December 14-15, 2023 -- A LOOK BACK TO SEE WHERE WE ARE HEADING #17

publication date: Dec 13, 2023
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Senator Scores Group Calling
Eisenhower a Red

Young Deplores- Growth of

John Birch Society

Mansfield Joins Attack on

Semi-Secret Extremists

(AP)—Senator Milton R. Young
said today that leaders of an
ultra-conservative, semi-secret
group operating In many states
had falsely accused former Pres-
ident Dwight D. Eisenhower of
being a Communist. :

The North Dakota Republican,
on the Senate floor, said the or-
ganization was known as the
John Birch Society. It contends
it is fighting communism, he
said, and has accused him [Mr.
Young] of “being about every
kind of a scoundrel, including
a Communist or pro-Commu-

He identified the leader as
Robert Welch, a retired busi-
ness executive of Belmont,
Mass. .

Senator Mike Mansfield,
majority leader, praised Mr.
Young for his denunciation of
the group. The Montanan said
he had heard of it in his state
and “something is wrong some-

Influence Is Cited

Mr. Young said the society
had cells in North Dakota
among “some of the most able
"and influential people in each

He said Mr. Welch had “made
accusations against the Presi-
dent of the United States and
other top officers far beyond
anything the late Senator Joe
McCarthy [of Wisconsin] even
thought of.”

“To label some of our most
loyal and dedicated people as
Communists plays right into the
hands of the Communists,” he

He placed in The Congres-
sional Record articles from The
Chicago Daily News of last July.
26 and the current edition of
Time magazine dealing with the
society and Mr. Welch.

The News article said Mr.
Welch was the author of a book,
“The Politician,” which it said
tries to prove that General Ei-
senhower is a dedicated Com-
munist and that his brother, Dr.
Milton R. Eisenhower, is “Ike’s
superior in the Communist

The Time article told of so-
ciety activities in several states.
It said Mr. Welch was a former
prominent Boston business man
who regarded the income tax
and Social Security as moves
toward communism.

Mr. Young said most of the
group's criticism “is leveled not
against liberal public officials,
but against the more middle-of-
the road and even conservative

“From a practical political
point of view,” he said, “such
charges actually are of some
help. It is sort of a medicine to
some liberal-thinking people
who often have accused me of
being a reactionary conserva-

Notified of Mr. Young’s state-
ments, Mr. Welch said at his
home in Belmont, Mass.: “I do
not wish to comment.”

Membership Unknown

The society was founded,
according to Mr. Weich, to
fight communism and work for
less government and more
individual responsibility.

It was set up in December,
1958, and named in honor of
John Birch of Macon, Ga., who
before World War II was a
missionary in China.

At the outbreak of war he
joined Gen. Claire L. Chen-
nault’s “Flying Tigers” as an
intelligence officer. He rose to
captain in the: United States
Army and was Killed by Chinese
Communists on Aug. 25, 1945,
ten days after V-J Day.

The group's headquarters is
at 395 Concord Avenue, Bel-
mont, Mass. Mr. Welch, 61.
year-old leader, formerly was
vice president of the James O.
Welch Company, candy manu-
facturer in Cambridge.

Mr, Welch, who was born in
North Carolina, attended the
University of North Carolina,
United States Naval Academy
and Harvard Law School.’

In 1950, he sought the Re-
publican nomination for Lieu-
tenant Governor of his state,
but was defeated in the pri-
mary. He has written “The
Road to Salesmanship,” “May
God Forgive Us” and “The Life
of John Birch."

He became better known as
the author of “The Politician,”
which evolved from a 302-page
letter he wrote in December,
1954, and sent to four friends.

He said last night that he had
written, it because “the Eisen-
hower administration visibly
double-crossed, and thus helped
eliminate from public life, some
very stanch and loyal members
of the Republican party who
had been leaders among con-
servatives in both houses of

By 1956, he said, he had re-
written the letter to 60,000
words and by the summer of
1958 to 80,000. It was then pri-
vately printed, but never for-
madly published or sold as a
book, he added.

He said the document had
been written before the forma-
tion of the society, and had
nothing to do with it.

Mr. Welch is the editor and
publisher of American Opinion,
a monthly magazine. He also
puts out the society’s monthly
bulletin and other tracts.

The .total membership of the
society and the number of its
employes [sic] are not known.

Dues are $24 for men and $12
for women. A life membership
costs $1,000.

The New York Times

Published: March 9, 1961

Note: Senator Young said the
Birchers had cells in North Dakota
among “some of the most able
"and influential people in each
community." These included
Stanley Jerome Gaetz, who went by
“Jerry,” and who was the pro-Barry
Goldwater mayor of
Rugby, ND. In 1964, Jerry Gaetz
ran for Lieutenant Governor
in the GOP primary as an extreme
right-wing candidate to unseat
incumbent moderate Republican Frank
Wenstrom. Fate intervened when
Gaetz died from a sudden heart attack
on the floor of the state GOP convention
in Bismarck. Jarry Gaetz's son is
former Florida state Senate president
Don Gaetz and his grandson is
U.S. Rep. Matt Gaetz.


