Thursday, December 8, 2011

An Intimacy with the Elite

Arthur E. Carpenter, 
"Social Origins of Anticommunism: 
The Information Council of the Americas,"  
Louisiana History: The Journal of the Louisiana Historical Association, Vol. 30, No. 2 (Spring, 1989), pp. 117-143 
Patrick J. Frawley, Jr.

Continued from Part 1

Morrison complied, advising citizens to "support INCA with vigor." Similarly, Hale Boggs, U. S.  congressman from the New Orleans area, helped INCA win tax-exempt status and praised it as "a prime example of making constructive use of our private citizens in the ideological and psychological struggle against communism."32

Although reliant on this local elite during its early years, INCA tried to expand beyond the city. It met with mixed results. Occasionally its appeals brought forth contributions. In 1964 Ochsner reported a $2,000 donation from the chairman of Standard Oil of New Jersey, [in 1964 the chairman was M. Jackson Rathbone, but note footnote 63 below; R.L. Blaffer was one of the founders of Humble Oil in Texas, partner of W.S. Farish, charged with trading with the enemy during World War II through Standard Oil of New Jersey, which had been a hidden shareholder in Humble Oil.] and in 1966 American & Foreign Power Company, most of whose Latin American subsidiaries had been nationalized, gave $1,000. INCA also hoped to attract funds from H.L. Hunt, the Texas oilman who was a generous patron of the ultra-right. In 1966 board member H. Eustis Reily traveled to Texas to tell Hunt about INCA. Afterwards Ochsner thanked the Texan for meeting with Reily, stressing the urgency of INCA's mission "because of the recent race riots and communistic infiltration." Apparently, though, Hunt did not assist INCA.33

California proved more lucrative. Dudley Swim, a California resident and chairman of National Airlines, was a major benefactor. As noted, Swim was Ochsner's friend, and he was familiar with New Orleans's Latin American program. Back in 1960, after visiting Guatemala on an International  House trade mission, he declared he was "acquiring about 6,000 acres of land in Guatemala for agricultural development."

The most important Californian was Patrick J. Frawley, Jr. [photo above courtesy of Ghost of Mansion Past] Frawley joined Butler and Ochsner as INCA's most influential members. Beginning in the mid-1960s INCA depended increasingly upon the largesse of this Los Angeles businessman who was then an executive of Eversharp, Schick Electric, and Technicolor. Frawley was partial to rightist groups and causes. Among others he lavished large sums upon the Christian Anti-Communism Crusade, the Cardinal Mindszenty Foundation, the American Security Council, and the Young Americans for Freedom. He was a generous supporter of Ronald Reagan's early political career. And he often added prominent conservatives to his corporate boards; Ochsner was an Eversharp director, for example.34

These elite patrons were drawn to INCA, at least initially, because it offered a way to strike at the Cuban Revolution. INCA vowed to use its propagandistic skills to help prevent that revolution's spread elsewhere in Latin America. It devoted its first couple of years to producing and distributing Truth Tapes--anti-Castro recordings designed to be broadcast on Latin American radio stations and to sway the Latin American masses. To convey strong emotion on the tapes, INCA often enlisted Cuban refugees who, in Butler's words, spoke "in the unmistakable argot of their occupation, with the unimpeachable dialect of their class, and with the sincerity bred of bitter experience." By mid-1964, it claimed over 120 cooperating stations in sixteen Latin American nations. According to INCA, the tapes worked. Ochsner boasted, for instance, that one featuring Juanita Castro, Fidel's sister, helped Christian Democrat Eduardo Frei defeat socialist Salvador Allende in Chile's 1964 presidential election.35

Then an apparently fortuitous event encouraged INCA to take up other forms of anti-Cuban propaganda. On August 21, 1963, Lee Harvey Oswald, then a New Orleans resident, appeared on a local radio program with Butler and several others. Their discussion narrowed quickly to Oswald's professed Marxism, his sympathy for Cuba, and his defection to the Soviet Union. Several months later when President Kennedy was assassinated, the hunger for information about Oswald magnified the radio program's importance. Realizing this, INCA issued two records based on a recording of that program.36 In these records and in its literature, INCA described the assassination as tragic confirmation of its analysis and methods. Communist propaganda, argued Butler, had conditioned Oswald and then had incited him to violence. Communist "hate-conveyed always by words from communists to their sympathizers--finally moved the mind, that actuated the trigger, that killed the President of the United States. The links of guilt are visible and obvious." Claiming to have exposed and driven Oswald from New Orleans, Butler believed an INCA branch in Dallas might "have professionally neutralized Oswald there and perhaps saved the President's life."37

