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The Sins of Robert Maheu


Pat Speer
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Acording to Thomas, Williams' first HUAC client was the screenwriter Martin Berkeley, who named 154 names, purportedly at Williams' urging. Williams later denied this, but acknowledged he did nothing to prevent his client from ratting out everyone he ever suspected of leaning left.  Another client who ratted was  Robert Rossen, the producer of  All the King's Men, who named 57 reds, including two who would be blacklisted, Budd Schulberg and Ring Lardner, Jr.  (Ironically 57 is the number of commies originally cited by Joseph McCarthy as working in the State Dept.  The Manchurian Candidate hinted that he picked this number because it was the number of his favorite ketchup and easy to remember...even more ironically, it was the ketchup company that created the wealth of Teresa Heinz Kerry, John Kerry's wife, and this has upset the new McCarthys so much they've decided to create W, the right wing jingo-istic super ketchup, as advertised on websites everywhere.)  Williams went on to represent screenwriter Howard Koch, screenwriter  Carl Foreman and producer Harold Hecht, a man named by Berkeley, charging them exorbitant fees in what might well be considered extortion, seeing as Williams also represented their chief accuser, McCarthy..

Thank you for that. I suspect Williams was working for McCarthy from the beginning. Williams for example, refused to work for anti-Vietnam protestors because he saw them as "communists".

Does Thomas mention Frank Wisner, Richard Bissell, Tracy Barnes and Desmond FitzGerald in his book? I have a theory that he got to the idea for writing The Very Best Men while researching the book on Williams.

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For whatever it is worth I remember reading (about 45 years ago) a column by Wliiam F. Buckley, Jr. that was a vicous (perhaps too strong) attack on Williams. Strange that Williams had defended McCarthy because Buckley was a McCarthy supporter: wrote a book called "McCarthy and His Enemies". Wish I could remember why Buckley was attacking Williams.

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For whatever it is worth I remember reading (about 45 years ago) a column by Wliiam F. Buckley, Jr. that was a vicous (perhaps too strong) attack on Williams.  Strange that Williams had defended McCarthy because Buckley was a McCarthy supporter:  wrote a book called "McCarthy and His Enemies".  Wish I could remember why Buckley was attacking Williams.

Williams was seen as a mobster lawyer. Williams had also been responsible for revealing details of illegal activity by the FBI. The other possibility is that he seemed to be an enemy of Richard Nixon. According to Kay Graham, Williams played an important role in the publishing of the Pentagon Papers and the Watergate investigations. Again, evidence that Williams was working for the CIA against Nixon.

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As I recall the Buckley column it may have related to William's representation of Hoffa.

There is a legal document called a Notice of Appearance in which an attorney notifies the court he or she is representing a party in the matter.

About the only thing I remember from the Buckley column is that Williams had written: " I entered my appearance on his behalf" and Buckley was using William's legal terminology to ridicule him as pompous and vain.

But I do think Williams also had a reputation as a Democrat.

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As I recall the Buckley column it may have related to William's representation of Hoffa.

There is a legal document called a Notice of Appearance in which an attorney notifies the court he or she is representing a party in the matter.

About the only thing I remember from the Buckley column is that Williams had written:  " I entered my appearance on his behalf" and Buckley was using William's legal terminology to ridicule him as pompous and vain.

But I do think Williams also had a reputation as a Democrat.

Buckley devotes a chapter to Williams in one of his books. I read it in a used bookstore-should have just bought it. As Ii remember it, he hated Willaims for his ego and hypocrisy--purporting to be liberal while representing Hoffa and his ilk.

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