Chief Justice Attacked Anew
—Robert Kennedy Views
Society With ‘Concern’

Special to The New York Times.

A leader of the John Birch So-
ciety confirmed today that the
ultra-consérvative organization
was promoting a massive let-
ter-writing campaign for the
impeachment of Chief Justice
Earl Warren.

Bryton Barron, a field repre-
sentative of the society, said
that Chief Justice Warren's re-
moval was currently one of the
four major aims of the group.

Mr. Barron, a retired State
Department historian who lives
in Springfield, Va., said that
the campaign was being con-
ducted because a survey had re-
vealed that the Chief Justice
had “voted 92 per cent of the
time in favor of Communists
and subversives” since joining
the court.

{In Belmont, Mass., Robert
H. W. Welch, founder of the
John Birch Society, denied
Friday that he had ever called
former President Dwight D.
Eisenhower a “card-carrying
Communist,” The Associated
Press reported.]

Members of Congress have
been deluged in the last few
weeks with letters making de-
mands that Mr. Warren be re-
moved from his post.

The Justice Department dis-
closed, meanwhile, that the
ultra-conservative society was
“a.matter of concern” to Attor-
ney-General Robert F. Kennedy.

A spokesman said, however,
that no investigation was under
way and that it was doubtful
whether there were grounds for
one. The department is trying
to determine whether such
grounds exist, he reported. In
another development, Repre-
sentative Edgar W. Hiestand,
Republican of California, re-
ported that the society was
“growing very fast” and aiming
for a membership of 100,000 by
the end of this year. Mr. Hie-
stand, a member of the society,
held a news conference to an-
swer criticism of its activities.

“There are lunatic fringes,
and the John Birch Society is
not that,” Mr. Hiestand de-

The society was founded in
1958 by Robert H, W. Welch Jr.
of Boston, a retired candy man-
ufacturer, and is said to have
chapters in thirty-four states
and the District of Columbia.

Named for Missionary

The society is named for a
Baptist missionary who served
as an Army intelligence officer
in the Far East during World
War II. It asserts that Mr. Birch
was killed by Communists ten
days after the end of the war.

Its announced purpose is to
fight and destroy communism
in the United States. Its mem-
bership is said to include many
able and patriotic men, but its
membership list has been kept
secret. Its methods, however,
have been condemned by equally
able and patriotic individuals as
going far beyond the tactics
employed by the late Senator
Joseph R. McCarthy.

Various complaints from
around the country tell of stu-
dent members who have re-
ported that certain teachers are
under the influence of commu-
nism. These reports have heen
followed by complaints to the
school from parents or im-
portant persons in the com-
munity. :

In other areas, telephone
campaigns have heen reported
in which members of a commu-
nity have been told that a cer-
tain neighbor was a Commu-
nist. Letter-writing campaigns
are widely reported.

There has been no documen-
tation, however, that such ac-
tivities have been definitely
linked to the John Birch So-
ciety. :

Two Deny Secrecy

Both Representative Hiestand
and Mr, Barron insisted that
there was nothing secret about
the organization except that the
identity and number of its
members were not advertised.

Mr. Barron identified himself
as the society's field represen-
tative for Virginia, the District
of Columbia and part of Mary-

He confirmed the belief, al-
ready widely held here, that
the society was promoting a
letter-writing campaign aimed
at Chief Justice Warren's im-:
peachment. Congressional of-
fices have recently been flood-
ed with letters from many parts
of the country demanding such
action against the Chief Jus-

The impeachment drive is one
item on the society's present;
“agenda” for action, according
to Mr. Barron. He said the
others were:

¶A campaign against the
purchase of goods manufac-|
tured behind the Iron Curtain.

¶A constitutional amendment
repealing the Federal income

¶Support for the work of the
House Committee on Un-Ameri-
can Activities,

Both Mr. Barron and Repre-
sentative Hiestand disassociated
themselves from some views at-
tributed to Mr. Welch, whom
they consistently referred to as
“the founder” rather than by

They said they did not agree,
for example, with the charge
that former President Dwight
D. Eisenhower was “a dedicated,
conscious agent of the Commu-
nist conspiracy.”

Mr, Barron has been a lec-
turer and writer since 1955,
when he retired from the State
Department at the request of su-
periors who accused him of “in-.

While Mr, Barron declined to
answer a question on the num-
‘ber of society members in his
jurisdiction, the leader of a
chapter in near-by Alexandria,
Va, said there were twelve
groups in the Washington met-
ropolitan area. Each group, he
said, has fifteen to twenty

The Alexandria leader, Junius
Robert Smith, a retired Army
officer, said his chapter con-
tained other retired military of-
ficers and Government officials,
a retired member of Congress
and other retired persons as
well as “many young people.”
He said there was one chap-
ter in Fairfax County, Va., one
in Montgomery County, Md.,
and several in the District of
Columbia. He added that he
knew of chapters in Baltimore,
Md., and Charlottesville, Va.