The Oswald episode provided raw material for another mode of propaganda: film. In 1965 INCA produced the lurid "Hitler in Havana," which equated Castro with Hitler and which blamed the Cuban leader for Kennedy's death. In the fall and winter of 1966 Frawley underwrote television showings of the film in several large cities. These showings elicited favorable comment. "This is the first time I have seen a TV documentary accurately depicting the tragic situation of post-Castro [sic] Cuba," the executive vice president of American and Foreign Power wrote Butler. And in December 1966 at New Orleans City Hall a rally of several hundred Cuban exiles and their supporters, including the mayor, saluted INCA's film. But "Hitler" appealed only to the convinced. New York Times reviewer Jack Gould ridiculed it as "the crudest form of propaganda," as a "tasteless affront to minimum journalistic standards."38

Angered, Ochsner complained to his friend Turner Catledge, executive editor of the New York Times, that Gould had slurred INCA and anti-communism. Catledge tried to soothe Ochsner, assuring him that his newspaper's editorial page was "unequivocally anti-Communist," and that Gould had only suggested that "politically motivated programs such as 'Hitler in Havana' should be advertised as such and not presented simply as documentaries with disinterested commercial sponsorship." Ochsner was not pacified. Forwarding a copy of Catledge's letter to Butler, he commented that "it just goes to show we are up against real problems when it comes to fighting the leftist press."39

Besides funding this film, Frawley helped INCA establish a presence in Los Angeles. In 1966 Schick and Technicolor, both headed by Frawley, invited Butler to counsel their "top management on the significance of current revolutionary conflict and their probable effects on the corporate future." Together the two firms would require one-third of his working time. In return, they would pay him a monthly retainer of $2,000, provide him a furnished home in Los Angeles, and allow him to continue his INCA duties. Butler accepted. Given his fascination with media and his ambitions for INCA, the chance to operate in Los Angeles under such generous patronage must have been irresistible. This decision, he explained, would benefit INCA. His new position would help the organization spread beyond New Orleans and would put him "on the ground floor in the midst of the communications center of America." And he pledged that INCA's headquarters and his own primary residence would remain in New Orleans.40

But changing circumstances were drawing INCA away from its Latin American orientation and from its New Orleans birthplace. While INCA was refining its propaganda capabilities and was expanding to the West Coast, a second threat was disturbing its elite social base. Gradually, opposition to the Vietnam war, student radicalism, and black rebellion were supplanting the Cuban Revolution as sources of elite alarm. Again addressing its patrons' anxieties, INCA devoted itself more and more to combating domestic radicalism, an insurgency whose flames burned brightest far from the Crescent City. INCA explained this shift as a mere tactical adjustment of its founding strategy. Because Cuba supposedly directed a concealed hierarchy of subversion that instigated and then manipulated domestic disorder, INCA's original purpose remained valid. Having earlier parried a Soviet-Cuban thrust into Latin America, INCA now engaged the same enemy within the U. S. The war had come home, thanks to the Cubans, when Oswald [sic] assassinated Kennedy and then, as the 1960s unfolded, when black and student radicalism raged. "Castro switched the major emphasis of his campaign from a Latin American encircling movement to a strike at the heart of the U. S.," wrote Butler.41

An especially disturbing expression of this external subversion was student radicalism. As Ochsner argued, "the drive to seize college campuses and convert them into staging grounds for urban revolt, is the current manifestation of Castro's campaign. The campuses are decisive." In 1966 Ochsner reported that Butler had "investigated the TEACH-IN at U.C.L.A. last week. Vicious material advocating everything from perversion to treason is being circulated to the youngsters there. He says that the situation is similar but worse than the Tulane SPEAK-IN." Similarly, Butler warned Frawley about "the present plans to capture the campuses and
convert them into staging grounds to attack white neighborhoods."42

INCA set out to douse these flames flickering across U. S. campuses. In the fall of 1967 Ochsner and another INCA member obtained a list of former Junior Achievers then attending colleges in New Orleans. From this list INCA hoped to assemble a nucleus of conservative students on each campus. INCA's executive committee recommended starting a "fight against communism on the campuses and in the colleges of New Orleans and gradually spread this out." Local high schools also concerned INCA. In October 1968 Richard E. Warren, an INCA staff member, offered assistance to the principal of John McDonogh High School. "For some time now," Warren wrote, "Dr. Joseph Schwertz (Fortier High School) and I have been communicating in order to prevent disruptions by radical students in his high school." Recently some McDonogh students had asked Warren for help at their school against similar disturbances and against organizing efforts by the leftist Students for a Democratic Society.43

Meanwhile on the West Coast, Butler was trying to intervene among rebellious youths. He faced imposing cultural, generational, and political obstacles. Whereas he represented an organization of white, conservative, older businessmen, radicals drew upon generational solidarity, upon revulsion with racism and intervention in Vietnam, and upon a common counter-cultural idiom manifested in the underground press, music, and other media. Butler thus confronted a tough problem: How to make INCA's stale anti-communism palatable to young Americans? INCA could not serve this purpose. It was, in Butler's mind, a conflict corporation, not a mass youth movement. Seeking an imaginative organizational form, Butler created the SQUARE Movement. Adapting Maoist ideas, he explained to Ochsner that every revolution walked on two legs: education and action. INCA handled the former, but its nonprofit status forbade it straying from "educational purposes."

