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Has anyone got anything on Thomas Concoran? He was a member of the Suite 8F Group. He was also closely connected to Sam Rayburn and Lyndon B. Johnson. Despite his shady business dealings he was never convicted of a criminal offence.

It is claimed that Concoran played an important role in persuading John F. Kennedy to make Johnson his running-mate. Interestingly, his brother, Howard Corcoran, was the judge in the trial of Ray Crump, who was charged with the murder of Mary Pinchot Meyer. Howard Corcoran insisted that Mary’s private life should not be mentioned in court. This was very important in disguising the possible motive for the murder. Corcoran also kept the fact that Mary was the former wife of Cord Meyer, a senior figure in the CIA. As Crump’s lawyer, Dovey Roundtree, pointed out, as a result of Concoran's actions, the court found out little information about her: "It was as if she existed only on the towpath on the day she was murdered."

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I have been doing some research into Thomas Concoran and have found out some fascinating information on him. Not only was he the main person responsible for getting LBJ on the JFK ticket in 1960 he was also heavily involved in CIA covert operations between 1947 and 1963. He was also extremely close to William Pawley and Paul Helliwell and played an important role in PBSUCCESS (information in CIA files declassified in 1997). I will provide more details next week.

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John,

Is this the same individual that was instrumental in empowering the American Volunteer Group in 1941 under the auspices of FDR??

And I would find it significant that Helliwell et al, the KMT/Burma "arena" are part of the efforts that came of the AVG and CAT.

My short take is that it was TV Soong's money and Mr. Concoran's string pulling that got the power played out in the Beltway for the AVG.

Looking forward to your future information on this man and his deeds.

Sincerely

Jim

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http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/JFKcorcoran.htm

One day in early October 1940, Franklin D. Roosevelt told Tommy Corcoran that he wanted him to resign from the administration. He wanted him to carry out a covert mission and it was "too politically dangerous" to do this while serving in his government. Roosevelt promised that he would bring Corcoran back into the government as soon as this covert operation had been completed. (1)

It came as no surprise that Corcoran had been asked to leave Roosevelt’s administration. For several years there had been speculation that Corcoran had been using his access to government officials for financial gain. No one guessed at the time that Corcoran had been recruited to carry out undercover work in China. In fact, the story was kept a secret until revealed by David McKean in his book “Peddling Influence” that was published in 2004. McKean had been given access to Tommy Corcoran’s unpublished autobiography which confirmed that he had been involved in a secret mission to China in 1940.

Ernest Cuneo’s claim that Corcoran “headed FDR’s informal intelligence service and international spy operations long before there was an OSS” appears to be true. (2) More importantly, in October 1940, Roosevelt, became the first president to “contract out” U.S. foreign policy. Corcoran was to play a leading role in this new development for the next twenty years.

Who was Tommy Corcoran and why had he been selected for the task? Corcoran was a young lawyer working in Washington when he was recruited in 1932 by Eugene Meyer, chairman of the Federal Reserve Board, as general counsel for the newly established Reconstruction Finance Corporation.

After Franklin D. Roosevelt defeated Herbert Hoover in November, 1932, he asked Felix Frankfurter to assemble a legal team to review the nation's securities laws. Frankfurter selected Tommy Corcoran, Benjamin Cohen and James Landis for the task. Together they drafted the legislation that created the Securities and Exchange Commission.

At the beginning of Roosevelt’s administration, Corcoran, was seen as one of his left-wing advisers. As Howard Zinn has pointed out, Corcoran, like Harry Hopkins, Harold Ickes and Ben Cohen, “blamed big business for the Great Depression”. (3)

The following year Corcoran was involved in drafting the Public Utilities Holding Company Act. On 1st July, 1935, Owen Brewster claimed that Corcoran threatened to stop construction on the Passamaquoddy Dam in his district unless he supported the Holding Company Bill. Congress immediately ordered the rules committee to investigate the matter. The Senate investigation, headed by Hugo Black, eventually cleared Corcoran of any wrongdoing. Corcoran wrote to a friend: "Storms make a sailor - if he survives them."

Roosevelt's personal secretary, Louis Howe, died of pneumonia on 24th June, 1936. According to Corcoran's biographer, David McKean, Corcoran now replaced Howe as Roosevelt's most "trusted adviser and personal companion" (4). Some of Roosevelt's ministers complained about Corcoran's growing influence. Henry Morgenthau, the Secretary of the Treasury, claimed that Corcoran was a "crook".

As well as drafting New Deal legislation, Roosevelt used Corcoran as his "special emissary to Capitol Hill". Elliott Roosevelt wrote that: "Apart from my father, Tom (Corcoran) was the single most influential individual in the country." (5)

In 1936 the Lower Colorado River Authority (LCRA) decided to build the Marshall Ford Dam (now known as the Mansfield Dam). At that time Brown & Root was in serious financial trouble. (6) In the past, the company had been involved in small-scale road projects. Alvin Witz, Brown & Root’s legal adviser, suggested they should bid for this $10 million contract. The company had no experience in this field and therefore joined forces with the McKenzie Construction Company. Witz was also chief counsel for the LCRA. He was therefore in a good position to know details of the various bids for the Marshall Ford Dam contract. In December, 1936, the LCRA awarded the contract to Brown & Root-McKenzie. This joint venture underbid the nearest competitor, Utah Construction, by a margin of $137,000. (7)

In the first few months of the project, Brown & Root-McKenzie spent $1.5 million on equipment and a giant cableway. However, it had done this before the bureau of reclamation, the agency responsible for the federal dam projects, had obtained the necessary authorization from Congress. (8) Brown & Root was now in serious trouble. Alvin Witz now introduced George and Herman Brown to Lyndon B. Johnson. This 28 year old director of Texas National Youth Administration, was hopeful of becoming the next representative to the U.S. Congress for the Tenth District of Texas. Witz encouraged the Brown brothers to help finance Johnson’s campaign. (9)

Johnson was elected in March 1937. He immediately set about persuading the Rivers and Harbors Committee to authorize money for the Marshall Ford Dam and to ratify all federal contracts with Brown & Root. Johnson now contacted Tommy Corcoran and asked him to plead his case before President Roosevelt. He did and according to Corcoran, Roosevelt replied: “Give the kid the dam.” (10)

Corcoran still had work to do. Robert Caro points out that: “The precise nature of Corcoran’s dealings with the previously recalcitrant Comptroller General’s office and the Bureau of the Budget are not known – Corcoran will not discuss them except to say, “I made a hell of a lot of calls on that dam” – but the refusals by these two offices to authorize additional allocations out of the first appropriation abruptly ended, and the previously growing curiosity about the dam abruptly vanished.” (11)

The successful acquisition of the Marshall Ford Dam was the beginning of a network that was to last for over thirty years. This highly secret network became known as the Suite 8F Group. The name came from Herman Brown’s suite at the Lamar Hotel in downtown Houston where the men met regularly. The group initially included Herman and George Brown, Lyndon B. Johnson, Tommy Corcoran and Alvin Witz. Later, other business figures from Texas joined this group: Gus Wortham (American General Insurance Company), James A. Elkins Sr. (First City Bancorporation), Robert Kerr (Kerr-McGee Oil Industries) and James Abercrombie (Cameron Iron Works).

Corcoran and Witz concentrated on putting the deals together. However, for Suite 8F Group to work it needed to have members like Johnson who held political power. This included Sam Rayburn, chairman of the Interstate and Foreign Commerce Committee and majority leader in the Senate, Jesse H. Jones, chairman of the Reconstruction Finance Corporation and Secretary of Commerce and Albert Thomas, chairman of the House Appropriations Committee. (12)

Herman Brown was the gatekeeper and he allowed others to join when they obtained political power and influence. (13) For example, John Connolly and Fred Korth later became important members.

Joseph Pratt and Christopher Castaneda described the common goals of the Suite 8F group as working towards a “healthy business climate characterized by a minimum of government regulations, a weak labor movement, a tax system favorable to business investment, the use of government subsidies and supports where needed to spur development, and a conservative approach to the expansion of government social services.” (14)

In 1937 Corcoran used this influence to make sure Sam Rayburn of Texas became Speaker of the House. This was a difficult task as James Farley was advocating that John O'Connor got the job. Corcoran's increasing power was indicated by the fact that Franklin D. Roosevelt brought an end to Farley's campaign. This was the beginning of a very close relationship that Corcoran enjoyed with Rayburn and the Texas oil industry. (15)

Franklin D. Roosevelt began to have considerable problems with the Supreme Court. The chief justice, Charles Hughes, had been the Republican Party presidential candidate in 1916. Hughes, appointed by Herbert Hoover in 1930, led the court's opposition to some of the proposed New Deal legislation. This included the ruling against the National Recovery Administration (NRA), the Agricultural Adjustment Act (AAA) and ten other New Deal laws.

