2012-01-07 08:11:15 UTC
the two extant "IC" fragments, even though both (the "SEP" and "WRP")
still uphold it and the "SWP" is still active and, I note, includes in
its leadership figures, several of those named in the document below.
Maybe as they are now in the NWO Globalist Left they have - to coin an
appropriate metaphor - "buried the hatchet"...
Now read on...
International Committee of the Fourth International
FBI SPIES IN THE SWP (USA)
The strange group from Carleton College, Minnesota
LABOUR REVIEW Vol. III No 3
pp. 139 - 149
When Joseph Hansen died on January 17, 1979, he left behind a network
of secret police agents in the leadership of his revisionist Socialist
Workers Party (USA). This group of agents constitutes a tremendous
danger to the Fourth International, the international working class
and the oppressed masses. They function not only as domestic
stoolpigeons within the American labour movement, but as the
organisers and instigators of provocations against revolutionary
movements all over the world.
The centre of this conspiracy is the weekly magazine,
'Intercontinental Press', which was founded by Joseph Hansen and is
published in the national headquarters of the SWP in New York City. It
is the nerve centre of an international network of skilled and
ruthless police spies such as FAUSTO AMADOR, the agent of ex-dictator
Somoza, who was billed by 'Intercontinental Press' as 'a leading Latin
American Trotskyist (November 27, 1977).
The agents inside the leadership of the SWP enjoy unlimited backing
from the US government. A Federal court order that the files of some
of these agents be released was first defied by the US Attorney
General and then overturned by a higher court. The government is now
seeking legislation that would impose a seven-year moratorium on the
exposure of informants' files under the Freedom of Information Act.
Simultaneously, the SWP has decided to drop its suit to uncover the
names of hundreds of agents within its 'top offices' and membership in
exchange for a cash settlement with the government.
The International Committee of the Fourth International is determined
to expose the present functioning agents in the SWP -just as the late
Joseph Hansen was exposed. Who are they, how were they recruited, who
trained them, where did they come from?
In recent weeks the four-year investigation into 'Security and the
Fourth International' has entered a completely new field of research.
It has temporarily left the skyscraper metropolis of New York City,
the steamy suburbs of Mexico City, the grey granite US National
Archives Building in Washington, DC, and the pre-war record centres of
Western Europe. The investigation has travelled lo the Mid-west of the
United States to the small, sleepy rural town of Northfield in the
state of Minnesota. The pride of the upper middle class who live there
is Carleton College, an elite private university set in idyllic
surroundings of vast lawns, gardens and playing fields.
While the other numerous state colleges have few restrictions on
admissions, low tuition fees and a large intake of working-class
youth, Carleton is a strictly exclusive institution. It is expensive,
its students are creamed from 'the best and brightest' and it
specialises in the 'liberal arts'. Applicants are primarily from
bourgeois and well-off families who want their sons and daughters to
'get on in life' and to make the right connections. Each potential
student is obliged to submit an autobiographical essay with his or her
application form. These are studied by a staff of admission officers
who are skilled at spotting those who can be trusted to uphold 'the
American way' and weeding out the 'undesirables'.
Carleton's Board of Trustees consists largely of the most reactionary
industrialists and bankers in the United States. During the 1950s and
early 1960s, the President of Carleton College was Lawrence Gould, an
explorer and admirer of the World Federalist schemes championed by the
dean of CIA agents, Cord Meyer Jr. The official philosophy at Carleton
during their period was based on a fervent anti-communist liberalism.
It preached on behalf of 'responsible' free enterprise against the
'horrors of totalitarian collectivism'. As the conservatism of the
Eisenhower years gave way to the crusading anti-communism of the
Kennedy administration, it was common for students from the middle
class to enrol in government service -anything from the so-called
'Peace Corps' to the CIA — in order to prosecute the 'war against
communism'. Carleton College was no exception.
Our attention is now concentrated on a group of 11 people in the
leadership of the SWP: Jack Barnes, Mary-Alice Waters, Elisabeth
Stone, John Benson, Doug Jenness, Caroline Lund, Larry Settle, Barbara
Mattson, Cindy Jaquith, Dan Styron and Paul Eidsvik. All these
individuals — with the sole exception of Eidsvik — have served as
members of the SWP Political Committeee, National Committee, or as
alternates. Six of them are presently members of the Political
Committee: Barnes, Waters, Stone, Jenness, Seigle and Jaquith. They
have all been re-nominated to serve again on a revised Political
Committee of 16 which is to be elected at the SWP convention at
Oberlin, Ohio, this month.