Consequently, he was trying "to attract rank and file 'Activists' who will set up SQUARE Circles to practice what INCA teaches." Armed with INCA's ideas, SQUARE activists would battle the left for the minds of young Americans. Borrowing counter-cultural forms, Butler produced SQUARE posters, bumper stickers, buttons, and other artifacts. In the spring of 1968 he launched a magazine, the Westwood Village SQUARE, as an antidote to the underground press. Further heeding Mao's advice, Butler tried to swim as a fish in this youthful sea. Although well past thirty years old, he tailored his appearance to countercultural norms. "I have been working right in the middle of the mess," he wrote an INCA member back in New Orleans, "and so my hair is longer and my suits sharper. But the same old super-patriotic, American revolutionary heart beats beneath the bright threads." INCA had a national presence as well: In the late 1960s and early 1970s it organized annual conferences to train young Americans in conflict management; it intervened in the antiwar movement; it established a campus news service to help students print "freedom newspapers"; and its monthly information service reported on leftist activity.44

Notwithstanding its own boasts, INCA accomplished little on campuses. Its old-style anticommunism, even when dressed in hip fashions, was unable to deflect youthful discontent over U. S. foreign policy and domestic problems. The SQUARE Movement, admitted Butler early in 1971, "has been a generalized force, with little or no organization."45 This failure contributed to a larger pattern of decline. By the late 1960s INCA's earlier promise and confidence were fading. Its troubles stemmed partially from anticommunism's loosening grip upon American thought. The very issues that aroused INCA's supporters-revolutionary nationalism abroad and strife at home-caused many other Americans to question anticommunism's crudely reductionist assumptions. INCA's facile politics offered little historical grounding or analytical insight for those then trying to understand the war in Vietnam or the problems faced by U. S. blacks. Nonetheless INCA clung stubbornly to its ideas and thereby found itself increasingly at odds with prevailing political discourse.

Indicative of INCA's vulnerability was the trial of Clay Shaw. Ironically that trial occurred in INCA's New Orleans stronghold and centered on the Kennedy assasination, the source of INCA's major propaganda success. On March 1, 1967, Orleans Parish District Attorney Jim Garrison arrested Shaw, the former general manager of the International Trade Mart and a key figure in the city's Latin American program. Garrison charged that in September 1963 Shaw, David William Ferrie, Lee Harvey Oswald, and others met in New Orleans and conspired to kill President Kennedy. Whereas INCA had blamed the assassination on communism, Garrison pointed to a conspiracy from the right.46

Garrison's investigation disturbed INCA's leaders. Apparently in May 1967 INCA's general counsel, Gibbons Burke, advised Butler to secure the organization's files. Subsequently, Butler reported the records had been "air expressed out here to Los Angeles.... They arrived in good order two weeks ago, and I have put them under lock and key."47

Ochsner even feared his own arrest. In the summer of 1967, William Gurvich, who had just resigned as one of Garrison's investigators, claimed the district attorney was preparing a number of arrests, including that of a doctor. "I wondered whether he might mean me," Ochsner wrote Butler, "but did not think he did until Bill Helis, a good friend of mine, who knows Gurvich very well, called me [said Gurvich] and told him it was I and he was going to have me arrested as an accessory to the fact." 

Rumor had Ochsner treating Jack Ruby, discovering a hopeless cancer that convinced Ruby "he had nothing to lose by killing Oswald," and then destroying Ruby's record, thereby withholding evidence. Two weeks later he wrote Butler that Garrison "is still going wild." Gurvich had told the press that the district attorney was about to arrest "a number of people in New Orleans, including a doctor, a coffee man, and a hotel owner." Allegedly those to be arrested were Ochsner, a member of the Reily family, and Seymour Weiss, formerly managing director of the city's Roosevelt Hotel. "I have heard nothing about it, but I would not be surprised if he would attempt to do it," wrote Ochsner.48

Doctors had been known to inject healthy people with viruses.

