VETERANS OF THE ABRAHAM LINCOLN BRIGADE
23 WEST 26th STREET NEW YORK 10, N.Y. MUrray Hill 3-5057
June 28, 1954
Some months ago, we wrote to you, enclosing a copy of the article, ''Tooling Up for Mass Repression," reprinted from the liberal weekly magazine, The Nation. That was the blueprint under which our organization, one of hundreds, was scheduled for prosecution as "subversive."
That prosecution has been under way now in Washington for nearly two months. The government has produced twelve witnesses and over 200 exhibits against us, and it has not yet completed its case.
As the government's case has unfolded, we made the shocking discovery that it was not just the Veterans of the Abraham Lincoln Brigade that was on trial. The prosecuting attorneys, in collusion with their witnesses, have been trying to make a case not only against us, but against the Spanish Republican Government as well, as an alleged "communist front." They are using this distortion to lay the basis not only for wiping out our organization, but to indict all anti-Franco opinion in this country as "subversive."
The government needs the lies of deserters and police agents to buttress its official policy of alliance with Franco. Opposition to this unpopular alliance must be silenced by smear and suppression; the fascist dictator of Spain must be built up as an anti-Communist hero of the "free world."
Concurrently with our trial, this sinister pattern has been developing:
(1) The U.S. Supreme Court upheld the six-month suspension of Dr. Barsky's license to practice medicine. Dr. Barsky, a noted New York surgeon who served on the Loyalist side in Spain and later became chairman of the Joint Anti-Fascist Refugee Committee, served a six-month prison term for refusing to turn over the committee's records to the House Un-American Activities Committee in 1946, Justice William O. Douglas dissented in the Barsky case, writing: "When a doctor cannot save lives in America because he is opposed to Franco in Spain, it is time to call a halt and look critically at the neurosis that has possessed us."
(2) A Spanish military mission arrived in the U.S. to inspect U.S. Army installations, at the invitation of the Pentagon, and reviewed New York's Memorial Day parade as Mayor Wagner's guests of honor. At the same time, it was reported from Madrid that U.S. military experts in Spain are intensifying training of Franco's armed forces.
(3) America's foremost nuclear physicist, Dr. J. Robert Oppenheimer, was denied loyalty clearance as a security risk because,
"... and that Government of the people, by the people and for the people, shall not perish from the earth" - ABRAHAM LINCOLN