On 2nd February, 1937, Franklin D. Roosevelt made a speech attacking the Supreme Court for its actions over New Deal legislation. He pointed out that seven of the nine judges (Charles Hughes, Willis Van Devanter, George Sutherland, Harlan Stone, Owen Roberts, Benjamin Cardozo and Pierce Butler) had been appointed by Republican presidents. Roosevelt had just won re-election by 10,000,000 votes and resented the fact that the justices could veto legislation that clearly had the support of the vast majority of the public. (16)

Roosevelt suggested that the age was a major problem as six of the judges were over 70 (Charles Hughes, Willis Van Devanter, James McReynolds, Louis Brandeis, George Sutherland and Pierce Butler). Roosevelt announced that he was going to ask Congress to pass a bill enabling the president to expand the Supreme Court by adding one new judge, up to a maximum off six, for every current judge over the age of 70.

Charles Hughes realized that Roosevelt's Court Reorganization Bill would result in the court coming under the control of the Democratic Party. Behind the scenes Hughes was busy doing deals to make sure that Roosevelt's bill would be defeated in Congress.

Tommy Corcoran was giving the task by Roosevelt to persuade Congress to pass this proposed legislation. This included working closely with I. F. Stone of the New York Post. Stone, a strong opponent of the conservative Supreme Court, agreed to write speeches for Concoran on this issue. These speeches were then passed on to Roosevelt supporters in Congress. (17)

In the past Corcoran had relied heavily on the influence of his close friend, Burton Wheeler, chairman of the Judiciary Committee. However, Wheeler had now turned against Roosevelt. Wheeler even argued that Roosevelt had been behind the assassination of Huey Long. (18) Corcoran continued to campaign for the Court Reorganization Bill but he failed to persuade enough to get it passed.

Even the most left-wing of all the justices, Louis Brandeis, opposed Roosevelt's attempt to "pack" the Supreme Court. Brandeis was also beginning to oppose some aspects of the New Deal that he believed "favored big business".

However, members of the Supreme Court accepted they had to fall in line with public opinion. On 29th March, Owen Roberts announced that he had changed his mind about voting against minimum wage legislation. Hughes also reversed his opinion on the Social Security Act and the National Labour Relations Act (NLRA) and by a 5-4 vote they were now declared to be constitutional.

Then Willis Van Devanter, probably the most conservative of the justices, announced his intention to resign. He was replaced by Hugo Black, a member of the Democratic Party and a strong supporter of the New Deal. In July, 1937, Congress defeated the Court Reorganization Bill by 70-20. However, Roosevelt had the satisfaction of knowing he had a Supreme Court that was now less likely to block his legislation.

Corcoran later took credit for getting Hugo Black (1937), Felix Frankfurter (1939), William O. Douglas (1939) and Frank Murphy (1940) appointed to Supreme Court. He also played an important role in defending Black when it was discovered that he was a former member of the Ku Klux Klan. Corcoran later claimed he wrote Black's statement asking for forgiveness. (19)

Corcoran also became involved in advising Roosevelt over foreign policy. Although he had liberal views on domestic issues, Corcoran was passionately anti-communist. This was partly because of his Roman Catholicism. Roosevelt initially favoured giving help to the Republican government in Spain. However, Corcoran was a supporter of the fascist movement led by General Francisco Franco.

As Drew Pearson and Jack Anderson pointed out in their book, The Case Against Congress: “Long before Pope John and Pope Paul made it clear they were not in sympathy with the Catholic hierarchy of Spain, the reactionary wing of the Catholic Church in the United States had been conducting one of the most efficient lobbies ever to operate on Capital Hill. It was able to reverse completely American policy on Spain. During the Spanish Civil War, Thomas G. Corcoran, a member of the Roosevelt brain trust, worked effectively at the White House to keep an embargo on all U.S. arms to both sides.” (20)

Corcoran knew that Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini would continue to provide both men and arms to Franco. Roosevelt's decision enabled fascism to win in Spain and become entrenched in Europe. Roosevelt later told his cabinet that he had made a "grave mistake" with respect to neutrality in the Spanish Civil War.

Corcoran's fascist sympathies resulted in him becoming a firm advocate of isolationism. (21) He told friends that Irish Americans liked him "remembered their parents' repression at the hands of the British". On one occasion, Harry Hopkins told Corcoran: "Tom you're too Catholic to trust the Russians and too Irish to trust the English." (22)

Roosevelt was angry with Corcoran over his advice on Spain. He also began to see that Corcoran was becoming a problem for the administration. He had upset a lot of powerful figures in Congress with his arm twisting tactics. Corcoran had also tried to unseat those who attempted to resist Roosevelt. Walter George of Georgia claimed that Corcoran had the "power of saying who shall be a senator and who shall not be a senator."

Alva Johnson wrote that Corcoran had become a very powerful figure in the Roosevelt administration: “Cabinet officers, senators, commissioners stand in attention… Smart people who want to get action at headquarters ignore the regular secretariat, overlook the Cabinet and cultivate the acquaintance of White House Tommy. He can get things done.” (23)

In June 1939, an article appeared in the Saturday Evening Post accused James Roosevelt of being a war profiteer. It was also claimed that the president's son helped Joseph Kennedy to obtain the ambassador to Great Britain. Corcoran, who was very close to James Roosevelt, got dragged into this scandal. It was not the first time that Corcoran had been accused of corrupt behaviour. Norman Littell, a high-ranking Justice Department official, told Anna Roosevelt that Corcoran had become a liability to her father: No quality is so essential in government as simple integrity and forthrightness. Ability and brilliance of mind are not enough." (24)

In February, 1940, it was announced that the US Navy planned to build Corpus Christi Naval Station in Texas. The contract was a “cost-plus” contract. This meant that the contractor would recoup all expenses plus a built-in, guaranteed profit based on a pre-negotiated percentage. In addition, it was agreed that the contract would not be put out for competitive bidding. (25)

Brown & Root wanted this contract and asked their friends from the Suite 8F Group to help them obtain it. Corcoran managed to persuade President Roosevelt to inform the Navy Department that Lyndon Johnson should be consulted before the contract was granted.

Johnson suggested that Brown & Root should be given the contract that was worth $23,381,000 with a 5% per cent profit on top of that. Corcoran reported back that Brown & Root would have to share the profits of the deal with Californian businessman, Henry J. Kaiser. George Brown later recalled that the “White House said we had to take in Kaiser”. (26) Negotiations with Kaiser resulted in Kaiser being given 25% of the profits. According to Dan Briody, Kaiser “did virtually nothing to earn it.” (27) It is assumed that a percentage of Kaiser’s profits went to Corcoran. It was not the last time that these two men were to work together.

In 1940 Corcoran began telling friends that he was considering leaving government. He told Sam Rosenman: "I want to make a million dollars in one year, that's all. Then I'm coming back to the government for the rest of my life." (28) Corcoran's plan was to become a political lobbyist on behalf of companies seeking to obtain government contracts. A large number of government officials had their jobs because of Corcoran. It was payback time.

In October 1940, Roosevelt told Corcoran that he wanted him to resign from the administration. Roosevelt believed that the best way of stopping Japanese imperialism in Asia was to arm the Chinese government of Chiang Kai-shek. However, Congress was opposed to this idea as it was feared that this might trigger a war with Japan. Therefore, Roosevelt's plan was for Corcoran to establish a private corporation to provide assistance to the nationalist government in China. Roosevelt even supplied the name of the proposed company, China Defense Supplies. He also suggested that his uncle, Frederick Delano, should be co-chairman of the company. Chaing Kai-shek nominated his former finance minister, Tse-ven Soong, as the other co-chairman. (29)

For reasons of secrecy, Corcoran took no title other than outside counsel for China Defense Supplies. William S. Youngman was his front man in China. Corcoran's friend, Whitey Willauer, was moved to the Foreign Economic Administration, where he supervised the sending of supplies to China. In this way Corcoran was able to create an Asian Lend-Lease program.

