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The Neocon's Victory of "Perception" Management

Douglas Caddy

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From the article: Rupert Murdoch’s media empire is bigger than ever, but his neocon messaging barely stands out as distinctive, given how the neocons also have gained control of the editorial and foreign-reporting sections of the Washington Post, the New York Times and virtually every other major news outlet. For instance, the demonizing of Russian President Putin is now so total that no honest person could look at those articles and see anything approaching objective or evenhanded journalism. Yet, no one loses a job over this lack of professionalism.

The Reagan administration’s dreams of harnessing private foundations and non-governmental organizations have also come true. The Orwellian circle has been completed with many American “anti-war” groups advocating for “humanitarian” wars in Syria and other countries targeted by U.S. propaganda. [see Consortiumnews.com’s “Selling ‘Peace Groups’ on US-Led Wars.”]


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Know Thy Enemy! Dark Genesis and Deep Politics: The New Republic

by Craig Lee Merrihue

“What the hell was a partner in the Morgan Bank doing starting a “pinko” journal like The New Republic in the first place?”

Jim Martin


The New Republic magazine has once again been trotted out to play the Trojan-Horse role for which it was hired.

Los Angeles Times readers were recently lambasted with yet another shrill diatribe against the Palestinian people from New Republic editor-in-chief Martin Peretz (see “Traveling With Bad Companions; Western supporters of the Palestinian cause are morally blind”, June 23, 2003, Commentary) . Such hysterical obloquy would be simply tiresome were it not for the pernicious effect of such drivel on generations of innocent lives.

Those who support the Palestinian cause against Israel, are, at best, in Peretz’s condescending estimation, “myopic romantic{s}”, but more aptly designated as “deluded folk”, “certified kooks”, or by the almost quaintly anachronistic “fellow travelers.”

Some of these “certified kooks”, are genuinely mystified by such irrational invective coming from the helmsman of the most venerable flagship for thoughtful liberalism.

Deliciously tempting though it may be to pick apart Peretz’s logic or his lack thereof, it is more enlightening to assess by what right the New Republic’ arrogated to itself the moral authority to pontificate through its blow-hard editor-in-chief.

The truth is, there is no such moral authority. The New Republic is the cynical creation of self-serving men whose moral mandates seldom rise above the maxim “he who has the gold makes the rules.”

One of the most complete expositions of this little-told story is found in Professor Carroll Quigley’s Tragedy and Hope: A History of The World In Our Time (Macmillan, 1966). The eminent Dr. Quigley was professor of history at the Foreign Service School of Georgetown University, and had previously taught at Princeton and Harvard---certainly no academic slouch, he.

Quigley was also the favorite professor of little Bill Clinton. In fact, in his first presidential nomination acceptance speech, Clinton went out of his way to thank above all others two gone-but-not-forgotten influences who shaped his self-professed belief in the duty of public service: President John F, Kennedy and Professor Carroll Quigley. Clinton attended Georgetown when his professor’s 1300+page tome was probably required reading. Author Jim Martin conjectures that this is probably where the ambitious little suck-butt learned how power really works in the world.

The short of it is, the New Republic was founded in 1914 with J.P. Morgan Banking Money (specifically by Willard Straight who had married heiress Dorothy Payne Whitney) to manipulate the political left. In Quigley’s analysis on pages 936-956, this infiltration had a threefold purpose:

(1)To keep informed on Left-wing thinking; (2) to provide these liberal groups with a forum which would act as a safety-valve to “blow off steam”; and (3) to have a final veto on their publicity, and possibly on their actions, if they ever went “radical”.

Before launching this Trojan Horse, Cornell graduate Willard Straight had served as Far East expert for the Morgan Banking interests of which he was a partner, living in the region 1902-1910. He also was an assistant to Sir Robert Hard , Director of the Chinese Imperial Customs Service, who was lead man, according to Quigley in the European Imperialist penetration of China.

As her name indicates, Willard Straight’s wife, Dorothy Payne Whitney, was the product of an alliance between two of America’s richest families, with giant interests in New York utilities, Rockefeller’s Standard Oil (now Exxon), and much else. One of her brothers married into the equally aristocratic Vanderbilt dynasty, the other wed the daughter of Secretary of State John Hay, who articulated the so-called “open-door” policy in China.

