July 28, 1977 | Backgrounder on Department of Homeland Security
26 July 28, 1977 AMERICA'S DECLINING INTERNAL SECURITY I One of the most nettlesome problems faced by Americans throudh out much of this century has been how best to cope with the threat posed by the worl d Communist movement to what Mr. Justice Felix Frankfurter once called "the effective, free functioning of our national institutions Communist Party of the United States of America v. Subversive Activities Control Board 367 U.S. 1, 97 (1961 I One of the m o st oft-used devices has of course, been Congressional inquiry for legislative and investigative purposes it is also perhaps not surprising that this device has been fraught with controversy, although it must be observed that critics of this procedure have seldom evidenced any real grasp of the actual accomplishments of such work.
There can be no doubt that Congress possesses the power to I conduct wide-ranging inquiry into the origins, leadership, and activities of subversive movements; to argue otherwise would be to contend that our elected representatives must legislate in a vacuum cases in the internal security field, stated that "TO remain uninformed upon a subject thus represented would be a failure in Congressional responsibility Barsky v. United Sta t es 167 F. 2d 241, 247 (1'948 cert. denied, 334U.S. 843, petition for rehearing denied, 339 U.S. 971 In the same decision Judge Prettyman further declared We think that inquiry into threats to the existing Judge E. Barrett Prettyman, in one of the primary f orm of government by extra-constitutional processes of change is a power of Congress under its prime obli gation.to protect for the people that machinery of 1 2 which it is a part, and inquiry into the desira bility vel non of other forms of government is a power of Congress under its mandate to initiate amendments if such become advisable Ibid 246 Such inquiry has been conducted by legislative committees at the national and state levels since the earliest days of the Communist movement in this country. In 1919 and 1920 for example, a subcommittee of the United States Senate Judiciary Committee and a joint committee of the New York State legislature, respectively, conducted significant inves tigations into the activities of the early Communist movement incl uding particularly the activities of Soviet agents in the United States. Since that time, a succession of Congressional and state committees have investigated virtually every aspect of subversion and its effects on American life and government.
Of these, t he most prominent and controversial was undoubtedly the House Committee on Un-American Activities, later renamed the House Committee on Internal Security, the history of which bears recounting The House Committee on Un-American Activities (popularly, if e r roneously, known simply as "HUAC was created by the House of Representativesin 1938 as the Special Committee on Un American Activities under the chairmanship of the late Martin Dies of Texas. The committee's mandate was renewed by vote of the House in eac h succeeding Congress until 1945 when one of the committee's members successfully moved to amend the House rules to provide for a standing Committee on Un American Activities. This move, born of a recognition of the need for continuing inquiry into revolut i onary activities directed against our form of government, assured the existence of the committee as a permanent instrumentality of the House capable of investigating subversive activities with the expertise needed in such a highly specialized and constitu tionally delicate area. Supporters of the committee over the years have recognized that it is vital, when one considers the essentially esoteric and conspiratorial nature of the subject matter involved, that there be continuing inquiry huttressed by appro p riate power of subpoena, to develop what is often called "hard" information admittedly not readily 3 1 accessible to the legislative branch of government OUSF COMMITTFF ON INTFRNAI SFCURITY AND ITS ABOI ITION The standing Committee on Un-American Activiti e s existed until February 1969 when, pursuant to a resolution introduced by Congressman Richard H. Ichord of Missouri, who had succeeded to the chairmanship of the committee at the beginning of the 91st Congress, it was reconstituted as the Committee on In t ernal Security with a somewhat revised mandate. The committee existed in this new form until January 14, 1975, when the House voted to adopt revised rules.for the 94th Congress which provided for the abolition of the committee and the transfer of its juri s diction, files, and certain of its staff to the House Committee on the Judiciary. It is significant that this procedure, ad vanced by the "Bolling Committee" as part of its overall committee reform package for the House, avoided a vote on the merits of t h e committee as a separate entity, the'sort of vote that the committee had invariably won throughout the entire period of its existence. Thus, by means of what committee supporters have called a parliamentary Sleight-of-hand maneuver, the com mittee was ef fectively abolished.