Corcoran also worked closely with Claire Lee Chennault, who had been working as a military adviser to Chaing Kai-shek since 1937. Chennault told Corcoran that if he was given the resources, he could maintain an air force within China that could carry out raids against the Japanese. Corcoran returned to the United States and managed to persuade Franklin D. Roosevelt to approve the creation of the American Volunteer Group. (30)

One hundred P-40 fighters, built by the Curtiss-Wright Corporation, intended for Britain, were redirected to Chennault in China. William Pawley was Curtiss-Wright's representative in Asia and he arranged for the P-40 to be assembled in Rangoon. (31)

It was Tommy Corcoran's son David who suggested that the American Volunteer Group should be called the Flying Tigers. Chennault liked the idea and asked his friend, Walt Disney, to design a tiger emblem for the planes.

On 13th April, 1941, Roosevelt signed a secret executive order authorizing the American Volunteer Group to recruit reserve officers from the army, navy and marines. Pawley suggested that the men should be recruited as "flying instructors".

In July, 1941, ten pilots and 150 mechanics were supplied with fake passports and sailed from San Francisco for Rangoon. When they arrived they were told that they were really involved in a secret war against Japan. To compensate for the risks involved, the pilots were to be paid $600 a month ($675 for a patrol leader). In addition, they were to receive $500 for every enemy plane they shot down. (32)

The Flying Tigers were extremely effective in their raids on Japanese positions and helped to slow down attempts to close the Burma Road, a key supply route to China. In seven months of fighting, the Flying Tigers destroyed 296 planes at a loss of 24 men (14 while flying and 10 on the ground).

Corcoran had originally been an isolationist. However, he now knew that he could make a fortune out of the arms trade. His first major client was Henry J. Kaiser, the man who he managed to bring into Corpus Christi Naval Station. Corcoran had also helped Kaiser obtain lucrative government contracts while working for the Reconstruction Finance Corporation. (33)

Kaiser paid Corcoran a retainer of $25,000 a year. Corcoran then introduced Kaiser to William Knudsen, head of the Office of Production Management. Over the next few years Kaiser obtained $645 million in building contracts at his ten shipyards. Kaiser's two main business partners were Stephen D. Bechtel and John McCone. Kaiser had worked with Bechtel in the 1930s to build many of the major roads throughout California. (34) As I. F. Stone pointed out: “Mr. McCone's rising fortunes, financial and political, have been associated with the war and the arms race”. (35)

Corcoran was also informed that a great deal of magnesium would be needed for building aircraft. With the help of Jesse Jones, the boss of the RFC, Kaiser was granted a loan to build a magnesium production plant in San Jose, California. After the RFC loan was secured, Corcoran sent Kaiser a bill requesting $135,000 in cash and a 15% stake in the magnesium production business. (36)

Another important client was Brown & Root. Corcoran arranged for George Brown and Herman Brown to meet William Knudsen. Records show that Corcoran was paid $15,000 for "advice, conferences and negotiations" related to shipbuilding contracts.

Robert Bryce points out that it was another member of Suite 8F Group who helped the Brown brothers to make a fortune out of the war industry: “The Browns got into shipbuilding business for the U.S. Navy thanks to another friend in Congress, Representative Albert Thomas of Houston. Brown Shipbuilding, a newly created subsidiary, won a contract to build ships even though the firm had never built so much as a canoe.” (37)

In 1942 the Brown brothers established the Brown Shipbuilding Company on the Houston Ship Channel. Over the next three years the company built 359 ships and won contracts worth over $500 million. (38)

Corcoran's work with China Defense Supplies caused some disquiet in Roosevelt's administration. Henry Morgenthau was a prominent critic. He argued that in effect, Corcoran was running an off-the-books operation in which a private company was diverting some of the war material destined for China to a private army, the American Volunteer Group. (39)

Resistance also came from General George Marshall and General Joseph Stilwell, the American commander in Asia. (40) Marshall and Stilwell both believed that Chaing Kai-shek was completely corrupt and needed to be forced into introducing reforms. (41)

The Office of Strategic Services (OSS) was also having trouble with Chiang Kai-shek. The OSS arrived in July 1942. Known as Detachment 101, members of the OSS had been instructed to train Chiang’s men in guerrilla warfare. One of those officers sent to China was Captain Walter Mansfield. He later wrote: “By ordinary standards of guerrilla warfare, these Chinese were a pretty poor lot. I could not help contrasting them with Serbian guerrillas with whom I fought… Here in China, individual bravery was the exception rather than the rule.” (42)

However, this was not a problem of race. Chinese communists were putting up a good fight against the Japanese. General Stilwell came to the conclusion that this was a problem of motivation. As one British officer argued that there was a “virtual undeclared peace” between Chiang Kai-shek and the Japanese invaders. Stilwell had particularly problems with General Tai Li, head of the Bureau of Investigation and Statistics. According to R. Harris Smith, Tai Li had “acquired great wealth through his control of the opium trade” (43). A wartime OSS report criticized Tai Li’s use of concentration camps and political executions against his opponents. It pointed out that “General Tai was not Admiral Canaris of China, but the Heinrich Himmler”.

Stilwell complained about Corcoran's ability to present Chiang in the best possible light with Roosevelt. Stilwell wrote to Marshall that the "continued publication of Chungking propaganda in the United States is an increasing handicap to my work." He added, "we can pull them out of this cesspool, but continued concessions have made the Generalissimo believe he has only to insist and we will yield." (44)

The OSS gradually took over the activities that Corcoran had helped set up in China. In 1943 OSS agents based in China included Paul Helliwell, E. Howard Hunt, Mitch Werbell, Lucien Conein, John Singlaub and Ray Cline. It is argued in the Iran-Contra Connection that these men were involved in a small OSS mission at Kumming. (45) This was later confirmed by E. Howard Hunt in his autobiography, Undercover. However, Hunt gives no details of what this mission entails other than the orders came from Colonel Paul Helliwell (46). In his book, Compulsive Spy: The Strange Career of E. Howard Hunt, Tad Szulc quotes a friend of Hunt’s as saying: “This was when Howard was bitten by the bug of intelligence and espionage and that’s when he flipped.” (47) According to an article in the Wall Street Journal, some officers of the OSS in China were paid for their work with five-pound sacks of opium. (48) It seems that some members of the OSS were aligning themselves with General Tai Li rather than General Silwell.

Corcoran continued to work closely with members of the Suite 8F Group. On 4th April, 1941, Texas senator, Morris Sheppard died. Corcoran agreed to help Lyndon Johnson in his campaign to replace Sheppard. This included helping Johnson obtain approval of a rural electrification project from the Rural Electrification Administration. Corcoran also arranged for Franklin D. Roosevelt to make a speech on the eve of the polls criticizing Johnson's opponent, W. Lee O'Daniel. (49) Most of the money for the campaign came from Suite 8F Group members. Robert A. Caro claims that: “No one knows how much Brown & Root gave to the 1941 Lyndon Johnson campaign for Senator, and no one will ever know, but the amount was in the neighborhood of $200,000.” An IRS investigation into Johnson’s campaign funds was unable to discover the true figure. When one of Johnson’s aides, Edward Clark, was asked how much Johnson was given in 1941 he replied: “He had as much as he asked for.” (50) Despite the efforts of the Suite 8F Group, O'Daniel defeated Johnson by 1,311 votes.

On the suggestion of Alvin Wirtz, another key member of the Suite 8F Group, Johnson decided to acquire KTBC, a radio station in Austin. E. G. Kingsberry and Wesley West, agreed to sell KTBC to Johnson (officially it was purchased by his wife, Lady Bird Johnson). However, it needed the approval of the Federal Communications Commission (FCR). Johnson asked Corcoran for help with this matter. This was not very difficult as the chairman of the FCR, James Fly, was appointed by Frank Murphy as a favour for Corcoran. The FCC eventually approved the deal and Johnson was able to use KTBC to amass a fortune of more than $25 million. (51)

Corcoran’s links with right-wing foreign groups began to cause him problems as the war escalated. Corcoran now came under pressure from the work he was doing for Sterling Pharmaceutical. His brother, David worked for the company and was responsible for getting Corcoran the contract. However, it was revealed in 1940 that Sterling Pharmaceutical had strong links with the German company, I. G. Farben. (52) The FBI discovered that Sterling had conspired with Farben to control the sale of aspirin. In other words, the two companies had formed an aspirin cartel. (53) According to one FBI report, Sterling Pharmaceutical was employing Nazi sympathizers in its offices in Latin America. Rumours began to circulate that Burton Wheeler would announce that he was appointing a subcommittee to investigate the relations between American and German firms.