Garrison's probe therefore challenged INCA's version of the assassination and threatened to implicate Ochsner in a sensational trial. Predictably, Ochsner and Butler responded by trying to make communism the issue. Bearing the brunt of the attack was Mark Lane--whose book Rush to Judgment had placed him among the leading critics of the Warren Commission and who was then conferring with Garrison. In a public statement the two INCA leaders branded Lane an unscrupulous communist, "a professional propagandist of the lunatic left who has been inferring Oswald was innocent and Kennedy was the victim of a right wing plot, since four weeks after the assassination." Communists were manipulating the issue to create distrust of the government and to cause the U. S. to "crumble from within."49
They turned to the House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC) for more information. Ochsner asked F. Edward Hebert, a U. S. representative from the New Orleans area, to "get whatever information you can from Congressman Willis about Mark Lane." Edwin E. Willis, also a U. S. representative from Louisiana, was HUAC chairman. Hebert sent Ochsner a report culled from HUAC files, which cited "Communist Fronts" with which Lane had been associated between 1952 and 1967.50

Ochsner also obtained a five-page intelligence report about Lane. Although its sources were unspecified, this report was preceded by an unsigned memorandum attributing the report's information to "the files of the New York City Police, the FBI, and other security agencies." The memorandum charged that Lane "is and has been a dedicated Communist; is and has been a sadist and masochist, charged on numerous occasions with sodomy." This suggestive prelude was followed by the familiar listing of membership in "front" organizations, civil-rights arrests, and involvement in the assassinationi nvestigation. The "numerous "sodomy charges shrank to mention of a 1962 inquiry by the Queens County District Attorney, without detailing its outcome.51

Armed with such material, INCA tried to discredit and isolate Lane. In December 1967 Ochsner scolded the presidents of both Tulane University and the Young Men's Business Club for allowing Lane to speak at their respective institutions. Later that month he appealed to an executive of Time, Inc., to expose Lane and other alleged subversives. New Orleans had been invaded, complained Ochsner, by a "legion of lunatic left-wing extremists,"w ho were "launching the most outrageous innuendoes, all aimed at undermining public confidence in the FBI, the CIA, the Office of the Presidency, stigmatizing Cuban refugees, and anti-communists and obtaining classified  information." Yet, he lamented, "not one national news medium has had the courage to expose their deep-seated political bias, despite the fact that they have track records which read like the indexes to the WORKER."52

Unable credibly to denounce Garrison as a communist, Ochsner and Butler instead whispered that mental instability left the district attorney prey to communist manipulation. "As you know," Butler wrote Ochsner", Garrison is a sick, sick person mentally but clever enough to manipulate public opinion." Ochsner agreed: "People generally in New Orleans are losing complete faith in the man and most people think he is completely nuts, which I believe he is, and before long he will crack up." At least once, Ochsner spread apparent evidence of Garrison's problems. During an election campaign for district attorney, an opponent had obtained Garrison's military medical records, which documented treatment for psychological disorders from the late 1940s to the mid-1950s. Ochsner possessed a transcript of these records and sent a copy to a friend who was the publisher of the Nashville Banner. "It shows why he is doing what he is," Ochsner observed. "Of course, it is a shame that he is playing into the hands of the Communists because he is being advised by Mark Lane and [Harold] Weisberg."53

Eventually in 1969 the jury rejected Garrison's case and acquitted Clay Shaw. Although INCA and its  leaders avoided implication, the episode was revealing. Unlike the nurturing circumstances of the early 1960s, INCA felt beleaguered by the decade's end. In addition to these external pressures, it was weakened also by internal conflicts that eroded its most valuable asset, elite support. Although its members never abandoned INCA's principles, they grew dissatisfied with its ineffectiveness. Much of their discontent stemmed from Butler's alleged managerial shortcomings, especially in financial matters.

INCA had been plagued by a chronic shortage of funds--an anomaly for an organization blessed with such wealthy patrons. Payments to staff, landlords, and creditors often were delayed or missed altogether. In 1966, for instance, Butler advised INCA's landlord that only $200 of its $380 office rent would be forthcoming, while at the same time he pleaded with the previous landlord to delay collection of unpaid rent.54 Blaming INCA's shortcomings on the staff's amateurish methods, some members suggested adopting business-like procedures of accounting and office routine. Such measures, they argued, would generate regular income from supporters and thereby end the worrisome deficits. Emerging as their spokesman was
INCA treasurer Maurice W. Grundy, the president of two lumber companies.

More the publicist and promoter than the manager, Butler resisted these seemingly innocent and sensible suggestions. His argument hinged on the related assumptions that INCA was a combative propaganda organization and that the conflict manager must possess financial control. Business norms, he said, would deprive a conflict organization of its flexibility, disarm it before communists, and transform it into a social club spinning harmless platitudes. Defeating communists required innovation and daring, not the predictable routine of an accountant. In revealing words he summarized his differences with Grundy: "Suffice it to say that it was based on a Military Management, rather than the Business Management approach."55 This tension between professional anticommunist and businessmen patrons threatened to tear INCA apart.

