Bernie's 40-Year Russian Love Affair
From his Burlington mayorship to his presidential runs, there's a terrible pattern.
For several years, Democrats breathlessly warned that President Donald Trump was a stooge, doing the bidding of Russian dictator Vladimir Putin. They still claim $100,000 in Facebook political ads, paid for by Russian proxies, swung the 2016 election in Trump’s favor. Never mind that few of the ads even referenced a candidate. Despite their hysterics over supposed Trump-Russia ties, until recently it looked like an actual Russia-loving candidate would win the Democrat presidential nomination in a landslide.
That would be “Bolshevik Bernie” Sanders, the proudly self-declared socialist who has a disturbing habit of praising brutal leftist dictators.
Sanders was a slacker who didn’t hold a steady job until he was almost 40, a man his friends described as “a slob who kept a messy apartment.” When he finally got a steady job, it was a government job as the mayor of Burlington, Vermont. Bernie has been collecting government checks ever since, becoming a multimillionaire with three houses despite never working outside of politics.
It was as mayor of Burlington that Sanders began to nurture his love affair with the former Soviet Union. As a newlywed, he honeymooned in Moscow, slamming back vodka shots while sitting shirtless and singing under a portrait of Soviet mass murderer Vladimir Lenin.
After returning to the United States, Sanders established a “sister city” program with the city of Yaroslavl, Russia. Recently obtained 1980s-era Soviet documents reveal the Soviet government eagerly used Sanders to promote communist propaganda in order to “reveal American imperialism as the main source of the danger of war.”
The Sanders campaign counters that President Ronald Reagan was encouraging sister-cities programs, which is true as far as it goes. But using the program to promote America and her values in the communist USSR is one thing; praising a regime that killed and imprisoned millions of its own people is entirely another.
After returning from a visit to the USSR in 1988, Sanders was very complimentary of the totalitarian regime, declaring, “People there seemed reasonably happy and content. … I didn’t notice much deprivation.”
When city officials from Yaroslavl visited then-Mayor Sanders in Burlington, unearthed Soviet government documents show the trip was only approved after Burlington officials sent a letter to the Kremlin promising to “emphasize the ‘peace-loving foreign policy’ of the Soviet Union,” with a seven-point “plan for information-propaganda work.”
But Soviet Russia is not the only totalitarian communist dictatorship with which Bolshevik Bernie has long been enamored. He’s also quite fond of the Castro regime in Cuba.
Sanders recently came under fire for defending deceased Cuban strongman Fidel Castro, a staunch Soviet ally for decades. “We’re very opposed to the authoritarian nature of Cuba, but, you know, it’s unfair to simply say everything is bad,” he declared. “When Fidel Castro came into office, you know what he did? He had a massive literacy program. Is that a bad thing? Even though Fidel Castro did it?”
It seems that in Bernie’s mind, oppression, torture, and brutal murder are tolerable so long as the victims can read the names of their tormenters and executioners. Even when given the opportunity to backtrack and recant, Sanders doubled down on his defense and praise of the Castro regime, even taking time to praise the Communist Chinese regime as well.
Maybe most horrifying is that just six years ago Sanders was part of a delegation that visited Alan Gross, an American accused of spying and thrown in a Cuban prison. Gross spent 1,841 days in prison, during which time he lost five teeth and over 100 pounds. He was kept in a dark cell where he saw “20 minutes of sunlight during the first year.” His interrogators threatened to pull out his fingernails and hang him.
Later released in a prisoner exchange, Gross tells of how Bernie barely spoke during the visit, but at the end of the visit, looking at this beaten, emaciated fellow American, said only that he didn’t see what was so wrong with Cuba.
What kind of twisted, freedom-hating, communist-loving stooge could look at a haggard political prisoner and express only sympathy for the torturers? And what does it say about the Democrat Party that such a large percentage of its base adores a man who openly embraces merciless, brutal totalitarian regimes?