Assistant Attorney General Thurman Arnold announced he was ready to prosecute any American company aiding and abetting a German company in any part of the world. On 10th April, 1941, the Department of Justice issued subpoenas to Sterling Pharmaceutical. Soon afterwards newspapers began to run negative stories about the company. One claimed that Sterling was helping the Nazi propagandist Joseph Goebbels fulfill his pledge that "Americans would help Hitler win the Americas." (54)

On 2nd June, 1941, Roosevelt appointed Francis Biddle as his new Attorney General. Biddle was a close friend of Corcoran's. The day after his appointment, Biddle accepted a settlement offer from Sterling in which the company would pay a fine of five thousand dollars. Later, it was agreed that Sterling would abrogate all contracts with I. G. Farben.

Corcoran was not the only American being investigated for his business dealings with Nazi Germany. According to Joseph Trento, “Prescott Bush became the American banker for Hitler’s largest single industrial supporter in Germany through an elaborate money-laundering operation” (55) Trento is referring to Fritz Thyssen, the man who controlled the vast German Steel Trust. The bank that Bush used for this operation was the Union Banking Corporation (UBC). Bush did such a good job that in 1934 he was put on the UBC board of directors.

During the war the Department of Justice carried out an investigation into Prescott Bush dealings with Nazi Germany. It was discovered that Bush “failed to divest himself of more than a dozen ‘enemy national’ relationships that continued until as late as 1951”. (56)

However, Prescott Bush was never to be charged with these offences. David Corcoran also survived this scandal. On 2nd June, 1941, Roosevelt appointed Francis Biddle as his new Attorney General. Biddle was a close friend of Corcoran's. The day after his appointment, Biddle accepted a settlement offer from Sterling Pharmaceutical in which the company would pay a fine of five thousand dollars. (57)

In Congress there was speeches made calling for an investigation into the role played by Corcoran in protecting the interests of Sterling Pharmaceutical. Senator Lawrence Smith argued: "It is common gossip in government circles that the long arm of Tommy Corcoran reaches into many agencies; that he has placed many men in important positions and they in turn are amenable to his influences."

On 16th December, 1941, Corcoran appeared before the Senate Defense Investigation Committee. He admitted that business had been exceedingly good since he left Roosevelt's administration. Some members of the committee were convinced that Corcoran's activities revealed a need for more stringent lobbying restrictions. Senator Carl Hatch from New Mexico introduced a bill that would prohibit former government employees from working with government departments or agencies for two years after leaving government service. As David McKean points out in Peddling Influence "the bill never made it out of the Judiciary Committee, presumably because Washington lobbyists persuaded their friends on the panel to kill it." (58)

In a letter to the Senate Defense Investigation Committee in November, 1944, Norman Littell, assistant attorney general for the lands division, reported conversations between Tommy Corcoran and Francis Biddle that suggested that the two men had a corrupt relationship. Littell claimed that Biddle seemed to be following instructions from Corcoran. In the letter, Littell asked the committee: "What has Tommy Corcoran got on Biddle?"

Littell argued that during the investigation of the Sterling Pharmaceutical case, Biddle was "completely dominated by Tommy Corcoran". He added that this company was acting as "an agent of Nazi Germany" and that Biddle's decision to settle this case was "the lowest point in the history of the Department of Justice since the Harding administration".

This story was picked up by the national press and demands were made that the relationship between Biddle and Corcoran should be investigated. Sam Rayburn made sure that no committee held a hearing on this issue. Charles Van Devander reported in the Washington Post that: "Strong influence is being brought to bear to block an investigation by Congress into the affairs of the Department of Justice, including Attorney General Biddle's allegedly close relationship with lawyer lobbyist Tommy Corcoran." (59)

Tommy Corcoran was also linked to another company that obtained a large number of lucrative government contracts during the war. It is well documented that one of Corcoran’s most important clients was Henry J. Kaiser. It is less well-known that Kaiser was a business partner of John A. McCone and Steve Bechtel.

Kaiser began his business relationship with the Bechtel family when he became a partner of Steve’s father, Warren, in 1921. Together they won the contract to build the Boulder Dam (later known as the Hoover Dam). Also involved in this project was John A. McCone. At the time he worked as sales manager for Consolidated Steel. He arranged with Kaiser and Bechtel to provide 55 million tons of steel for the Hoover Dam. The sale saved Consolidated Steel from bankruptcy. McCone got the contract because he was a close friend of Warren Bechtel’s son, Steve Bechtel (they met while students studying engineering at Berkeley).

After Warren’s death in 1933, Henry J. Kaiser joined forces with Steve Bechtel. In 1937, McCone joined the team. As a result the Bechtel-McCone Corporation was formed. (60) Over the next few years the three men formed several companies with them taking it in turn to become the front man. In some cases, they remained silent partners. This was especially true after the war when McCone sought a career in politics and was responsible for giving government contracts to Kaiser and Bechtel.

The first major customer of Bechtel-McCone was Standard Oil of California (Socal). The company obtained a contract to build Socal’s new refinery in Richmond. It was the first of many refineries built by Bechtel-McCone. By 1939 the company had more than 10,000 employees and was building refineries, chemical plants and pipelines all over the world. (61)

It was Kaiser’s connections with Tommy Corcoran that was to be the most important factor in the growth of this business empire. In the summer of 1940 Steve Bechtel and John McCone had a meeting with Admiral L. Vickery of the U.S. Maritime Commission. Vickery told the men he “had received a telegram from the British Purchasing Commission (BPC) urgently requesting that the Maritime Commission arrange the building of 60 tankers to replace the ships the British had lost to German torpedoes”. At another meeting a few weeks later, Maritime Commission chairman, Admiral Emory S. Land, told Bechtel and McCone that: “Besides building ships for the British, they would have to build them for the Americans as well. Not merely tankers, but Liberty and Victory cargo ships, troop transports, the whole makings of a merchant navy.” Admiral Land confidently added that thousands of vessels would be needed as “America was headed into war.” (62)

As a result of these two meetings, Bechtel, McCone and Kaiser built shipyards at Richmond and Sausalito. Several of their companies were involved in this project that became known as “Operation Calship”. It was a terrible gamble because at that time they were relying on the predictions of Admiral Emory S. Land. However, Land was right and only a month after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, Maritime Commission awarded Calship its first shipbuilding contract. Within a year, Calship was employing over 42,000 workers at its two shipyards.

In 1942 John McCone and Steve Bechtel obtained a contract to build aircraft at Willow Run in Alabama. The War Department agreed to pay all the company’s costs plus 5 percent on work estimates presented by Bechtel-McCone every six months.

A 300-acre factory was built and 8,000 employees hired to staff it. However, no aircraft were built. Employees were paid for doing nothing. A local man, George P. Alexander, discovered details of this scam and collected affidavits from workers who admitted that they “went in every day at 9.00, punched the time clock, then went home”. They then returned to the factory at 5.00 to “punch out”.

Alexander filed suit against Bechtel-McCone in federal district court on 31st July, 1943. He claimed that the company had made “many and various claims against the government of the United States, or a department or officer thereof, knowing such claims to be false, fictitious or fraudulent.” (63)

However, the judge dismissed the case. The problem was with the contract, not the claims by Bechtel-McCone. As John McCone admitted to Fortune Magazine on 17th May, 1943: “Every six months, we estimate how much work we expect to do in the next six months and then we get a fee of five percent of the estimated amount of work regardless of how much work we actually do turn out.” (64)

Bechtel-McCone was also involved in another scandal concerning war contracts. Lieutenant General Brehon Somervell, head of the Army Sources of Supply Command, decided to build “a major refinery at the Norman Wells oilfields in Canada’s Northwest Territories, and run a pipeline from there 1,200 miles southwest through the Yukon Territory into Alaska.”

The contract to do this was given to John McCone and Steve Bechtel. The terms of the contract were very unusual. The Bechtel-McCone Corporation was guaranteed a 10% profit on the project (the kind of deal that George Bush gave to Halliburton in Iraq). The other surprising thing about the Canol Project was that it was to be a secret contract. It seems that Somervell did not want anyone outside the War Department and the Bechtel-McCone Corporation to know about this deal. The reason for this is that Harold Ickes, as Interior Secretary and the head of the Petroleum Administration for War, should have been the person who oversaw this project.

