We did not want satellites but partners. Its rulers saw in the weakened condition of the world not an obligation to assist in the great work of reconstruction, but an opportunity to exploit misery and suffering for the extension of their power. Instead of help, they brought subjugation. They extinguished, blotted out, the national independence of the countries that the military operations of World War II had left within their grasp.
The difference stares at us from the map of Europe today. To the west of the line that tragically divides Europe we see nations continuing to act and live in the light of their own traditions and principles. On the other side, we see the dead uniformity of a tyrannical system imposed by the rulers of the Soviet Union. Nothing could point up more clearly what the global struggle between the free world and the communists is all about.
For the dominant idea of the Soviet regime is the terrible conception that men do not have rights but live at the mercy of the state. Inevitably this idea of theirs--and all the consequences flowing from it--collided with the efforts of free nations to build a just and peaceful world. The "cold war" between the communists and the free world is nothing more or less than the Soviet attempt to checkmate and defeat our peaceful purposes, in furtherance of their own dread objective. We did not seek this struggle, God forbid. We did our utmost to avoid it.
In World War II, we and the Russians had fought side by side, each in our turn attacked and forced to combat by the aggressors. After the war, we hoped that our wartime collaboration could be maintained, that the frightful experience of Nazi invasion, of devastation in the heart of Russia, had turned the Soviet rulers away from their old proclaimed allegiance to world revolution and communist dominion. But instead, they violated, one by one, the solemn agreements they had made with us in wartime. They sought to use the rights and privileges they had obtained in the United Nations, to frustrate its purposes and cut down its powers as an effective agent of world progress and the keeper of the world's peace.
Despite this outcome, the efforts we made toward peaceful collaboration are a source of our present strength. They demonstrated that we believed what we proclaimed, that we actually sought honest agreements as the way to peace. Our whole moral position, our leadership in the free world today, is fortified by that fact. The world is divided, not through our fault or failure, but by Soviet design. They, not we, began the cold war. And because the free world saw this happen because men know we made the effort and the Soviet rulers spurned it--the free nations have accepted leadership from our Republic, in meeting and mastering the Soviet offensive.
It seems to me especially important that all of us be clear, in our own thinking, about the nature of the threat we have faced-and will face for a long time to come. The measures we have devised to meet it take shape and pattern only as we understand what we were--and are--up against. The Soviet Union occupies a territory of 8 million square miles. Beyond its borders, East and West, are the nearly five million square miles of the satellite states--virtually incorporated into the Soviet Union--and of China, now its close partner. This vast land mass contains an enormous store of natural resources sufficient to support an economic development comparable to our own.
That is the Stalinist world. It is a world of great natural diversity in geography and climate, in distribution of resources, in population, language, and living standards, in economic and cultural development. It is a world whose people are not all convinced communists by any means. It is a world where history and national traditions, particularly in its borderlands, tend more toward separation than unification, and run counter to the enforced combination that has been made of these areas today.
But it is also a world of great man-made uniformities, a world that bleeds its population white to build huge military forces; a world in which the police are everywhere and their authority unlimited; a world where terror and slavery are deliberately administered both as instruments of government and as means of production; a world where all effective social power is the state's monopoly--yet the state itself is the creature of the communist tyrants. The Soviet Union, with its satellites, and China are held in the tight grip of communist party chieftains.
The party dominates all social and political institutions. The party regulates and centrally directs the whole economy. In Moscow's sphere, and in Peiping's, all history, philosophy, morality and law are centrally established by rigid dogmas, incessantly drummed into the whole population and subject to interpretation--or to change by none except the party's own inner circle.
And lest their people learn too much of other ways of life, the communists have walled off their world, deliberately and uniformly, from the rest of human society. That is the communist base of operation in-their cold war. In addition, they have at their command hundreds and thousands of dedicated foreign communists, people in nearly every free country who will serve Moscow's ends.
Thus the masters of the Kremlin are provided with deluded followers all through the free world whom they can manipulate, cynically and quite ruthlessly, to serve the purposes of the Soviet state. Given their vast internal base of operations, and their agents in foreign lands, what are the communist rulers trying to do? Inside their homeland, the communists are trying to maintain and modernize huge military forces.
And simultaneously, they are endeavoring to weld their whole vast area and population into a completely self-contained, advanced industrial society. They aim, some day, to equal or better the production levels of Western Europe and North America combined--thus shifting the balance of world economic power, and war potential, to their side. They have a long way to go and they know it. But they are prepared to levy upon living generations any sacrifice that helps strengthen their armed power, or speed industrial development. Externally, the communist rulers are trying to expand the boundaries of their world, whenever and wherever they can.
This expansion they have pursued steadfastly since the close of World War II, using any means available to them. Where the Soviet army was present, as in the countries of Eastern Europe, they have gradually squeezed free institutions to death. Where post-war chaos existed in industrialized nations, as in Western Europe, the local Stalinists tried to gain power through political processes, politically-inspired strikes, and every available means for subverting free institutions to their evil ends.
Where conditions permitted, the Soviet rulers have stimulated and aided armed insurrection by communist-led revolutionary forces, as in Greece, Indo-China, the Philippines, and China, or outright aggression by one of their satellites, as in Korea. Where the forces of nationalism, independence, and economic change were at work throughout the great sweep of Asia and Africa, the communists tried to identify themselves with the cause of progress, tried to picture themselves as the friends of freedom and advancement--surely one of the most cynical efforts of which history offers record.
Thus, everywhere in the free world, the communists seek to fish in troubled waters, to seize more countries, to enslave more millions of human souls. They were, and are, ready to ally themselves with any group, from the extreme left to the extreme right, that offers them an opportunity to advance their ends. Geography gives them a central position. They are both a European and an Asian power, with borders touching many of the most sensitive and vital areas in the free world around them. So situated, they can use their armies and their economic power to set up simultaneously a whole series of threats--or inducements--to such widely dispersed places as Western Germany, Iran, and Japan.
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These pressures and attractions can be sustained at will, or quickly shifted from place to place. Thus the communist rulers are moving, with implacable will, to create greater strength in their vast empire, and to create weakness and division in the free world, preparing for the time their false creed teaches them must come: the time when the whole world outside their sway will be so torn by strife and contradictions that it will be ripe for the communist plucking.
This is the heart of the distorted Marxist interpretation of history. This is the glass through which Moscow and Peiping look out upon the world, the glass through which they see the rest of us. They seem really to believe that history is on their side. And they are trying to boost "history" along, at every opportunity, in every way they can.
I have set forth here the nature of the communist menace confronting our Republic and the whole free world. This is the measure of the challenge we have faced since World War II--a challenge partly military and partly economic, partly moral and partly intellectual, confronting us at every level of human endeavor and all around the world.
It has been and must be the free world's purpose not only to organize defenses against aggression and subversion, not only to build a structure of resistance and salvation for the community of nations outside the iron curtain, but in addition to give expression and opportunity to the forces of growth and 'progress in the free world, to so organize and unify the cooperative community of free men that we will not crumble but grow stronger over the years, and the Soviet empire, not the free world, will eventually have to change its ways or fall.
