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Surfing secrets

TO THE chap who rang up, giving only his first name and breathlessly telling me to look at some Internet site where all the Pentagon's secrets were disclosed - "only don't stay on-line too long, or they'll trace you" - I can only say: Welcome to America!

What my friend described as a top-secret draft report on the US Defence Department's "information architecture" proved to be a numbingly technical outline, nearly 100,000 words long, of the Pentagon's plans to re-equip for the information age. The only people who might sit up are hardware suppliers hoping to get a bit of the action.

There's much more exciting stuff than that around. The 91st Missile Wing at Minot Air Force Base in North Dakota offers an on-line tour, complete with a map showing where the silos are. You can also check out the inventory of nuclear-capable B-2 stealth bombers in Missouri and study the Pentagon's basic concepts for planning, conducting and concluding a nuclear war, contained in an unclassified document numbered JP 3-12 in the Joint Chiefs of Staff Joint Electronic Library. When it mentions the "initial laydown of nuclear weapons", it is not talking about disarmament.

It was the US military establishment which created the Internet, and from the amount of material they put on it, you begin to wonder why some right-wing theorist hasn't seen a plot to betray the nation's secrets to the forces of world government.

The party lion

AND while we're talking about conspiracies: the Writers Guild of America has belatedly revealed the names of left-wingers, kept secret at the time because of the Hollywood blacklist, behind some of the best-known movies of yesteryear. It says it is righting an old injustice, but to me it simply reveals international communist subversion in all its fiendish thoroughness.

Born Free, for instance - even the title derives directly from the writings of that notorious proto-Marxist, Jean-Jacques Rousseau. I always suspected that we were intended to see the lions as oppressed proletarians ("Four legs good, two legs bad," remember?), with George and Joy Adamson in the role of bourgeois liberals whose misguided benevolence diverts the masses from their revolutionary destiny.

The Adventures of Robinson Crusoe? The same message all over again, with Man Friday in the lions' revolutionary niche. Custer of the West? Yet more of the same, this time with Native Americans. Pancho Villa barely bothers to disguise the propaganda. As for Earth vs the Flying Saucers and Crack in the World, I have no doubt that these were designed to sow despondency among freedom-loving people everywhere.

Even Ronald Reagan was duped into collaborating with these people, in Hellcats of the Navy. Fortunately, as we now know, their efforts to hold him up to ridicule did not succeed.