Continuing financial embarrassment sharpened this conflict. In June 1966 a frustrated Butler told Ochsner that electricity at INCA's office had been shut off due to delinquent bills. For this and other ills he blamed Grundy for "tieing strings" to the thousands of dollars in INCA's bank account. Blinded by business orthodoxy, Grundy tried "to reduce the financial foundation to the cut and dried concepts of the lumber industry." The conflict, insisted Butler, was irreconcilable. But Ochsner rejected this implied ultimatum, defending the need for revised office procedures and advising Butler to "get over your persecution complex as far as Mr. Grundy is concerned."'56 

This particular crisis subsided, probably because a chastened Butler dared not antagonize Ochsner further. But the underlying problem still chafed Butler, and his factional opponents still demanded changes. By the fall of 1967 Butler's position seemed precarious. Ben C. Toledano, an attorney and prominent local  conservative, wrote his fellow INCA directors that he had been" considering simply resigning from the INCA Board for this would be the easiest way to remedy my displeasure with the way things have been going." The executive committee, which included Grundy, began using T. Sterling Dunn--formerly the area manager for Sears, Roebuck--as a consultant. Dunn reported that membership confidence was eroding due to sloppy operational methods. At one executive committee meeting Ochsner stressed that INCA must function in a businesslike fashion, and at another the executive committee decided "we must have a businessman in the INCA offices to constantly supervise the business end of the organization and to see that the members were properly billed and followed up." A defensive Butler believed Grundy was using Dunn "to interfere in the INCA office by remote control."57

Yet Butler somehow reversed this momentum and drove Grundy from the organization. Their final confrontation occurred at a board meeting in April 1968 when Butler suggested INCA cosponsor a conference of conservative youths that summer. Grundy countered that INCA should instead plan an alternative program for September, that money should be conserved for office management, and that a fund drive should be prepared. Butler exploded: Delay would be disastrous and, besides, Grundy was unqualified to decide the issue. His patience exhausted, a weary Grundy gave up. Reminding everyone that he had tried to quit two weeks earlier, he now insisted t he board accept his resignation. It did, whereupon h  and Dunn quit the meeting and INCA.58

Butler's victory did not, however, slow INCA's decline. Especially damaging were Frawley's business misfortunes. In May 1970, for example, dissident Technicolor shareholders charged him with investing more than $ 9 million of Technicolor funds in other companies he headed. In a proxy battle a month later the dissidents ousted him and arranged purchase of his Technicolor stock. "Pat's ability to help is going to be severely curtailed for awhile," Butler observed. Indeed, the rich vein that had been opened so generously by Frawley now contracted. Butler noted that his own "income from Frawley Enterprises has been curtailed."59 In this dispirited setting INCA, in November 1970, finally formed an area council in Los Angeles. But the council either lost or failed to recruit its indispensable patrons: Dudley Swim died and Frawley declined to serve as cochairman. With a grim show of determination, Butler resolved to reestablish the council "promptly and begin methodically recruiting  Anti-Communists as we did in New Orleans, gradually building up the Big Names." Instead, financial deficits widened and the council died.60

Late in 1972, cut off from Frawley's patronage, Butler resumed permanent New Orleans residence.  Prospects were no better in the Crescent City. As always, financial pressures harried and demoralized the staff. Richard Warren, a key staff member, complained to Ochsner that his four years with INCA had left him with "a destroyed marriage, a ruined credit rating, and drastic change in my personality." He would stay with INCA only "until I can find something else that is not as demanding."61

INCA weakened further as the 1970s unfolded. Its ineffectiveness continued to alienate its remaining elite members. Years later Captain John W. Clark recalled that the Delta Line, of which he had been president, had given "substantial sums in the way of contributions . . . and I personally underwrote some notes when they needed it." Yet, INCA "never really got off the ground." It was "more of a fundraising organization to pay for the expenses. And they constantly have been from one crisis to another." Similarly, one of Ochsner's sons said supporters "dropped off because they just didn't see INCA doing what it used to do." "I don't know how effective INCA was," he said. "I've talked to a lot of people in Central America particularly, and I can't find anybody that's heard... Truth Tapes."62

Perhaps INCA also suffered from its devotion to a single issue. In its early years that focus had been an advantage. Bruised by Castro's revolution and alarmed about its spread, New Orleans's elite had gathered under INCA's apocalyptic banners. The immediacy of the Cuban spectre had encouraged a heterogeneous elite to unify around a single issue. But as the Cuban threat receded, it probably became increasingly difficult to sustain such cohesion. Then perhaps the dependence on one issue became a liability, robbing INCA of whatever vitality and clarity might have been gained from a broader conservative program. As resonant and powerful as it remained, anticommunism could not fit every situation. Over-reliance on it forced INCA into increasingly cranky positions. Thus Ochsner and Butler perceived the Watergate imbroglio through the reducing spectacles of communist conspiracy. Ochsner informed a Houston supporter that INCA had uncovered proof of "a definite link between the communists and the people who are trying to impeach the President." And Butler explained to a friend that "the disinformation campaign on Nixon may go down in history as even more decisive than the Kennedy assassination enterprise. It is much more easily laid at the CPUSA's [Communist Party, USA] door, although the mass media has neglected to probe for the underlying facts."63