Our whole program of action to carry out this purpose has been directed to meet two requirements. The first of these had to do with security. Like the pioneers who settled this great continent of ours, we have had to carry a musket while we went about our peaceful business.
We realized that if we and our allies did not have military strength to meet the growing Soviet military threat, we would never have the opportunity to carry forward our efforts to build a peaceful world of law and order--the only environment in which our free institutions could survive and flourish. Did this mean we had to drop everything else and concentrate on armies and weapons?
Of course it did not: side-by-side with this urgent military requirement, we had to continue to help create conditions of economic and social progress in the world. This work had to be carried forward alongside the first, not only in order to meet the non-military aspects of the communist drive for power, but also because this creative effort toward human progress is essential to bring about the kind of world we as free men want to live in.
These two requirements--military security and human progress--are more closely related in action than we sometimes recognize. Military security depends upon a strong economic underpinning and a stable and hopeful political order; conversely, the confidence that makes for economic and political progress does not thrive in areas that are vulnerable to military conquest.
These requirements are related in another way. Both of them depend upon unity of action among the free nations of the world. This, indeed, has been the foundation of our whole effort, for the drawing together of the free people of the world has become a condition essential not only to their progress, but to their survival as free people.
This is the conviction that underlies all the steps we have been taking to strengthen and unify the free nations during the past seven years. What have these steps been? First of all, how have we gone about meeting the requirement of providing for our security against this world-wide challenge? Our starting point, as I have said on many occasions, has been and remains the United Nations. We were prepared, and so were the other nations of the free world, to place our reliance on the machinery of the United Nations to safeguard peace.
But before the United Nations could give full expression to the concept of international security embodied in the Charter, it was essential that the five permanent members of the Security Council honor their solemn pledge to cooperate to that end. This the Soviet Union has not done. I do not need to outline here the dreary record of Soviet obstruction and veto and the unceasing efforts of the Soviet representatives to sabotage the United Nations. It is important, however, to distinguish clearly between the principle of collective security embodied in the Charter and the mechanisms of the United Nations to give that principle effect.
We must frankly recognize that the Soviet Union has been able, in certain instances, to stall the machinery of collective security. Yet it has not been able to impair the principle of collective security. The free nations of the world have retained their allegiance to that idea. They have found the means to act despite the Soviet veto, both through the United Nations itself and through the application of this principle in regional and other security arrangements that are fully in harmony with the Charter and give expression to its purposes. The free world refused to resign itself to collective suicide merely because of the technicality of a Soviet veto.
The principle of collective measures to forestall aggression has found expression in the Treaty of Rio de Janeiro, the North Atlantic Treaty, now extended to include Greece and Turkey, and the several treaties we have concluded to reinforce security in the Pacific area. But the free nations have not this time fallen prey to the dangerous illusion that treaties alone will stop an aggressor. By a series of vigorous actions, as varied as the nature of the threat, the free nations have successfully thwarted aggression or the threat of aggression in many different parts of the world. Our country has led or supported these collective measures.
The aid we have given to people determined to act in defense of their freedom has often spelled the difference between success and failure. We all know what we have done, and I shall not review in detail the steps we have taken. Each major step was a milepost in the developing unity, strength and resolute will of the free nations. The first was the determined and successful effort made through the United Nations to safeguard the integrity and independence of Iran in and Next was our aid and support to embattled Greece, which enabled her to defeat the forces threatening her national independence.
In Turkey, cooperative action resulted in building up a bulwark of military strength for an area vital to the defenses of the entire free world. In , we began furnishing military aid to our partners in the North Atlantic Community and to a number of other free countries. The Soviet Union's threats against Germany and Japan, its neighbors to the West and to the East, have been successfully withstood. Free Germany is on its way to becoming a member of the peaceful community of nations, and a partner in the common defense.
The Soviet effort to capture Berlin by blockade was thwarted by the courageous Allied airlift. An independent and democratic Japan has been brought back into the community of free nations. In the Far East, the tactics of communist imperialism have reached heights of violence unmatched elsewhere--and the problem of concerted action by the free nations has been at once more acute and more difficult.
Here, in spite of outside aid and support, the free government of China succumbed to the communist assault. Our aid has enabled the free Chinese to rebuild and strengthen their forces on the island of Formosa. In other areas of the Far East-in Indo-China, Malaya, and the Philippines--our assistance has helped sustain a staunch resistance against communist insurrectionary attacks. The supreme test, up to this point, of the will and determination of the free nations came in Korea, when communist forces invaded the Republic of Korea, a state that was in a special sense under the protection of the United Nations.
The response was immediate and resolute. Under our military leadership, the free nations for the first time took up arms, collectively, to repel aggression. Aggression was repelled, driven back, punished. Since that time, communist strategy has seen fit to prolong the conflict, in spite of honest efforts by the United Nations to reach an honorable truce. The months of deadlock have demonstrated that the communists cannot achieve by persistence, or by diplomatic trickery, what they failed to achieve by sneak attack. Korea has demonstrated that the free world has the will and the endurance to match the communist effort to overthrow international order through local aggression.
It has been a bitter struggle and it has cost us much in brave lives and human suffering, but it has made it plain that the free nations will fight side by side, that they will not succumb to aggression or intimidation, one by one. This, in the final analysis, is the only way to halt the communist drive to world power. At the heart of the free world's defense is the military strength of the United States. From to , the United States was sole possessor of the atomic bomb. That was a great deterrent and protection in itself. But when the Soviets produced an atomic explosion--as they were bound to do in time--we had to broaden the whole basis of our strength.
We had to endeavor to keep our lead in atomic weapons. We had to strengthen our armed forces generally and to enlarge our productive capacity-our mobilization base. Historically, it was the Soviet atomic explosion in the fall of , nine months before the aggression in Korea, which stimulated the planning for our program of defense mobilization. What we needed was not just a central force that could strike back against aggression. We also needed strength along the outer edges of the free world, defenses for our allies as well as for ourselves, strength to hold the line against attack as well as to retaliate.
We have made great progress on this task of building strong defenses. In the last two and one half years, we have more than doubled our own defenses, and we have helped to increase the protection of nearly all the other free nations. All the measures of collective security, resistance to aggression, and the building of defenses, constitute the first requirement for the survival and progress of the free world. But, as I have pointed out, they are interwoven with the necessity of taking steps to create and maintain economic and social progress in the free nations.
There can be no military strength except where there is economic capacity to back it. There can be no freedom where there is economic chaos or social collapse. For these reasons, our national policy has included a wide range of economic measures. In Europe, the grand design of the Marshall Plan permitted the people of Britain and France and Italy and a half dozen other countries, with help from the United States, to lift themselves from stagnation and find again the path of rising production, rising incomes, rising standards of living. The situation was changed almost overnight by the Marshall Plan; the people of Europe have a renewed hope and vitality, and they are able to carry a share of the military defense of the free world that would have been impossible a few years ago.