The $35 million for the project came from within a massive war appropriations bill that was passed by Congress in April 1942. After working on it for a year the cost had reached over $100 million. It was finished in May 1945. However, the wrong sized pipes had been used and it was discovered that to pump the oil it cost $150 per barrel rather than the $5 estimated by Somervell, Bechtel and McCone. Less that a year after it was finished, the plant and pipeline was abandoned. It had cost the American taxpayer $134 million. (65)

After the war the “General Accounting Office told a House Merchant Marine Committee investigation that the company had made $44,000,000 on an investment of $100,000. The same committee a few months later complained that Mr McCone's company was “paid $2,500,000 by the government to take over a shipyard costing $25,000,000 and containing surplus material costing $14,000,000.” (66)

Tommy Corcoran was not the only person arranging for Kaiser, Berchtel and McCone to obtain lucrative government contracts during the war. John L. Simpson was a close friend of an interesting group of people including Allen and John Foster Dulles, Dean Acheson and William Donovan. In 1942 Simpson was recruited into the OSS by Allen Dulles. His official title was chief financial advisor for the U.S. Army in Europe. In 1944 Simpson returned to San Francisco and became a consultant to the Betchtel-McCone Corporation. His arrival brought even more contracts from the War Department. (67)

In 1945, U.S. forces captured the banking documents held by the Nazis regarding Prescott Bush. Robert Cowley was one of those who saw these documents. He told Joseph Trento that the “file was damning”. (68) It seems that this information was “far more detailed than the records the Justice Department had obtained during its banking investigation”.

According to Joseph Trento, this information was passed to Allen Dulles, Frank Wisner and John J. McCloy, the German High Commissioner. (69) This information was kept from the American public. However, over the years, Prescott Bush and his family had to pay a price for this secrecy.

Dulles was himself involved in working with fascists fleeing from Germany. In his book ‘The Secret History of the CIA’, Trento argues that “Donovan and Dulles secretly threw in America’s lot with the worst of the Third Reich. America was actively recruiting Nazis – not simply scientists, but high-level military and civilian officials of the Hitler regime.” (70)

John J. McCloy helped Dulles to help Nazis to escape punishment. As German High Commissioner he controversially ordered the release from prison of German industrialists such as Alfried Krupp and Friedrich Flick that had been convicted of serious war crimes at Nuremberg.

One month after the end of the Second World War, Tommy Corcoran joined with David Corcoran and William S. Youngman to create a Panamanian company, Rio Carthy, for the purpose of pursuing business ventures in Asia and South America. Soon afterwards, Claire Chennault and Whiting Willauer approached Corcoran with the idea of creating a commercial airline in China to compete with CNAC and CATC. Corcoran agreed to use Rio Cathy as the legal vehicle for investing in the airline venture. Chiang Kai-shek agreed that his government would invest in the airline. Corcoran anticipated he would own 37% of the enquity in the airline, but Chennault and Willauer gave a greater percentage to the Chinese government, and Corcoran's share dropped to 28%. (71)

Civil Air Transport (CAT) was officially launched on 29th January, 1946. Corcoran approached his old friend Fiorella La Guardia, the director general of the United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration (UNRRA). He agreed to award a $4 million contract to deliver relief to China. This contract kept them going for the first year but as the civil war intensified, CAT had difficulty maintaining its routes. (72)

The OSS had been disbanded in October 1945 and was replaced by the War Department's Strategic Service Unit (SSU). Paul Helliwell became chief of the Far East Division of the SSU. Helliwell worked closely with Tommy Corcoran and Claire Chennault in China.

In 1947 the SSU was replaced by the Central Intelligence Agency. CAT needed another major customer and on 6th July, 1947, Corcoran and Claire Chennault had a meeting with Roscoe H. Hillenkoetter, the new director of the CIA. Hillenkoetter arranged for Corcoran to meet Frank Wisner, the director of the Office of Policy Coordination. Wisner was in charge of the CIA's covert operations.

On 1st November, 1948, Corcoran signed a formal agreement with the CIA. The agreement committed the agency to provide up to $500,000 to finance an CAT airbase, and $200,000 to fly agency personnel and equipment in and out of the mainland, and to underwrite any shortfall that might result from any hazardous mission. Over the next few months CAT airlifted personnel and equipment from Chungking, Kweilin, Luchnow, Nanking, and Amoy. (73)

In 1948, Lyndon B. Johnson decided to make a second run for the U.S. Senate. His main opponent in the Democratic primary (Texas was virtually a one party state and the most important elections were those that decided who would be the Democratic Party candidate) was Coke Stevenson. (74)

Coke Stevenson was the favourite to win the contest. This worried George and Herman Brown. Ed Clark, Brown & Root’s lawyer said: “They (Brown & Root) were regulated in a thousand ways, and Stevenson would have run them out of Washington… The Browns had to win this. Stevenson was a man of vengeance, and he would have run them out of Washington. Johnson – if he lost, he was going back to being nobody. They were going back to being nobody.” (75)

Stevenson helped his cause by criticizing Johnson for supporting the Taft-Hartley Act. The American Federation of Labor was also angry with Johnson for supporting this legislation and at its June convention the AFL broke a 54 year tradition of neutrality and endorsed Stevenson.

Johnson asked Tommy Corcoran to work behind the scenes at convincing union leaders that he was more pro-labour than Stevenson. This he did and on 11th August, 1948, Corcoran told Harold Ickes that he had "a terrible time straightening out labour" in the Johnson campaign but he believed he had sorted the problem out. (76)

Sid Richardson was another person who was very keen for Johnson to win the election. He lent Johnson his converted B-24 Liberator, an aircraft that could fly 2,100 miles without refuelling. (77)

Senator Ralph Yarborough remarked: “They were spending money like mad. They were spending money like Texas had never seen. And they were brash about how they spent it, and they were utterly ruthless. Brown & Root would do anything.” (78)

On 2nd September, unofficial results had Stevenson winning by 362 votes. However, by the time the results became official, Johnson was declared the winner by 17 votes. Stevenson immediately claimed that he was a victim of election fraud. On 24th September, Judge T. Whitfield Davidson, invalidated the results of the election and set a trial date.

Johnson once again approached Corcoran to solve the problem. A meeting was held that was attended by Corcoran, Francis Biddle, Abe Fortas, Joe Rauh, Jim Rowe and Ben Cohen. It was decided to take the case directly to the Supreme Court. A motion was drafted and sent to Justice Hugo Black. On 28th September, Justice Black issued an order that put Johnson's name back on the ballot. Later, it was claimed by Rauh that Black made the decision following a meeting with Corcoran.

On 2nd November, 1948, Johnson easily defeated Jack Porter, his Republican Party candidate. Coke Stevenson now appealed to the subcommittee on elections and privileges of the Senate Rules and Administration Committee. Corcoran enjoyed a good relationship with Senator Styles Bridges of New Hampshire. He was able to work behind the scenes to make sure that the ruling did not go against Johnson. Corcoran later told Johnson that he would have to repay Bridges for what he had done for him regarding the election. (79)

The matter was now referred to the Texas State Democratic Executive Committee. A meeting was held in Fort Worth to decide who won the election. According to Dan Briody, the “full, immense, weight of the economic power of Brown & Root was thrown behind Lyndon Johnson that night”. (80) Once again it was successful and Johnson won the Executive Committee vote by 29 to 28. On 3rd January, 1949, Johnson became a U.S. senator for the state of Texas.

At the end of the Second World War the Bechtel-McCone company was brought to an end. John McCone now invested much of the profits he had made from war production in Pacific Far East Lines. McCone was the majority stockholder but Steve Bechtel and Henry Kaiser were also silent investors in this company.

McCone also formed a partnership with Henry Mercer, the owner of states Marines Lines, whose vast fleets operated in the Atlantic. As Laton McCartney pointed out in ‘Friends in High Places: The Bechtel Story’, McCone was now “one of the dominant shipping figures in the world.” (81)

McCone and Bechtel were also directors of the Stanford Research Institute. McCone was also chief fund-raiser for the California Institute of Technology, whose scientists had been involved in the development of the atom bomb and were now involved in nuclear research.

McCone took a keen interest in politics and was a fanatical anti-communist. McCone told his friends that the Soviets intended to achieve “world domination”. I. F. Stone described him as a “rightest Catholic… a man with holy war views.” (82)

John L. Simpson, chief financial officer to the various corporations owned by Steve Betchel, introduced McCone to Allen Dulles at a meeting in 1947. It was at this time he became friends with William Knowland and Dwight D. Eisenhower. McCone played a lot of golf with Eisenhower and was later to play a key role in persuading him to become the Republican Party presidential candidate. In 1948 Harry S. Truman appointed McCone as Deputy to the Secretary of Defense. According to Laton McCartney, despite his title “it quickly became apparent that he was the department’s real boss.” (83)

In 1949 Sam Zemurray asked Corcoran to join the United Fruit Company as a lobbyist and special counsel. (84) Zemurray had problems with his business in Guatemala. In the 1930s Zemurray aligned United Fruit closely with the government of President Jorge Ubico. The company received import duty and real estate tax exemptions from Ubico. He also gave them hundreds of square miles of land. United Fruit controlled more land than any other individual or group. It also owned the railway, the electric utilities, telegraph, and the country's only port at Puerto Barrios on the Atlantic coast.

