Cottage Diplomacy by Michael WardernCitizen Diplomats: Pathfinders innSoviet-American Relations—AndnHow You Can Join Them by GalenWarner and Michael Shuman, NewnYork: Continuum.nThe premise of Citizen Diplomatsnby Gale Warner and Michael Shuman,nwith a foreword by Carl Sagan, isnsimple: America’s elected politicians andnprofessional diplomats have been so inadequatenin managing relations with thenSoviet Union and coping with the nuclearnthreat that concerned citizens themselvesnshould do all they can to improvenour understanding with the Soviets.nWhile the book has no bibliography,nfootnotes, or index, it does contain an76-page appendix of 38 different categoriesnof U.S./Soviet exchange groups. Itnis, in short, a kind of motivational tool fornantinuclear activists.nEach of the nine chapters tells thenstory of an individual “pathfinder.”nAnd then, of course, there are the outrightnlies and distortions that accompanynthe effort to show visitors the best thenUSSR has to offer. For 70 years, returningndiplomats, journalists, businessmen,nand others skilled in the language havendocumented Soviet capabilities to deceive.n38 / CHRONICLESnThey range from Dr. Bernard Lown,ncofounder of the International Physiciansnfor the Prevention of Nuclear Warn(IPPNN), to Samantha Smith, perhapsnthe most politically exploited little girl innthe history of US/USSR relations. Thenidea is to show that everyone can contributento our better dealings with thenSoviets, regardless of age or occupation.nGrandmother? Sure. Farmer? Of course.nAnyone.nBut those who embark on this type ofnjourney are not exactly typical Americans.nIn the 1950’s, Dr. Bernard Lownnhad memberships in several of the subversivenorganizations listed in the Walter-nMcCarran Act. He first journeyed to thenSoviet Union in 1968—the year of thenSoviet invasion of Czechoslovakia —nafter meeting a certain Soviet doctor innIndia in 1966. In 1985 Lown, on behalfnof the IPPNN he helped to cofoundnwith this same Soviet doctor, received anNobel Peace Prize.nIn the mind of Warner & Shuman,nLown is a prototype of the citizenndiplomat — an individual citizen whonfurthered the cause of peace and nuclearndisarmament. Perhaps a more realisticninterpretation is that he was an alienatednAmerican exploited by Moscow professionalsnto further their foreign policyngoals.nThe Soviet doctor that Lown met inn1966 in India and in 1968 in Moscownwas Yevgeny Chasov. In 1973 Chasovndenounced Nobel Peace Laureate AndreinSakharov in the Soviet press. Aboutnthe same time he became head physiciannto the members of the Politburo. Sincen1982 Chasov has been a member of thenCentral Committee of the CommunistnParty of the Soviet Union. Clearly, henwas under strict party discipline and nonprivate citizen.nElena Bonner {Alone Together) raisesnthe chilling prospect that Dr. Chasovnmay well have been personally responsiblenfor the decision to brutally force-feednher husband, Andrei Sakharov, in 1984,nwhen he was on a hunger strike. GivennChasov’s proximity to the Politburo, hisnfield (cardiology), Sakharov’s illness ofnthe heart, and the importance of Dr.nSakharov, Chasov’s involvement seemsnplausible. Nonetheless, the Sovietsnscored a great propaganda coup by havingntheir native son, a top party leader,nChasov, receive the Nobel Peace Prize.nThen there is the case of grandmothernSharon Tennison, age 50. Her disillusionmentnwith American politics afternthe assassinations of the Kennedys andnMartin Luther King was followed by anreligious search. She went through twonmarriages and passed through two religionsnto “something universal.” It wasnaround that time that she joined Physiciansnfor Social Responsibility (PSR) andnfrom these experiences determined shenhad to go to the Soviet Union to see fornherself what the Soviets were like. Afternall, how could she claim they are just likenus if she had never been there?nWhile in the USSR, Mrs. Tennisonnfirst learned of Leonard Peltier, annAmerican Indian serving consecutive lifensentences in a U.S. federal prison. In thenSoviet Union, Mr. Peltier is celebrated asnthe moral equivalent of Andrei Sakharovnnnin exile. Mrs. Tennison apparently nownbelieves that Mr. Peltier’s human rightsnhave been abused because he was leadingnthe Indians against the U.S. governmentnin a just cause. She does not givencredence to his criminal conviction fornthe deaths of two federal agents. So, thennext time we hear of 10,000 or sonpolitical prisoners in the Soviet Union,nwe should remember Mr. Peltier. Sovietnguides do not just show visitors thenSoviet Union — they also explain thenUnited States to them.nThere is a vast literature of visitors tonthe Soviet Union attempting, like SharonnTennison, to learn the truth about thenSoviets. Paul Hollander {Political Pilgrims)nhas explained why many alienatednWesterners visiting the Soviet Union failnto see even what is apparent. First, therenis the dissatisfaction with America followednby the “willing suspension ofndisbelief” (apologies to Coleridge) uponnentering the Soviet Union. This willingnessnto see the positive is further enhancednby techniques of hospitality. Thenvisitors are catered to as important visitingnofficials. When the system inevitablynfails and the food is rotten, for example,nwell, just look at how hard these Sovietsntry! How can one speak ill of them? Andnthen, of course, there are the outrightnlies and distortions that accompany theneffort to show visitors the best the USSRnhas to offer. For 70 years, returningndiplomats, journalists, businessmen, andnothers skilled in the language have documentednSoviet capabilities to deceive.nNonetheless, Grandmother Tennisonnhas led about 20 different groups to thenSoviet Union to see what the Soviets arenreally like and to help others see thensame.nCurrent exchanges, the aftermath ofnthe Reagan/Gorbachev 1985 Summit,nhave been anything but reciprocal, despitentreaty stipulations to that effect. Inn1986, 80,000 Americans went to then