The results of this transfer were as predicted by those knowledge able in domestic security matters the Judiciary Committee did nothing in the area of internal security despite the rather I 'There has always been a great flaw in the ar gument of those who contend that it is sufficient to rely on the resources of the Federal Bureau of Investigation in dealing,with subversion.
Many of these .people fail .to appreciate the restrictions within which the FBI operates. The fact, of course, is that the Bureau functions primarily as the investigative arm of the Department of Justice, a role which is far different from that of a Con gressional committee. It is true that certain data developed by the Bureau have been made available to Congress, p r incipally during testimony before the House and Senate Committees on Appropriations, but the Bureau does not exist to develop infor mation as the basis for remedial legislation to cope with sub versive activity. This can be accomplished only by a duly aut h orized committee of the House or Senate armed with the power of subpoena. Furthermore, since the Bureau must by definition be subject to the will of the Attorney General, who may or may not recognize the need for the gathering of domestic intelligence dat a on subversive groups and individuals, it is absolutely essential that Congress possess its own independent capability in this area. 4 L aaive hope in some quarters that something might be accomplished.
In the Internal Security Committee's last annual rep ort, sub mitted to the House on January 29, 1974, Chairman Ichord had written In my appearance before the Select Committee on Committees, commonly known as the "Bolling Committee I stressed that it was not important what committee of the House of Represen t atives does the work in the field of internal security, but what is important is that the work is done. I pointed out the impracticality of adding to the work of an already overburdened Juciciary Commit tee. Yet the proposal in the working draft of the se l ect committee's report provides for a substantial increase in the jurisdiction and workload of the Committee on the Judiciary To put it bluntly, I do not think the matter of the internal security of the United States will receive any Significant .attentio n if the progosed transfer of jurisdiction of the Committee on Internal Security to the Judiciary Committee is accomplished hUSF JUDICIARYlkk S RFCoRD OF INACTION While it is possible to take issue with Mr. Ichord's assertion that it does not matter which c ommittee does the work, egpecially if one assumes that an expert committee and staff are preferable to those whose expertise is spread too thinly among many sub ject areas, one cannot quarrel with the accuracy of his predic tion about the disposition of t h e work. Any illusions on this score have long since vanished. The fact is that during the past two and one half years, the House Judiciary Committee has done precisely nothing in furtherance of its expanded mandate over "Communist and other subversive act i vities affecting the internal security of the United States Consider the following I The Judiciary Committee has investigated neither the extent of subversive activity in the United States nor the advisability of any remedial legislation to deal with it. I nstead, to all appearances, it has been content to engage in running harassment of the Federal Bureau of Investigation with an eye to restricting still further the ability of the Bureau to engage in electronic surveillance or other meaningful domestic sec u rity work The Internal Security Committee's professional staff personnel have been systematically dismissed withzthe exception of a token handful. The true intent of the Judiciary Committee's leadership is easily seen when one realizes that those dismisse d included, in many cases I. i I 5 people with the deepest knowledge of, and longest experience with, the Internal Security Committee's work. Of the committee's former minority staff, all of whom participated actively in some of the committee's most signif i cant investigative efforts despite being small in numbers, all were dismissed Though the House rules as adopted in January 1975 provided that all of the Internal Security Committee's property and records" should be transferred to the Judiciary Committee, t o "be available for use by the latter committee to the same extent as if such property and records were originally that of the Committee on the Judiciary the leadership of the Judiciary Committee has interpreted this language as a mandate to eliminate the Internal Security Committee's files as a source of information to the House, a goal long sought by the professional-enemies