This revelation comes from an excellent mental floss post discussing random facts about American spy history.
Following World War II, Frank Wisner helped found the Office of Policy Coordination. Officially, its mission was refugee assistance and working with the International Red Cross. Its actual mission involved covert actions against the Soviet Union. Wisner was a wily, charming, Southern aristocrat who was forever changed when he witnessed the brutal Soviet occupation of Romania. His office invested heavily in psychological warfare, which was still a relatively new concept. Ideas that came from the office included delivering American toiletries across the Iron Curtain (to demonstrate superior Western standards of comfort) and airdropping enormous condoms labeled “Medium” onto the Soviets, to demoralize them against an anatomically superior American army. (Sadly, this plan was never carried out.)
They put a southern guy in charge of psychological warfare? Looks like whoever made that decision spent more than a few college nights in the hazement. But really, how did that plan not get the green light!?! I mean the Cold War was as much a cultural war as anything else, and nothing says dominance quite like convincing your enemies that all of your soldiers have cartoonishly huge penises.
That’d be better than spending a decade trying to make the Soviets jealous of disco and John Travolta. Imagine if this idea had taken off and spread to other aspects of American culture. Movie actors would have been forced to wear cucumbers in their pants. Actresses instructed to walk bow legged immediately following a love scene. They probably would have even made a movie called something like “Shaft.” Oh, wait… There would have probably even been rumors floating around Moscow that the 1980 “Miracle on Ice” team had to duct tape their junk up for fear of having their dinosauric manhood severed by an ice skate as it dragged behind them on the rink.
But I guess the reason I really like this plan is because it’s the same way that Frank Reynolds picks up women.
- [via mental floss]