Ubico was overthrown in 1944 and following democratic elections, Juan Jose Arevalo became the new president. Arevalo, a university professor who had been living in exile, described himself as a "spiritual socialist". He implemented sweeping reforms by passing new laws that gave workers the right to form unions. This included the 40,000 Guatemalans who worked for United Fruit.

Zemurray feared that Arevalo would also nationalize the land owned by United Fruit in Guatemala. He asked Corcoran to express his fears to senior political figures in Washington. Corcoran began talks with key people in the government agencies and departments that shaped U.S. policy in Central America. He argued that the U.S. should use United Fruit as an American beachhead against communism in the region.

Thomas Corcoran and his business associates were having difficulty making a profit from Civil Air Transport (CAT). Paul Helliwell, CIA’s man in China managed to persuade Frank Wisner of the OPC to provide an annual subsidy of over $1 million. Helliwell also paid CAT to fly Alfred C. Cox, to fly throughout China, giving money and munitions to surviving warlords. (85)

In May, 1949, General Claire Chennault, traveled to Washington to ask for more funds for the Nationalists. Tommy Corcoran also used his influence on behalf of Chiang. However, Harry S. Truman had a poor opinion of Corcoran and his pleas were rejected. After the State Department rejected Chennault’s ideas as impractical, Helliwell arranged for him to meet Frank Wisner. It was agreed that the CIA would use its own covert operations group (OPC) to do what it could to help in the fight against the Chinese communists. This included increased subsidies to CAT.

Eventually the CIA took full control of CAT. According to Joseph Trento, Paul Helliwell used the airline to fly arms into Burma. “CAT then used the ‘empty’ planes to fly drugs from Burma to Taiwan, Bangkok, and Saigon. There the drugs were processed for the benefit of the KMT and Chiang Kai-shek’s corrupt government.” (86)

As Robert Caro pointed out Carcoran had been “transformed, with remarkable speed, into a lobbyist growing rich on fees from some of the country’s most reactionary businessmen who hired Tommy Cork to help them circumvent the laws he had written.”

Notes

1. David McKean, Peddling Influence, 2004 (page 125)

2. David McKean, Peddling Influence, 2004 (page 286)

3. Howard Zinn, New Deal Thought, 1966 (pages 140-144)

4. David McKean, Peddling Influence, 2004 (page 69)

5. David McKean, Peddling Influence, 2004 (page 118)

6. Robert Caro, The Years of Lyndon Johnson: The Path to Power, 1982 (pages 372-73)

7. Dan Briody, The Halliburton Agenda: The Politics of Oil and Money, 2004 (page 44)

8. Robert Bryce, Cronies: Oil, the Bushes, and the Rise of Texas, 2004 (pages 61)

9. Dan Briody, The Halliburton Agenda: The Politics of Oil and Money, 2004 (pages 49-52)

10. Tommy Corcoran, interviewed by Robert Caro, included in The Years of Lyndon Johnson: The Path to Power, 1982 (page 460)

11. Robert Caro, The Years of Lyndon Johnson: The Path to Power, 1982 (pages 460-61)

12. Joseph A. Pratt & Christopher J. Castaneda, Builders: Herman and George R. Brown, 1999 (pages 158-59)

13. Dan Briody, The Halliburton Agenda: The Politics of Oil and Money, 2004 (page 44)

14. Joseph A. Pratt & Christopher J. Castaneda, Builders: Herman and George R. Brown, 1999 (page 159)

15. Kenneth S. Davis, FDR: Into the Storm, 1993 (pages 294-295)

16. Ted Morgan, FDR: A Biography, 1985 (pages 473-478)

17. David McKean, Peddling Influence, 2004 (page 78)

18. David McKean, Peddling Influence, 2004 (page 89)

19. David McKean, Peddling Influence, 2004 (page 99)

20. Drew Pearson & Jack Anderson, The Case Against Congress, 1968 (page 356)

21. Donald F. Drummond, The Passing of American Neutrality, 1955 (page 383)

22. David McKean, Peddling Influence, 2004 (page 120)

23. Saturday Evening Post (31st July, 1937)

24. David McKean, Peddling Influence, 2004 (page 118)

25. Dan Briody, The Halliburton Agenda: The Politics of Oil and Money, 2004 (pages 76-81)

26. Robert Caro, The Years of Lyndon Johnson: The Path to Power, 1982 (page 584)

27. Dan Briody, The Halliburton Agenda: The Politics of Oil and Money, 2004 (page 81)

28. David McKean, Peddling Influence, 2004 (page 126)

29. David McKean, Peddling Influence, 2004 (page 139-40)

30. Robert Dallek, Franklin D. Roosevelt and American Foreign Policy, 1979 (page 273)

31. Fana de l'Aviation Magazine, January, 2002

32. Fana de l'Aviation Magazine, January, 2002

33. David McKean, Peddling Influence, 2004 (page 147-149)

34. For a full account of the Henry J. Kaiser, Stephen D. Bechtel and John McCone business relationship see Laton McCarthy, Friends in High Places: The Bechtel Story, 1988

35. I. F. Stone, I. F. Stone Weekly (9th October, 1961)

36. David McKean, Peddling Influence, 2004 (page 148)

37. Robert Bryce, Cronies: Oil, the Bushes, and the Rise of Texas, 2004 (page 70)

38. Dan Briody, The Halliburton Agenda: The Politics of Oil and Money, 2004 (pages 86-87)

39. David McKean, Peddling Influence, 2004 (page 150)

40. Robert Dallek, Franklin D. Roosevelt and American Foreign Policy, 1979 (pages 354-57)

41. R. Harris Smith, OSS: The Secret History of America’s First Central Intelligence Agency (page 244)

42. Walter Mansfield, Ambush in China, Marine Corps Gazette, March 1946 (page 42)

43. R. Harris Smith, OSS: The Secret History of America’s First Central Intelligence Agency (page 245)

44. David McKean, Peddling Influence, 2004 (page 150)

45. Jonathan Marshall, Peter Dale Scott & Jane Hunter, The Iran Contra Connection: Secret Teams and Covert Operations in the Reagan Era, 1987 (page 64).