By the late 1970s, only a handful of loyalists held INCA together. In 1978 a subdued Butler told Ochsner that the directors had "unanimously decided to try to keep INCA alive." "I've had to devote most of my time just to keeping doors open at INCA for the past six months," he complained. When Ochsner, pleading the debilities of age, tried to reduce his commitment to INCA, Butler begged him to remain at the helm as his "departure would be a disaster." Ochsner relented, though he gave up the presidency for the titular position of chairman. "Unless we can get the support of more people," Ochsner wrote, "it is difficult to see how we can keep it viable." On September 24, 1981, he died at the age of eighty-five.64 INCA was then a palsied twenty years old.

INCA declined, but its brand of anticommunism remained potent. In 1982 several influential New Orleanians helped form the Caribbean Commission, an organization that resembled INCA. Dr. Alton Ochsner, Jr., a son of the late INCA leader, served as the commission's chairman; Samuel G. Robinson as president; and, until his death, Ernest Burguieres, Jr., as executive vice president. Ochsner and Robinson had been INCA members. As INCA had fixed on Cuba, the commission dedicated itself to discrediting the Nicaraguan Revolution. It portrayed itself and the Nicaraguan contras as defenders of democracy and of a revolution betrayed, as opponents equally of the Somozas and of the Sandinistas. Arguing that communists had usurped the democratic revolution against Somoza and had installed an oppressive regime that served Soviet and Cuban masters, it demanded the U. S. government "give enough aid to the Nicaraguan freedom fighters to permit them to complete their revolution and eliminate Sandinista oppression." Besides propaganda, the commission provided the Contras with food, clothing, and medicine, and Ochsner treated wounded Contra soldiers without cost in New Orleans.65

Much like INCA, though, the commission's democratic rhetoric and its judicious criticism of both Somocistas and Sandinistas obscured the amicable relations that the commission's leaders or their families had enjoyed with the Somozas. As noted previously, this had been true of Ochsner's father. And the son rallied to the Contras before they acquired the trappings of a democratic insurgency. Just weeks after the 1980 U. S. presidential election, he appeared before Reagan advisers on behalf of Nicaraguan counter-revolutionaries, whom a UPI dispatch described as "pro-Somoza Nicaraguan exiles." Robinson and Burguieres had similar connections. The former was an executive of the family company, Robinson Lumber, that had possessed extensive interests on Nicaragua's east coast. He admitted he "personally knew all three Somozas, and they were well educated and thoughtful people." Burguieres, a New Orleanian of elite background, had lived in Nicaragua as a businessman for several years after World War II and had maintained friendly ties with the Somozas.66

Complicit with a social structure that invited revolution, the commission's leaders tried to bury their past by appropriating a democratic idiom and by defaming revolution as the work of a global conspiracy. In short, the history of INCA and the emergence of the Caribbean Commission suggest a persisting intimacy between anticommunism and elite citizens.

32 Butler to Morrison, June 21, 1961, Morrison Collection; Morrison to Members of
the Information Council of the Americas, June 24, 1961, carton S61-11, Morrison
Collection; Hale Boggs, "Congressman Warns of Apathy in Wake of Nuclear Test
Treaty," Clarion Herald, October 10, 1963.

33 Ochsner to Clayton Nairne, February 25, 1964, folder 3, box 51, Ochsner Papers;
Information Council of the Americas, INCA Cash Receipts, December 14, 1966, folder 1,
box 53, Ochsner Papers; H. Eustis Reily to H. L. Hunt, January 5, 1967, folder 6, box 105,
Ochsner Papers; Ochsner to Hunt, December 31, 1966, folder 1, box 53, Ochsner Papers.

34 Dudley Swim to Ochsner, December 24, 1970, folder 6, box 144, Ochsner Papers;
Swim to Neville Levy, November 28, 1960, International House Papers; Moody's
Industrial Manual, 1969, p. 1224; William W. Turner, Power on the Right (Berkeley,
1971), pp. 172-184, 191-194.

35 House Committee on Foreign Affairs, Subcommittee on International Organizations
and Movements, Winning the Cold War: The U. S. Ideological Offensive, Part V, 88th
Congress, 1st session, 581; Ochsner to Joyce Hall, July 7, 1964, folder 2, box 51,
Ochsner Papers; Ochsner to George St. John, December 28, 1964, folder 1, box 51,
OchsnerP apers.

36 These records were titled Oswald: Self-Portrait in Red and Oswald Speaks. On
Oswald's New Orleans sojourn, see Michael L. Kurtz, "Lee Harvey Oswald in New
Orleans: A Reappraisal," Louisiana History, X XI (1980), 7-22.

