Researchers Trevor Loudon and Cliff Kincaid are warning the Senate to examine CIA Director Leon Panetta’s anti-defense record, associations with identified communists, and support for the Marxist Institute for Policy Studies before voting on his nomination as Secretary of Defense. A vote could come as early as Tuesday in the Senate Armed Services Committee.
“Panetta opposed President Reagan’s military build-up in the 1980s, which was a decisive factor in the ultimate fall of Soviet-style communism, and he was on the side of the communists in Central America,” they said in a joint statement. “There is every reason to believe, based on his public record, that he will cut major weapons systems and even military personnel as defense secretary, putting the U.S. into a weak international position vis-à-vis China and radical Islamists in the critical years ahead.”
Loudon and Kincaid point to disturbing evidence of Panetta’s long-time friendly relationship with identified Communist Party figure Hugh DeLacy, who had ties to identified communist spies Solomon Adler and Frank Coe and accused spy John Stewart Service. The evidence shows that, in addition to his friendly ties to communist spies, DeLacy had traveled to Communist China and Sandinista Nicaragua in support of those regimes.
This evidence – and more – is contained in the “Hugh DeLacy Papers” reviewed and obtained by Loudon during a fact-finding trip to the University of Washington, where the material is stored. Kincaid reviewed evidence of DeLacy’s communist background in hearings conducted on “Communist Political Subversion” by the House Committee on UnAmerican Activities and “Un-American Activities in California” by the California Senate Fact-Finding Committee on Un-American Activities. It is not apparent that any of this material has been obtained or reviewed by the Senate or the FBI.
In addition to this evidence, which involves communist espionage activities, Loudon and Kincaid say that Panetta’s record as a member of Congress, especially during the 1980s, must be probed in order to understand what policies he will pursue as defense secretary. They point to a series of “Dear Hugh” and “Dear Leon” letters that reveal that Panetta and DeLacy shared the same ideological perspective on domestic issues, such as cutting the defense budget, and foreign affairs, in terms of failing to confront the challenge of international communism. The letters also reveal that Panetta, as a member of Congress, provided DeLacy with a summary of a document on military affairs that was not available to the public. Another letter from Panetta to DeLacy refers to “trying to locate the documents you requested” and providing them “as soon as they are received in my office.”
These letters to an identified communist — named as such in Congressional hearings as well as by Communist attorney John Abt – raise questions as to whether Panetta was safeguarding sensitive information he may have had access to.
“After Obama’s selection of Panetta as CIA director,” note Loudon and Kincaid, “observers commented on his lack of intelligence experience. Attention should have been focused on his relationship with DeLacy, which raises the question of whether he is entitled to have access to classified information of the highest order as CIA director. The DeLacy connection suggests that Panetta was particularly responsive to a ‘constituency,’ as he called it in one letter, detrimental to the national security interests of the United States. It is this same ‘constituency,’ which includes members of Democratic Socialists of America and the neo-Marxist New American Movement, as well as the Communist Party, which backed Barack Obama’s political career. This commonality has to be the explanation of why Obama picked Panetta for the CIA post. They were ideological soul-mates.”
In terms of national defense, even before Reagan took office, Panetta was complaining about “wasteful spending that goes into needless weapons systems,” according to one letter to DeLacy. In 1981, after Reagan took office, Panetta attacked “sharp increases for defense proposed by the Reagan Administration” as “a blank check to the Pentagon…” This was the build-up that confronted Soviet power in Europe and around the world.
As Soviet- and Cuban-backed communists were vying for complete control of Central America, after having already seized the government of Nicaragua through the Sandinista takeover under President Jimmy Carter, Panetta sent a “Dear Hugh” letter saying that “I have always been a strong and vocal opponent of the Reagan Administration’s slide toward military intervention in Nicaragua.” Such a stance effectively put Panetta on the side of the communists in Central America, backed by the Soviet Union and Cuba.
In fact, Reagan was reacting to international communism’s attempt to take the countries of the region one by one. In response, Reagan liberated Grenada from foreign-backed communists, backed the democratically-elected government of El Salvador, and supported anti-communist freedom fighters in Nicaragua. But Panetta boasted to DeLacy in one letter that he had even voted against a House amendment declaring that the introduction of Soviet MIG fighters in Central America was a national security threat to the United States.
Another disturbing aspect of the Panetta record involves his close collaboration with the Washington, D.C.-based Institute for Policy Studies (IPS), a Marxist think tank supportive of communist regimes such as Cuba and Sandinista Nicaragua. Indeed, Chilean Marxist Orlando Letelier, exposed as a Cuban agent by documents found in his briefcase after his death, was operating under the cover of the IPS.
Panetta was a member of the Congressional committee that celebrated the 20th anniversary of IPS in 1983, the same year the organization launched a series of conferences with the Institute of the U.S.A. and Canada, a front for Soviet intelligence activities.
The DeLacy relationship involves more than DeLacy himself, since Panetta addressed one letter to “Dear Hugh and Dorothy,” a reference to DeLacy’s wife, a former senior Communist Party activist in Missouri, and identified in a congressional report as an alleged organizer for the Party in California. Panetta spoke at Hugh DeLacy’s memorial service in 1986 and put a tribute to both of them in the Congressional Record in 1983. “I am very pleased to transmit to you the enclosed tributes from the Congressional Record,” Panetta wrote to them. In turn, DeLacy wrote a “Dear Leon” letter to Panetta thanking him not only for the tribute but for attending a private “celebration” with them. DeLacy quickly added, however, that he wanted Panetta to turn his attention to “the need for cutting back the military boondoggle…”
While the Senate Armed Services Committee is the proper venue for examining Panetta’s anti-defense record, the Senate Intelligence Committee is the body that should have probed the Panetta-DeLacy relationship, DeLacy’s ties to identified communist spies Solomon Adler and Frank Coe and accused spy John Stewart Service, and Panetta’s handling of sensitive information as a member of Congress. But there is no record of the Senate Intelligence Committee having done so.
“Panetta’s nomination was rushed through the Senate for CIA director and is now being rushed through the Senate for Secretary of Defense,” Loudon and Kincaid said. “This is not the way national security and intelligence matters should be handled by Congress. We are waiting for just one member of the Senate to put a hold on this nomination.”
They urge American citizens to contact their Senate members immediately at 202-224-3121
(Loudon, who runs the New Zeal blog http://trevorloudon.com/, and Kincaid, president of America’s Survival, Inc. www.usasurvival.org , specialize in researching and reporting on anti-American extremist political movements with foreign connections, funding, and sponsorship.)