Now the countries of Europe are moving rapidly towards political and economic unity, changing the map of Europe in more hopeful ways than it has been changed for years. Customs unions, European economic institutions like the Schuman Plan, the movement toward European political integration, the European Defense Community-all are signs of practical and effective growth toward greater common strength and unity. The countries of Western Europe, including the free Republic of Germany are working together, and the whole free world is the gainer.
It sometimes happens, in the course of history, that steps taken to meet an immediate necessity serve an ultimate purpose greater than may be apparent at the time. This, I believe, is the meaning of what has been going on in Europe under the threat of aggression. The free nations there, with our help, have been drawing together in defense of their free institutions.
In so doing, they have laid the foundations of a unity that will endure as a major creative force beyond the exigencies of this period of history. We may, at this close range, be but dimly aware of the creative surge this movement represents, but I believe it to be of historic importance. I believe its benefits will survive long after communist tyranny is nothing but an unhappy memory. In Asia and Africa, the economic and social problems are different but no less urgent. There hundreds of millions of people are in ferment, exploding into the twentieth century, thrusting toward equality and independence and improvement in the hard conditions of their lives.
Politically, economically, socially, things cannot and will not stay in their pre-war mold in Africa and Asia. Change must come--is coming--fast. These names alone are testimony to the sweep of the great force which is changing the face of half the world. Working out new relationships among the peoples of the free world would not be easy in the best of times. Even if there were no Communist drive for expansion, there would be hard and complex problems of transition from old social forms, old political arrangements, old economic institutions to the new ones our century demands--problems of guiding change into constructive channels, of helping new nations grow strong and stable.
But now, with the Soviet rulers striving to exploit this ferment for their own purposes, the task has become harder and more urgent--terribly urgent. In this situation, we see the meaning and the importance of the Point IV program, through which we can share our store of know-how and of capital to help these people develop their economies and reshape their societies. As we help Iranians to raise more grain, Indians to reduce the incidence of malaria, Liberians to educate their children better, we are at once helping to answer the desires of the people for advancement, and demonstrating the superiority of freedom over communism.
There will be no quick solution for any of the difficulties of the new nations of Asia and Africa--but there may be no solution at all if we do not press forward with full energy to help these countries grow and flourish in freedom and in cooperation with the rest of the free world. Our measures of economic policy have already had a tremendous effect on the course of events. Eight years ago, the Kremlin thought post-war collapse in Western Europe and Japan--with economic dislocation in America--might give them the signal to advance.
We demonstrated they were wrong. Now they wait with hope that the economic recovery of the free world has set the stage for violent and disastrous rivalry among the economically developed nations, struggling for each other's markets and a greater share of trade. Here is another test that we shall have to meet and master in the years immediately ahead.
And it will take great ingenuity and effort--and much time--before we prove the Kremlin wrong again. But we can do it. It is true that economic recovery presents its problems, as does economic decline, but they are problems of another order. They are the problems of distributing abundance fairly, and they can be solved by the process of international cooperation that has already brought us so far. These are the measures we must continue.
This is the path we must follow. We must go on, working with our free associates, building an international structure for military defense, and for economic, social, and political progress. We must be prepared for war, because war may be thrust upon us. But the stakes in our search for peace are immensely higher than they have ever been before. For now we have entered the atomic age, and war has undergone a technological change which makes it a very different thing from what it used to be. War today between the Soviet empire and the free nations might dig the grave not only of our Stalinist opponents, but of our own society, our world as well as theirs.
This transformation has been brought to pass in the seven years from Alamogordo to Eniwetok. It is only seven years, but the new force of atomic energy has turned the world into a very different kind of place. Science and technology have worked so fast that war's new meaning may not yet be grasped by all the. But I have been President of the United States, these seven years, responsible for the decisions which have brought our science and our engineering to their present place.
I know what this development means now. I know something of what it will come to mean in the future. We in this Government realized, even before the first successful atomic explosion, that this new force spelled terrible danger for all mankind unless it were brought under international control. We promptly advanced proposals in the United Nations to take this new source of energy out of the arena of national rivalries, to make it impossible to use it as a weapon of war.
These proposals, so pregnant with benefit for all humanity, were rebuffed by the rulers of the Soviet Union. The language of science is universal, the movement of science is always forward into the unknown. We could not assume that the Soviet Union would not develop the same weapon, regardless of all our precautions, nor that there were not other and even more terrible means of destruction lying in the unexplored field of atomic energy.
We had no alternative, then, but to press on, to probe the secrets of atomic power to the uttermost of our capacity, to maintain, if we could, our initial superiority in the atomic field. At the same time, we sought persistently for some avenue, some formula, for reaching an agreement with the Soviet rulers that would place this new form of power under effective restraints--that would guarantee no nation would use it in war. I do not have to recount here the proposals we made, the steps taken in the United Nations, striving at least to open a way to ultimate agreement.
I hope and believe that we will continue to make these efforts so long as there is the slightest possibility of progress. All civilized nations are agreed on the urgency of the problem, and have shown their willingness to agree on effective measures of control--all save the Soviet Union and its satellites.
But they have rejected every reasonable proposal. Meanwhile, the progress of scientific experiment has outrun our expectations. Atomic science is in the full tide of development; the unfolding of the innermost secrets of matter is uninterrupted and irresistible. Since Alamogordo we have developed atomic weapons with many times the explosive force of the early models, and we have produced them in substantial quantities. And recently, in the thermonuclear tests at Eniwetok, we have entered another stage in the world-shaking development of atomic energy. From now on, man moves into a new era of destructive power, capable of creating explosions of a new order of magnitude, dwarfing the mushroom clouds of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
We have no reason to think that the stage we have now reached in the release of atomic energy will be the last. Indeed, the speed of our scientific and technical progress over the last seven years shows no signs of abating. We are being hurried forward, in our mastery of the atom, from one discovery to another, toward yet unforeseeable peaks of destructive power. Inevitably, until we can reach international agreement, this is the path we must follow. And we must realize that no advance we make is unattainable by others, that no advantage in this race can be more than temporary.
The war of the future would be one in which man could extinguish millions of lives at one blow, demolish the great cities of the world, wipe out the cultural achievements of the past--and destroy the very structure of a civilization that has been slowly and painfully built up through hundreds of generations. Such a war is not a possible policy for rational men. We know this, but we dare not assume that others would not yield to the temptation science is now placing in their hands.
With that in mind, there is something I would say, to Stalin: You claim belief in Lenin's prophecy that one stage in the development of communist society would be war between your world and ours. But Lenin was a pre-atomic man, who viewed society and history with pre-atomic eyes. Something profound has happened since he wrote. War has changed its shape and its dimension. It cannot now be a "stage" in the development of anything save ruin for your regime and your homeland.