of Congressional committees inves tigating subGersion. The massive files on revolutionary groups and individuals accumulated by the Un-American AEtivi'tiesand Internal Security Committees between 1938 and 1975 and, it should be noted, regularly consulted as a basic reference source by representatives of appropri were ate executive branch agencies, including the FBI reviewed, packaged, and consigned to storage, thereby effectively rendering them unavailable as a practical matter The prevailing mentality among the Judiciary Committee's leadership is further indicated by the fact that legis lation designed to deal with terrorist violence a s a specifically Federal offense has, despite the descernible proliferation of terrorist groups within the United States in recent years, occasioned not so much as one day of hearings. This legislation, introduced by Congressman John M. Ashbrook of Ohio, h imself a member of tne Judiciary Committee, has been pending before the committee for two and one half years without anything whatever being done to assess the need for it. Introdu'ced by Mr. Ashbrook as H.R. 1577 on January 17, 1975, it was again introdu c ed by him as H.R. 152 on January 4, 1977 and is the only such legislation before the House a fact which is, in itself, indicative of a steady.deterior ation in Congressional awareness of the nation's internal security needs b The above few facts should se rve to demonstrate that the House Judiciary Committee or at least the leadership of that committee has not the slightest intention of fulfilling the elppanded mandate conferred upon it in 19
75. It should be clear to any reasonably objective person that if meaningful inves tigative and legislative effort is to be undertaken within the Houseof Representatives to aid fn our government'.s attempts to move against threats to our form of government posed by revolutionary groups and individuals it will certainly not be forthcoming from the present Judiciary Committee. It should be equally clear that, given the already heavy jurisdic tional loads of existing House committees, the best indeed realistically, the only means to this e.nd is revival of the House Commit t ee on Internal Security with sufficient funds adequate staff, and the power of subpoena to enable it to conduct in-depth continuing investigations to assist the House in determining the need for remedial legislation and also, in discharging the related Co ngressional oversight responsibility to determine the desirability of additional action by appropri ate agencies within the executive branch.
In order to appreciate more fully the dismal record of the Judiciary Committee in discharging that portion of its revised mandate that pertains to internal security oversight and inves tigation, one must try to gain an understanding of the accom plishments of the House Committees on Un-American ActiGities and Internal Security during the better than 35 years of their continuous existence So much concentrated effort has been expended in recent times on impugning the record of the committees as well as on impugning the motives and methods of domestic security-related agencies in general, that people seem unaware in all t oo many instances, of the positive side of the question As indicated earlier, the critics of the committee very often seemed not to have any firm grasp of what the committee was about From the outset in 1938, the committee was concerned with all varieties of subversive activity in the United States. It is not generally appreciated that the first hearings conducted by the Dies Committee in 1938 dealt with the German-American Bund not with the Communist movement. The Bund, an obvious extension of Hitlerite i nfluence within the United States, remained a major focus of committee effort until the Bund passed from vie.w; however,,similar activities continued to occupy the committee throughout its existence.
The committee held extensive hearings on Fascist and Ku:Klux Klan organizations, demonstrating, in many cases, a disquieting interlocking relationship on matters directly involved with activity which was, by any reasonable standard, a threat to the countr y 's security interests. The committee documented a considerable degree of collaboration between leaders of several domestic Fascist-oriented groups and activities clearly designed to advance the interests of the Nazi movement, including direct collaboratio n with the German-American Bund itself. The hearings appendix volumes, and reports of the Dies Committee are, even today, an invaluable compendium of primary information on the Nazi and Fascist movement in the United States during a particularly precarious period in American history.