Quigley sees the New Republic as the best example of the alliance between Wall Street and Left-wing publications. The original purpose of this particular alliance was “to provide an outlet for the progressive left and to quietly guide it in an Anglophile” direction. The author goes on to say that this task was given to a smug young man just out of Harvard, Walter Lippman, who would be the towering figure in American Journalism until his death in 1974. Lippman was one of the few American members of the mysterious Round Table Group (more on this later), which had been a dominant force in British foreign policy since its formation in 1909. Lippman’s bi-weekly columns appeared in hundred’s of papers over six decades. As a link between Wall Street and the Round Table Group, and an editor of New Republic, Lippman in 1918, still in his 20s, was given the opportunity to be the official interpreter of Woodrow Wilson’s Fourteen Points at the Paris Peace Conference following World War I.

Guiding the American Left in an Anglophile direction is a goal that absolutely mystifies most modern Americans, who have lost touch with American democracy’s long history of opposing the philosophy and exploitive designs of the British Empire. After decades of “disneyfication” and tabloid celebrity mongering, few Americans see Monarchy as the bloodline worshipping cult of greed clung to by those who believe they are born to rule over others.

Quigley cites Willard Straight’s official biography by Herbert Croly, the first editor of the New Republic, who wrote in 1924, six years after Willard’s untimely death, that “Straight was in no sense a liberal or progressive, but was, indeed, a typical international banker and that the New Republic was simply a mechanism for advancing certain designs of such international bankers, notably to blunt the isolationism and anti-British sentiments so prevalent among many American progressives, while providing them with a vehicle for expression of their progressive views in literature, art, music, social reform, and even domestic politics…the chief achievement of the New Republic, however in 1914-1918 and again in 1938-1948, was for interventionism in Europe and support for Great Britain.

So the great journal of liberal democracy’s crowning glory was to shed blood on behalf of the Empire the nation had broken away from.

Dorothy Payne Whitney Straight was to support the paper until well in the 1950s. A few years after Willard’s death, she acted upon her true feelings for America’s democratic experiment with a new republic by marrying into British nobility and becoming Lady Elmhirst of Dartington Hall. She took her three young children from America and brought them up English. Once again demonstrating her true devotion to the liberal principles professed by the New Republic, Lady Elmhirst renounced her American citizenship in 1935. Her youngest son, Mike Straight, stood for Parliament, as was his right as a British subject. This situation proved to be no obstacle, however, when he returned to America at age 22 and was immediately appointed to the State Department. Paving the way for her son in America, Dorothy Payne Whitney Straight, transferred her sole ownership of the New Republic to a dummy corporation with her son Mike as president.

From this position, Mike Straight may have, in Quigley’s view, “pulled off the most skillful political coup in twentieth century American politics. “ Quigley is referring to the complete removal from the American scene of the Communist Party and Socialist organizations as the serious forces to contend with they had been for several decades.

Part Two

Only in America.

Mike Straight, J.P. Morgan Banker and blue-blood aristocrat, deploys that paragon of liberal journalism, The New Republic, to destroy the Left as a serious political power in America. Not surprisingly, the magazine continues today in its role of Trojan Horse with visceral polemics against all who dare challenge the pro-Israel party line.

Straight, although a declared anti-communist, was nonetheless quite cozy with the reds when it suited his purposes. Quigley highlights this collaboration in Straight’s role with the Progressive Party presidential bid of former vice-president Henry A. Wallace in 1948. Ironically, Wallace is denigrated in the opening sentences of Peretz’s diatribe as a gullible “fellow traveler”, although Peretz conveniently neglects to mention Wallace’s sojourn as editor of the New Republic.

Straight gave Wallace a bully pulpit in his magazine, and brought in a number of communists like Lew Frank as campaign insiders. In the meantime, Straight worked feverishly to block the candidacies of any state, local, or congressional level aspirants of Wallace’s new Progressive Party. He also worked behind the scenes with his anti-communist friends in labor, veteran, and liberal groups to prevent an endorsement of Wallace’s presidential bid, citing the presence of communists on the candidate’s staff (which Straight himself had brought in). Quigley states that these efforts resulted in nothing less than the shattering of the left-labor coalition of the 1930s (the Popular Front), driving the leftists out of the unions and the labor movement across the country. All of this years before the witch hunts of Sen. Joseph McCarthy or J. Edgar Hoover. In the meantime, Straight’s family (the Whitney’s on his mother’s side), founders of Pan-Amercian Airlines, profited handsomely when C.V. Whitney was appointed by President Truman, (who one would think grateful for the destruction of the left), to the most powerful Federal civil aviation post, Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Aeronautics.

