Communist Party & The Negro (1953-1956) (1956) by FBI
This October 1956 FBI monograph was used by the FBI to train its Agents.
The monograph addresses many of the falsehoods which have been presented by white supremacist and extreme right spokespersons for many decades.
Often, incomplete or misleading comments by J. Edgar Hoover have been used by extreme right individuals and organizations (such as the John Birch Society and the White Citizens Council movement) to discredit and disparage our entire civil rights movement and its leadership.
In 1965, J. Edgar Hoover described the civil rights movement as “a great and too long neglected cause of human rights” in our country. [FBI Law Enforcement Bulletin, Introduction, April 1965].
Hoover observed in a December 1964 speech, that:
“Let me emphasize that the American civil rights movement is not and has never been dominated by the communists–because the overwhelming majority of civil rights leaders in this country, both Negro and white, have recognized and rejected communism as a menace to the freedoms of all.” [J. Edgar Hoover speech, 12/12/64, Our Heritage of Greatness, pg 7 – Hoover speech before Pennsylvania Society and the Society of Pennsylvania Women; bold emphasis on “not” and “never” in original document].
In November 1966, Hoover received an inquiry from a self-identified JBS member who saw the above quote in a letter-to-the-editor of his local newspaper and the Bircher wanted to know if the quote was an accurate reflection of Hoover’s judgment both in 1964 and 1966. Hoover replied affirmatively and concluded: “This position remains essentially unchanged today.” [FBI-HQ 62-104401, serial #3021, 11/15/66 Hoover reply to incoming Bircher inquiry].
Also see following Hoover comments:
“Communist leaders have been complaining bitterly about the turnover of Negro members and of the Party’s inability to indoctrinate any large number of Negroes. Information we have received follows a regular pattern: Negroes are rejecting Communism.” [J. Edgar Hoover, Masters of Deceit, 1958, page 232]
“It would be absurd to suggest that the aspirations of Negroes for equality are communist inspired. This is demonstrably not true…” [J. Edgar Hoover speech, Faith In Freedom, 12/4/63, page 6].
“In general, legitimate civil rights organizations have been successful in excluding Communists, although a few have received covert counseling from them and have even accepted them as members…The CP is not satisfied with this situation and is continually striving to infiltrate the civil rights movement at every level.” [J. Edgar Hoover, U.S. News and World Report, 11/1/65, page 46].
“It is no secret that one of the bitterest disappointments to communistic efforts in this Nation has been their failure to lure our Negro citizens into the party. Despite every type of propaganda boomed at our Nation’s Negro citizens, they have never succumbed to the party’s saccharine promises of a Communist ‘Utopia’. This generation and generations to come for many years owe a tremendous debt to our Negro citizens who have consistently refused to surrender their freedoms for the tyranny of communism.” J. Edgar Hoover testimony before U.S. Senate Internal Security Subcommittee, 01/17/60, reprinted in March 1960 FBI Law Enforcement Bulletin, page 7].
Also see the following comment by the House Committee on Un-American Activities:
“The Communist Party in the United States of America, in its continuing efforts to infiltrate and destroy the Constitutional government of this country, has made the minority groups in the United States prime targets of attack…The fact that the Communist conspiracy has experienced so little success in attracting the American Negro to its cause reflects favorably on the loyalty and integrity of the vast majority of the 15,000,000 Negro citizens. To attest to this fact we restate the words of Mr. J. Edgar Hoover, Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, which appeared in the Congressional Record of January 26, 1953:
‘We recently reviewed the origins of 5,395 of the leading members of the Communist Party. The results were most interesting. Only 411 were Negroes but of the remaining 4,984, we found that 4,555, (or 91 ½ percent) were either of foreign birth or born of foreign parents…The fact that only 411 Negroes were found in this select group is strong evidence that the American Negro is not hoodwinked by these false messiahs.’
“In furtherance of its traitorous design the Communist Party of the United States has exploited issues of genuine concern to the American Negro and all Americans.” [Committee on Un-American Activities, U.S. House of Representatives, “The American Negro in the Communist Party”, 12/22/54, page 1].
And in its “Conclusion”, the Committee observed:
“From the facts set forth in this report, the committee can only conclude that the vast majority of Americans of the Negro race have consistently resisted the blandishments and treacherous promises offered them by the Communist conspirators.” [Committee on Un-American Activities, U.S. House of Representatives, “The American Negro in the Communist Party” 12/22/54, page 13]
In 1961, the California Senate Fact-Finding Subcommittee on Un-American Activities reported that:
“The Communist Party in this country has, from its inception, endeavored to attract Negroes to its ranks. At one stage of its existence the Party even undertook to establish a Negro nation in the deep South and through its Southern Conference for Human Welfare made an all-out effort to recruit large numbers of the Negro people. This attempt, like the Communist attempt to penetrate and control the N.A.A.C.P., resulted in failure.” [Eleventh Report of the California Senate Fact-Finding Subcommittee on Un-American Activities, 1961, page 136].