I do not know how much time may elapse before the communist rulers bring themselves to recognize this truth. But when they do, they will find us eager to reach understandings that will protect the world from the danger it faces today. It is no wonder that some people wish that we had never succeeded in splitting the atom.
But atomic power, like any other force of nature, is not evil in itself. Properly used, it is an instrumentality for human betterment. They asked me to take on the job. My home was in Beverly Hills and our chief office was in Los Angeles. So it would entail my having to go up and down the coast usually by United Airlines, but sometimes General [John L. We took over a hotel in San Francisco and organized a group that would handle the relocation, this was before the Relocation Authority was created.
This group consisted of people from each of the agencies of the Government, for example Milton Eisenhower was for Agriculture, Governor [M. Then we had the people that took the census, I think the director of the Bureau. We took over this hotel and put these people in there and the census people began to find where the citizens of Japanese descent lived. We got some big sample tables like salesmen use and they put the raw reports out on the table. Inside of, oh, 60 days they could tell us exactly the city blocks where the people of Japanese descent lived.
Meanwhile the engineers, Army Engineers, began their job of building the cantonments, the camps. The first one was Santa Anita. They took over the race track and changed the stalls into apartments, very nice apartments; put in running water and everything. Then they built the Tule Lake camp that was up in the mountains and some down in the desert.
Meanwhile, General DeWitt and myself surveyed the West to find places where we might build camps where the internees would be received. There was a lot of antipathy and much personal enmity. We finally located three or four camps outside of the west coast area, but the largest ones were along the west coast.
There's been much talk about this episode in our history. HESS: Let's go back to the beginning. Looking back what was the view at that time just after Pearl Harbor? What was the thinking at that time on the necessity for relocating the Japanese, or moving the Japanese away from the coast? The Congress passed an Act that authorized a commanding general, it didn't mention DeWitt, but the commanding generals in strategic areas to remove people from the area or to have a curfew. Our idea was to have a curfew. At first DeWitt put in a curfew. But the sentiment in California was very, very strong and had been oh, for almost a century.
Not necessarily against the Japanese, but against the yellow race. First it built up into a yellow peril complex. The people were already for it in We had quite a few incidents that were unfortunate; for example, one night we had what we thought was an air raid on Los Angeles.
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I had just come in from San Francisco. Mary had a German maid who called to me from the bottom of the stairway. I was upstairs and. I could see the search lights converging out towards Santa Monica. Your mind fools your eye sometimes. I thought I saw anti-aircraft flames and one thing and another. Then the next morning the Los Angeles Times had big headlines, "L. So that caused a furor of course. Then we had one incident at Long Beach where somebody found a bomb on the beach and they claimed it was put there by a one-man Japanese submarine.
And many times when I was in San Francisco, which I was almost every day, people would call and say they. They were not true. We had thousands of letters about people of Japanese descent; for example one would say, there's a General of the Japanese Army or Admiral in the Navy who lives at such and such a place. And so we would get pretty quick service and we found that in most instances they did have uniforms, but they were uniforms of a lodge, like the Masonic Lodge.
A person in Santa Monica might pull down his window curtain a certain distance and then let it up, etc. This was thought to be a signal to a boat at sea. We never found an instance where there was any actual signaling was going on; somebody's curtain busted once or twice, and that was all there was to that. But there was, in addition to the yellow peril hysteria, an economic situation.
The Japanese are the greatest stoop laborers, I suppose in the world. The climate, soil, etc. However most California land was taken and they were obliged to take it where they could. This would ordinarily be in areas that no one else would want to live because it was too hazardous for a yellow skinned person;. It might also be hazardous because it would be around high tension wires or transformer stations; or it might be in a switching yard where there are several railroad tracks and things like that; or perhaps it might be a reservoir dam, land right below the dam, where they might have big rocks and other debris that has accumulated there before they built the dam or was left over concrete, etc.
Well these people of Japanese extraction would get to work and they would dig the rocks out and bring in some soil, fertilizer and water and the first thing you know they'd have a right nice garden. I well remember headline after headline and hundreds of letters and telegrams I would receive about Tule Lake -- I think the name, a reservoir. I am not certain at this late date but I think that it was a lake up there in the hills where Los Angeles got its water. This hatred was a serious problem for the Japanese themselves; they began to dropping off, some found dead, others. And I would get telegrams from people in small communities saying: "If you don't get these 'damn Japs' out of here you are going to find them dead," and similar threats.
So I finally concluded that perhaps for their own sake we ought to try to do something to protect them. Frankly, I suggested, and Mr. Hoover insisted, that we take care of the Japanese in the same manner that we were handling Germans and the Italians. That was on the basis of individual prosecutions; or what some people call mass trials, but they weren't really mass ones. You might have nine or ten defendants in a conspiracy case.
And we convicted quite a few, perhaps a thousand, that we call "Nazi," during the war. The cases were filed in various district courts, particularly, I remember, in Brooklyn; and we had a squad of witnesses and. It was, of course, the same background in each case which permitted the use of the same witnesses in various courts.
The individual action of a defendant would have to be proven by specific witnesses as to specific conduct; and, it would be different of course. As a rule we had no trouble but we had one case here in the District of Columbia that gave us some; but no violence or anything like that. Honestly we didn't have any trouble with the Japanese; as a matter of fact the Japanese were not interned until I'd say April or May ; that is the first ones; and some of them were not moved until much later in the war.
And we never suffered any sabotage, either in Hawaii or on the west coast. We could have done without it. Of course your hindsight is much better than your foresight; also you have to put it in the perspective of the time, which was that there was a great hullabaloo about getting them out of California, or something would happen to them. And now that is all over I rather think that perhaps it was for the best. A large percent of them did not go back to the original homes.
I think less than half of them went back to California. The rest of them are scattered over the United States. I had a meeting here with the Japanese-American Association, I think they call it, and they had no chip on their shoulder; there was no acrimony.
In fact they gave me a beautiful etching that one of their people had drawn. It's just been four or five weeks ago. So I rather think that while it was a very, very. But it was also a bad experience for us. But I hope that it will teach us a lesson, that it is not necessary to do these things. Clark, Washington, D. By Jerry N. Hess, Harry S. Why in your opinion were you selected as Attorney General? It had to do with procurement contracts in the construction of defense plants, materiel, equipment, etc. The Department of Justice had a war frauds unit that prosecuted fraud cases; Senator Truman was chairman of the defense plants committee and after holding a hearing he would.
After reviewing the transcript I would go to Senator Truman's office and discuss the transcript with him and his Counsel, Hugh Fulton.https://gosufasole.tk
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So I got acquainted with Mr. Truman in that manner. We cooperated very closely and prosecuted some very serious fraud cases which the Truman Committee had uncovered. The Committee rendered a great service to the country and Mr. Truman became nationally known for his honest, forthright approach to the work of the Committee. It made our work of prosecution easy and much more certain. At the same time it afforded quick punishment and promoted obedience to law.