46. E. Howard Hunt, Undercover, 1975 (pages 37-43)

47. Tad Szulc, Compulsive Spy: The Strange Career of E. Howard Hunt, 1974 (page 15)

48. The Wall Street Journal (18th April, 1980)

49. David McKean, Peddling Influence, 2004 (page 157-60)

50. Robert Caro, The Years of Lyndon Johnson: The Path to Power, 1982 (page 718)

51. J. Evetts Haley, A Texan Looks at Lyndon, 1964 (pages 55-82)

52. David McKean, Peddling Influence, 2004 (page 133)

53. For a full account of this subject see Charles C. Mann and Mark L. Plummer, The Aspirin Wars, 1991

54. David McKean, Peddling Influence, 2004 (page 151)

55. Joseph Trento, Prelude to Terror, 2005 (page 4)

56. John Buchanan & Stacey Michael, New Hampshire Gazette (7th November, 2003)

57. David McKean, Peddling Influence, 2004 (page 155-57)

58. David McKean, Peddling Influence, 2004 (page 166)

59. David McKean, Peddling Influence, 2004 (page 171-74)

60. Laton McCarthy, Friends in High Places: The Bechtel Story, 1988 (page 53)

61. Laton McCarthy, Friends in High Places: The Bechtel Story, 1988 (page 55)

62. Laton McCarthy, Friends in High Places: The Bechtel Story, 1988 (pages 56-58)

63. Laton McCarthy, Friends in High Places: The Bechtel Story, 1988 (pages 66-70)

64. John McCone, interview with Fortune Magazine, 17th May, 1943. The article was never published.

65. Laton McCarthy, Friends in High Places: The Bechtel Story, 1988 (pages 61-66)

66. I. F. Stone, I. F. Stone Weekly (9th October, 1961)

67. Laton McCarthy, Friends in High Places: The Bechtel Story, 1988 (pages 74-75)

68. Robert Crowley was a member of the OSS and later became associate director of the CIA.

69. Joseph Trento, Prelude to Terror, 2005 (page 3)

70. Joseph Trento, The Secret History of the CIA, 2001 (page 29)

71. David McKean, Peddling Influence, 2004 (page 211)

72. David McKean, Peddling Influence, 2004 (page 212)

73. David McKean, Peddling Influence, 2004 (page 213)

74. Dan Briody, The Halliburton Agenda: The Politics of Oil and Money, 2004 (page 129)

75. J. Evetts Haley, A Texan Looks at Lyndon, 1964 (pages 21-54)

76. David McKean, Peddling Influence, 2004 (page 204)

77. Robert Bryce, Cronies: Oil, the Bushes, and the Rise of Texas, 2004 (page 56)

78. Robert Caro, The Years of Lyndon Johnson: Means of Ascent, 1990 (page 286)

79. David McKean, Peddling Influence, 2004 (page 205)

80. Dan Briody, The Halliburton Agenda: The Politics of Oil and Money, 2004 (page 131)

81. Laton McCarthy, Friends in High Places: The Bechtel Story, 1988 (page 97)

82. I. F. Stone, I. F. Weekly, 7th November, 1960

83. Laton McCarthy, Friends in High Places: The Bechtel Story, 1988 (page 99)

84. David McKean, Peddling Influence, 2004 (page 214)

85. Alfred W. McCoy, The Politics of Heroin: CIA complicity in the Global Drug Trade, 1991 (page 167)

86. Joseph Trento, Prelude to Terror, 2005 (page 25)

87. Robert Caro, The Years of Lyndon Johnson: The Path to Power, 1982 (page 765)

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  • 2 months later...

http://www.chadbourne.com/about/s_Chadbourne.html

By the 1930s, Chadbourne was a self-made millionaire who had developed his solo law practice into a leading Wall Street firm of approximately 60 attorneys in an array of different legal practices. He was counsel to more than 150 of the largest corporations in the country, and served as chairman or director of the Wright Aeronautical Corporation, Mack Trucks Incorporated, the Otis Elevator Company and the Manufacturers Trust Company, among other notable companies. Having weathered the Great Depression, brokered deals in a variety of industries, and established a growing law firm that would continue to reflect his belief in innovative dealmaking and topnotch counsel, Thomas Chadbourne died in 1938.

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A position has opened for an enterprising attorney!

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http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/JFKcorcoran.htm

Tommy Corcoran

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http://www.warbirdforum.com/ch3con.htm

Chiang Kai-shek took advantage of the new thinking, sending his brother-in-law to Washington to speed the flow of American aid to China. T. V. Soong was the most endearing member of a large, clever, and unscrupulous family. Like Madame Chiang, his sister, he got along well with Americans. He was a Harvard man; he spoke English more readily than Mandarin; and he was as neat as a doll, hair cut short and combed straight back, ears tucked against his head, and thin-rimmed spectacles reflecting the light. On July 9 he met with Henry Morgenthau, Roosevelt's portly, balding treasury secretary. On the table, with luncheon, was a proposal that the United States lend China $140 million to stabilize her currency, improve the Burma Road, and buy military supplies, including 300 fighter planes and 100 light bombers. The Pawley-Leighton proposal had been doubled.

Soong also cultivated Thomas Corcoran

Duly alarmed, Roosevelt told his advisers to work up a loan for Chiang. He also sent Lauchlin Currie to see the clever and useful Tommy Corcoran in his office at 1511 K Street, four blocks from the White House.

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  • 3 weeks later...

I have just discovered that Tommy Corcoran helped establish the Citizens' Committee for a Free Cuba on 6th May, 1963. Others involved in this project was Clare Boothe Luce, Edward Teller, Leo Cherne, Christopher Emmet, General S. L. A. Marshall, JosephBeirne, Irving Brown, Jay Lovestone, Ernest Cuneoand Dr. Buell Gallagher.

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I have just discovered that Tommy Corcoran helped establish the Citizens' Committee for a Free Cuba on 6th May, 1963. Others involved in this project was Clare Boothe Luce, Edward Teller, Leo Cherne, Christopher Emmet, General S. L. A. Marshall, JosephBeirne, Irving Brown, Jay Lovestone, Ernest Cuneoand Dr. Buell Gallagher.

Edward Teller is an interesting name on that list. He was also on the panel of the Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board, as was Leo Cherne.

Over time, Teller made two very interesting comments. In April of 1963 while giving a speech at a U.S. military academy symposium, he said, "If we get to the moon, the type of life we will find there will be Russian."

In a speech he gave to the Rotary Club of Dallas during the mid 1970's, he said, "The United States should declassify all secret documents after one year." Interesting to note that at the time, the HSCA were beginning to get into full swing.

It's a pity that last recommendation wasn't adopted.

James

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Excellent article on Thomas Corcoran.

The whole Brown and Root approach lays the historical background for today's HALLIBURTON scandal.

As the 8F Suite got more powerful, Corcoran's fascist and corrupt approach was

rewarded....

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  • 1 year later...

Has anyone EVER established a link between Phillips and LBJ? Wallace? Carter? Connally? Was Phillips in an acting troupe with any of Hunt's security men? Was there any contact between LBJ and Maheu prior to his becoming President? With anyone in Johnson's inner circle and Maheu? With Johnson and Hughes? How close was Johnson with Helms? Could there have been a cadre of SS men and CIA who worked together to put the BIG Texan in power? If so, who was involved?

If Wallace was up there, the picture is still far from complete.

The connection between David Philips, Howard Hunt, Allen Dulles and LBJ is Tommy Corcoran.

I believe there is not doubt that LBJ ordered the murder of Henry Marshall and that it was done by Mac Wallace.

Reading your page on Tommy Corcoran, and then following this up with the post that talk about McCone and your page on him being taken down, threats you received, was a very useful exercise to reacquaint myself regarding these connections.

I think John that you have come as close to solving the question of who killed JFK as we will ever get.

Glad also that you are looking again at the "TX. connection" to the murder of JFK.

Dawn

I do not think Tommy Corcoran has ever been mentioned in any of the conspiracy books. Yet, if LBJ's people were involved in the death of JFK, Corcoran would definitely have been brought in at some stage in the proceedings.

Corcoran was also very close to William Pawley, who I believe was involved in the assassination. He was also the link between the government and the Military Industrial Complex via his relationship with Henry J. Kaiser, Stephen D. Bechtel, John A. McCone and Sam Zemurray. He also worked closely with George & Herman Brown, the men who had bankrolled LBJ since 1937.

Corcoran also worked with characters such as Paul Helliwell, E. Howard Hunt, Mitch Werbell, Lucien Conein, John Singlaub and Ray Cline in China during the 1940s. This developed into a business relationship in the 1950s when Frank Wisner, on behalf of the CIA negotiated with Corcoran for the purchase of Civil Air Transport (CAT).

Then there is Concoran's role in Operation Mockingbird. He had numerous contacts with journalists who could always be relied upon to promote the interests of his clients. This goes back to the 1930s when Corcoran paid journalists like I. F. Stone of the New York Post to write articles in support of Franklin Roosevelt. It is probably no coincidence that Stone was an important defender of the Warren Commission in 1964. At the time, Stone was seen as America's main "conspiracy" journalist so his attacks on people like Carl Marzani, Thomas Buchanan, Joachim Joesten and Mark Lane was very important in the cover-up. For example, Stone had defended Marzani in "The Nation" when he was convicted of "concealing his Communist Party membership" in 1947. However, in 1964 he was the publisher, editor and reporter of "I.F. Stone's Weekly". At the time, Stone admitted: "There was nothing to the left of me but the Daily Worker". People used to wonder how the journal survived. Maybe it was because of handouts by the CIA.

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Has anyone EVER established a link between Phillips and LBJ? Wallace? Carter? Connally? Was Phillips in an acting troupe with any of Hunt's security men? Was there any contact between LBJ and Maheu prior to his becoming President? With anyone in Johnson's inner circle and Maheu? With Johnson and Hughes? How close was Johnson with Helms? Could there have been a cadre of SS men and CIA who worked together to put the BIG Texan in power? If so, who was involved?

If Wallace was up there, the picture is still far from complete.

The connection between David Philips, Howard Hunt, Allen Dulles and LBJ is Tommy Corcoran.

I believe there is not doubt that LBJ ordered the murder of Henry Marshall and that it was done by Mac Wallace.

