Document Type: 
Document Number (FOIA) /ESDN (CREST): 
Release Decision: 
Original Classification: 
Document Page Count: 
Document Creation Date: 
December 16, 2016
Document Release Date: 
December 27, 2004
Sequence Number: 
Case Number: 
Publication Date: 
July 26, 1967
Content Type: 
PDF icon CIA-RDP75-00149R000700150001-1.pdf201.51 KB
' e ~ 1j(~'L'?~ j ~c~l~vtE'.G~ July 26, 196Approved Fo w$SI Q,1 5Rfc*fMRz5 64"p700150001-1 A 3761 creasing in importance, but as yet re-. Soon thereafter an area representative of there's nothing like admitting a mistake. It's ceiving slight consideration, of the ad- the Corps visited the group and read a letter 'disarming, ..nd It clears the air, visability of imposing the same restric- announcing that it was improper for Peace The latest public omcial to discover this is bons on, public employees engaged in Corps personnel to identify themselves as the able director of the Peace Corps, Jack different activities. I suggest, Mr. members of the Corps in Signing such a Vaughn, who has just saved himself of a lot Speaker, that neither reason ri0r logic declaration. of future trouble by sensibly reversing a Murray thereupon drafted a lonely state- ruling which abridged the free speech *rights dictate that the rules concerning one ment, asserting that the restriction violated of Peace Corps volunteers stationed around employed in a certain governmental ac- both his personal rights and the spirit of the the world. tivity necessarily be the same as those' Corps. He sent copies to Peace Corps chief tian It won't be necessary now for the American applicable to one employed by that same Jack Vaughn, two other officials stationed in Civil Liberties Union or others to test in court government in a different activity. Chile, and The Times. the constitutionality of a recent order by Bruce Murray, until his recent dis- About a week later a newspaper in Con- Vaughn against volunteers openly criticizing missal, was a Peace Corps volunteer In cepcion (El Sur) published a UPI dispatch U.S. Vietnam policy, and in Identifying them- Chile. As reported by James Wechsler in describing the Peace Corps edict prohibiting selves as Peace Corps workers in doing so. the New York rePost, ported he was dismissed be, volunteers from revealing their connection In It still leaves in some doubt, however, the signing any Vietnam dissent and reporting propriety of firing Bruce Murray, a 25-year- cause he authorized a Chilean newspaper that one member of the group had asked to old volunteer from Newport, Rhode Island, to publish his letter criticising a recent have his name removed. At this point Mur- who protested against our Vietnam policy in Peace Corps ruling which declared it im- ray committed his explosive sin. He gave a a letter to a newspaper in Chile where he has proper for Peace Corps volunteers to sign, copy of his letter to El Sur, which published been serving. Despite Vaughn's having as Peace Corps volunteers, a "it the next day. In doing so he made it plain rescinded his original order, Murray will not tions Now" petition. Although so gotia - that he was speaking only for himself. be rehired. tin N as to appear bo, sign- Within 48 hours he was interrupted at an On the other hand, Peace Corps officials orchestra rehearsal by a Peace Corps aide say there will now be no punitive action Ing said petition constituted, according and informed that he had been recalled to against the five young volunteers in Ecuador to,the Peace Corps' directive, an inter- Washington. There were a series of amiable who !wrote a letter to the New York Times fergnce in Chilean politics, but futile meetings with Vaughn, and his after' the Murray dismissal in which they As Indicated by Clayton Pritchey in an deputies. Murray refused to agree to change said, "We feel obliged to express openly our article in the New York Post Mr. Jack H. his course and was politely but firmly "terrni disagreement with the war in Vietnam, and Vaughn, Director of the Peace Corps, has nated." His present hope is to return to work to protest the Peace Crops ruling which de- reversed the policy as it applies to publi- for the University of Concepcion if his draft flies us the right to identify ourselves as board approves. volunteers when taking stands on U.S. for- cations in U.S, news media. Why did Murray fight se hard for the right eign policy Issues." But what of Bruce Murray? Given the to identify himself as a Peace Corpsman in Murray was one of 92 volunteers in Chile facilities of modern communication such challenging our Vietnam policy? Perhaps the who were warned last month to disassociate as the Associated Press and the United better question is: why did anyone in Wash- themselves officially from a circular attack- Press International, is the difference be- ington (was it the State Dept.) Insist that he ing the Vietnam war or face disciplinary tween publishing a letter, critical of U.S. be punished and thereby dramatize a signa- charges. Vaughn said he had notified the , in a U.S. newspaper and publish- ture that would otherwise have received group in writing that they were free "as in- policy Ing ol that same letter in a host, publish- lash- little notice? - dividuals" to express their opinions to the p Murray plausibly contends that his credi- President, to the Congress, or to the U.S. foreign, country newspaper so great as .bility in Chile (where left-wing forces con- press if they "completely avoid" public iden- to warrant the dismissal of one who tinually try to brand the Corps as a nest of- tification of their "Peace Corps connections." chooses the latter course? , /'Imperialist spices" and CIA operatives) was They were told that "letters to the U.S. press For the benefit of my Colleagues, I at stake. The formal contention on which his for possible publication cannot include your suggest serious consideration of the fol- dismissal was based-that he was "interfer- Peace Corps connection." lowing articles-the first by James ? ing" in Chilean politics-was a bureaucratic ' The justification for firing Murray, but not Wechsler in the New York Post of July fantasy; the fact of life is that no significant the five from Ecuador, is that the Ecuador W W the second in the New York Post in the segment in Chilean politics supports the U.S. volunteers placed their letter In an Ameri- , Y position in Vietnam. can newspaper, while Murray had his pub- New York Post of July 21: "When I left," Murray says, "everybody I lished in a Spanish-language newspaper in [From the New York Post, July 18, 1967] , knew was In favor of what I was doing-pro- Chile. Vaughn's new order, which goes out to A BATTLE Or THE PEACE CORPS fessors, the people I lived with, even people the field this week, still forbids foreign pub-. (By James A. Wechsler) I met casually in the street. I never really lication. met anyone there who backed our escalation In this connection, the agency says it Is Echoes of what will inevitably begbme in Vietnam." maintaining its "long-standing policy which known as the "Bruce Murray Case" nay More recently five Peace Corps volunteers prohibits volunteers from speaking on or en- haunt the Peace Corps for a long time. In Ecuador, led by Paul Cowan, published a gaging In the politics of the host country to Murray talked quietly yesterday about the letter in The Times proclaiming their din- which they are assigned." events leading to his recent dismissal from agreement with our Vietnam stand. It Is a Nevertheless, Vaughan appears to have gone the Corps unit In Chile. He is a light-haired, measure of-the surviving decency and ambi- a long way to meet the objections of the genial, neatly-dressed young man, quite in- valence of the Corps' leadership that their Civil Liberties Union which, In a message to distinguishable in outward aspect from am- heresy will not be punished. President Johnson said, "The importance of bitious contemporaries who drink martinis In response to inquiry, a Corps spokesman protecting dissent in the midst of tension, on the bar-car after a day's labor in Wall in Washington said yesterday that the dis- which you yourself have endorsed on many Street. He has neither the stereotyped tones tinction was that they had been cleared be. occasions, points up the need for pr m t nor brooding demeanor of a "case." p cause they had not carried their message to action by the Administration in guaranteeing But the issues stirred by the fate of this the press In Ecuador and that'much of their Peace Corpsmen their First Amendment political war casualty have created problems protest was aimed at the Peace Corps itself, rights." of conscience for many other volunteers The point is well-intentioned if not well- Also in a message to Vaughn personally, the and for serious men in the leadership of the reasoned. ACLU said: "A long line of Supreme Court Peace Corps, One hopefully concludes that rational men decisions makes perfectly clear that govern- Murray joined the Corps In 1965 immedi- have recognized the peril of a full-scale re- ment employment cannot be made contin- ately after receiving a master's degree in bellion in the Corps and are finding ways gent upon the relinquishment of the First music at UCLA and, after training, was as- to justify abstention from -further reprisals. Amendment right to petition the govern. signed to Concepcion, Chile, In October of So perhaps 25-year-old Bruce Murray ment and to express opinion" that year. He taught music at the university didn't really lose the larger battle. The sad An Important part of the Peace Corps' there; he worked with the university or- question is why any Washington bureaucrat "magic," according to Harris Wofford, chestra and spent another part of his time ever believed anything could be gained by formerly the associate director of the agency, in choral exercises with juveniles held In local opening fire on him and undermining the "has been that its volunteers have been prisons. He also devoted hours to teaching integrity and character of an organization freer agents than ever seen before in any, English at the local YMCA. Throughout this that has been-by deed rather than word- bureaucracy." interval he lived In a Chilean slum. The the Worthiest voice of America In recent Volunteers, he says, go abroad not as am. diversity and dedication of his activity offer yeam bassadors, or propaganda agents, or even civil a renewed glimpse of the anonymous services i. ' servants. "They go as citizens free to agree being rendered by thousands of volunteers in, [From the New York Post, July 21, 19671 or disagree with their President ... to agree so many places. disagree with American official Then, Iasi May after 'long introspection' . . ? THE PEACE CORPS Rmuv6 or policies ... about Vietnam, he lost his. anonymity, He (By Clayton Richey) they are making visible what, for too many and several others signed a !'Negotiations- WASH xazoN,rnpolitis~, ss the late John invisible about America-our relatively open Now" petition circulated among volunteers. V. Kennedyand Piorello La Guardia proved. , society." Approved.For Relea?e 2005101/05 : CJA-RDP75-000150001-.1 V