From................ National Catholic Reporter May 5, 1989

By- [the late] Penny Lernoux

FEATURE -

3 of 3 Page 14

An aggressive businessman and master of deception, Casey was a vain man who made a fortune as a New York City lawyer. He skirted the law on several occasions, as in his controversial dealings with fugitive financier Robert Vesco when Case was head of the Securities and Exchange Commission.

But this did not hurt his standing in Republican circles, and in 1980 he became Reagan's campaign manager. He received the CIA directorship as a reward for his services.

Both before and after Reagan nominated him to head the CIA, he was part of a small inner circle that chose cabinet appointees, and he continued to influence policy through "The Group," a select gathering of influential conservatives that also included James L. Buckley, the brother of William Buckley and a former New York senator, and Frank Shakespeare, chairman of the New Right's Heritage Foundation. Both Buckley and Shakespeare are Knights.

General Alexander Haig [Retired]. Best known for his role in Watergate, Haig was also involved in White House plotting to overthrow Chilean President Salvador Allende. [Another party to the plot was McCone, who, on leaving the CIA, joined the board of ITT, which offered the CIA $1 million for its anti-Allende activities.]

Commander of NATO under Carter and Reagan's first secretary of state, Haig set the tone for the Reagan administration by announcing that international terrorism would replace human rights as Washington's key concern. The mercurial secretary frequently fought with other members of Reagan's cabinet, including Jeane Kirkpatrick, then U.S. ambassador to the United Nations and also a right-wing Catholic.

William and James Buckley. A protege of Spellman, William Buckley Jr. gained the cardinal's support in launching his conservative Christian journal of opinion, National Review. William Casey was the lawyer who incorporated the publication in 1955. The sixth of 10 children born to an Irish-American oil tycoon, Buckley grew from a precocious child into a precocious adult a man who gloried in being a "professional and recreational snob," in the words of one critic.

But the enfant terrible of the 'National Review' and the television talk show "Firing Line" is more than an amusing gadfly. He was an apologist for Senator Joseph R. McCarthy [a position that endeared him to Spellman], and in the 1950s he worked as a CIA covert agent in Mexico City under E. Howard Hunt of Watergate fame. [Buckley, who became Hunt's lifelong friend, solicited funds to pay for his legal defense.] Like Haig and McCone, he supported the CIA's destabilization campaign against Allende's government, chiefly through disinformation.

One of the most influential men in the back corridors of Republican power, Buckley served as a political consultant to the National Security Council during the Reagan administration. His brother James, a former New York senator, was undersecretary of state for security affairs and president of Radio Free Europe and Radio Liberty, both with a history of employing Nazi collaborators. Under Buckley, they were accused of broadcasting anti-Semitic material and of providing positive descriptions of a Nazi unit involved in the murder of thousands of Jews in the western Ukraine.

Clare Boothe Luce. The grand dame of the Cold War and a Dame of Malta, Luce was a popular playwright and the wife of the publishing tycoon Henry R Luce, who cofounded 'Time' magazine.

[ Henry Luce, like Donovan, was very close to Cardinal Spellman, ....... see LUCE AND HIS EMPIRE by W.A. Swanberg,.... has a great picture of Luce, Spellman, and "the Vietnamese they both backed, Ngo Dihn Diem " ]

Although she originally supported Franklin Roosevelt, she switched to the Republicans, serving two terms in Congress, and in the 1950s became ambassador to Italy. She was prominent in the notorious China Lobby, the intellectual force behind Senator McCarthy's witch-hunts.

The lobby was so named because of its strong support for Chiang Kai-shek's regime, loyalty to which became a test of loyalty to the United States. Not only did the lobby succeed in smearing State Department dissenters as "Reds," including some of its leading China experts, it also set the stage for U.S. involvement in Vietnam by persuading the American public that the fall of any Asian territory to the communists was a sellout to communism. Fear of the domestic repercussions of such a charge was so great that both Democratic and Republican governments allowed themselves to be sucked into the quagmire of Southeast Asia.

Luce, who converted to Catholicism in mid-life, became a symbol of conservatism, giving her support to a multitude of right-wing causes. These included the contras' Nicaraguan Freedom Fund and the American Catholic Committee, in which William Simon was active. She also served on Reagan's Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board. Luce died in 1987 at 84.

William Simon, treasury secretary under Nixon and Ford and a Republican millionaire. He became a deal-maker on leaving government, using his privately held Wesray Corp. to buy up undervalued companies. Tense and impatient with subordinates, he was nevertheless regarded as a "smooth" operator by his peers in the boardroom.

Simon was a lavish contributor to Catholic institutions, ................. [ Simon reminds me of Charles Keating, of S & L bankruptcy fame ] .... particularly the Paterson, NJ., diocese, where he grew up in a middle-class family, and to his alma mater, Lafayette College in Pennsylvania. He also gave considerable support to conservative causes and institutions as head of the board of trustees of the John M. Olin Foundation, set up by the chemical and weapons manufacturer Olin Corp.