During the 1950s. and 19608, the standing Committee on Un American Activities continued to develop such information for the use of the Congress to meet its need to assess the impact of revolutionary and other subversive movemen ts. In 1954 for example, the committee issued a Preliminary RepPrt on N and Hate Groups which dealt ,with the activitzs of e Ra.tibnal; Renaissance Party, an avowedly Fascist group, and Common Sense, a racist and aggressively anti-Semitic hate sheet. i i 3 I- u;<.k ux="" ki="" an="" organ="" i="" 7~~1="" ons="" in="" 1965,="" the="" committee="" again="" undertook="" exhaustive="" hearings="" on="" the="" activities="" of="" ku..klux="" klan="" organizations="" in="" the="" united="" states.="" the="" record="" of="" this="" inquiry,="" which="" filled="" five="" volumes="" of="" testimony="" and="" exhibits="" and="" a="" spe="" c="" ial="" report,="" is="" quite="" probably="" the="" best="" available="" body="" of="" primat.y="" source="" material="" on="" the="" klans="" in="" recent="" times.="" the="" committee's="" investigation="" resulted="" in="" hearings="" during="" 1966="" on="" legislation="" specifically="" aimed="" at="" terrorist="" activities,="" as="" well="" as="" in="" a="" lette="" r="" of="" appreciation="" for="" the="" quality="" of="" the="" investigation="" from="" no="" less="" than="" the="" late="" emanuel="" celler,="" chairman="" of="" the="" house="" judiciary="" committee="" and="" certainlynot="" a="" man="" who="" could="" have="" been="" charged="" with="" any="" pro-huac="" bias.="" celler's="" letter,="" as="" entered="" into="" the="" reco="" r="" d="" of="" the="" 1966="" hearings,="" reads="" in="" pertinent="" part="" as="" follows="" i="" followed="" most="" carefully="" this="" committee's="" investigation="" of="" the="" ku="" klux="" klan.="" i="" did="" so="" because="" many="" had="" expressed="" to="" me="" the="" ic/="" misgivings="" about="" the="" purposes="" of="" the="" commit="" tee-on-un-="" american="" ac="" t="" ivities="" and="" had="" questioned="" its="" objectivity.="" indeed,="" many="" had="" asked="" me="" as="" chairman="" of="" the="" committee="" on="" the="" judiciary="" to="" undertake="" these="" investigations="" because="" of="" their="" mis="" givings="" of="" the="" committee="" on="" un-american="" activities="" 8="" having="" spoken="" to="" you="" prior="" to="" t="" h="" e="" commencement="" of="" these="" hearings="" i="" had="" no="" hesitancy="" in="" advising="" those="" with="" whom="" i="" spoke="" of="" my="" conviction="" that="" the="" hearings="" would="" be="" thorough,="" productive,="" and="" objective="" i="" am="" more="" than="" pleased="" to="" be="" able="" to="" say="" that="" my="" conviction="" was="" completely="" justified.="" w="" h="" en="" the="" record="" is="" printed="" this="" country="" will="" be="" supplied="" with="" authoritative="" infor="" mation="" on="" the="" who="" and="" what="" and="" how="" of="" the="" ku="" klux="" klan="" and="" with="" this="" record="" no="" individual="" can="" absoive="" himself="" by="" saying="" he="" did="" not="" know="" of="" the="" klan's="" terroristic="" activities="" an="" d="" the="" degree="" of="" hatred="" and="" violence="" for="" which="" it="">
The sincerity of this Committee and its wish to reach at this evil are now firmly established.
The phenomenon of terrorist violence was of particular concern to the Internal Security Committee until the very end of its exis tence. During 1974, which was its last full year of operation the committee embarked upon a major investigation of the terrorist threat in an attempt to assess the desirability of new legislative or executive branch remedies. In a ddition to the many other ter rorist groups considered, many of them overkly Communist in orien tation, the Nation of .Islam, known as the Black Muslims,-was'given significant attention in the testimony of two intelligence spe cialists from the San Franci sco, California, police department.
The testimony and documents provided for the record by these two expert witnesses form irrefutable proof of the true nature of the NO1 as opposed to the popular misconception, fostered by the media, of the NO1 as an essentially religious organization.
Perusal of the committee's documented record shows to any in terested reader that the Nation of Islam is in fact steeped in the rhetoric of violence and particularly virulent race hatred.