37 Edward Scannell Butler, "INCA vs. Oswald: The Motivation of an Assassin,"
Victory, (December 11, 1963), n.p.

38 Butler to INCA Membership, December 7 , 1966, folder 1, box 53, OchsnerP apers;
H. W. Balgooyen to Butler, November 2, 1966, folder 2, box 53, Ochsner Papers;
Times-Picayune, December 19, 1966; New York Times, October 28, 1966.

39 Ochsner to Turner Catledge, November 15, 1966, Ochsner Papers; Catledge to
Ochsner, November 22, 1966; Ochsner to Butler, November 26, 1966, folder 2, box 53,
Ochsner Papers.

40 John F. Seyer to Butler, March 3, 1966, Ochsner Papers; Patrick J. Frawley, Jr., to
Butler, March 1, 1966, folder 4, box 53, Ochsner Papers; Butler to Ochsner, March 9,
1966, folder 4, box 53, Ochsner Papers.

41 Butler to Friend of INCA, August 22, 1967, Information Council of the Americas,
Political Ephemera Collection, Tulane University; Butler to Wallace M. Davis, January
15, 1966, folder 4, box 53, Ochsner Papers.

42 Ochsner to INCA Supporter, n . d., Information Council of the Americas, Political
Ephemera Collection; Ochsner to Percival Stem, March 31, 1966, folder 4, box 53,
Ochsner Papers; Butler to Patrick J. Frawley, Jr., November 4, 1968, folder 1, box 121,
Ochsner Papers.

43 INCA Executive Committee, minutes of October 17, October 31, November 28,
1967, meetings, folders 1 and 3, box 105, Ochsner Papers; Richard E. Warren to Joseph
Abraham, Jr., October2 8, 1968, folder 1, box 121, Ochsner Papers.

44 Butler to Ochsner, December 18, 1970, folder 6, box 144, Ochsner Papers; Butler,
Revolution, p. 115; Butler to Dudley Swim, May 9, 1968, folder 4, box 121; Butler to
James Richards, January1 6, 1970, folder 4, box 145, Ochsner Papers;" INCA Fact Sheet:
Ten Years, 1961-1971," Information Council of the Americas, Political Ephemera
Collection; Ochsner to INCA Member, January 12, 1970, folder 4, box 145, Ochsner

45 Butler to Richard E. Warren, February 20, 1971, folder 7, box 165, Ochsner Papers.

46 Rosemary James and Jack Wardlaw, Plot or Politics? The Garrison Case and Its
(New Orleans, 1967), p. 58.

47 Butler to Gibbons Burke, June 12, 1967, folder 4, box 105, Ochsner Papers.
48 Ochsner to Butler, June 29, 1967, Ochsner Papers; Ochsner to Butler, July 12,
1967, folder 4, box 105, Ochsner Papers.

49 "An Unrushed Judgment of Mark Lane: Statement by Alton Ochsner and Ed Butler
of INCA," April 5, 1967, folder 3, box 105, Ochsner Papers.

50 Ochsner to F. Edward Hebert, April 10, 1967, folder 2, box 105; Hebert to Ochsner,
April 19, 1967, folder 6, box 105, Ochsner Papers. This report was titled "Information
from the Files of the Committee on Un-American Activities, U. S. House of
Representatives, April 14, 1967, For: Honorable F. Edward Hebert, Subject: Mark Lane."

51 This report is located in folder 1, box 134, Ochsner Papers.

52 Ochsner to Herbert Longenecker, December 12, 1967, Ochsner Papers; Ochsner to
Milton L. Fletchinger, December 12, 1967, Ochsner Papers; Ochsner to James Linen,
December 28, 1967, folder 1, box 105, Ochsner Papers.

53 Butler to Ochsner, July 15, 1967, folder 4, box 105, Ochsner Papers; Ochsner to
Butler, July 19, 1967, folder 4, box 105, Ochsner Papers; James and Wardlaw, Plot or
pp. 102-103; Ochsner to James G. Stahlman, January 17, 1968, folder 7, box
121, Ochsner Papers.

54 Butler to Paul Dastugue, November 19, 1966, Ochsner Papers; Butler to Barney
Maloney, November 19, 1966, folder 2, box 53, Ochsner Papers.

55 Butler to Bruce Baird, Jr., May 5, 1968, folder 4, box 121, Ochsner Papers.

56 Butler to Ochsner, June 17, 1966, Ochsner Papers; Ochsner to Butler, June 21,
1966, folder 4, box 53, Ochsner Papers.

57 Ben C. Toledano to Board Member of INCA, September 27,1967, folder 4, Ochsner
Papers; INCA Executive Committee, minutes of October 17 and of December 5, 1967,
meetings, folders 1 and 3, Ochsner Papers; Butler to Ochsner, November 17, 1967, folder
3, box 105, Ochsner Papers.