SOMETHING IN COMMON
Barnes is national secretary of the SWP, Waters is editor of
Intercontinental Press (replacing Hansen) and Jaquith is associate
editor of the weekly Militant. In addition to being leaders of the
SWP, this group are the most hardline defenders of the double-agent
Hansen and the architects of the sordid deal to accept US government
money and halt all claims to the identity of the FBI agents in the
These 11 have something else in common. They all attended the same
university - Carleton College in Northfield, Minnesota.
Barnes andStone entered Carleton in the fall of 1957 and graduated
with the class of 1961. They left the school as husband and wife.
Waters, Styron and Benson belonged to the class of 1963. Jenness and
Eidsvik belonged to the class of 1964. Seigle, Mattson and Lund
belonged to the class of 1966. Jaquith belonged to the class of 1969.
The fact that more than one-third of the SWP Political Committee and
more than a quarter of it s entire national leadership come from the
same exclusive Mid-Western college cannot be passed off as a
coincidence. It is thoroughly suspect and demands the fullest
investigation. To say the least, the SWP's leadership is an example of
political inbreeding without precedent in the history of the socialist
movement. It represents — and this is the best that could be said of
it — an utterly hideous clique formation.
Who are these 11 people? None of them come from a background in any
way connected with the struggles of the American working class. They
arrrived at Carleton University with reputations as 'all-American'
high school boys and girls, not even remotely associated with any form
of protest or radical activity. They impressed their teachers as
community do-gooders, avid scouts and campers, sports enthusiasts and,
in most cases, high-minded participants in church activities.
There might have been an explanation for the incredible influx of
Carleton College graduates into the SWP leadership if the campus was a
hotbed of radical activity in the 1960s or if the SWP ran a
flourishing branch there. But there is not the slightest evidence that
this was the case. On the contrary, the SWP appears to have no history
of activity at Carleton. In that part of the United States, the SWP's
original roots were in the great historic struggles of the Minneapolis
working class. The SWP played a crucial role in the leadership of
Local 544 of the Teamsters starting with the great strike of 1934 and
leading to mass recruitment into the unions across 11 states. Yet
today, the group of 11 from Carleton maintains a stranglehold over the
In a recent report to the SWP national committee, entitled Forging the
Leadership of the Proletarian Party, Mary-Alice Waters stated:
The membership of the SWP is roughly 42 per cent female, but 33 per
cent of the National Committee is women. On the other hand, 6 or 7 per
cent of party members are black, but 26 per cent of our National
Committee is black. The Latino members make up about 5 per cent of the
party, and about 7 per cent of the National Committee. As of this
plenum, about 39 per cent of the membership, and 30 per cent of the
National Committee are industrial workers.
My own opinion is that the composition of our national committee is
not out of harmony with the real leadership of the party. Give or take
a few percentage points — and that is not important — those figures
fairly accurately reflect what we have accomplished. In that sense,
the National Committee elected at the last convention is good.
Because, as we pointed out at the time, our elected leadership and our
real leadership had better coincide, or else our leading committees
would lose their authority. We would be as phoney as a three dollar
bill if our real leadership and our elected leadership got out of
mesh. ('Discussion Bulletin', Vol.36, No. 13, P-8)
The statistically-minded Ms. Waters might have mentioned the following
interesting set of statistics. The Carleton 11 constitutes
approximately 0.6 per cent of the entire membershp of the Socialist
Workers Party. However, the Carleton groups holds 15.2 per cent of the
seats on the present National Committee. This figure still does not
give the true measure of the control which this group exerts on the
SWP, because the percentages are even higher on the committees which
govern the day-to-day activities of the SWP.