It is of further interest that thi s record was developed almost three years before the Hanafi Muslim takeover of certain public buildings in the nation' s capital The extent to which the committee concerned itself with racist Fascist, and Nazi organizations and their activities over the y e ars has been, as stated earlier, generally unappreciated nevertheless, it was a major focus of committee inquiry and cer tainly reflected a determination by the committee-and its profes sional staff to maintain scrutiny of subversive activities emanat ing from both extremes of the political spectrum. It is, however demonstrably true, as so many have observed, that the primary focus of the committee's efforts was upon the threat to our in stitutions posed by the world Communist movement and -the various exe m plars of revolutionary Communism in the United States I This 9 was not, however, because harrassment of Communistsprovided com mittee members with the juiciest headlines, as professional enemies of the committee have often contended; rather, it was becaus e Communist groups have demonstrated far more staying power and have shown an unequalled ability to infiltrate virtually every segment of our society and achieve near respectability at several key junctures in recent American history, all the while pursuin g goals which'are obviously antithetical to the commonly held values that underlie Western civilization in general and the United States in particular I I 11 CoMMUNrsM There have been innumerable studies by academic and other author ities on the nature of C ommunism in the United States, but there are none that provide the reader with a better or more comprehen sive overview of the subject than those issued by the committee over theLzyears. At various points during its existence, the Un-American Activities C o mmittee issued basic studies of, for example, the advocacy by the Communist Party of force and violence the role of the Communist Party as an agent of the Soviet Union and the relationship of the Communist Party to the worldwide Com munist International. O ther studies included informative reports on such subjects as Communist atomic espionage, the role of Soviet agents within the American government, attempts by the Communist Party to subvert the American Negro, and the role of Communists within the labor m ovement. All these reports were based on careful investigative and research effort and were re flective of the expertise developed by the committee and its pro fessional staff. One may ask whether such expertise would have been developed had this work bee n relegated to an already over burdened committee with more generalized jurisdiction; it seems logical to answer that it probably would not expertise on the subject of Communist subversion was probably unmatched is indicated by the consistent ferocity with which the Communist Party opposed the committee's work throughout its existence That the committee's The hearings conducted by the Un-American Activities Committee were, of course, marked by constant controversy, but they were far more carefully prepared a nd decorously conducted than most people realize. The truth of the matter is that even the most sensational of the committee's hearings, including the mass:-vely publicized investigations of Communist penetration of Hollywoo2 and government, were justifie d by legitimate concern over the extent of Communist subversion in key segments of American l.ife.
It was entirely proper, for example, that the committee, in 10 trying to apprise itself and the House of the me-hods which Communists used in advancing their revolutionary aims, should inquire into the manner in which Communists operate through front groups and other instrumentalities to raise huge sums of money ostensibly for worthy purposes while, in fact, the money was destined for the support of subversiv e activities. This was certainly the case in the Hollywood hearings, which demonstrated the extent to which the Party had tapped the unusually high salaries of major film figures for subversive, as against genuinely humanitarian, purposes. This was far fro m being the only accomplishment of the hearings, but it was a most signifi cant contribution to the fund of knowledge on Communist decep tion available to Congress in meeting its legislative responsi bilities in the internal security area COMMUNIST INFII T R ATION OF GOVFRNMFNT In like manner, the committee's investigations into Communist penetration of government were of incalculable value to the country. Through many years of painstaking effort, the Commit tee on Un-American Activities developed a record wh i ch documented in meticulous detail the pattern of Communist