24. adolfogiurfa says:

    @E.M: Energy: What you describe it is true, though still it is an accumulation of “energy”, as in the “ram pump”, where a tank is being filled as to reach enough “pressure”. Still the same general law, though we are used to describe phenomena with as many different words as possible.
    “Who do I care?”..so you are fulfilling your curiosity through investigating what those little “devils” currently do. BTW, now totally involved in achieving the “optimization” of markets (their profits) by a “New World Order”, “Global Governance”, or establishing an “Open Society”….but, at the “end of the day” (what a disgusting expression, concocted by “intelligent” new age journalists), who the winners or losers are?
    The “elite” has moved to China (and this is really funny, to say the least) in the naive belief they have somewhat convinced the chinese people…though the truth is that you never convince any member of the mongolian race (asian or american). So, there is a lot of fun ahead.
    How many other “spring times” are we going to witness after the Arab Spring?, the Syrian, now unfolding…perhaps the most wanted Russian spring?
    Buy more popcorn!..and not only human (or devil) affairs to watch ,but nature´s too:
    It´s snowing in the Saharan desert!

  25. adolfogiurfa says:

    @Paskvaks: Let us be clear: Only in the USA the world is known to end at the Rio Grande in the south and at Canada in the north. The rest of people of the real world perfectly know all what some have made to create such a paradise and know they want to export that “blessing” now everywhere, but that is an already lost effort, though it may seem differently: World “conspirers” are being fooled everywhere. The trouble is YOU PAY for it and not they!

  26. R. de Haan says:

    adolfogiurfa (15:03:14) :

    “It’s snowing in the Saharan desert”

    Yes, there’s also snow covering the coastal area’s of Morocco, Tunesia and Algeria.
    These are considered rare events but over the past five years ( you could say they have become the new normal.
    Last year brought snow to Casablanca and Rabat and many houses collapsed under the weight of snow.

    In the Netherlands, together with Germany one of the last bastions of unconditional believe in the CAGW BS, last night minus 22.9 degrees Celsius was measured, the lowest in 27 years, although the weather forecasts claimed night temps wouldn’t go lower than minus 12 degrees.

    The lowest temperature ever measured in the Netherlands was minus 27 degrees in 1942 and this record could be broken tonight because there won’t be any wind.

    So with a little luck the Dutch will have their famous “Elfstedenticht” a skating tour in Friesland, an event that according to Gang Green wouldn’t be possible because of all the warming.

    A snow front yesterday that dumped 2.5 inches of snow crippled the entire country. Trains quit service and at three O’clock in the afternoon a traffic block of over 800 km was reported.

    In terms of low’s we’re back in the Fifties of the passed Century.

    It’s been rather nice nice to have watched Gang Green digging their own grave stating “snow and ice would be a thing of the past”.

    When the snow fell and temps went down they changed their tune and told us the cold was caused by Global Warming.
    One of the finest lines I still remember was that “the cold was masquerading the underlying heat”. Never heard so much hubris all of my life.

    However, I don’t expect they will drop the climate change doctrine all together but concentrate all their propaganda efforts on “sustainability”. That will allow them to continue their agenda without difficult questions asked, that is, if we let them.

  27. R. de Haan says:

    @ Adolfo,

    As for the Arab Spring (I prefer to call it Arab Winter) the expected set back comes from the the Russians and the Chinese who just vetoed the pending UN Resolution that demanded for Bashir to step down immediately despite massive diplomatic efforts.

    If this continues we’ll be back in Cold War territory before we know it (if we haven;t arrived there all ready).

    I think Russia and China exactly know what our NWG establishment is up to an they’re not playing the game.

  28. R. de Haan says:

    A for they NWG gang they now claim to have over 100 countries to join thi rather vague entity.

    This means we 100 countries willing to sacrifice their independence.


    I think if they ask the citizens of any of those 100 countries they will be left with a great big ZERO.

    If they are going to push through this madness I think a lot of political leaders will have to worry about what they eat or drink including Sarkozy.

    I am sure Sarkozy has the USA on his list as well.
    Judging the American people he can forget all about it.
    If the article I linked goes main stream I think the upcoming elections will be a done deal.
    Dellers splits warmists

    a book about how Green Zealots are destroying the planet sells.
    And while the obsession of our elites for Global Governance in the name of environment looks more absurd every day, real events will dominate the news as history repeats.

