In the US there is a little cottage industry of writers and campaigners who dedicate themselves to “clearing the names” of known Soviet spies like the Rosenberg’s and Alger Hiss.
In New Zealand, the Soviet networks of the cold war period, still remain largely unexposed, so their defenders are fewer.
In an article in the October North&South McNeish both exposes and “covers up” some of the communist networks of the ’50s.
It has long been my contention that Wellington’s Victoria University, like Cambridge in England, was the epicentre of Soviet agent recruitment in this country.
Starting possibly as early as the 1920s, former members of the university’s Communist Party linked “Free Discussions Club” began to infiltrate academia and government.
In the ’40s and early ’50s former members of the Communist Party controlled Victoria University “Socialist Club” infiltrated several government departments, recruited mainly by the radicals of the previous generation.
Foreign Affairs was a major target and the Department’s head, Sir Alister McIntosh, a close associate of Sutch, gathered around him a clique of covert Marxists, who came to dominate the Department and its policy direction.
McIntosh was almost certainly a Soviet agent and his disastrous legacy remains with us to this day.
McNeish’s article is very much worth reading. In it he names many probable members of the network. Unfortunately rather than exposing them, it offers up an array of pathetically weak excuses for their behaviour.
It is a “snow job” of Antarctic blizzard proportions. I believe McNeish is either appallingly naive, incredibly stupid, or has some vested interest in keeping the truth obscured.
Inadvertently perhaps, McNeish has done the country a favour by bringing the issues and personalities into the open. He has revealed some very interesting pieces of information, that have confirmed much of what I already knew or suspected and has also opened new avenues of enquiry.
Over the next few weeks I will analyse McNeish’s article in a series of posts. This will be done in “fisk” form.
This is not just an academic exercise. I believe some of these people have done New Zealand huge damage and deserve to be exposed. I hope I can help to kick that process along.
More importantly, New Zealanders need to understand how badly this country was infiltrated by covert communist networks, remnants of which may be still influencing this country today.