espionage against our government. The best-known such investigation, by all ac 1 counts, was the case of Alger Hiss, convicted of perjury in a trial that probably would never have been conducted h ad it not been for the dedication with which the committee and its staff pursued the facts of the case through a maze of deception and dissembling by Hiss, to say nothing of the obstructionism forth coming from the executive branch in the initial stages o f the investigation. One reads the transcript of the Hiss-Chambers hearings and is struck by the precision of much of the ques t&ning a phenomenon which is in stark contrast to the often advanced view of the committee members and staff as mere mind less Re d baiters, unconcerned with facts and obsessed with headline hunting the Committee on Un-American Activities, Alger Hiss would never have been brought to justice It is fair to say that had it not been for The committee's efforts were not, as has so often b e en contended conducted without regard to legislative aims legislation in the internal security field, the Internal Security Act of 1950, was based directly on the accumulated weight of the evidence developed over the years by the committee. There were als o numerous other bills referred to the committee, some of which were enacted into law and some of which were not; they all however, fell solidly within the committee's mandated juriisdiction and could not have been handled nearly as expertly by any 1 The p r incipal 11 other committee of the House including the Judiciary Committee Again, one must come to grips with the question of full-time as opposed to merely part-time, expertise in an area that is admittedly esoteric and constitutionally delicate, the law, both legislative and case, that has developed in the internal security field being highly specialized in nature But investigative effort was and is necessarytoany informed understanding of the problem of subversion in our time stated earlier, to contend t h at investigation of subversion is not a proper function.of Congress is to contend that Congress must be expected to legislate in a vacuum. This would; of course be dangerous in the extreme As a practical matter, Congress cannot reach an intelligent positi o n on the need for legislation to deal with subversive activity unless it has first acted to in form itself, in the most precise detail possible, as to the exact nature of the threat at hand. It is a classic irony that the surest way to bring about:.unwiTi s e:..and. repressive legislation against revolutionary threats to our institutions assuming Of course, that legislation is ever desired at all would be not to have a functioning committee to inform the House of the facts on which wise legislation ought to b e based As This need was never more apparent than during he 1969-1974 period when the committee was reconstituted as the House Com mittee on Internal Security. During this period, the committee examined the phenomenon of revolutionary violence in great de t ail Major investigations were conducted into the activi.ties of such violence-prone organizations as Students for a Democratic Society and the Black Panther Party, andreports were published which summarized the documented facts for Congress and the Americ a n people A 1973 study of political kidnapings was used by the Agency for International Development in helping foreign public safety officials meet the growing threat of terrorist violence and a 1974 staff study of terrorism remains perhaps the most compre h ensive public source of information on the background and activities of the principal terrorist organizations operating in recent times. This latter document is of special value because of its international emphasis, there being clear links between foreig n terrorist apparats and what most people seem to regard as purely domestic terrorism During the 1969-1972 period, the committee compiled a documented record showing the extent to which the principal anti-Vietnam war coalitions were dominated or controlled by Communists dedi cated, not to the achievement of peace, but to the bringing about of a Communist military victory in Southeast Asia. Legisla tion was proposed which was designed to restrict travel to hostile areas in time of undeclared war. These heari n gs were a signifi cant revelation of the realities of Communist activity against the United States during an especially crucial period in our 12 history, and they provided Congress and the American people with an excellent case study in the methods by whi ch Communists operate to advance the interests of foreign totalitarian govern ments against tile legitimate security interests of our country.