I must say, however, that I had developed a war friendship with Robert Hannegan, who was also from Missouri. Hannegan originally was the Internal Revenue Collector in St. Louis, and then came here. Washington as Commissioner of Internal Revenue; and became -- during Mr. Roosevelt's time -- chairman of the Democratic National Committee. I had become acquainted with Mr. Hannegan through mutual friends in St. Louis, and he was, I think, largely instrumental in getting my appointment.
Frankly, Bob Hannegan came to me about -- well it was before Mr. Roosevelt's death. I was about to go back to private practice in Dallas. I had been in St. Louis and talked to Adolph Busch at his request. At that time, the train service from Dallas, my home town, and Washington went through St. Louis and one had a three-hour wait over in the trip. So I went to lunch with Adolph Busch who was the predecessor of Augustus. There was a group of non-resident breweries doing business in Texas, such as Falstaff and Pabst and including several in Milwaukee who had the same Texas counsel, Martin Winfrey.
Winfrey had passed on shortly before that time. I had, before leaving Dallas, represented the Times Herald , a local newspaper, and it had been trying to get me to come back. I had also lost my older brother in and his practice was quite extensive. The plan was that I would return and take over both the Winfrey brewery representation and my brother's firm. But Bob said, "No, you ought not to do that. We have bigger things for you. After Mr. Roosevelt's death, why, Bob called me one day and he said, "I want you to get me two letters. Sam pulled out his desk drawer and took out a piece of his personal stationery, "Speaker of the House," and he wrote in longhand: "Dear Mr.
There was quite a contrast between the two letters, although each was very kind and helpful. I gave them to Bob, and he, I suppose, took them to the President. I don't know what he did with them. I got a call one day from the White House; I was asked to come over and see the President. When I went over he told me, himself. Something on his philosophy of justice perhaps? He told me, and you'll find a slight reference to this in his book, that he thought that there were many injustices being visited upon many of our people, and that he wanted me to see if we couldn't bring a more effective justice home to the average man in the courts -- not only Federal but state.
And he. Then he told me, I remember well, he said, "Also I want you to pick out somebody for Solicitor General who, in the event you go, I'll have another man -- I won't have to look all over the country and wait around to get me another man to be Attorney General. So, from time to time, why of course, I'd see Mr. I was very fortunate. I had a close personal relationship. And that's a very sensitive spot for an Attorney General, because the President's counsel is a lawyer who is in the White House -- President Roosevelt created the office -- Presidents had had confidants, of course, for years.
But you may remember it really bobbed up more during the time of President [Woodrow] Wilson who had House, who was a Texan, incidentally. Then, subsequently, Mr. Roosevelt established the office of counsel. I don't think it was because he had any lack of confidence in the Attorney General. But it was just that the many, many things that came up in such a sudden and never ending fashion, required immediate attention, and sometimes you couldn't get the Attorney General; often, too, the bureaucracy works a little slowly, and so Mr.
Roosevelt used Sam [Samuel] Rosenman, you. He appeared several times before congressional committees and I met him in that fashion. HESS: One brief question. Biddle make any comment on what his opinion was of the President having a Special Counsel in the White House? Roosevelt appointed Sam Rosenman he waited until a time when Francis Biddle was out of town to make the announcement. Do you recall that? Roosevelt was a pretty positive person.
I knew him myself. I don't think he would have cared a whit how the Attorney General felt about it. During that period of time did you work closely with. I knew Mr. Rosenman, but not as well as I do now. I, of course, became acquainted with him when he was there. And he was very cooperative; we didn't have any problems. But of course, he was not there very long. I was new and it was natural that some deference would be paid. HESS: I don't know if it's true or not, but we hear today of persons on the White House staff who place themselves between the President and his Cabinet members.
Would you comment on that? Did you find anything like that in the Truman administration? I did not in my appointment. In my service I did not. Of course you always hear those things, and I think that sometimes some. I think that's the way that idea crept in. And, of course, the President's a pretty busy person. He can't be seeing a Cabinet officer every moment. We used to have meetings every Friday, and rather religiously.
I don't think many were passed over. He would talk over various problems that were raised by the Cabinet officers. I had a habit, which was a bad one, of meeting with him after the Cabinet, sometimes before. HESS: Was this on something that you wanted to take up with him that did not affect the others and would therefore waste the time of the other Cabinet members? HESS: Was this particularly unusual or wouldn't the other Cabinet members do the same thing -- want to talk to him about something that was not For example, the State Department I'm sure did all the time.
Foreign affairs were pretty hot then, you know; and, then, the atomic bomb was quite controversial. There was a movement on foot to turn it over, lock, stock, and barrel to the world. Three or four of us fought that in a Cabinet meeting and we prevailed, although of course, the secret mechanism eventually got out.
But I rather think this decision delayed the development of the bomb for three or four years in other hands. It may have had some effect, although I'm not one to say it changed the world in any way; but I rather think that maybe our action had a sort of a cold effect; you will remember, soon after Mr.
Roosevelt died, relations between us and the Communist world got pretty hot at times. It might have been that if we had turned the bomb over something untoward would have happened, although I doubt it. CLARK: Oh, yes, we devoted, I remember, one full Cabinet session; I rather think in the fall of -- perhaps even before -- it had been discussed over a period of four or five months.
HESS: It's fairly well known. Truman mentions this in his volumes, but which Cabinet members do you recall thought that the secrets of the atomic bomb should be turned over to international control? In other words, what was Henry Wallace's view? I don't know, there was about four or five of us that were against it. The President had a practice of going around the Cabinet seniority-wise.
I think I was four in the hierarchy, as I remember it. And I sat one removed from the President. So, I was pretty high on the totem pole, you might say. We did not have a Vice President, but when [Alben W. HESS: Did he attend more Cabinet meetings towards the first of the second term than he did later in the term? I came to the Court in August so I was only in the Cabinet about a half year during the Truman second term. During the period I was there I'd say Mr. Barkley was there well over half the time. He sat at the Cabinet table opposite the President.
They were very friendly, of course they had served in the Senate. Barkley had been a very, very strong contender for the Presidency himself, and there had been some talk of him running, even against Mr. There was a lot of talk about Eisenhower running also. I don't think that Mr. Barkley ever had any idea of running against him, though. I think his idea was to be Vice President all the time. HESS: On the subject of the atomic bomb -- what is your opinion on the use of the atomic bomb in August of ?
Indeed, I talked with him about four or five months before he died. I had to be over in Kansas City and he was in the hospital. The doctor said I could stay about five minutes, but the President wouldn't let me go and I stayed there about forty-five minutes, and we got. He sat in a chair, and I didn't notice any weakness at all, and his mind was just like a steel trap, and he was very forceful and he didn't pull any punches.
Typical Truman appearance. He defended his dropping the bomb. I rather think myself, that it was necessary to do it. To defeat the Japanese would have entailed the loss of millions of our soldier boys. Because it's somewhat like the Vietnam situation, except it's not quite so aggravated, you wouldn't have so much guerrilla warfare -- a dissipation of your efforts and greater effort to try and reach the heart of the problem that would be Tokyo; you'd have to do some island hopping; if you didn't use the bomb.