As an interesting aside, while Mike Straight was at Cambridge, he was a member of a secret fraternal society called “The Apostles.” As John Costello writes in The Mask of Treachery, this group was in turn very close to the Anthony Blunt-Guy Burgess-Kim Philby spy ring. The Apostles were allegedly Marxist aristocrats (figure that out!), and included Lord Victor Rothschild of the powerful and Zionist-financing banking family. According to Costello, “Guy Burgess, in fact was being paid 100 pounds sterling a month as an ‘investment advisor’ to Mrs. Charles Rothschild while an active Soviet Spy.”

Oh what a knotted web we weave, when first we practice to deceive!

Straights subterfuge against true progressive politics, perpetrated while the controlling force of The New Republic, played to the development of a Radical Right mythology of liberal plots to undermine the American way of life, and the helped in the branding of left-ism as “un-American.”

However, Quigley says that this radical right fairy tale, “like all fables, does in fact have a modicum of truth.” Quigley then goes on to provide the history, based on his insider access to the group’s papers, of an “anglophile network, which operates, to some extent, the way the radical right believes the Communists act.” The modern form of this malignant misrule had its genesis in the Round Table Groups founded by world pirate Cecil Rhodes (for whom Rhodesia in Africa was named) and the subsequent trustees of his enormous ill-gotten gains. The stated purpose of the group was to federate the English speaking peoples of the world in accord with principles laid down by Cecil Rhodes and William T. Snead. By 1915 there were Round Table groups in seven English speaking countries, with the inventor of “professional and objective journalism", and New Republic icon, Walter Lippman, leading the American contingent. The “chief backbone” of the group was built around “the already existing financial cooperation between the Morgan Bank in New York and a group of international financiers in London led by the Lazard Brothers”, with numerous entities in between.

Known as “Lord Milner’s kindergarten” after the venerable English aristocrat’s demise in 1925, several front groups were established in each of the commonwealth nations, and led by a veritable who’s who of moneyed power: Lord Lothian, Lady Astor, the Dulles brothers, the Harrimans, and Morgan bankers too numerous to mention. Front groups were established in each of the member countries. The British entity is the Royal Institute of International Affairs, widely known by the name of its St .James Square location across the street from the Astors, Chatham House. The American Counterpart is the Council on Foreign Relations, publishers of Foreign Affairs magazine, and the source for nearly every Secretary of State and Secretary of Defense for the last 80 years, as well as most Presidents. The CFR has a small, select, by invitation-only membership, which makes its domination of U.S. foreign policy almost ludicrous, were it not so lethal for so many. Sister organizations include the Trilateral Commission, which consists of major players in America, Europe, and Japan, and the so-called Bilderberger group, largely concerned with Euro-American affairs.

Quigley claims this group has exerted inordinate influence in public debate not only through media ownership, but through what evolved from the J.P Morgan banks handling of academic endowments. In Quigley’s words, “access to publication and recommendations to academic positions in the handful of great American universities…required similar sponsorship.” In this way, a small, though mighty group determined to a large extent “the individuals who published, who had money, who found jobs, were consulted, and who were appointed to government missions.” Furthermore, Quigley points out that “the names of Wall Street luminaries still adorn these Ivy League campuses,” and that “the chief officials of these universities (Harvard, Yale, Stanford, etc), were beholden to these financial powers and usually owed their jobs to them.” In summation, the Georgetown professor states, “On this basis…there grew up in the twentieth century a power structure between London and New York which penetrated deeply into university life, the press, and the practice of foreign policy.” It is this same Anglo-American axis threatening peace and justice in the world today.