While Ms Waters promotes a thoroughgoing diversion about the
'proletarianisation' of the SWP, the fact is that it has been
'Carletonised'. On the SWP Political Committee, the Carleton group
holds 35.2 per cent of the seats. Following this month's convention at
Oberlin, this figure will rise to 3 7.5 per cent. The control of this
Carleton grou p was strengthened following the last SWP convention in
1977 when the size of the Political Committee was reduced from 24 to
17 members. At the convention taking place now, it will be reduced
further to 16 members.
This reorganisation at the top and centralising of control must be
seen against the background of Hansen's death in January and the
inevitable reshuffling in the network of agents. During the past year,
actions have been taken which place under the control of this Carleton
group every aspect of the SWP's work. During the past few months, the
Political Committee has established an Organisation Committee.
According to Waters, 'The Organisation Commitee handles questions of
personnel, finances, communications with the field; helps to organise
and prepare meetings of the Political Committee; and takes care of as
many of the day-to-day administrative tasks as it can.' (Vol.36, No.
13, p!2) When this Organisation Committee was established, it
consisted of six members. Three of them were Political Committee
members: Doug Jenness, Elizabeth (Betsey) Stone and Larry Seigle —all
from Carleton College! The SWP Political Committee also established an
international subcommittee which directs the activities of the SWP in
the United Secretariat (which it, however, cannot join because of the
reactionary Voorhis Act). This subcommittee which directs all the
international work of the SWP has five members. Three of them are
alumni of Carleton College — Jack Barnes, Doug Jenness and Mary-Alice
To complete this picture, let us note again that the position of
national secretary and the editorship of Intercontinental Press are in
the hands of the Carleton alumni Barnes and Waters. And another
crucial assignment — the handling of the SWP's contact with the
Justice Department in negotiations over the settlement of the
Political Rights Defense suit — was placed in the hands of Seigle.
Under his guidance, the SWP has dropped its demand for the exposure of
the agents' files in return for money and has virtually abandoned the
entire law suit.
There is still another statistic which is noted: out of the 11
Carleton students who joined the SWP, all of them became full members
or alternates on the National Committee.
These statistics present an extraordinary picture of an organisation
which is entirely controlled by a group who attended the same
exclusive mid-western college and who share virtually identical middle-
class backgrounds. The running of the SWP is in the hands of a group
who discuss and coordinate their activities among themselves. The
National Committee rubberstamps decisions prepared in advance.
An investigation of these 10 individuals is an urgent necessity. There
may be important agents in the SWP who did not attend Carleton
College. But Jack Barnes and his associates must be considered prime
suspects. It is beyond the realm of probability — either mathematical
or political—that the central leadership of what claims to be a
revolutionary party could emerge out of one small Mid-Western college.
As every Marxist knows, the development of revolutionary leadership is
bound up with the question of 'generations' and the historical and
social experiences through which these generations pass. The impulse
for the development of revolutionary fighters and Marxism is provided
by the class struggle. Reflected in each individual leader are
problems associated with different periods in the class struggle and
various layers within the working class and sections of the middle
class. Leaders come forward in their development not as individuals
but as the expression of social forces in the class struggle. The
pioneers of American Trotskyism emerged out of both the heroic period
of IWW struggles in the United States and the all-powerful impact of
the 1917 October Revolution. The next generation of Trotskyist
leadership in the United States who participated with Cannon in the
building of the SWP emerged out of the great movement of the working
class provoked by the Depression. The highest expression of this
development was the cadre of Minneapolis workers who either
participated in or were influenced by the 1934 General Strike.
After the initial upsurge of the working class following World War II
— during which the membership of the SWP grew rapidly — the problems
of party-building became exceptionally difficult as the post-war
economic 'boom' got underway. The vast majority of the new recruits of
1945-1947 were lost. The growth of McCarthyite reaction only deepened
the isolation of the SWP from the broad masses of the working class.
Within the party itself, a whole section of trade unionists succumbed
to the pressures of the boom, abandoned Trotskyism and deserted the
Fourth International with Pablo in 1953. Towards the end of the 1950s
other factors also intervened to weaken the SWP — the death of John G.