And I rather think it will be a good lesson for history. Now it's been, well, thirty years almost, and we haven't had another atomic incident. I don't think. I rather think that we're going the other way, to where we're going to reason things out together, if we possibly can.
Truman regard as a proper role of his Cabinet? Were they his principal advisers? Truman was one to believe that a Cabinet officer should run his department with a free hand. He never did interfere -- never asked me to bring a suit or to slow down on one. He never was critical although I got a lot of criticism otherwise. I don't know whether you've been through the papers or not -- newspapers, but I got considerable criticism. At times it was pretty rough particularly with reference to the John Lewis-United Mine Workers injunction suit over the coal strike, the Kansas City vote frauds, the.
Hiss case, and the loyalty oaths and things of that kind. But at no time, at no time, although I had lunch about once a week with the President and met on other occasions also did he ever criticize my action. Practically every week he'd have three or four of us over for lunch at the White House. And then quite often I would see him down -- it's not in the basement, but they had a little dining room downstairs there -- and either Clark Clifford or Harry Vaughan or somebody would ask me to come over. Usually it would not be a session about any matters of State. It would be a sort of relaxing period that you could meet with the President.
I remember especially one time on his birthday. He had a cook named Pye, and Pye had cooked a birthday pie for him. We found out about it and obtained a union label which, as you know, is often stuck in the crust under them. And so we put this union label on the pie crust next to the pan.
Pye came prancing in balancing his pie on his hand. The President cut it at the right place, exactly where we had that union label on the bottom of it. Just as he slipped his knife under it and raised up his piece of pie it turned over and there's the union label in full view.
He looked up at Pye just like a Broadway actor.
You would never dream that it was a frame-up at all, and the President says, "Pye did you tell me you baked this pie? He turned white and was non-plussed; then the President laughed and Pye was greatly relieved. This is an example of the type of thing that we did. Sometimes it wouldn't be so hilarious! Some of the people on the White House staff, perhaps, some people not even in Government? The only one, I would say, that I came in contact with in that regard would be Clark Clifford. I remember several times that I did go over to see the President about the coal strike, and he had Clark Clifford there.
But we would talk about strategy and the chances of success and things of that kind, and the effectiveness of the injunction. Whether it was an effective weapon to put an end to a strike. I went over two or three times, and I think -- one time we met upstairs in his office right next to the President's bedroom --and Clark, and I, and he talked over the situation. So, I would repeat, I do not remember anytime other than this instance when the President called in other counsel and of course he was his counsel at the time. There wasn't anything untoward about him having Clark there at all.
I don't know of anyone else that was either in the White House or from the outside of the White House, that was ever consulted about any matter in my jurisdiction. HESS: The period following the war was a period full of strikes and labor strife. One of those was the railway problem in I have found that the President called the Cabinet in in late May of '46 to inform them that he intended to go to Congress in person the next day, and demand the labor law that would give him the authority to draft strikers into the armed services, when the strike.
Cabell Phillips in his book The Truman Presidency on page states that when you raised a question about the constitutionality of such a move, the President brushed you aside with the answer, "We'll draft 'em first and think about the law later. We had a George Washington too. He was a lawyer. At that time we had an Assistant Solicitor General that wrote all the opinions, under the name of the Attorney General for the President -- legal opinions.
Now they call it Office of Legal Counsel or something like that; but then we called it Assistant. Solicitor General. George and myself and two or three other people in the Department of Justice stayed up all night, that very night that he made that decision, drafting the bill and then he sent it up to Congress. He went up there with it the next morning, and it was introduced at 12 o'clock noon.
Rayburn was the Speaker. It passed the House pretty quick -- an hour or so; and it went over to the Senate and Bob Taft stopped it. HESS: I believe that was the time when the President went up to deliver that message in person, and Leslie Biffle, the Secretary of the Senate, handed him a note during the speech informing him that the strike had been settled.
Is that correct -- that same one? HESS: Now, a brief question about the loyalty of Government employees and this was another thorn, this was another subject that was back and forth. Truman's administration, and that was when he appointed a commission to look into it. They drew up a report which they called "To Secure These Rights," which he promulgated. And if you will study that -- it's only a few pages -- you will find it is a blueprint of most everything that's been done in the area of civil rights since that time He followed that through by integrating the armed services of which he was the Commander in Chief; and, although Mr.
Roosevelt, whom I loved, had talked much about the plight of the Negro and. I remember quite well the newspapers would run pictures of Mrs. Roosevelt with black people, and attach some derogatory headlines to it. It was difficult for Mr. Roosevelt, I'm sure; but Mr. Truman took the position that we had to have immediate action on it, and he proposed legislation to the Congress, some of which became law. Eventually, the housing legislation which Mr. Johnson was able to get through in the middle sixties was really a refinement of Mr. Truman's proposals. He also made proposals with reference to voting public accommodations and things of that kind.
So, I rather think that this program had its inception back there. Of course, at. He was determined to make some progress in this area. Of course, the Congress didn't cooperate too much during the 80th Congress, in particular. He couldn't do much then, but when he got his Congress in, why he was able to do much more. HESS: We'll get further into the question of civil rights a little bit later, but more on the question of loyalty. CLARK: Loyalty, we of course, were somewhat disturbed about the attacks that were being made with reference to Communists in the Government as well as at large.
So we tried to initiate some workable solution to protect. During the war, in fact beginning about , these were loyalty boards. Most people never heard of them, but they were boards that were created without any public hearings. Their procedures were all secret. Those in charge did not make them public.
They had a list just like our list, except it was not made public either. It had such organizations on the list as Nazi groups, the Ku Klux Klan, and Fascist organizations were on their list. It was done to protect the Government from Nazi, Fascist and other groups just as ours was to protect against communism.
During the war, as you well know, the Communists were our Allies and we were fighting side by side. We gave them all sorts of materiel and equipment. So, as the cold war progressed and as [Winston] Churchill announced the "Iron Curtain" why we. We got blasted nearly every day over something; and then Senator McCarthy came into it and was quite active in it.
And while many people in high posts thought it was an unfortunate one that we could have avoided the public itself was. This was evidenced by the effective programs resulting in Communist supporters, speakers, etc. So, we promulgated the Loyalty Order, and its whole system of preclusion of Communist sympathizers in Government jobs. There was no secret about it; the entire program -- including the prescribed list of organizations was public.
The latter was known as the Attorney General's list, which included quite a number of organizations. The Justice Department had hearings on it and I've been criticized for it, but the Supreme Court later held it unconstitutional -- as not affording due process. In fact, hearings were held as to organizations that protested.