    Economic collapse and war will make headlines again.

    Yes, history repeats.

    But it comes with ever higher stakes and an ever higher number of people involved.

    It’s really a shame nobody asks for their opinion.

  29. E.M.Smith says:


    Sir, I resent that remark! Citizens of the USA know that the world does not end at the Rio Grand! They are well aware of the suburbs of the USA called Cozumel and Acapulco!


    @R. de Haan:

    I’ve been pondering putting up a ‘weather around the world’ posting detailing where it’s cold and snowy, but figured others are likely already doing that… Still, it’s damn cold and snowy in a lot of places…

    At WUWT there was the story of the electronic thermometer dying at -79 F in Alaska so no new record can ever happen. It pointed out that the officially recognized lower bound is 40 degrees ( C and F )… so any temp below that is just a ‘bonus point’ and well outside the approved / calibrated range.

    So one thing I wonder is, with parts of Europe flirting with -30 C, just how many reports from places like N. Norway, Sweden, Russia, etc. are either going to be ‘not reported’, or be ‘highly off’ as they are beyond calibration, or dropped from the record as the QA process will find them out of calibration / reasonable ranges…

    Looks to me like we’ve got a ‘wired in’ lower bound on where temperature reports can go…

    If the thesis that we’ve had a PDO / AMO flip on a 60 year cycle is correct, then we ought to be able to look at the ’50s and pretty much know what we’ve got. Then again, we’ve got a very sleepy sun this time so it might end up much worse…

    In a recent poll of ‘concerns’ in the USA, ‘climate change / global warming’ ranked dead last. They can make all the noise they want, folks no longer hear them… (though it will require vigilance to assure they just don’t go to back door and do it via the administrative apparatus…)

    Even if they do, as the diminished and cold stratosphere hits the poles and then moves ever further toward the equator as tropospheric air, it will be pretty clear who is full of hot air and who is freezing…

    I assume “NWG” was supposed to be “AWG”?

    Yes, Russia and China have a much more reality based and pragmatic understanding of the world. As long as we are willing to destroy our own industries and ship money to them, they will be all for it. But they are certainly not ‘bought into it”. Russia semi-officially has embraced a 2030 or so Little Ice Age scenario as likely.

    I think eventually they will abstain from a vote on Syria (IFF we pay them enough in some other way). Either that, or it’s going to be a NATO only thing (with all that implies) and we’ll get to find out where Turkey stands these days… ( I’d not want to be running a NATO ‘kinetic event’ in Syria with Turkey ‘having my back’…)

    At any rate, I think we’ve got about 3 to 6 months until we find out…

    Folks in the USA tend to ignore their government and let it do all sorts of crazy stuff… until they get P.O.’d enough. Then they speak with a bit of a vengeance. IMHO, we are approaching that point.

    As far as Europe and the 100 countries… Well, unless they can find a way to save: Greece, Italy, Spain, Portugal,… and pay back Germany… and keep the UK from falling into poverty and freezing in winter: I think the EU is setting itself up for an implosion / revolt. From those often comes strife and warfare. Being dependent on Russia for winter warmth; and just over the water from a disrupted Muslim World, will not add to stability.

    At each step of “fix” things have become better for a little while at the expense of a greater instability just a bit in the future. Eventually that process reaches the “Brittle Failure” point…

    IMHO it is the “Demographic Bomb” that sets this off. As the “Boomers” retire, it’s a SHTF moment. That process is ‘happening now’, but has a couple of more years to run to completion. I place it about 2020 at the outside. About “now” as a closest bound. So average of 2016.

    The problem with the folks wanting to control everything via central authority is that they fail to understand:

    1) They are incompetent to do it. (EVERYONE is. The system is just too complex to control via a single control point. It MUST have distributed adaptive ‘control’ to function well.)

    2) The “grunts” who support this world can, and will, just stop “contributing” and start “taking care of their own” when it gets bad enough.

    3) We are at a point in history where it LOOKS like things will just get better and better (so a great time to take over…) we are in fact facing an inflection point to the dismal side ( Each of: climate inflection to cold and a social inflection of the population bomb and and economic inflection to strife as production of wealth leaves the west for China) and it’s not a good time to be in power.

    All I can figure is that the “power of positive thinking” generation of “leaders” just hasn’t got a clue how to see the ‘Bad Thing’ lurking…

    Oh Well… at least it won’t be boring ;-)

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