N. A. M. Discloses Censure

The National Association of
Manufacturers disclosed yester-
day that ifs executive hoard
unanimously adopted a resolu-
tion last September indirectly
censuring the John Birch So-

That was after its attention
had been called to a series of
articles in a Chicago newspaper
that said Robert H, W. Welch,
the society's founder, had de-
scribed former President Dwight
D. Eisenhower as a Communist.

Charles H, Sleigh Jr., execu-
tive vice president, said three
former N. A. M. presidents who
‘had been identified as having
‘been active in the society had
attended the meeting and voted
for the resolution. They are
William J. Grede, Elm Grove,
Wis,, Cola G. Parker, Neenah,
Wis.,, and Ernest G. Swigert,
Portland, Ore.

Spruille Braden, former As-
sistant Secretary of State and
more recently president of the
New York City Anti-Crime
Commission, said he was still a
member of the national council
of the society but had no local

The New York Times

Published: April 1, 1961

Letters to The Times

Birch Society Criticized


I wonder whether Robert Welch
Jr. realizes that should his “Impeach
Warren” campaign succeed, it might
mean a death warrant for his venom-
ous Birch Society.

Does it ever occur to Mr. Welch
that he and his ilk exist in America
today only by virtue of the fact that
a man like Chief Justice Earl War-
ren sits on the bench of the highest
court in the land? In a society domi-
nated by Mr. Welch there would be
exactly one set of rules—his,

I would like to suggest that a
democratic, truly American organ-
ization sponsor another essay con-
test: “How to eradicate Birch so-
cieties without impairing the Amer. |
ican way of life.”


West Wardsboro, Vt., Aug. 5, 1961.

The New York Times

Published: August 12, 1961


Editorial: No evidence for Biden
impeachment inquiry?
No problem. The House GOP
doesn’t seem to care

Los Angeles Times

The Times Editorial Board

Dec. 7, 2023

The politically inspired impeach-
ment inquiry into President Biden
has failed to produce any
convincing evidence that
Biden has committed the
high crimes and misdemeanors
required by the U.S. Constitution
for the conviction and removal
of a chief executive.
So naturally Speaker Mike Johnson
is proposing a floor vote, likely
next week, to authorize the
inquiry as a “necessary step.”

Johnson attempted to justify
a vote by the full House —
which should have been taken
months ago as a procedural
matter — as a response to
supposed White House
stonewalling. But it’s hard
not to see it as the latest
attempt by the House
Republicans leadership to
placate the far-right cohort
of their conference and
Trump cultists in the party
at large.

Deposed Speaker Kevin McCarthy
(R-Bakersfield) launched
the Biden impeachment
inquiry in September without
securing a floor vote
, thus
avoiding a scenario in which
saner members of his fragile
majority — including Republicans
elected in districts where
Biden is popular — might
rebel. Those same Republicans
should join Democrats in
denying legitimacy to this
impeachment circus by voting no.

Despite questions about the
business dealings of Biden’s
son, Hunter Biden, and
aspersions cast on what
Republicans call “the Biden
crime family
,” no proof has
been offered that President
Biden benefited from his
son’s business dealings
or shaped U.S. policy
because of them.

Testimony by Devon Archer,
a former Hunter Biden associate,
spectacularly failed to
substantiate allegations
President Biden had any
significant involvement
in his son’s business affairs.
Republicans also seem to
be trying to breathe new life
into a claim, debunked long ago,
that as vice president Biden
pushed for the dismissal of
a Ukrainian prosecutor, Viktor
Shokin, because Shokin
was investigating Burisma,
a company on whose board
Hunter Biden served. In fact,
the Obama administration’s
campaign against Shokin
was part of a multinational
to press Ukraine to
deal with corruption.

Finally, on Monday the House
Oversight Committee
portentously that Hunter
Biden’s business entity,
Owasco PC, which had received
payments from foreign
companies, had made
monthly payments to Joe Biden.
Committee Chairman James Comer
(R-Ky.) said the payments
“are now part of a pattern
revealing Joe Biden knew
about, participated in and
benefited from his family’s
influence peddling schemes.”

But the Washington Post
that the payments
— made in 2018, when Joe Biden
was a private citizen —
were reimbursements for a
truck Biden helped his financially
strapped son to purchase.

The details of the overblown
allegations against the president
are almost beside the point,
which is that the faltering
impeachment inquiry is best
viewed as an exercise in
toadying to former President
Trump, who has accused Biden
of being “the most corrupt
president we’ve ever had
House Republicans faced
with a vote on legitimizing
this fishing expedition
should ask themselves
if it’s their interests to
climb aboard this particular
carriage in the Trump train.

Los Angeles Times

Published: December 7, 2023

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