There was a panel of three in the Department of. Justice that heard these protests; considered the entire list and recommended to me the organizations that should go on the list. We did have hearings to those objecting despite the Supreme Court finding, which was based entirely on the complaint in the case. I remember well the Lawyer's Guild appeared for a hearing. But the McGrath case went to the Court on what we call a motion to dismiss and in that procedure all of the allegations of a complaint are taken as true, and the allegations were that we did not have any hearings, so that's why the Court found to the contrary.
Actually we did have hearings; we did list the organizations that the hearing panel recommended and we circulated it to the various loyalty boards created under the Executive Order. Without our advice or approval several states began passing laws that would adopt the. Attorney General's list as to State employees. First thing you know the Attorney General's list was applied, applied across the board, in private life as well as in public employment. It was never intended for use outside the Federal establishment but in a short while it was followed with reference to practically all employee loyalty, public and private.
There were many cases involving it. Practically all of the states adopted loyalty programs, loyalty oaths, and things of that kind. It was a time of some hysteria. It was right after the war. The people were somewhat disturbed about the Communists, particularly at that time. The Chinese were working somewhat closer to Russia than they are now. And as a consequence there was public feeling that we should be much more strict in that area.
We thought that some of. And the President was determined that no one would be crucified by this hysteria, and so we put many safeguards in our program. And I don't think, as I look back on it, that there were too many untoward situations. Of course, any program that you have of that type is going to have some difficult situations that in hindsight appear to be untoward and insupportable. But I'd say as a general rule that the thousands of employees, over two million in fact, who were in the Government at that time suffered no problem. It worked surprisingly well, and as time went on it was refined to prevent unfair application in cases of hardship.
By the time that Mr. Truman went out of office, why, it was about the same program that is in operation today. Devitt] Vanech and Richard M. Freeland in his book that's just come out recently The Truman Doctrine and the Origins of McCarthyism states -- this is on the subject of employee loyalty and investigations. Clark's advocacy of a new initiative in this area was consistent with the concern over internal security he had manifested since his appointment as Attorney General.
There is reason to believe that in urging new action with regard to employee loyalty Clark was reflecting the views, if not following the advice, of F. Director Hoover. Did you ever follow the advice or reflect the views of J. Edgar Hoover in the matter of the investigation of employee loyalty? Hoover sometimes would talk about -- during the early period -- the composition of the board, and the type of investigation the F. But as far as formulating any broad principles, or. Vanech was one of my assistants, Gus Vanech, and I selected him myself.
While he had been in the Department sometime he certainly wasn't any protege of Mr. Hoover had organized after the war a section in the F. It was beamed largely toward Communist activity. There was a large increase, a phenomenal increase in reports that I would get from him with reference to alleged Communist infiltration.
However, most of those things were very general, and I had an assistant Jim [James M. He would go over them carefully and give me a report on them or send me the ones he thought were sufficiently important. Hoover, as I remember it, never did attend any meetings of this Commission until after it was organized and in business.
He attended, I believe, one or two of the initial meetings where they were trying to develop a pattern of investigative technique that the Commission wanted to follow, and matters of that kind that would be within his jurisdiction. Edgar Hoover -- did you have a compatible working relationship with Mr. Roosevelt appointed me as head of the Antitrust Division in , and then Mr. Biddle transferred me later to the. Criminal Division. We had a practice in the Department of Justice under which the Attorney General might switch an assistant without confirmation -- every Assistant Attorney General had to be confirmed by the Senate -- but without confirmation he could switch you to another Division, so I went over to Criminal.
Of course in Criminal I was very much closer to the daily workings of the F. They investigated all our cases, in fact most of our cases originated in the F. So, we had to use the F. Hoover more when I was an Assistant in the Criminal Division. Hoover was a very efficient and hard working person, very conservative, and was certainly imbued with.
Hoover was a subordinate to the Attorney General, and as you know, there have been newspaper reports that he did not look upon his situation there in that manner with some Attorney Generals. I have Robert Kennedy for instance, the report of conflict. Did you have any difficulty, any conflict with Mr. Hoover over your position? Hoover tried to do what I indicated should be done.
But in operations as massive as Mr. Hoover's were when I was there -- he had about three thousand agents -- it was quite difficult. He had his agency divided into five or six different divisions. I would have to deal quite. Hoover, because invariably he would have to go to them, too. I had personally known most of them, so I'd go to them. Then sometimes there was antipathy. I think that it's fair to say that Mr. Hoover had an overriding passion to protect the F. There's nothing to most of the charges of infiltration in the State Department.
He would not say that a Federal offense had been committed that was cognizable under our statutes. But he claimed that there was a leftist attitude in the State Department -- not at a high level, but in the lower echelons. When they commenced investigating, for example, the Kansas City vote fraud charges -- it was next door to Mr. Hoover immediately began to try to backwater to get the F.
Somebody stole the ballots out there right from under their noses. I remember talking to Mr. Hoover about my offering a reward. I'd offer a reward -- personal reward -- to anyone that would furnish leads to its solution. But he pooh-poohed it and said he didn't think I should. So, later on I found out -- he told me it was unbeknownst to him -- that the F. And whenever they would send me the relevant files on the K. I just ran across that accidently in the Kansas City vote fraud investigation that Senator Ferguson conducted.
He had appointed Bill Rogers, who is the present Secretary of State, to be counsel for the subcommittee and Bill was forthright enough to tell me when I let him go through the file. Originally I wouldn't let the K. But so much criticism resulted that I set up two rooms in the Justice Department Building for Bill to come down and go through the files personally. He came up to my office and showed me the file one day. He had found it in his examination of the K. He said that, "Mickey [D. Milton] Ladd had set it up. So, I said, "Well there's a lot of stuff in here that looks pretty bad.
I had not been practicing law since with my law partner, and this was in about I can't imagine such a thing. I had nothing to do with his appointment, it was State. He had nothing to do with the Kansas City vote frauds but they were reaching out hoping to involve him. Then another untoward thing that was in the file was a copy of the Kansas City Star and it said, "Clark," big headlines on the front page "Clark Rebuked," or something, I don't know, it had some derogatory headline.
I read the article, and it said that the committee investigating the Kansas City vote fraud reported today that Attorney General Clark was derelict in his duty in investigating the case, and that his statement concerning the fact that he had done exactly what Mr. Hoover had suggested with reference to the investigation was false, and all sorts of things. In fact this edition of the Star had never been published. It was a story based on Mr. Ferguson's report that he intended to make on behalf of the Committee when his Republican colleague on.
However, his colleague did not join but filed his own report which was favorable to me. Ferguson had leaked the report to the Star believing his colleague would join and the Star had set it all up ready for delivery when Mr. Ferguson had to call them to tell them to hold it. When they had the hearing I went up to the Capitol -- Ferguson was going to announce the findings against me -- and everything; well his colleague Senator Langer didn't agree with Ferguson but came out on my side, the Democrat on the subcommittee, McCarran, of course, was on my side all the time -- he was a Democrat.