Reading your page on Tommy Corcoran, and then following this up with the post that talk about McCone and your page on him being taken down, threats you received, was a very useful exercise to reacquaint myself regarding these connections.

I think John that you have come as close to solving the question of who killed JFK as we will ever get.

Glad also that you are looking again at the "TX. connection" to the murder of JFK.

Dawn

I do not think Tommy Corcoran has ever been mentioned in any of the conspiracy books. Yet, if LBJ's people were involved in the death of JFK, Corcoran would definitely have been brought in at some stage in the proceedings.

Corcoran was also very close to William Pawley, who I believe was involved in the assassination. He was also the link between the government and the Military Industrial Complex via his relationship with Henry J. Kaiser, Stephen D. Bechtel, John A. McCone and Sam Zemurray. He also worked closely with George & Herman Brown, the men who had bankrolled LBJ since 1937.

Corcoran also worked with characters such as Paul Helliwell, E. Howard Hunt, Mitch Werbell, Lucien Conein, John Singlaub and Ray Cline in China during the 1940s. This developed into a business relationship in the 1950s when Frank Wisner, on behalf of the CIA negotiated with Corcoran for the purchase of Civil Air Transport (CAT).

Then there is Concoran's role in Operation Mockingbird. He had numerous contacts with journalists who could always be relied upon to promote the interests of his clients. This goes back to the 1930s when Corcoran paid journalists like I. F. Stone of the New York Post to write articles in support of Franklin Roosevelt. It is probably no coincidence that Stone was an important defender of the Warren Commission in 1964. At the time, Stone was seen as America's main "conspiracy" journalist so his attacks on people like Carl Marzani, Thomas Buchanan, Joachim Joesten and Mark Lane was very important in the cover-up. For example, Stone had defended Marzani in "The Nation" when he was convicted of "concealing his Communist Party membership" in 1947. However, in 1964 he was the publisher, editor and reporter of "I.F. Stone's Weekly". At the time, Stone admitted: "There was nothing to the left of me but the Daily Worker". People used to wonder how the journal survived. Maybe it was because of handouts by the CIA.

It would appear that if you keep "digging", then you just may find yourself having actually "climbed" to the top of the food/aka (money) chain.

And although I am not of the opinion that any of those at the top actually "directed" the event, not unlike ENRON and other such con's, they most certainly fostered the economic environment in which others would have deemed the necessity for their own self-peservation of their economic status.

As to Brown & Root's power! I was informed that if I would sign on to go to work for them in Vietnam (I was working as a welder, serving in the MS National Guard, and attempting to attend College), that my National Guard Service could be completely excused and that I could thereafter go right to Vietnam making "big bucks".

B&R/aka Haliburton and their money, controlled LBJ, who most probably was in fact the Biggest Crook who has ever served in the White House.

http://www.corpwatch.org/article.php?id=6028

Halliburton , Brown and Root's parent company, is a Fortune 500 construction corporation working primarily for the oil industry. From 1962 to 1972 the Pentagon paid the company tens of millions of dollars to work in South Vietnam, where they built roads, landing strips, harbors, and military bases from the demilitarized zone to the Mekong Delta.

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Yep!, and for anyone who actually saw it, they utilized the thousands of displaced Vietnamese who lost their villages and rice fields as a result of the "Free Fire Zone" concept, and these men; women; and children were paid "survival" wages to break big rocks into little rocks for usage on the roadways.

Anyone wanna guess how much B&R was paid to provide and install "crushed" stone onto the roads?

Anyone need any hints as to exactly why & how LBJ entered the Presidency poor, yet emerged a millionaire?

Each and every "honorable" american citizen should make an annual pilgrimage to the gravesite of LBJ, and thereafter relieve their bladder upon same.

Along with quite a few others!

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It would appear that if you keep "digging", then you just may find yourself having actually "climbed" to the top of the food/aka (money) chain.

And although I am not of the opinion that any of those at the top actually "directed" the event, not unlike ENRON and other such con's, they most certainly fostered the economic environment in which others would have deemed the necessity for their own self-peservation of their economic status.

As to Brown & Root's power! I was informed that if I would sign on to go to work for them in Vietnam (I was working as a welder, serving in the MS National Guard, and attempting to attend College), that my National Guard Service could be completely excused and that I could thereafter go right to Vietnam making "big bucks".

B&R/aka Haliburton and their money, controlled LBJ, who most probably was in fact the Biggest Crook who has ever served in the White House.

http://www.corpwatch.org/article.php?id=6028

Halliburton , Brown and Root's parent company, is a Fortune 500 construction corporation working primarily for the oil industry. From 1962 to 1972 the Pentagon paid the company tens of millions of dollars to work in South Vietnam, where they built roads, landing strips, harbors, and military bases from the demilitarized zone to the Mekong Delta.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Yep!, and for anyone who actually saw it, they utilized the thousands of displaced Vietnamese who lost their villages and rice fields as a result of the "Free Fire Zone" concept, and these men; women; and children were paid "survival" wages to break big rocks into little rocks for usage on the roadways.

Anyone wanna guess how much B&R was paid to provide and install "crushed" stone onto the roads?

Anyone need any hints as to exactly why & how LBJ entered the Presidency poor, yet emerged a millionaire?

Each and every "honorable" american citizen should make an annual pilgrimage to the gravesite of LBJ, and thereafter relieve their bladder upon same.

Along with quite a few others!

This is indeed something that we both agree upon.

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Another thing all these connections show is that there is really no difference between the Democratic and Republican parties when it comes to this kind of power. Brown and Root- LBJ and Bushies. I too have never seen Corcoran's name in any JFK assassination material. That he was the force behind getting LBJ on the ticket, taken with LBJ's obsession to be president is, to me , one more piece of evidence of LBJ's true involvement in JFK's murder. Means, motive and opportunity, certainly, imho

Dawn.

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It would appear that if you keep "digging", then you just may find yourself having actually "climbed" to the top of the food/aka (money) chain.

And although I am not of the opinion that any of those at the top actually "directed" the event, not unlike ENRON and other such con's, they most certainly fostered the economic environment in which others would have deemed the necessity for their own self-peservation of their economic status.

As to Brown & Root's power! I was informed that if I would sign on to go to work for them in Vietnam (I was working as a welder, serving in the MS National Guard, and attempting to attend College), that my National Guard Service could be completely excused and that I could thereafter go right to Vietnam making "big bucks".

B&R/aka Haliburton and their money, controlled LBJ, who most probably was in fact the Biggest Crook who has ever served in the White House.

http://www.corpwatch.org/article.php?id=6028

Halliburton , Brown and Root's parent company, is a Fortune 500 construction corporation working primarily for the oil industry. From 1962 to 1972 the Pentagon paid the company tens of millions of dollars to work in South Vietnam, where they built roads, landing strips, harbors, and military bases from the demilitarized zone to the Mekong Delta.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Yep!, and for anyone who actually saw it, they utilized the thousands of displaced Vietnamese who lost their villages and rice fields as a result of the "Free Fire Zone" concept, and these men; women; and children were paid "survival" wages to break big rocks into little rocks for usage on the roadways.

Anyone wanna guess how much B&R was paid to provide and install "crushed" stone onto the roads?

Anyone need any hints as to exactly why & how LBJ entered the Presidency poor, yet emerged a millionaire?

Each and every "honorable" american citizen should make an annual pilgrimage to the gravesite of LBJ, and thereafter relieve their bladder upon same.

Along with quite a few others!

This is indeed something that we both agree upon.

Although of little solace, according to a highly relieable source (retired SS Agent). Perhaps LBJ did in some manner or another pay for his actions.

His last years were reportedly spent, frequently drunk, and in a state of paranoid delusion.

And, according to a "standing joke" among those who had to tolerate him, in the event that he should have been assassinated during this period, the first suspects should have been those members of the US Secret Service who had to tolerate him and his continued abuse of people and power.

Perhaps this "legacy" should be also engraved onto his headstone along with words to the effect of being one of our nation's biggest thieves and POLITICAL CROOKS!

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The book length biography:

Tommy the Cork: Washington's Ultimate Insider from Roosevelt to Reagan, by David McKean, published by Steerforth Press in 2004.

John references the Random House paperback edition, retitled Peddling Influence: Thomas "Tommy the Cork" Corcoran and the Birth of Modern Lobbying, which appeared in 2005.

TC was born in raised in Pawtucket, Rhode Island, the mill town immediately to the north of Providence.

I'm so proud.

Edited by Charles Drago
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