Wright (Usick) and the resignation of Morris Lewitt (Stein) to name
So great was the impact of the isolation imposed by the boom on the
SWP that its old leadership began to politically retreat and was
completely incapable of taking advantage of the one great opportunity
for recruitment that emerged in the 1950s: that is, the smashing up of
the Communist Party in the shattering of world Stalinism that emerged
out of Khrushchev's secret speech to the 20th Congress in 1956 and the
suppression of the Hungarian Revolution. In the late 1950s, the SWP
embarked on its ill-fated and opportunist 'regroup-ment' policy which
eventually led to the recruitment of a layer of students out of the
Shachtmanite movement. But it was not even from this layer that the
new leadership of the SWP emerged.
The Carleton College group suddenly appeared on the scene like a bolt
from the blue. It had absolutely no identifiable political genealogy.
The Minneapolis branch of the SWP had never undertaken political work
at Carleton College.
The official story advanced by the SWP leadership is that Barnes was
radicalised by the Cuban Revolution. This must have happened very
suddenly, for the conservative governors of the prestigious Ford
Foundation detected nothing politically questionable about Barnes when
they granted him a fellowship to visit Cuba. The president of the
Foundation at the time was Dean Rusk, soon to be chosen as US
Secretary of State and in that office become one of the principle
architects of the imperialist aggression against Vietnam. Barnes was
also awarded the equally prestigious Woodrow Wilson Fellowship.
In fact, the whole story of the shock impact of the Cuban Revolution
on the minds of young Carletonians is thoroughly dubious. Despite the
importance of this struggle, there is absolutely no evidence to
support the claim that the events in Cuba were accompanied by a wave
of radicalisation on the American campuses. There is not another
campus in the United States where the reaction to the Cuban Revolution
produced any significant recruitment into the Troskyist movement. The
Carleton development was not only untypical; it was unique. Moreover,
it becomes entirely inexplicable in politically legitimate terms when
one recalls that the SWP itself virtually ignored the Cuban Revolution
for the first year after Castro's accession to power.
It was Joseph Hansen who first made Cuba the major issue in the
Trotskyist movement in 1961, and that was for the purpose of
engineering, on behalf of the FBI-CIA, a split by the SWP from the
International Committee of the Fourth International. Barnes and the
Carleton College group came into prominence as handraisers for Hansen
against the minority within the SWP who opposed the split from the
International Commmittee. Barnes and his Carleton associates entered
the milieu of the SWP via the Fair Play for Cuba Committee. While
serving as a senior proctor at Carleton, responsible for maintaining
discipline among younger students, Barnes became identified with the
newly-formed Carleton chapter of this Committee. As American
imperialism became increasingly hostile to the Castro regime, the Fair
Play committees became active in different parts of the country. There
is no doubting that the chapters became prime targets for CIA and FBI
infiltration. One can assume that both agencies occasionally set up
chapters on their own in order to improve their access to left-wing
groups. Barnes and his associates were not the only ones who made
their initial contact with the SWP through the Fair Play committees.
An identical path was travelled by Lee Harvey Oswald, the future
assassin of President Kennedy.
BACKGROUND OF AN AGENT
One thing is certain: the emergence of the Carleton College group
coincided with the most intensive period of FBI-CIA infiltration of
the Socialist Workers Party. There exist overwhelming grounds for
suspicion that Barnes and his Carleton associates were recruited into
the FBI or CIA during their years at the College and sent into the
Socialist Workers Party. There, their rapid advancement into the
leadership of the Party was guaranteed by the influence exerted by the
key FBI agent, Joseph Hansen.
The impecccably patriotic middle-class backgrounds of the Carle-ton
group — the sons and daughters of respected small town professionals,
local businessmen and even a missionary — could serve as a stereotype
of thousands of students in the late 1950s and early 1960s who were
attracted by the prospects of an exciting government career in the
CIA. One persuasive recruiting officer for the CIA on a visit to
Carleton College could well have provided the impulse which led ten of
its students into the SWP. Philip Agee provided a very straightforward
picture of how he became a CIA agent, and it certainly applies to many
Hundreds of companies come to the university to interview students for
possible employment. I hadn't signed up for any interviews, but I've
just had my first and probably only, job interview. To my surprise a
man from the CIA came out from Washington to see me about going into a
secret junior executive training program. Virginia Pilgrim must have
recommended me. I'd forgotten she mentioned a program like this when
she stayed with us in Tampa last year — said she would dearly love to
see the son of her oldest friends come into the CIA. . . (Inside the
Company: CIA Diary, Bantam page 1).