Under Simon's tutelage, and with the help of three other conservative foundations Sarah Scaife, Smith Richardson and J.M. the Olin Foundation in 1978 established a "clearinghouse" for corporate donations called the Institute for Educational Affairs [IEA]. The idea was to give business a stable of intellectuals financed by the corporations. IEA grantees were soon churning out books on subjects dear to the heart of corporate America, and some 50 conservative and neoconservative publications, including student newspapers, also received substantial funding.

But the major emphasis of the foundations, which increasingly worked together, was to establish university chairs in economics, law and other social sciences and to provide grants to colleges and think tanks to support the agenda.

Simon himself wrote two books in praise of private enterprise. He also found time to head the lay commission of the American Catholic Committee that attacked the bishops' letter on the economy and was prominent in the contra private aid network.

Frank Shakespeare. A broadcasting executive and personal friend of Reagan, Shakespeare served as executive vice president of CBS-TV, vice chairman of RKO General Inc., director of the U.S. Information Agency and what seemed a requisite position for American Knights director of Radio Free Europe and Radio Liberty.

[It was, and may still be, illegal in America, to publish transcripts of Radio Free Europe and Radio Liberty broadcasting ........ JP ]

He was also chairman of the New Right's Heritage Foundation, which played an important role in setting policy for Reagan's administration.

He was ambassador to Portugal from 1985 to 1987, when he replaced William Wilson, also a Knight of Malta, as ambassador to the Vatican following Wilson's fall from favor. Like Grace and Luce, he belonged to the Simon-Novak commission of the American Catholic Committee that tried to undercut the U.S. bishops' pastoral on the economy.

Cardinal Bernard Law, one of the highest-ranking conservatives in the American church and widely regarded as the pope's man in the United States.

Thomas Bolan, a partner in Saxe, Bacon and Bolan, the law firm of Senator McCarthy's deceased aide Roy Cohn. Among the firm's clients is the New York archdiocese. Bolan was chosen by Reagan to greet the pope on behalf of the U.S. government when John Paul stopped in Alaska en route from the Philippines.

Patrick J. Frawley Jr. Heir to the Schick razor fortune, Frawley is a well-known funder of right-wing Catholic causes, such as the Christian Anti-Communist Crusade. His wife, Geraldine, is publisher of the conservative 'National Catholic Register' and a Dame of Malta.

Lewis E. Lehrman, a convert. Lehrman's $60 million drugstore-chain fortune made him the moneybag of the New York Republican party after Nelson Rockefeller's death. In 1982 he made a bid for the governor's seat against Mario Cuumo in which he was unsuccessful, though supported by a cabal of Knights, including William Buckley, Grace and Bolan. Lehrman served the necessary time at Radio Free Europe and was also on the board of the Heritage Foundation. His Citizens for America lobbied extensively for the Nicaraguan contras.

Other prominent American Knights include:

Former Senator Jeremiah Denton [R-Ala.], who lost his seat in the 1986 election. Denton gained notoriety during his hearings on terrorism when prominent Catholic religious orders were attacked for preaching "violent Marxist revolution."

Senator Peter Domenici, Republican senator from New Mexico since 1972.

Walter J. Hickel, former governor of Alaska and former secretary of the interior. [re-elected gov. of AK in 1990 or so]

Admiral James D. Watkins, Reagan's hard-line chief of naval operations.

Frank V. Ortiz, U.S. ambassador to Argentina. He was removed from his post as ambassador to Guatemala by President Carter because he was considered "too conciliatory" to the military regime, according to the 'Washington Post.'

Chrysler chief Lee Iacocca.

Ralph Abplanalp, the aerosol magnate.

Baron Hilton of the hotel chain.

William S. Schreyer, chairman of Merrill Lynch.

Francis X Stankard, chief executive officer of the international division of Chase Manhattan. [i.e. billions of dollars loaned down South American Roman Catholic rat-holes ........ JP ]

Martin F. Shea, executive vice president of Morgan Guaranty Trust.

Joseph Brennan, former chairman of the executive committee of the Emigrant Savings Bank of New York. Brennan was a member of an independent commission appointed by the pope to study the relationship between the Vatican Bank and Italy's P-2 Masonic Lodge.

Richard R. Shinn, chairman of the Metropolitan Life Insurance Company.

The international membership list also reads like a Who's Who of wealth and power; it includes King Juan Carlos of Spain; Spiros S. Skouras, president of Prudential Lines; and Paul-Louis Weiller, a close friend of Richard Nixon, a member of the board of directors of Renault, and the former head of Air France.

Picture caption- Clare Boothe Luce in 1953 when she served as U.S. ambassador to Italy. [Pictures of Simon and Shakespeare]

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