Other areas explored by the committee as the basis for possible legislation or oversight of the executive branch included at tempts by Communist groups to subvert our military, the operation of the Communist Party within the trade union movement, the emasculation of the Federal civilian employee loyalty-security program, and the conduct of domestic intelligence oper a tions for internal security purposes. This last hearing, one of the committee's final efforts prior to abolition, represented a serious effort to examine the problems faced by our government in acting properly against subversion while maintaining essen ti a l procedural safeguards to protect the rights of Andiiriduals and it is to be regretted that the effort could not continue as originally planned, especially when one notes the obvious anti domestic security bias of most such investigations during the past several years. Instead of reasoned effort-inzthis field based upon expertise, there has been a-steady sustai-ned 'wreck ing operation obviously aimed at crippling our domestic security capability INF IN GOVERNMFNT INTFRNAL SFCURITY CAPABIl ITy The 'averag e American probably has no real conception of the sad pass to which the government's internal security capability has come, but the evidence is all around us The House Committee on Internal Security has been abolished, and no other committee of the House h a s shown the slightest interest in assuming its functions in any meaningful manner The Senate Internal Security Subcommittee has been abolished and its jurisdiction added to that of the Subcommittee on Criminal Laws and Procedures of the Senate Judiciary C o mmittee, where the fate of the work is at best uncertain The Attorney General's list has been abolished leaving the government without one of the primary tools used over the years in operating the per sonnel security program a program which has also passe d largely into disuse in many cases The Subversive Activities Control Board, one of the principal agencies in our government's in ternal security efforts, has long since :geased 13 to exist, despite serious attempts to revamp the Board as a major part of a n overhauled and rein vigorated personnel security program The domestic security efforts of the Federal Bureau of Investigation have been all but crippled as a result of relentless harassment: both in and out of Congress coupled with the effects of what ma n y professionals see as wholly unrealistic in vestigative quidelines imposed by the Attorney General. Today, the FBI is forced to spend large amounts of its appropriated funds and tie up large numbers of its trained agents in processing free dom of informa t ion requests for informant data from Communists and their allies, rather than on domestic security work.-in defense of our country The domestic intelligence gathering activities of our military.services have been crippled de spite the need of the military to develop and maintain information on those individuals and groups that pose a potential 0.r actual threat in civil disturbance situations The Internal Security Division of the Depart ment of Justice has been abolished and reduced to a section within the Criminal Division.
Prosecukorial activity within the Department in the internal security field has all but ceased to exist.
In addition, there are no longer any functioning legislative committees in the internal security area at the state level.
The last such body, the California Senate Fact-Finding Subcom mittee on Un-American Activities, issued its final report in 19
70. Further;-intelligence units of state and local police departments have been driven out of existence through a campaign of harassmeri t by lawsuit carried out by a network .of .Co.mmunist front and other allied organizations Today, there is little if any meaningful internal security capa ability left eFthek.:at the national or at the state level.
Clearly, something must be done PROPOSALS TO RFVIVE INTERNAI SFCURITY COMMII IW During the 94th Congress, Congressman John Ashbrook (R-Ohio once the ranking minority member of the House Internal security Committee, introduced several identical resolutions to r establish the committee as a standing committee of the House t 14 with full subpoena power. These resolutions, despite Mr. Ashbrook's concern that the work be maintained, never got beyond the Rules Committee where they died at the expiration of the 9 4th Congress.
Now the effort has been renewed with the introduction by Mr. Ashbrook of House Resolution 15 and .with the introduction by Congressman Lawrence P. McDonald (D-Ga of House Resolution 48 and several identical resolutions with a total of almost 150 co-sponsors. Mr. Ashbrook has added his endorsement to the McDonald resolution as a co-sponsor, and the resolution has come to be known as the McDonald-Ashbrook resolution.
This resolution provides for the reestablishment of the House Committee on Internal Security as a standing committee of the House with its own professional staff and power of subpoena.
It also provides for the transfer to the revived committee of all the former Internal Security Committee files, thereby ef fectively mandating the p reservation of an invaluable collection of information on Communist and other subversive activities in the United States It is beyond dispute that terrorism and other forms of revolu tionary violence are on the increase. Congressman McDonald has, since th e abolition of the Internal Security Committee managed to publish in.the..Congressional Record a steady series of documented, accurate accounts of the activities of Moscow oriented, Trotskyite, Castroite, and Maoist Communist groups within the United State s . He has compiled documented exposes of Puerto Rican and other terrorist activities, always concen trating on the need for effective governmental action as against our currently impotent posture. Many people who have become increasingly concerned about th e decline in our government's ability to deal effectively and knowledgeably with terrorist violence and .other forms of subversion have begun to see in the steady growth of support for the McDonald-Ashbrook proposal both within the House of Representatives and elsewhere in the United States, a hopeful sign that at least one step toward correcting ,this dangerous situation may finally be possible By William T. Poole Policy Analyst