What did the CIA like about Agee?
Gus (the recruiter) knew a lot about me: student government, academic
honors and the rest. I said that what I liked best was being chairman
of the Washington's Birthday Exercises in February when we gave the
patriotism award to General Curtis Lemay. (Inside the Company: CIA
Diary, Bantam page 2).
As a social type common found on the Mid-West campuses in the late
1950s and early 1960s, Agee as a student was mirrored in Barnes,
Styron, Benson and Jenness. They all were active in student
government, but perhaps the most outstanding young citizen among them
was Charles Sheridan Styron, whom his friends called 'Dan'. He was the
popular students leader who was elected president of the Carleton
Student Association. In 1963, after he had already become active in
the voung Socialist Alliance, youth movement of the SWP, Styron was
selected to give the student address at the inauguration of the new
President of Carleton College — with whom he remained on intimate
terms even after graduation. In this period, the intellectual climate
on campuses like Carleton was dominated by the vicious
anti-communism and anti-Marxism of the liberal university hierarchy.
Even more interesting about Styron, whose Carleton bride was Mary-
Alice Waters, was his penchant for travel. In 1960, he spent five
weeks of the summer touring the Soviet Union. That period was the very
height of the Cold War. There was no such thing as casual vacationing
in the USSR for Americans. The scheduled Paris summit had just
collapsed following the infamous U-2 incident in which an American spy
plane was shot down over the Soviet Union. But Styron managed to get a
visa and travelled 5,000 miles by car through Minsk, Smolensk, Moscow,
Leningrad, Novgorod, Kharkov and Kiev.
At that time, such a trip could have been made only with the express
authorisation of the American government. And upon return, it would
have been considered virtually mandatory that the individual who made
the trip submit to an exhaustive debriefing conducted by the CIA. As
for Styron's political convictions, they are reflected in a column he
wrote in a campus newspaper on December 6, 1961:
Those who see the total destruction of mankind as a possible
alternative to the 'Red Menace' also make the mistake of attributing
to the dictatorship in the USSR undeserved power. They also show a
complete lack of faith in the power of free institutions to overcome
this totalitarian regime.
When Styron wrote this anti-communist garbage, he and his friend John
Benson were up to their ears in the Fair Play for Cuba Committee
activities. The sentiments expressed in that passage are not those of
a young man turning toward Marxism. It is the language of someone
preening himself for a career in the CIA.
Styron's rise through the ranks of the SWP was meteoric. He soon was a
National Committee member and then a senatorial candidate of the SWP
in California. But in 1976, after more than a decade in the leadership
of the SWP, Styron was suddenly removed from the National Committee
without explanation. This is unusual because Styron is the only member
of the Carleton group that lost a position in the leadership. This
occurred just as the official reports of 1,600 informers having been
active in and around the SWP became frontpage headlines in newspapers
all over the United States.
In April 1979, Styron committed suicide in Houston — where he had been
sent ostensibly to participate in the SWP's 'industrialising' policy.
The explanation for this suicide was Styron's increasingly severe
bouts of depression. For a long-time party leader, Styron received
incredible short shrift — especially from his old classmates from
Carleton College. There was a one page obituary in The Militant - not
written by any of his Carleton associates — a small memorial meeting
in Houston, and that was that. He has not been mentioned since.
It must be considered a strong possibility that Styron's removal from
the national committee was carried out because he stood — for one
reason or another — in special danger of exposure as a police agent.
In the interest of mutual self-preservation, the Carleton group had to
ease Styron out of the political limelight.
This sinister secret faction from Carleton College must be
investigated. The ten surviving members of this faction must be
compelled to come before a Commission of Inquiry and answer detailed
questions about their background that is put before them. If their
reputations are clear, they should have no objections.
Responsible members of the SWP must insist at this Convention now in
session at Oberlin that the entire Carleton group be removed from all
offices and positions on the National Committee until the
investigation is completed and if they are cleared.
The International Committee is now gathering further evidence on this
Carleton group that it will submit to a proper and duly constituted
Commission of Inquiry, as has already been set forth in Security and
the Fourth International.
First published in The News Line, August 7, 1979