THE PEKING BOMB: The Psychochemical War Against America by Gerd Hamburger

THE PEKING BOMB: The Psychochemical War Against America

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KIRKUS REVIEW

This book is a bad joke, reminiscent of the charge that ""The Russians are spreading pornography."" Hamburger, a Roman Catholic priest who left Hungary after 1956, claims that Peking not only thrust drugs on American troops in the Far East, but created the whole counterculture -- starting with Lin Yutang's book The Importance of Living in 1937. Then came the Beats (Allen Ginsberg ""received love for Lenin with his mother's milk""), Marcuse, and Leary -- a ""belated revenge of the dragon"" for the Western opium trade. Taking the Kuomintang's estimates of the Chinese drug crop, Hamburger arrives at 10,000 tons occupying up to seventeen million acres of Chinese land! In Hong Kong, where this was written, with thanks from Hamburger to the South Vietnamese, Chinese Nationalist and U.S. officials, he discovers a cunning scheme for smuggling barmaiddope pushera into Macao and thence to the Crown Colony for major Peking-directed operations. The American deserter movement is found to be the core of another big ring, and the ""pro-Peking intellectuals"" around Ramparts magazine in particular are denounced as slanderers of the CIA, the Turks, the Kuomintang, Thieu, and Lon No1. Even if one hasn't read the documentation of CIA-Chinese Nationalist drug traffic in The War Conspiracy (1972) by Peter Dale Scott or other such researches, the book requires a distinct predisposition to believe in the unparalleled blamelessness of everyone but Peking, and a willingness to credit hippiedom as a Yellow Plot. The only question is whether the book has some subterranean political significance, or whether Hamburger is simply, urn, hoeing his own row.

Pub Date: April 28th, 1975
Publisher: Luce--dist. by McKay