Edward C. Carter

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Edward Clark Carter (June 9, 1878 – November 9, 1954) was an educator and officer of the YMCA, 1902-1922, of the Institute of Pacific Relations, 1926-1948, and chairman of the Russian War Relief Fund, 1941-1945.[1] In 1929 he published a book, China and Japan in Our University Curricula.


According to Carter's replacement as IPR Secretary General, Clayton Lane, Carter "was requested to resign" his leadership of the IPR "because of Carter's favorable attitude toward Russia."[2]

According to FBI files, Edward C. Carter described himself as a "fellow traveler."[3] Among the positions he held were:

According to FBI files, Carter was reported to "actively uphold Russia's policies"[8] and displayed "every indication that he has been closely associated with leading members of the Communist Party in the United States."[9] For example, in 1938, Carter recommended Communist Party Secretary Earl Browder to a Canadian club as a possible speaker, saying that Browder, "contrary to the public view, is 100% American."[10]

In a 1938 letter, IPR Trustee Owen Lattimore congratulated Carter: "I think that you are pretty cagey in turning over so much of the China section of the inquiry to Asiaticus, Han-seng and Chi. They will bring out the absolutely essential radical aspects, but can be depended on to do it with the right touch..."[11] “Asiaticus” was the Polish-born Comintern agent Moses Wolf Grzyb, alias M. G. Shippe (or Schiffe), alias Hans (or Heinz) Muëller (or Moëller);[12] “Han-seng” refers to refers to Chen Han-seng, a Comintern recruit and "a member of the well-known Richard Sorge Spy Ring";[13][14][15][16] “Chi” was Red Chinese secret agent Chi Chao-ting (Ji Chaoding).[17]

Also in 1938, when many other formerly loyal friends of the Soviet Union were becoming disillusioned by Stalin’s Great Purge,[18] Carter defended the show trials, saying the Russian people “are thankful that their government has at last been firm in dealing with what they regard as Fascist-supported intrigue to overthrow the Government of the Soviet Union.” This apologia was reprinted in full in Soviet Russia Today, which identified Carter as a frequent contributor to “our leading periodicals.”[19]

Carter endorsed the Hitler-Stalin pact, according to the socialist magazine New Leader,[20] but after the German invasion of the Soviet Union, he "proposed a toast to the success of the Soviet resistance to the Nazis and referred to Russia as the 'beloved Motherland of so many of us here tonight'"[21] and made a speech describing "the fight being waged by the Russian people in the defense of the democracies."[22]

Louis Budenz, former managing editor of the Daily Worker, told FBI investigators "that he had numerous dealings with Carter, while on the 'Daily Worker' staff, and that these dealings 'were on a plane based on the fact that he was a member of the Communist Party.'"[23] On April 22, 1948, Budenz advised, "Edward C. Carter was certainly under Communist Party discipline. I recall Jack Stachel, member of the national board of the Communist Party, stating that "Because the Russian War Relief Program is not going right, we will have to order Carter to realize his responsibility and continue his job. He is not running a community fund; he will have to live up to his Party responsibility."[24]

One teletype in the FBI's IPR file cites a source (redacted) to the effect that there was, since 1936, "a concerted effort to install men who had been screened by [Frederick Vanderbilt] Field or Carter or other members of the IPR into the State Dept.[25]

Another memo in the file, by an IPR regional officer, alleges that Carter "may have been connected with the Communists in some way.... his political views are way to the left.... I have little confidence in his basic honesty."[26]


  1. Biographical Note, Edward Clark Carter Papers, Columbia University Libraries.
  2. FBI Report: Institute of Pacific Relations, Espionage - R., April 11, 1950, p. 75 (IPR file, Section 8)
  3. FBI file: Institute of Pacific Relations, Section 2, PDF p. 3
  4. Ibid., PDF p. 17
  5. Ibid., Section 1, PDF p. 32
  6. Ibid., PDF p. 7
  7. Ibid.
  8. Ibid., Section 1, PDF p. 33
  9. Ibid., Section 2, PDF p. 3
  10. "The Case Against I.P.R.," Time, September 3, 1951
  11. The Right Touch,” Time, August 6, 1951
  12. Robert P. Newman, Owen Lattimore and the "Loss" of China (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1992), ISBN 0-520-07388-6, p. 452
  13. Maochen Yu, "Chen Hansheng's Memoirs and Chinese Communist Espionage," Cold War International History Project Bulletin, 6-7 (Winter 1995/1996), p. 274
  14. "Legendary Life of Chen Hansheng," China Daily, June 30, 2003
  15. John Gittings, "Chen Han-seng: Chinese social scientist who witnessed a century of change," The Guardian, April 1, 2004
  16. Stephen Mackinnon, "The Life and Times of Chen Hansheng (1897-2004)"
  17. S. Rpt. 2050, 82d Cong., 2d sess., Serial 11574, pursuant to S. Res. 306, Institute of Pacific Relations (Hearings July 25, 1951-June 20, 1952 by the Subcommittee to Investigate the Administration of the Internal Security Act and Other Internal Security Laws of the Committee on the Judiciary)
  18. Frank A. Warren, Liberals and Communism: The Red Decade Revisted (Columbia University Press, 1993), ISBN 0231084455, pp. 170-71
  19. IPR file, Op. cit., Section 1, PDF p. 34
  20. Ibid., Section 2, PDF p. 4
  21. Ibid., Section 1, PDF p. 32
  22. Ibid., PDF p. 33
  23. FBI memorandum: F.J. Baumgardner to H.B. Fletcher, Institute of Pacific Relations, Internal Security - C, August 12, 1948, p. 2 (IPR file, Section 3)
  24. FBI Report: Institute of Pacific Relations, Internal Security - C, July 22, 1949, p. 37 (IPR file, Section 4)
  25. April 5, 1950 teletype, San Francisco to FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover and Special Agent in Charge, Baltimore, "Owen Lattimore, Espionage - R.," p. 1 (IPR file, Section 4)
  26. "Memorandum on Communism and the IPR," from Charles P. Rockwood, Executive Director, IPR Pacific Northwest Division, to Dr. Raymond B. Allen, President, University of Washington, November 9, 1948, p. 3 (FBI IPR file, Section 5)

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