So when this untoward event for Ferguson happened it was he lost -- not me -- and as a result his report as given the Star was wrong. He had to call down there and tell the Kansas City Star , and ask them to They had already had it in print and the F. Later -- the SAC not knowing of the change -- sent this copy to Hoover and said, "I know that you'd be pleased to see what the Kansas City Star is going to say. But it never appeared on the streets on account of Langer's vote in my favor; and that copy of the Star was in this file; which led me to think that Mr.
Hoover did know about it, because the letter was addressed to him. HESS: If he had a file like that on you, do you think he had files like that on other people, and there as you say -- there have been stories that he kept files of derogatory information on Senators and Representatives.
They might not know what was in it. They might not know even if he had it, and -- hate to use the word blackmail but I'm satisfied that there were files possibly, but I don't think he knew about them. He had a large organization and I don't think that he would deliberately keep a file like that. In fact, Mr. Hoover's rather meticulous about his relationships with Congress, and I fought for the F. One that I remember was on the increase in their retirement salaries, which we got up to 50 percent, which was an enormous amount at that time.
And the President asked me about it, and I said, "Well, why don't you sign it and we'll get the Treasury in it. It would be easier to get them into the bill than it would be to pass a new one. In about a year we got Treasury in Then, on other occasions I had defended the F.
So I felt it was highly out of order for them to have this file. Well, Mr. Hoover told me that Mr. Ladd had told him that I had asked for the file to be created -- that there should be another file on the K. But I had no recollection of it. Certainly, they didn't have any memorandum to that effect, so I rather doubt that I ever so advised Mickey. But I think that Hoover was telling me the truth when he said that he didn't know about the file on me. During the Truman administration, as the Department of Justice was criticized in the press sometimes for not acting in aggressive fashion in manners pertaining to civil rights.
What's your view on that? Do you think that they were unjust? The statutes of course, were soft in that area and we had to carry all of them through the courts, all the prosecutions that we had, and all of our cases. As a consequence. Smith and Allwright for example was a Texas case, we intervened as amicus friend of the court and that case struck down the policy in Texas of having a white primary that would select nominees for the Party Democrat or Republican.
It held that the Democratic primary was tantamount to election, and that, therefore, they'd have to follow non-discriminatory procedures in conducting it. In short the selection of membership in the party must not be racial. They must let the blacks in. The classic case, was where they stuffed the ballot box. The restricted covenants case is where a grantor in a deed, would put a restricted covenant in the transfer of property in order.
We were in all of those cases. We won some of our most significant victories in that area, that up to that time was thought to be untouchable. Indeed, we got most of the credit -- some newspapers urged us to file briefs and the press was generous in giving credit for it. We enlarged the Civil Rights Section; it is now a Division. When I was an Assistant it had only two lawyers -- one of them, Henry Schweinhaut was appointed a Federal judge in the District of Columbia.
Hoover was against it. He inserted in his investigative directives that he sent to agents that all civil rights complaints be referred back to him, in the Department in Washington, without taking any action. Then he would refer them to me, and when I'd approve the investigation Hoover would say, "Well, the Attorney General ordered me to come in. And of course, I would get all the criticism of it, and I didn't mind that, but it did delay the thing considerably. We finally got that out of the requirements. So, I think that we made a lot of progress, that before too long we could commence going into cases like Painter down in Texas, which was a case against the law school.
And we were amicus in that. We went into the McLaurin case, which was an Oklahoma case. We went into a Missouri case, all of which were in the area of education. By the time Mr. Truman finished his second term, why the rule in the graduate school had already been established.
And that, if you'll read the Painter case, Sweatt is the lead name, you'll find some sentences in there that Mr. Truman's Attorney General put in when he was a Justice, that were the forerunners of Brown against the Board of Education, and that paved the way for. As a matter of fact, Brown was here at the time we decided Sweatt. Sweatt was decided about '51, and we held Brown for about three years, because we wanted to try to get a better national coverage -- get more cases from other states.
We got one from Delaware, and from Kansas -- well, Brown was from Kansas. CLARK: Well, it's just one of the group of companion cases, been here longer than any of the others, and just got on top -- the only sole reason why it carried the name. All those cases are in the decisions, including the District of.
Columbia, and so we just combined them for our purposes of argument at the time I was handling them. Then, in one of the cases, why, we sent the case back. The state had voted some bond issues to improve the separate but equal schools under the old Plessy Doctrine. We sent it back to determine just what they did do about it, whether the separate had come up to the equal.
But, I think it's illustrative of the fact that occasionally the Court delays decisions when the climate is not good. Sometimes the case is not an appropriate vehicle on which to base the point of law involved, the record may be cloudy, or the evidence not clear. In this case we thought that one, the question posed was not ripe for decision; two, the evidence was. And, so, we held the Brown case here for some three or four terms.
While I was Attorney General the President talked to me about discrimination, about like problems in the labor field. We brought some actions in that area. He also talked to me about restrictions in voting on the basis of color. He, of course, was interested in these basic discriminations during his entire public life.
He recognized. And where a fellow didn't have a vote he would get his rights protected and he wouldn't get any of the benefits of our society; and, so, he was anxious to wipe out such discriminations; that's why we pushed prosecutions in the labor and voting area.
We found we would be able to successfully prosecute cases like Smith and Allwright, Plessy and the like; when the Government joined in the cases it gave the case emphasis necessary for an expedited decision. The processes of investigation were so slow and cumbersome; all of the spade work had been completed. Why bring separate cases yourself when all of the points involved were already in the courts, private parties had already started them and the usual delay had already occurred, why not just join in and try to do it.
I think our joining those cases. I must say that they did have a section there, three people -- three lawyers -- when I came in as Attorney General, and they had four or five secretaries and people of that kind. But they were using the F. That's understandable; I'm not critical of it. The F. They don't investigate all these cases. In fact,. And so, if they hoped to get the cooperation of the local constabulary, why for them to go in and try to, say like in the Mississippi case -- the name has escaped me right now -- where the police officer tied this black to his car, and then started off at a slow pace where he could walk, and then he started to where he could run, and then he couldn't run, and he got dragged until he died -- it's difficult for the F.
We prosecuted those cases. We lost most of them, but in that case why the Supreme Court did go one step closer to what they say nowadays.
Richard Marggraf Turley (Editor)'s Documents
That step was that the officer had to prove, I mean the Government had to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that at. In other words he had to prove -- it's the 14th Amendment -- he had to prove it was some other constitutional right, which of course, it's impossible as those are objective things that you can't hardly prove. So you have to get some proof of them -- it's hard to do. So that created a problem for us. I think, with that point, why, it's remarkable we got as far as we did. Roosevelt, it's true, always talked about these things but never did anything about them, except this FEPC.
Truman, he didn't talk about them, he did something about them. CLARK: Well, I'd say in two areas that they were very significant, and that would be in Chicago and Detroit, because we used to try to -- in fact in some portions they were balanced out. That's about the time that newspaper that's in Chicago, what's the name of it, the black newspaper, they used to come out for Truman? I think you'll find that the blacks insofar as the voting was concerned, why, they began to do better.