Hugh Holmes Norton,
Eleanor Katz, Elliott Macis,
Mary Sue Valenti,
INT: Did you later have contact with the Black Panthers in Oakland.
INT: In what sense had the situation changed for African Americans.
FRANK: Well, I mean you have to, so you have to begin with the distinction between the situation African Americans in the South and the situation African Americans in the North and that's it basic, that, that, that's the first, that's the first difference. In the South Civil Rights Movement was successful in ending this caste system. It had grown out of the defeat of reconstruction., it had lasted in the South, so that there was, the Civil Rights Movement was successful in busting the caste system in the South., in the North, however in the Northern ghettos the Civil Rights Movement was a remarkably unsuccessful in improving the situation of Northern African American ghetto residents, there wasn't the same kind of caste system to bust, there was more an economic question and so the successes of the Civil Rights Movement really didn't mean much in the North, in the Northern African American Community except tremendous rising of expectations of possibilities of, of what might happen, so in the North also, it's also connected to certain developments in the South with Snick, but basically in the North arose the Black Power Movement although the Black Power Movement the first people to talk about Black Power were Snick in the South, it was really in the North where it took off and the Black Power Movement had a lot of different manifestations some of them I mean Poivit was a mass of rebellions throughout the Black Detroit, Los Angeles, New York, which were expressions of revolt, I mean they're clearly rebellions the way I understand them as rebellions are called riots, but the way I understand them is as rebellions and clear expressions of revolt but at the same time didn't really do much to what they did was they produced the war on poverty and reaction to them so it's a mistake to say that they didn't do much, they did something, they produced the war on poverty, they produced all these, all this money that went into, went into the cities to try to, to try to help the conditions of African Americans. As a matter of fact this is really interesting and this is sort of a little bit off the subject but it is really interesting to contrast the war on poverty which was produced by the Black riots of the 1960's and which meant an infusion of money into the Black communities we at the absence of any kind of war on poverty after the Los Angeles riots, after the, in when the riot was in 1992, 1992 and there was no war on, there was no money put in, there was certain tax breaks given to corporations to move into East Los Angeles, that was it, in the South Central, that was it but no war on poverty which shows like a whole different attitude of the American Corporate Political structure as to what to do about Black people in this Country. I mean the nine neglect really won, the nine neglect which was talked about by Moynahan I believe in the, in the early seventies, that, that attitude really won, let the ghettos rot, but that, that's jumping from 19 68 to 1992., so the rebellions did produce the rebellions did produce some monies from the Federal Government but they didn't really solve the situation of Black people. the Blank Panther Party which was one of the, one of the leaders of the Black Power Movement were explicitly Socialist and openly armed and represented in the Black community not only were they Socialist and that were they armed but they had real support in the Black community in, in Oakland, tremendous deep support. They also had support in Black communities in other parts of the United States but nothing like Oakland, they had had, had they had early morning breakfast programs where kids could go to kids could go to the Black Panther places and eat breakfast before they went to school, they had, they policed the police in the Black community, they were, they were integrated into the Black community and fought alongside the Black community in their sort of daily needs and they had tremendous suppo
INT: I am going to throw in a thought about the effectiveness of actions. INT: How effective do you think that the protest at the Oakland induction center was.
INT: I am going to throw in a thought about the effectiveness of actions.
INT: How effective do you think that the protest at the Oakland induction center was.
FRANK: Well, the Anti War Movement in general in the United States was tremendously successful., the at the Oakland induction center what that did, what the demonstration in front of the Oakland induction center what that did was to initiate kind of a new stage of the Anti War Movement which was a basically as long as the war continues there is going to be major disruptions by young people across the United States which continued to happen. It happened so the Oakland induction center was followed by the big demonstration in Washington did you see the famous Pentagon demonstration happened within six months of it and then there was throughout the whole rest of the time of the war in Vietnam there was major, major disruptions during the war and those disruptions put limits on the American, on America's ability to wage that war in the after the Ted offensive in 1968 there was a serious reconsideration on the highest levels of the American Government, Acheson was brought in and Johnson brought all the folks together to discuss what to do next because the Ted offensive clearly had blown away their any belief that their current strategy had been successful and the Government said that they'd need a million troops if they were going to win the land war. Remember at that time they thought they were going to win the land, if they were going to win the land war they are going to need a million troops and there were plans for doing that. At that, at that conference which lasted a couple of weeks J Edgar Hoover said to Johnson that if you try to get a million troops out of the United States he could not ensure the domestic security of the United States and that was the power of the Anti War Movement and out of that discussion came the decision to stop the land war. Johnson retired, which was an expression of the failure of his policy, he didn't run for re-election, they'd started pulling back of the troops and that phase of the war was over, it was over primarily because of the success of the Vietnamese of the Viet Cong and the North Vietnamese Armies, but secondarily because of our ability in this Country to put limits on that war, ability which I personally am very proud to have been a part of., now they tried to win the war subsequently through the air for several years and we weren't able to stop that, but we did stop the land war, we helped to stop the land war. Now, I'd also like to something another thing about the way history is, is miss, is miswritten and that is about the relationship between the Anti War Movement and American soldiers., some idea has developed, I don't know where it originally started, I think it started in a Hollywood movie but I'm not sure where it originally started, that the basic reaction, relationship between the Anti War Movement and American, American soldiers was that the Anti War Movement spit on American soldiers. I have, I have yet to hear, I, I don't know where that supposedly one incident came from, I don't think it actually ever happened, it certainly did not characterize the relationship between American Anti War Movement and American soldiers. In fact, just the contrary was the case at the same time that we were encouraging people not to go into the Army we also encouraged people who were in the Army to find ways to resist and were quite supportive of people in the Army an example of this was not talked about too much but was very success, one of the most successful Anti War activities was young people from the new Left would go to places where there were Army bases both in the United States, there was a very successful one in, in, in Okinawa and another one in Guam, you'd go to the community, ride around the base and you'd set up a coffee shop. The coffee shop supposed the people could support themselves through the coffee shop and then at the coffee shop you would have an opportunity to talk to soldiers to talk to soldiers about the war and to exchange ideas wit