The American branch of this Anglo-oriented cabal is said to have disseminated its influence primarily through five newspapers: The New York Times, the New York Herald Tribune, Christian Science Monitor, the Washington Post, and the Boston Evening Transcript. In fact, the Christian Science Monitor editor did surreptitious (and anonymous) duty as American correspondent for The Round Table. Lord Lothian, The Round Table’s first editor and secretary of the Rhodes Trust 1925-1939, contributed often to the Monitor. Morgan banking partner Thomas Lamont financially supported or owned outright The Saturday Review of Literature and the New York Post. In fact, Lamont attended the pivotal Paris Peace Conference following World War I, and there befriended his English counterparts who had been organized by Lord Milner’s group.

Lest one think Quigley a wide-eyed, wild-haired radical professor, bear in mind his own stated assessment that the goals of this group were, by and large, “commendable”: to federate the English speaking world, establish peace (think today’s Pax Americana), “help backward, colonial, and (to assist) underdeveloped areas advance toward stability along the lines taught at Oxford and the University of London (especially the London School of Economics and the Schools of African and Oriental Studies).” Quigley furthermore dismisses accusations of fascism against this group as communist propaganda”, and that they were really “quite the contrary.” They were “gracious and cultured gentlemen…who constantly thought in terms of Anglo-American solidarity…and who were convinced that they could gracefully civilize the Boers of South Africa, the Irish, the Arabs, and the Hindus, and who are largely responsible for the partitions of Ireland, Palestine, and India, as well as the federations of South Africa, Central Africa and the West Indies.”

May the Great Spirit deliver us from such gracious and cultured gentlemen. As economist John Kenneth Galbraith said of modern conservatives: (they are) "engaged in one of man’s oldest exercises in moral philosophy; that is, the search for a superior moral justification for selfishness.”

Besides, Quigley certainly received his comeuppance and learned with whom he was dealing. Jim Martin cites letters from the early 70s in which the eminent Georgetown Professor writes that the British publisher of Tragedy and Hope , Macmillan, suppressed the book because “they didn’t like its gist. Quigley further wrote that Macmillan was preventing him from assuming copyright to his own book by keeping it technically “in print”, but withholding it from the general public. Martin states that “Quigley photographed each page of the book and sent it to a printer; that’s the only reason it was available at all in America.”

The lessons from The New Republic’s history and the Round Table movement which spawned it for today are legion. Progressives will never see power with justice implemented in this world until they fully comprehend the nature and threat of power in the world today, which seeks self-preservation and expansion at without regard to human cost. Without this comprehension of the beasts’ inclination and reach, global civil rights movements will only be tolerated as long as they do not succeed to a great degree. But long before any tangible success will comes infiltration, manipulation, repression, co-option and annihilation.

The faring of presidential aspirants Howard Dean and Dennis Kucinich presents a case in point. Dean is the darling of the New Republic type crowd, and is therefore, this year’s Trojan Horse model, whether or not the former governor of Vermont is conscious of his designated role. The corporate media has been crowing over Dean’s first place finish among all Democratic contenders in the much ballyhooed “online primary” by Moveon.org, in which an astounding 317,000 people participated. Such was the case on the editorial page of the same L.A. Times which provided the soapbox for Martin Peretz’s ravings, but failed in the same article to mention Dennis Kucinich’s second place showing. This is particularly astonishing in view of the corporate media blackout of this sitting congressman who was once the youngest man ever elected mayor of a major city (Cleveland). That is because Kucinich is a genuine progressive with leadership skill, an egotistical dummy corporation, and a genuine threat to the powers that be. Dean, on the other hand, backs a bloated military budget and has deep relationships with the Israeli right wing. Needless to say, many well-intentioned progressives will fruitlessly attempt to jockey toward justice on the back of this Trojan Horse, only to eventually end up (once again) , with splinters in the rear.

The Money Power has absolutely no intention of handing over the reigns to justice and freedom. Nor does it care a twit what mothers and children live and die, or in what squalor. The innocents of Afghanistan and Iraq all had names, as do the subjugated poor everywhere, and were all beloved by someone, somewhere. But the bottom lines to power politics in the world in which we presently have our being are money and murder. If we hope ever to ameliorate that incontrovertible fact in at least some small way, we need to arm ourselves with knowledge of the details of power in the world.

Know thy enemy.


Craig Lee Merrihue is a writer, Green Party member, and activist residing in Southern California. He can be reached at: CMerrihue@mediamonitors.org. He contributed above article to Media Monitors Network (MMN).

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