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Cold War Music from the Golden Age of Homeland Security


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Open Letter To Khrushchev, An: Don Meehan [1961]

The letter song was an old tradition by the time of the Cold War and this tune is but one of several issued during the period. The most famous of this type of song is probably Jimmy Dean's over-earnest letter to 'Ivan' in the USSR urging peace and understanding between the two nations. 1962's Dear Ivan was so successful that it inspired a novelty answer single from 'Ivan' himself entitled, appropriately enough, Dear Jimmie (by 'Ivan Kavanovich' - Elko 12). Apparently, 'Ivan' couldn't spell Mr. Dean's first name.

This 'letter' is decidedly more confrontational and is, for the purposes of the reality of the recording, 'written' by a defector named Viktor Jaanimets (Jaanimets, who is briefly heard at the beginning of the record, experienced 15 seconds of fame in 1960 when he fled Khrushchev's ocean liner, the Baltika, for American asylum) and is addressed to Khrushchev. It is far more entertaining than the concilitory and hopeful audio correspondence between 'Jimmy' and 'Ivan.'
LYRICS/TRANSCRIPTION:
Open Letter To Khrushchev, An: Don Meehan [1961]

Russian man:

I am Viktor Jaanimets, since I fled Russian (unintelligible). In my new world I find peace and hope. I have a letter for Nikita Khrushchev, which my American friend will read:

American man:

Dear Mr. Khrushchev,

Iím at peace now, peace with myself, peace with the world, and peace with my Maker. Did you ever stop to think of the meaning of the word ďpeaceĒ Mr. Khrushchev? Itís a beautiful word with a beautiful meaning, but it can be spelled 2 ways. One, your way, is the way I was forced to spell it for many long years. The P is for the Persecution of every person or thing or body of people which stands in the way of Communism. The E is for the Evils brought about by Communism and the hate which is its driving force. The A stands for Atheism. There is no God where there is Communism, no moral law, no hope. And the C stands for the Confusion and Conflict between men. The E stands for the Earth, which Communism expects to conquer and spread its persecution, evils, atheism and conflict. But this is not the real meaning of peace, Mr. Khrushchev. I found a new and beautiful meaning. Millions and millions of people in the world spell it this way. First of all, the P stands for Prayer. I can get on my knees and pray to my Maker anywhere and anytime I desire now, just like all those other millions of free people can do. And the E stands for Equality. All men are created equal. Theyíre endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights. And the A stands for Ashes to Ashes, dust to dust. Man came from dust and he shall return to dust, and he can do a lot of good during that time. And the C stands for Christmas. The lesson of Christmas is the greatest of all, and the simplest: Peace on earth to men of good will. And last of all is the E which stands for Eternity, where the soul of man goes on forever and ever. The Earth is like a grain of sand on the shore. Eternity goes on and on and on like the magnificent universe of the great Creator. Think about this Mr. Khrushchev, the real meaning of peace. Think about it!

Don Meehan [1961]
An Open Letter To Khrushchev
(Don Meehan)
Joy 246

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