58 INCA Board of Directors, minutes of April 8, 1968, folder 5, box 121, Ochsner

59 Wall Street Journal, May 20, 1970; June 18, 1970; Butler to Ochsner, August 31,
1970, folder 7, box 144, Ochsner Papers; Butler to Ochsner, February2 9, 1972, folder
3, box 172, Ochsner Papers.

60 INCA Board of Directors, minutes of December 21, 1970, meeting, folder 6, box
144, Ochsner Papers; Richard E. Warren to Mr. and Mrs. Patrick J. Frawley, Jr.,
November2 4, 1970, folder 6, box 146, OchsnerP apers;B utlert o OchsnerF, ebruary2 9,
1972, folder 3, box 172, Ochsner Papers; Butler to Ochsner, August 5, 1972, folder 2,
box 172, Ochsner Papers.

61 Ochsner to Butler, March 14, 1974, folder 4, box 194, Ochsner Papers; Warren to
Ochsner, December 16, 1971, folder 5, box 165, Ochsner Papers.

62 John W. Clark, interview with author, Gulfport, Miss., May 29, 1984; Alton
Ochsner, Jr., interview with author, New Orleans, June 10, 1984.

63 Ochsner to Mrs. R. L. Blaffer, April 4, 1974, folder 2, box 194, Ochsner Papers;
Butler to Eugene H. Methvin, September 11, 1974, folder 3, box 194, Ochsner Papers.

64 Butler to Ochsner, November 27, 1978, Ochsner Papers; Ochsner to Butler,
December 1, 1978, folder 5, box 235, Ochsner Papers.

65 Caribbean Commission Newsletter, November 1, 1982; Times-Picayune/States-Item,
January 16, 1984; August 6, 1983; April 20, 1985; Times-Picayune, September 30,
1984; Alton Ochsner, Jr., letter to the editor, Times-Picayune/States-Item, April 13,

66 Times-Picayune/States-Item, November 19, 1980; S. G. Robinson, letter to the
editor, Times-Picayune/States-Item, July 27, 1983; Virginea Burguibres, interview with
author, New Orleans, May 15, 1984; Erest Burguieres, Jr., to Victor H. Schiro,
November 1, 1967, carton S67-2, Schiro Collection.


Anonymous said...


Good articles on anti-Communism in NO. But the part you need to connect is the Masonic elements in NO connected with those in Texas and California to brand JFK as a Communist and then take him out in Dallas.

Dulles had ownership in National Fruit, he was a high level Mason that networked with Hoover, Lemnitzer, LeMay, Murchison, and a highly Masonic managed Oak Ridge that wanted JFK out.

Anonymous said...

Arthur Carpenter correctly links INCA to The Boston Club in New Orleans which was started before the Civil War by the Draper, Preston and Forbes interests from Boston, MA which later formed United Fruit in New Orleans through the merger of The Boston Fruit Company with another Fruit importing company in 1900. The merger was handled by Sullivan and Cromwell whose principal partner was head of the Order of St. John in the United States at that time (c. 1900). Anastase Vonsiatsky later ran O.S.J. from his Connecticut home. Wm. Cromwell later hired the Dulles Brothers into his firm (c. 1940's) even before there was an O.S.S. or a C.I.A. So I still see this NOLA and INCA effect (incorporated only in 1961) as being funded by private enterprise with a strong link to O.S.J. through United Fruit incorporators and the current ownership. The Dulles Brothers, the Forbes, the Drapers, the Prestons, the Paines, etc. owned millions of dollars of United Fruit and Standard Fruit stock at that time it was later disclosed as well as shares in Freeport-McMoran Sulphur company all of whom had their entire Cuban holdings nationalized by Castro whose Father was a United Fruit sharecropper. When Dulles used The Great White Fleet of United Fruit to launch an anti-Castro invasion at The Bay of Pigs it was a blatant attempt to force JFK to intervene in the Dulles Brothers private and personal anti-Castro repatriation agenda to rescue their personal financial holdings and resulted in Dulles being fired as we all know now. We have to focus on the 60 year history of The Boston Fruit and United Fruit Companies in Latin America and the 500 year history of The Sovereign Military and Hospitaller Order of St. John which were the dominating forces behind anti-Communism, anti-Collectivism and anti-Catholicism. The C.I.A. was little more than the U.S. intelligence arm of The Order of St. John as it remains today. Something like 75-80% of the recent leadership of the C.I.A. were Knighted in the Order of St. John from Angleton, to Casey to that Italian guy whose name I have forgotten. And E. Howard Hunt named his son, St. John, as a tribute to that organization and his role in it. Hunt attended Brown when Vonsiatsky was there and they remained lifelong fiends.... I mean friends.

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